Daily Archives: July 31, 2017

France shuts down its only de-radicalization center, says ‘experiment’ failed

France has officially shut down its only state-run radicalization prevention center in Pontourny, near the Loire Valley, intended to host up to 25 people who become radicalized and choose to enroll on a voluntary basis.Read moreFrench Senate backs permanent state of emergency measures amid street protests (PHOTOS)

The French Interior Ministry noted in a statement on Friday that the live-in reception center in Pontourny was “experimental,” and “showed its limits.”It was therefore decided to shut the facility down, the statement provided by AFP said, adding that “the government will study the possibility of opening [some other] small structures to develop alternative solutions to incarceration.”The French government decided to open the center with the objective of “preparing and developing an educational program used for the reintegration of radicalized young people in the process of marginalization,”Le Parisien reported.But since opening last September, the center has only welcomed nine volunteer residents, and none of them have completed the program, the interior ministry said, as cited by the French newspaper.A Senate report, unveiled earlier this month, lambasted France’s deradicalization strategy, calling for the center in Pontourny to be closed, Le Parisien reported.

Source: France shuts down its only de-radicalization center, says ‘experiment’ failed — RT News

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An internet-connected fish tank let hackers into a casino’s network 

A high-tech, internet-connected fish tank in a North American casino has been used to exfiltrate data from the company’s network. Smart drawing pads used in an architectural firm were part of a botnet used to mount DDoS attacks against websites around the world owned by entertainment companies, design companies, and government bodies.These are just some of the discoveries made by UK-based cyber defense Darktrace, but serve as perfect examples of how lax security when it comes to IOT devices can spell disaster for businesses.Unexpected doors into the corporate networkIn the case of the smart fish tank, the casino had configured the tank to use an individual VPN to isolate the tank’s communications from the commercial network, but the attacker managed to use this foothold into the company network to scan for vulnerabilities in other systems and exploit them.Ultimately, he or she managed to transfer 10GB of company data outside the network, to a server in Finland. The data was uploaded to the server via the compromised fish tank.

Source: An internet-connected fish tank let hackers into a casino’s network – Help Net Security

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Dark web doesn’t exist, says Tor’s Dingledine. And folks use network for privacy, not crime

DEF CON A Tor Project grandee sought to correct some misconceptions about the anonymizing network during a presentation at the DEF CON hacking convention in Las Vegas on Friday.Roger Dingledine, one of the three founders of the Tor Project, castigated journos for mischaracterizing the pro-privacy system as a bolthole exclusively used by drug dealers and pedophiles to hide from the authorities.In fact, he said, only three per cent of Tor users connect to hidden services, suggesting the vast majority of folks on the network are using it to anonymously browse public websites for completely legit purposes. In other words, netizens – from journalists to activists to normal peeps – use Tor to mask their identities from website owners, and it’s not just underworld villains.Dingledine even went as far as saying the dark web – a landscape of websites concealed within networks like Tor – is so insignificant, it can be discounted.“There is basically no dark web. It doesn’t exist,” he told his DEF CON audience. “It’s only a very few webpages.”

Source: Dark web doesn’t exist, says Tor’s Dingledine. And folks use network for privacy, not crime • The Register

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New Surgical Strategy Offers Hope for Spinal Cord Injuries

Both ventral and dorsal roots have been detached, which is the common scenario clinically, the ventral root is implanted directly into the cord as is dorsal root, but after the ganglion has been cut out. In the final drawing the possible re-established connections and reflex arch are colored. Source: Thomas Carlstedt and Mårten RislingScientists in the UK and Sweden previously developed a new surgical technique to reconnect sensory neurons to the spinal cord after traumatic spinal injuries. Now, they have gained new insight into how the technique works at a cellular level by recreating it in rats with implications for designing new therapies for injuries where the spinal cord itself is severed.The brain and the neurons (nerve cells) in the rest of our body are connected in the spine. Here, motor neurons, which control muscle movement, and sensory neurons, which relay sensory information such as pain, temperature and touch, connect with the spinal cord.Where the neurons connect with the cord, motor neurons bundle together to form a structure called the motor root, while sensory neurons form a sensory root. In patients with traumatic injuries, these roots can be torn, causing areas of the body to lose neural control.Surgeons can implant motor roots at the area from which they are torn, and they will usually successfully reconnect, as motor neurons can regrow out of the spinal cord and into the motor root. However, this does not apply to the more troublesome sensory root, which surgeons couldn’t reconnect properly until recently. “Doctors previously considered this type of spinal cord injury impossible to repair,” says Nicholas James, a researcher at King’s College London. “These torn root injuries can cause serious disability and excruciating pain.”

Source: New Surgical Strategy Offers Hope for Spinal Cord Injuries

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Genetic evidence suggests the Canaanites weren’t destroyed after all


The Canaanites are famous as the bad guys of the Book of Joshua in the Tanakh, or the Hebrew Bible. First, God orders the Hebrews to destroy the Canaanites along with several other groups, and later we hear that the Canaanites have actually been wiped out. Among archaeologists, however, the Canaanites are a cultural group whose rise and fall has remained a mystery. Now, a group of archaeologists and geneticists has discovered strong evidence that the Canaanites were not wiped out. They are, in fact, the ancestors of modern Lebanese people.

The Canaanites were a people who lived three to four thousand years ago off the coast of the Mediterranean, and their cities were spread across an area known today as Jordan, Lebanon, Israel, Palestine, and Syria. Though they were one of the first civilizations in the area to use writing, they wrote most of their documents on papyrus leaves that didn’t survive. As a result, our only information about these people has come from their rivals and enemies, like the Hebrews, whose accounts were likely biased.The Canaanites are still hereWellcome Trust Sanger Institute geneticist Marc Haber and his colleagues decided to find out who the Canaanites were by sequencing ancient DNA from five persons whose bodies were found buried in the Canaanite seaside town of Sidon. An ongoing archaeological dig at the site had uncovered the burials of three women and two men who lived roughly 3,700 years ago in the bustling area. After sequencing DNA from all five people, the researchers compared the results with the genomes of 99 modern-day Lebanese people.

Source: Genetic evidence suggests the Canaanites weren’t destroyed after all | Ars Technica

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