Download: Chinese hackers target telecommunications and aviation shows

Download: Chinese hackers target telecommunications and aviation shows

This is today’s edition The Download, our weekday newsletter that provides a daily dose of what’s happening in the world of technology.

Chinese hackers took advantage of years-old software flaws to break into the telecom giants

News: Hackers hired by the Chinese government have broken into a number of major telecommunications companies around the world in a cyber espionage campaign that lasted at least two years, according to a new tip from U.S. security agencies.

How did that happen: Hackers have reportedly breached their targets by exploiting old and well-known critical vulnerabilities in popular network hardware. After gaining a foothold within their targets, hackers used compromised devices to gain full access to the online traffic of a number of private companies and government agencies, U.S. officials said. They did not state the names of those affected by the campaign, nor did they explain the impact it had.

What it means: The campaign is a warning of the need for better basic cyber security for some of the world’s most important networks and a dramatic illustration of the dangers posed by software bugs even years after they were discovered and published. Read the whole story.

“Patrick Howell O’Neill.”

The aviation industry can achieve emission targets, but new fuels must take off first

Reducing carbon emissions from aircraft will be difficult, but not impossible, according to a new report by the International Clean Transport Council.

The report outlines possible avenues for aviation to reduce emissions enough to play its part in keeping global warming below 2 ° C above pre-industrial levels, as set out in the Paris Agreement. He says about 60% of emissions reductions are projected to come from low-carbon fuels, while the rest comes from efficiency and lower demand. Read the whole story.

– Casey Crownhart

Mandatory reading

I combed the internet to find you the funniest / most important / scary / fascinating stories of today about technology.

1 Twitter has agreed to give Elon Musk access to millions of tweets
Which could make it much harder for him to give up buying the company. (USA $)
+ One of Musk’s financiers is connected to the Russian tycoon. (Bloomberg $)
+ Texas ’decision to investigate fake Twitter accounts is purely political. (USA $)

2 How Big Tech Accumulation of Data Harms Us All
And why wouldn’t that sharing hurt them. (Time $)
+ Collective data rights can prevent big technology from destroying privacy. (MIT Technology Review)

3 One start-up has been accused of issuing too many drugs for ADHD
Especially during the pandemic, when regulations on remote prescribing were relaxed. (WSJ $)

4 Uneven batteries work better at low temperatures
Flat lithium-ion batteries fight the cold – changing the shape of its components could be the solution. (New Scientist $)
+ This startup wants to pack more energy into electric vehicle batteries. (MIT Technology Review)

5 South Korea investigates the company behind the fall of stablecoin
Because of the allegations, the worker embezzled his cryptocurrencies. (FT $)
+ Workers thinking about turning to web3 are thinking about it. (Vox)

6 Smart windows are an obvious way to save energy
The problem is, as always, what makes them affordable enough to become mainstream. (Knowable Magazine)

7 Hurricane activity in the Caribbean is at an all-time low
And so surprisingly long. (Hakai Magazine)
+ We may have to start naming heat waves like we do with hurricanes. (Axios)
+ How to maintain power during hurricanes and heat waves. (MIT Technology Review)
+ Vibration monitoring could help experts avoid torrential floods. (Economist $)

8 Not all NFT art is terrible Download: Chinese hackers target telecommunications and aviation shows
It happens that most really famous pieces are. (The Verge)
+ Bored Apes was overthrown as the most popular NFT project. (Motherboard)

9 The saxophonist smuggled secrets into the USSR using encrypted music code Download: Chinese hackers target telecommunications and aviation shows
Making information incomprehensible to all but practical musicians. (Wired $)

10 It’s time to get over the current thing
Our collective ability to forget what we are indignant about should help. (FT $)

Quote of the day

“There are literally no computers in that clinic unless I bring my laptop from home.”

– says Mia Raven, director of policy at the abortion clinic in Alabama NBC News it is stepping up security measures as part of measures to better protect customers, as there is a risk of Roe being repealed.

Great story

Ghost ships, grain circles and soft gold: The GPS mystery in Shanghai

November 2019

On a hot summer night in July 2019, MV Manukai arrived in the port of Shanghai, near the mouth of the Huangpu River. The city would be the last stop for an American container ship in China before embarking on a long journey home to Long Beach, California.

As the crew carefully steered the ship 700 feet through the busiest port in the world, its captain watched his navigation screens carefully. According to Manukai’s screens, another ship was moving along the same channel at a speed of about seven knots (eight miles per hour). Suddenly, another ship disappeared from the AIS display. A few minutes later, the screen showed that another ship had returned to the dock. Then he was in the canal and moving again, then back to the dock, then disappearing again.

Eventually, confused, the captain took the binoculars and inspected the dock. The other ship was on the dock the whole time. Now, new research and previously unseen data show that Manukai, and thousands of other vessels, are falling victim to a mysterious new weapon capable of deceiving GPS systems in a way never seen before. Read the whole story.

Mark Harris

We can still have nice things

A place for comfort, fun and distraction in these strange times. (Do you have any idea? Call me back or tweet them to me.)

+ This oompah band processing Highway to Hell your Thursday will have a perfect start (Thanks Allegra!)
+ Who knew bamboo salt was it that interesting?
+ Riley is an LGBTQ + icon in our hearts. Download: Chinese hackers target telecommunications and aviation shows
+ What it looks like grow mango trees from seed throughout the year (just don’t expect it to bear fruit soon).
+ Asparagus season – here how to cook it to perfection.



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