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InfoSec News Nuggets 11/08/2023

Google, Meta, Discord, and more team up to fight child abuse online 

A new program called Lantern aims to fight online child sexual exploitation and abuse (OCSEA) with cross-platform signal sharing between online companies like Meta and Discord. The Tech Coalition, a group of tech businesses with a cooperative aim to fight online child sexual exploitation, wrote in today’s announcement that the program is an attempt to keep predators from avoiding detection by moving potential victims to other platforms. 


Chamberlain blocks smart garage door opener from working with smart homes 

Chamberlain Group—the owner of most of the garage door opener brands like LiftMaster, Chamberlain, Merlin, and Grifco—would like its customers to stop doing smart home things with its “myQ” smart garage door openers. The company recently issued a statement decrying “unauthorized usage” of its smart garage door openers. That’s “unauthorized usage” by the people who bought the garage door opener, by the way. Basically, Chamberlain’s customers want to trigger the garage door and see its status through third-party smart home apps, and Chamberlain doesn’t want that. 


Data broker’s “staggering” sale of sensitive info exposed in unsealed FTC filing 

One of the world’s largest mobile data brokers, Kochava, has lost its battle to stop the Federal Trade Commission from revealing what the FTC has alleged is a disturbing, widespread pattern of unfair use and sale of sensitive data without consent from hundreds of millions of people. US District Judge B. Lynn Winmill recently unsealed a court filing, an amended complaint that perhaps contains the most evidence yet gathered by the FTC in its long-standing mission to crack down on data brokers allegedly “substantially” harming consumers by invading their privacy. 


ICE faces heat after agents install thousands of personal apps, VPNs on official phones 

America’s immigration cops have pushed back against an official probe that concluded their lax mobile device security potentially put sensitive government information at risk of being stolen by foreign snoops. Between April 27 and August 17, the US Department of Homeland Security Office of the Inspector General conducted an audit of equipment managed by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and the agency’s IT policies. 


US Urges Critical Infrastructure Firms to Get “Shields Ready” 

The US government has launched a new campaign designed to encourage critical infrastructure (CNI) stakeholders to enhance cyber-resilience in their organizations. The “Shields Ready” initiative is intended to complement the successful “Shields Up” campaign. Unlike the latter, which was focused on helping all organizations and individuals to prepare for, respond to and mitigate cyber-attacks, Shields Ready is more specifically about improving CNI processes and hardening systems ahead of a potential incident. 


Google turns to regulators to make Apple open up iMessage 

iMessage serves as “an important gateway between business users and their customers” and should be regulated as a “core” service under the EU’s new Digital Markets Act (DMA), said Google and a group of major European telcos in a letter sent to the European Commission, and seen by The Financial Times. Being designated as a “core platform service” would be significant for iMessage, as it could compel Apple to make it interoperable with other messaging services. 

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