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Integrity - use of values or principles to guide action in the situation at hand.

Below are links and discussion related to the values of freedom, hope, trust, privacy, responsibility, safety, and well-being, within business and government situations arising in the areas of security, privacy, technology, corporate governance, sustainability, and CSR.

Worm targets Macs via Bluetooth, 21.2.06


A new computer worm targeting Apple Computer Inc.'s Macintosh computers has been identified for the second time in one week, security experts said.

The new worm, called OSX.Inqtana.A, spreads through a vulnerability in Apple's OS X operating system via Bluetooth wireless connections, antivirus company Symantec said.

'We have speculated that attackers would turn their attention to other platforms, and two back-to-back examples of malicious code targeting Macintosh OS X ... illustrate this emerging trend,' said Vincent Weafer, senior director at Symantec Security Response.

The latest virus follows OSX/Leap-A, which was identified last week and believed to be the first such virus targeting the Mac platform.

That worm attempts to spread via Apple's iChat instant messaging program, which is compatible with America Online's popular AIM instant messaging program. (Full story)

Symantec said the latest worm attempts to use Bluetooth connections to spread by searching for other Bluetooth-using devices that will accept requests for a connection when the computer is restarted.

Bluetooth is a wireless technology used to transmit data among devices at short distances.

The worm spreads via a vulnerability in the OS X operating system called the Apple Mac OS X BlueTooth Directory Traversal Vulnerability.

If a Bluetooth connection is made, the worm attempts to send itself to those remote computers. However, the worm itself does not appear to pose an immediate threat.

"While this particular worm is not fully functional, the source code could be easily modified by a future attacker to do damage," Weafer said, adding that Mac users should install available software patches to their operating systems to prevent such attacks.

The latest worm was identified Friday. Both worms are ranked a Level 1 threat on a scale of 1 to 5, with 5 being the most severe, Symantec said.

Notes on DriveBlue

DriveBlue+ Bluetooth Hands-Free Car Kit -
Bluetooth allows electronic devices to "talk" to each other without wires, and DriveBlue+ is an inexpensive way to make any car a hands-free Bluetooth environment.

It plugs into a car's cigarette lighter and detects any Bluetooth-enabled phone within 33 feet, establishing a voice-activated wireless connection. Simply tell the phone to turn on and which number to call and DriveBlue+ does the rest, even if the phone is hidden away in a briefcase. An integrated speaker with background noise and echo cancellation technology allows the driver to concentrate on driving and keeps the person on the other end from being inundated with speaker phone static. DriveBlue+ is available now at most major cell phone accessory stores for about $100.

[CLB: I realize this means drive with both hands while using your bluetooth enabled cell hands free. But take a little step with me. Couldn't related technology allow the steering wheel to remotely control the car's steering? Hand the wheel to your backseat driver, literally.]

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U.S. concludes 'Cyber Storm' mock attacks, 14.2.06


The [US] government concluded its 'Cyber Storm' wargame Friday, its biggest-ever exercise to test how it would respond to devastating attacks over the Internet from anti-globalization activists, underground hackers and bloggers.


Participants confirmed parts of the worldwide simulation challenged government officials and industry executives to respond to deliberate misinformation campaigns and activist calls by Internet bloggers, online diarists whose 'Web logs' include political rantings and musings about current events.

[CLB: And this is the number one reason why a communications strategy needs to be part of the security strategy for any organization.]

The Internet survived, even against fictional abuses against the world's computers on a scale typical for Fox's popular '24' television series. Experts depicted hackers who shut down electricity in 10 states, failures in vital systems for online banking and retail sales, infected discs mistakenly distributed by commercial software companies and critical flaws discovered in core Internet technology.


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Celebrity CEOs vs. Visionary Administrator CEOs, 8.2.06

globeandmail.com, By SHAWN MCCARTHY

A year after Fiorina's exit, Hurd makes his mark at HP


  • Reputation: Celebrity female CEO
  • Leadership style: Jetsetter; bought two Gulfstream corporate jets while the company was in the midst of layoffs
  • Accolades: Fortune magazine's most powerful woman in business six years running.


  • Reputation: Boring operations guy
  • Leadership style: Laser-like focus on execution; announced 15,500 in job cuts at HP within months of taking over.
  • Accolades: Investors sold off NCR shares, sending them 12.7 per cent lower, on news he was leaving the company.

After the splashy appearances of his high-profile predecessor Carly Fiorina, Hewlett-Packard Co. chief executive officer Mark Hurd created his own buzz at last month's Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas -- by not showing up.

The message couldn't have been clearer.

After six years with a celebrity CEO at the helm, Hewlett-Packard is now in the hands of a no-frills executive, who focuses like a laser on executing the company's business plan in a challenging, rapidly changing technology market.

Last year, Ms. Fiorina, flanked by stars Matt Damon and Gwen Stefani, had dazzled the gadget-happy conference by pledging to plow ahead with production of a digital entertainment hub that would merge the functions of a television, personal computer, stereo and other entertainment devices.

Five weeks later, a year ago tomorrow, the HP board ousted her amid a noisy campaign from investors who were unhappy with HP's erratic earnings performance and underperforming stock.

Mr. Hurd, who came to HP 10 months ago after turning around NCR Corp., is already winning kudos from Wall Street, in spite of some nagging concerns about the growth trajectory that he has outlined for the company.

He has not ushered in a startling new strategic vision, or spun off the personal computer division as some analysts had urged. But he has provided a sense of operational competence that critics -- and ultimately the board -- felt was missing in Ms. Fiorina.

'Carly knew where she was going; she didn't know how to get there,' said Rob Enderle, an industry analyst and consultant.

"Because they now have an executive that knows where he is going and how to get there, morale is up; HP is better able to execute, and the analysts are much more comfortable because it doesn't sound like somebody is trying to pull the wool over their eyes."

Critics argue that Ms. Fiorina had fumbled the $25-billion (U.S.) acquisition of Compaq Computer Corp. by failing to manage the integration of the two giants.

In his first year on the job, Mr. Hurd has launched a restructuring program that will eliminate 15,300 jobs and shave $2-billion in costs by 2007, reorganized the operating divisions to give more authority and responsibility to managers, and begun the mammoth task of retooling HP's own information technology to drive down costs, improve its functioning and make it a showcase for HP products and services.

He has also cancelled some of the higher-profile, lower-return ventures approved by Ms. Fiorina, including a digital entertainment hub that she unveiled at last year's Consumer Electronic Show and a project to marry HP technology with Apple Computer Inc.'s wildly successful iPod.

[...] [CLB: Now let's see if a visionary administrator can produce more reliable, less flashy results.]

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Will Google help navigate your Jetta?, 6.2.06

CNET News.com

The American unit of Germany's Volkswagen said on Friday that it is working on a prototype vehicle that features Google's satellite-mapping software to give drivers a bird's-eye view of the road ahead.

The two companies are working with graphics chipmaker Nvidia to build an in-car navigation system and a three-dimensional display so passengers can recognize where they are in relation to the surrounding topography.

Volkswagen of America, working through its Electronics Research Laboratory in Palo Alto, Calif., is working on other advancements, including automatic personalized information updates for the navigation systems.

The car manufacturer showed off the prototype car at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas in January.

A spokesman for the automaker said there were no definite plans to use the technology inside cars. But the collaboration between the automaker and Google shows the progress the Web search leader is making in expanding beyond the computer realm.

Google introduced Google Earth last June as a free satellite imagery-based mapping product based on technology from Keyhole, a company Google bought in October 2004.

[CLB: A hackable system isn't being used for actually controlling the car, but thta is only a step away. Still, hacking a driver's driving instructions could lead to problems. How do we ensure the data sent from a pblically accessible system is reliable?]

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Integrity Incorporated

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"We shall need compromises in the days ahead, to be sure. But these will be, or should be, compromises of issues, not principles. We can compromise our political positions, but not ourselves. We can resolve the clash of interests without conceding our ideals. And even the necessity for the right kind of compromise does not eliminate the need for those idealists and reformers who keep our compromises moving ahead, who prevent all political situations from meeting the description supplied by Shaw: "smirched with compromise, rotted with opportunism, mildewed by expedience, stretched out of shape with wirepulling and putrefied with permeation.
Compromise need not mean cowardice. .."

John Fitzgerald Kennedy, "Profiles in Courage"


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