International Intonation: Sept. 26, 2012

Mark Hendricks, Contributor Ω

Is your Apple device being tracked by the FBI?

A hacker group claims it has obtained 12 million Unique Device Identifiers (UDIDs) for Apple devices from a FBI computer.

UDIDs are a string of numbers and letters that are specific to each individual device. While normally harmless, UDIDs can be misused to access personal information including location.

AntiSec, a “hacktivist” collective, has currently released one million of these UDIDs they claimed to have taken from a file labelled “NCFTA_iOS_devices_intel.csv.”

These UDIDs were not just linked to American Apple products either.

Le Monde, a French daily newspaper, stated thousands of these UDIDs were linked to Apple devices belonging to French citizens.

Thenextweb.com has set up a site for people to see if their UDID was included in the list of one million that has been released.

There is no way to change your UDID. It’s important to remember this information is all based on the word of hacker group AntiSec. If your UDID is on the list that has been released be careful with how you use it because at the very least one group has your UDID.

Discover your UDID at whatsmyudid.com.

To find if your UDID is on the list go to thenextweb.com and search for “Apple UDID leak.”

Where you can find out more: techland.time.com

Tensions grow between China and Japan over disputed islands

China and Japan’s long history of conflict and political tension threatens to erupt again after the Japanese government bought a chain of islands, also claimed by China, from private owners.

The purchase of the Senkaku Islands — known as the Diaoyu Islands in Beijing — by the Japanese government prompted a series of protests in China.

Three of the five Senkaku Islands were owned by the same individual. The Japanese government signed a ¥2.05-billion contract (roughly $25.5 million) with this individual, which effectively gave them ownership over these three islands.

Japan claims this purchase was done to prevent a purchase from a Tokyo governor who planned to develop these islands commercially. The Japanese government was worried over the damage such a thing could cause to Sino-Japanese relationships.

The Chinese government claims their ownership of the islands can be traced much farther back in time than Japan’s claim over the islands. This is being seen as an attack on Chinese sovereignty, even causing the Chinese foreign minister Yang Jiechi to comment to the China Daily that China would take “necessary measures to protect its territorial sovereignty.”

Chinese surveillance vessels, which are lightly armed, have been scouting the waters around the disputed islands. With neither side backing down or willing to compromise over ownership of the islands, tensions seem destined to grow.

Where you can find out more: www.guardian.co.uk

Chimpanzee testing takes big step towards end

Sept. 21 marked a big day in animal testing — the largest research chimp colony in the United States released all of its test chimpanzees.

This decision was made last December by the National Institutes of Health to remove 110 chimpanzees from medical testing after a committee deemed research on chimpanzees ethically problematic and in most instances scientifically unnecessary.

This committee also saw a stop to further funding for chimpanzee research and a review of the chimpanzees under their care.

Chimp Haven, a sanctuary for the animals, will take in 10 of the primates while the others will go to the Texas Biomedical Research Institute, which has facilities to care for them. They will not be eligible for further testing.

There are still roughly 475 government-owned chimpanzees that can be used for medical research in the United States, but the closure of the largest facility marks a big stepping-stone.

Where you can find out more: www.washingtonpost.com

No Responses