hypnosec writes “The E-Sports Entertainment Association (ESEA) gaming league has admitted to embedding Bitcoin mining code inside the league’s client software. It began as an April Fools’ Day joke idea, but the code ended up mining as many as 29 Bitcoins, worth over $3,700, for ESEA in a span of two weeks. According to Eric Thunberg, one of the league’s administrators, the mining code was included as early as April. Tests were run for a few days, after which they ‘decided it wasn’t worth the potential drama, and pulled the plug, or so we thought.’ The code was discovered by users after they noticed that their GPUs were working away with unusually high loads over the past two weeks. After users started posting on the ESEA forums about discovery of the Bitcoin mining code, Thunberg acknowledged the existence of a problem – a mistake caused a server restart to enable it for all idle users.” ESEA posted an apology and offered a free month of their Premium service to all players affected by the mining. They’ve also provided data dumps of the Bitcoin addresses involved and donated double the USD monetary value of the mined coins to the American Cancer Society. Read more of this story at Slashdot.
SchrodingerZ writes “The Blue Angels squadron, known for their intricate and death-defying aerial demonstrations, has canceled all scheduled air shows for the rest of the year. The United States Navy, which controls the Blue Angels, has reported that the grounding comes from the massive rollbacks in spending, due to the 85 billion dollar sequestration given by the federal government. In a statement from the office of the Commander Naval Air Forces in San Diego, the Navy said, ‘Recognizing budget realities, current Defense policy states that outreach events can only be supported with local assets at no cost to the governmen.’ Currently, the cost of an air show is above $100,000. This story came just a week after the announcement by the Air Force that their Thunderbird shows will also be canceled.” Read more of this story at Slashdot.
concealment writes with news that a court battle has brought to light details on how the FBI’s “stingray” surveillance tool works, and how they used it with Verizon’s help to collect evidence about an alleged identity thief. Quoting: “Air cards are devices that plug into a computer and use the wireless cellular networks of phone providers to connect the computer to the internet. The devices are not phones and therefore don’t have the ability to receive incoming calls, but in this case Rigmaiden asserts that Verizon reconfigured his air card to respond to surreptitious voice calls from a landline controlled by the FBI. The FBI calls, which contacted the air card silently in the background, operated as pings to force the air card into revealing its location. In order to do this, Verizon reprogrammed the device so that when an incoming voice call arrived, the card would disconnect from any legitimate cell tower to which it was already connected, and send real-time cell-site location data to Verizon, which forwarded the data to the FBI. This allowed the FBI to position its stingray in the neighborhood where Rigmaiden resided. The stingray then “broadcast a very strong signal” to force the air card into connecting to it, instead of reconnecting to a legitimate cell tower, so that agents could then triangulate signals coming from the air card and zoom-in on Rigmaiden’s location. To make sure the air card connected to the FBI’s simulator, Rigmaiden says that Verizon altered his air card’s Preferred Roaming List so that it would accept the FBI’s stingray as a legitimate cell site and not a rogue site, and also changed a data table on the air card designating the priority of cell sites so that the FBI’s fake site was at the top of the list.” Read more of this story at Slashdot.
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An anonymous reader writes “According to ABC entertainment president Paul Lee: ‘We’d love to do something with Lucasfilm, we’re not sure what yet. We haven’t even sat down with them. We’re going to look at [the Star Wars live-action TV series], we’re going to look at all of them, and see what’s right. We weren’t even able to discuss this with them until [the deal] closed and it just closed. It’s definitely going to be part of the conversation.’ Not only that, but it’s also been announced that some of the 50 completed episode scripts that producer Rick McCallum has previously mentioned have been written by none other than Ron Moore of Star Trek and Battlestar Galactica fame.” Read more of this story at Slashdot.
Since 2003, Waxy.org ‘s Andy Baio has been documenting evidence of pirated/leaked Oscars screeners— in other words, copies of nominated films sent to Academy Awards voters which then make their way on to filesharing networks. The 2013 edition of his spreadsheet is out . He’ll post analysis tomorrow. “Most shocking find so far,” he tweets , “The Les Misérables screener hasn’t leaked online yet. Everyone knows pirates love musicals!”
Last week, the University of Chicago posted that they had received a curious package addressed to Henry Walton Jones, Jr. A student mail worker recognized that name as belonging to a certain Indiana Jones who, in the film trilogy, was a professor at UChicago. The envelope was packed with Indiana Jones ephemera, including a replica of Abner Ravenwood’s journal. The University posted the mystery online and it has now been solved. Turns out, the package was an eBay purchase on its way from a seller named Paul, in Guam, to a buyer in Italy. According to Paul, this package was en route from him in Guam to his intended recipient IN ITALY (registered mail confirmation attached) when it must have fallen out of the package in Hawaii. Our address had originally been put on the manila wrapping of the journal just for cosmetic effect. We believe that the post office wrote on our Zip code on the outside of the package and, believing the Egyptian postage was real, sent it our way. From Guam to Hawaii en route to Italy with a stopover in Chicago: truly an adventure befitting Indiana Jones. ” Indiana Jones Mystery Package ” Indiana Jones Mystery Package (Thanks, Bob Pescovitz!)
We knew this was coming, but I didn’t think it would make me this sad. Kevin Smith, who has been talking about his retirement for a while now, has announced that his final film will be a second sequel to his first film, 1994′s Clerks . The news comes after his intended swan song, the two-part hockey movie Hit Somebody , was set to become a six-part television miniseries . No news yet on which channel might host Hit Somebody . Some are guessing AMC, where Comic Book Men resides, but considering Smith’s generous amounts of colorful language, I’m thinking somewhere premium would work best — who wants to watch censored Kevin Smith? (Not a lot of people, judging by the short life of ABC’s Clerks: The Animated Series — but don’t rule out a possible return for that. coughcough::get on it, Adult Swim::coughcough) Smith’s retirement will be a bummer, considering he just proved he has stories like Red State up his sleeve; it’s sad to think he won’t try to do something else out of the box. (Insert dirty Chasing Amy joke here.) No additional information is out yet about Clerks 3 , but watch for more rumblings next year. I hope Matt Damon and Ben Affleck come back for this (if they don’t do Hit Somebody , that is). Kevin Smith Is Heading Back To The Quick Stop One More Time!! [Ain't It Cool News]