Showing 27 posts tagged russia

In the proposed book, Karen L. Dawisha, a professor of political science and a Russia expert, writes about President Vladimir V. Putin’s alleged links to organized crime. Last month she received a letter from John Haslam, the press’s executive publisher for political science and sociology, stating that the press would not proceed with the book. “The decision has nothing to do with the quality of your research or your scholarly credibility,” he wrote. “It is simply a question of risk tolerance in light of our limited resources.”

Citing Libel Fears, Cambridge U. Press Won’t Proceed With Book on Putin – The Ticker - Blogs - The Chronicle of Higher Education

Russia Blocks Access to Major Independent News Sites

Russia’s government has escalated its use of its Internet censorship law to target news sites, bloggers, and politicians under the slimmest excuse of preventing unauthorized protests and enforcing house arrest regulations. Today, the country’s ISPs have received orders to block a list of major news sites and system administrators have been instructed to take the servers providing the content offline.

The banned sites include the online newspaper Grani, Garry Kasparov’s opposition information site kasparov.ru, the livejournal of popular anti-corruption crusader Alexei Navalny, and even the web pages of Ekho Moskvy, a radio station which is majority owned by the state-run Gazprom, and whose independent editor was ousted last month and replaced with a more government-friendly director.

» via Electronic Frontier Foundation

The previous day, Ukrtelecom said, “unknown people seized several telecom nodes in the Crimea” and damaged its fiber backbone cable: “As a result, there are almost no services of fixed telephony, internet access, and mobile communications TriMob [Ukrtelecom mobile arm] provided in the territory of the Crimea.”

Russia’s cyberwar against Ukraine is every bit as strategic as its ground offensive - Quartz

"Ten years ago this would’ve been science fiction," he said. Arguably the most famous example of government-sourced malware is the Stuxnet worm, which targeted a specific kind of software that controls nuclear facilities. The United States and Israel have been implicated in the creation and distribution of Stuxnet. Uroburos is a rootkit made of two files, "a driver and an encrypted virtual file system," that can "take control of an infected computer, execute arbitrary commands, and hide system activities." The malware is highly dangerous, MN alleges, because its structure is "modular" and "flexible," meaning that new malicious functions can be added to it easily. "Uroburos’ driver part is extremely complex and is designed to be very discrete and very difficult to identify," MN said. In the Uroburos sample discussed by G Data, the malware is designed to steal files and monitor network traffic. The malware name is a variant spelling for Ouroboros, the ancient Greek symbol of a snake or dragon eating its own tail.

Security firm claims Russian government makes malware | Security & Privacy - CNET News

Dmitry Kozak, a Russian deputy prime minister in charge of preparations for the Olympics, mistakenly revealed during a press conference that at least some hotel guests are under video surveillance in their own bathrooms. “We have surveillance video from the hotels that shows people turn on the shower, direct the nozzle at the wall and then leave the room for the whole day,” the official told members of the press, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Russian official says government has video surveillance of Sochi hotel room showers | The Verge

But critics take particular issue with the plan for the new books, created by historians of Putin’s choosing, because they contain no reference to the protests against him in 2011 and 2012 and virtually no mention of his political foes, such as jailed tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky. They say the proposed version of history is “highly politicized and grossly distorts the facts.”

Is Vladimir Putin rewriting Russia’s history books? - World News

Kremlin returns to typewriters to avoid computer leaks

A source at Russia’s Federal Guard Service (FSO), which is in charge of safeguarding Kremlin communications and protecting President Vladimir Putin, claimed that the return to typewriters has been prompted by the publication of secret documents by WikiLeaks, the whistle-blowing website, as well as Edward Snowden, the fugitive US intelligence contractor.

The FSO is looking to spend 486,000 roubles – around £10,000 – on a number of electric typewriters, according to the site of state procurement agency, zakupki.gov.ru. The notice included ribbons for German-made Triumph Adlew TWEN 180 typewriters, although it was not clear if the typewriters themselves were this kind.

» via The Telegraph

These stations “were a small but very important part of the massive [signals intelligence] intercept and processing complexes operated not only by the KGB but also by the Soviet military intelligence service, the GRU,” writes Aid. But these posts are hardly Cold War relics. Most of them are still “monitoring the communications of the U.S., Europe and virtually every other country of any significance or size around the world,” he adds.

Map: The USSR’s Electronic Spy Posts Are Still Active, Eavesdropping on You | Killer Apps

File-Sharers Will Not Be Held Liable For Piracy, Russia Says

As Russia tries to find a balanced solution to the thorny issue of Internet piracy, the head of a government department responsible for communications and information technology says that attacking Internet users is not the solution. Speaking at the launch of a nationwide campaign to promote legal eBook purchases, Vladimir Grigoryev said that the government has no intention of holding downloaders liable or having them sent to court.

» via TorrentFreak

Russia Begins Selectively Blocking Internet Content

The Russian government in recent weeks has been making use of a new law that gives it the power to block Internet content that it deems illegal or harmful to children.

The country’s communications regulators have required Facebook, Twitter and YouTube to remove material that the officials determined was objectionable, with only YouTube, owned by Google, resisting. The video-sharing site complied with a Russian agency’s order to block a video that officials said promoted suicide. But YouTube filed a lawsuit in Russian court in February saying the video, showing how to make a fake wound with makeup materials and a razor blade, was intended for entertainment and should not be restricted.

Supporters of the law, which took effect in November, say it is a narrowly focused way of controlling child pornography and content that promotes drug use and suicide.

But opposition leaders have railed against the law as a crack in the doorway to broader Internet censorship. They say they worry that social networks, which have been used to arrange protests against President Vladimir V. Putin, will be stifled.

» via The New York Times (Subscription may be required for some content)