Print 85 comment(s) - last by vol7ron.. on Dec 11 at 11:28 PM

Pickup should boost Apple's recently struggling security efforts

Malware authors, who are finally taking note of the company’s operating system amid rising market share, have of late victimized Apple, Inc. (AAPL).  Amid struggles with malware -- mostly Trojans (programs that imitate real software or are carried by seemingly innocent webpages and trick users into installation) like MacDefender and Flashback -- the company has been scrutinized by security firms who suggest it needs help, and a more proactive stance on plug-in patching.

The highly profitable computer and digital device maker made a key step in the right direction this week, though, hiring Kristin Paget (formerly Chris Paget), according to a report by Wired.

Ms. Paget seems a natural fit for Apple.

She has said in past interviews that she is a "total Unix head" (OS X is Unix-like) and dislikes Windows.  And she's expressed an interest in hardware security.  When she left Recursion Ventures, her security firm, in July she expressed a desire to move away from bug-finding.  

Thus she may see her talents first applied to Apple's efforts to lock firmware hackers like George "GeoHot" Hotz out of Apple's iOS firmware.  Since the launch of the iPhone, Apple has been largely unable to stop such hackers from defeating its digital rights management scheme (via jailbreaking) and its network locking (via unlocking).  Apple has hired hackers in the past (most notably "Comex") to try to shore up its firmware, but the efforts have oft fizzled.

The new recruit, though, could fare better as she brings a long history of eye-opening security exploits.  In 2010 at DefCon hacker conference she set up a cell-phone intercepting station, a low-cost homebrew hardware setup that tricked towers into routing calls -- even encrypted ones -- through it, allowing conversations to be snooped on.

Kristin Paget
Kristin (formerly Chris) Paget led the bug finding hunt that helped dramatically improve the security of Windows Vista. [Image Source: Jean-Philippe Martin]

But Ms. Paget's most prestigious honor was delaying Windows Vista and in the process greatly improving its security.  In 2006 she was hired by Microsoft Corp. (MSFT) to assist with the final development of Vista.  According to recent speeches, which she gave after her five-year non-disclosure agreement (NDA) with Microsoft expired in 2011; Microsoft had expected a clean bill of health when they brought her onboard.

Instead, she and her team found a wealth of bugs.  She recalls, "We prevented a lot of bugs from shipping on Vista.  I’m proud of the number of bugs we found and helped get fixed."

The bug hunt was so successful that it forced Microsoft to delay Windows Vista.  Ms. Paget and her team received honorary shirts from Microsoft Vice President of Windows Development Brian Valentine that read: “I delayed Windows Vista.”

Windows Vista is widely viewed as a turning point in Microsoft's security history, paving ground for later 

Source: Wired

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RE: well
By TSS on 12/10/2012 2:17:37 AM , Rating: 2
People aren't forced to change their beliefs no. But at the same time, it does make them ignorant assholes. And that's just fact.

So are you by the way, suggesting "if they switch back". Right. Like they keep the penis on cold ice "and if you want it back we'll sow it right back on!".

Meanwhile, they went most of their life portraying themselves as something else because society expects that from them. Go ahead, go to your friends/family/anybody you know, tell them you're a woman trapped in a man's body and are terribly unhappy because of it. See how they react. Hint: don't expect them to be understanding.

This aint about beliefs. It's about their unhappyness and fixing it. And to be honest, if i'd had to chose between the happyness of this person or the happyness of some closeminded asshole, i'll vote this person any day.

RE: well
By vol7ron on 12/10/2012 2:42:25 AM , Rating: 2
You're right, this isn't about beliefs - it is about happiness.

Just because you have a "sex change", doesn't mean you change your gender. Being born a man and chopping off your genitalia and pumping yourself full of estrogen/hormones does not make you a woman, it just makes you a mutilated man. That is regardless of of society accepting your decision. So who really is the ignorant asshole? The person that expects others around him to change, or the people that recognize a fence is a fence, no matter how you paint it.

Back to gender benders, the issue is not that someone does so, the issue is that someone feels they need to do so. It is an imbalance of the psyche, which is not easy to heal. Psychological problems can affect the physical body and that is what many people that condemn others for being close-minded, either seem to forget, or are themselves close-minded about.

As stated, for me it's a matter of respect. I certainly believe a person has the right do it, but my reaction to it is all contingent on my take of the situation. And so you know, there are a lot of people that have had the operation that have wanted to switch back, just like there are self-proclaimed "homosexuals" that go back to being heterosexuals. It's the reason why there are thorough exams and stages to the operation, to try to make sure a person really knows its difficult to reverse.

RE: well
By Cloudie on 12/11/2012 2:39:16 AM , Rating: 2
'there are a lot of people that have had the operation that have wanted to switch back'

I'm not interested in 'how many', I'm interested in a percentage. What percent of people who have the operation want to switch back? I bet it's sub 1%.

'just like there are self-proclaimed "homosexuals" that go back to being heterosexuals.'

There was an American woman a few months back who said her sexuality just "changed". She was married to a man but broke up and got a divorce. Then a few years later she fell in love with and married a woman. A week later she admitted she was actually bisexual.

Sorry but there are two types of people saying this: 1) bisexuals 2) people hired by religious nutters to say they were "gay" then say they were straight and that they'd be cured by wacko therapy. It suits certain social conservative groups to portray homosexuality as a choice.

I admit there is fluidity to human sexuality, especially in teenage years but not that much.

And again I want a percentage on that. This time I would say sub 0.01%. Sexuality is not a choice and it cannot be "cured" however much some poor soul may wish it could.

RE: well
By vol7ron on 12/11/2012 11:28:55 PM , Rating: 2
If you're interested in percentage, then you don't understand numbers. Since the number of people that undergo the operation is probably a really small figure, there doesn't need to be a lot to make it a higher percentage.

And, I'm sorry but you can't group all people that claim to have a change in preference as either bi-sexual or crazy; surely, you have to believe there are people not in either of those two categories.

Whether the person has homosexual attraction is one thing, acting on it is another thing entirely. I'm not going to defend whatever a religion's stance is on the matter, just like I'm not going to try to defend my gay friends' views; however, I like to think the religious argument is that wanting to do something and doing something are two different things.--

There are kleptomaniacs that want to steal, some may say that's a genetic tendency, others say it's psychological, triggered by some event in the person's past (sounds just like the argument over homosexuality), but it is agreed that acting on it (actually stealing something) is against religious principles, no matter how much the person was "born" with that desire. The same argument is made for murder, drugs, adultery, etc. -- We all have our demons and from an objective standpoint, it's interesting to see how we view our faults, where we place blame, and what arguments are made.


Back to your numbers; you're never going to get the ones you want. They can't even get polls for presidential elections correct. The ability to get an overwhelming number of people to honestly comment on something so personal as sexuality (especially at a young age), doesn't seem feasible at the point.

But whatever the point, I'm an advocate of personal freedom. If what you do doesn't negatively affect a large majority of others and/or those immediately around you, then have fun doing it and enjoy your life, just don't force your beliefs onto others - and that's for all forms of music, drugs, sex, religion, etc.

RE: well
By 91TTZ on 12/11/2012 2:37:37 PM , Rating: 1
People aren't forced to change their beliefs no. But at the same time, it does make them ignorant assholes. And that's just fact.

No, that would be an opinion. Some people would disagree, some people would agree, it's all subjective.

"It's okay. The scenarios aren't that clear. But it's good looking. [Steve Jobs] does good design, and [the iPad] is absolutely a good example of that." -- Bill Gates on the Apple iPad

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