SN 627: Sharknado

(Although there are an unbelievable FIVE Sharknado movies, this will be the first and last time we use that title for a podcast!) This week we have another update on Marcus Hutchins, we discuss the validity of Wikileaks documents, the feasibility of rigorously proving software correctness, nearly half a million people need to get their body's firmware updated, another controversial CIA project exposed by Wikileaks, a careful analysis of the FCC's Title II Net Neutrality public comments comments, a neat two factor auth tracking site, the stupid patent of the month, an example of a vanity top level domain, a bit of errata, where did SpinRite come from?, and ... utterly unconscionable security mistakes made by AT&T in their line of U-Verse routers.

Hosts: Leo Laporte and Steve Gibson

Download or subscribe to this show at https://twit.tv/shows/security-now.

You can submit a question to Security Now! at the GRC Feedback Page.

For 16kbps versions, transcripts, and notes (including fixes), visit Steve's site: grc.com, also the home of the best disk maintenance and recovery utility ever written Spinrite 6.

Bandwidth for Security Now is provided by CacheFly.

SN 626: Shattering Trust

This week we cover a bit of the ongoing drama surrounding Marcus Hutchins, examine a reported instance of interagency hacking, follow the evolving market for 0-day exploits, examine trouble arising from the continued use of a deprecated Apple security API, discover that Intel's controversial platform management engine can , after all, be disabled, look into another SMS attack, bring note to a nice looking TOTP authenticator, recommend an alternative to the shutting-down CrashPlan, deal with a bit of errata and miscellany, then we look into an interesting bit of research which invokes "The Wrath of Kahn".

We invite you to read our show notes.

Hosts: Steve Gibson and Leo Laporte

Download or subscribe to this show at https://twit.tv/shows/security-now.

You can submit a question to Security Now! at the GRC Feedback Page.

For 16kbps versions, transcripts, and notes (including fixes), visit Steve's site: grc.com, also the home of the best disk maintenance and recovery utility ever written Spinrite 6.

Bandwidth for Security Now is provided by CacheFly.

SN 625: Security Politics

This week we discuss the continuing Marcus Hutchins drama, the disclosure of a potentially important Apple secret, a super-cool website and browser extension our listeners are going to appreciate, trouble with extension developers being targeted, a problem with the communication bus standard in every car, an important correction from Elcomsoft, two 0-days in Foxit's PDF products, Lava lamps for entropy, the forthcoming iOS 11 TouchID kill switch, very welcome Libsodium audit results, a mistake in AWS permissions, a refreshingly forthright security statement, a bit of errata, miscellany, and a few closing the loop bits from our terrific listeners!

We invite you to read our show notes.

Hosts: Steve Gibson and Leo Laporte

Download or subscribe to this show at https://twit.tv/shows/security-now.

You can submit a question to Security Now! at the GRC Feedback Page.

For 16kbps versions, transcripts, and notes (including fixes), visit Steve's site: grc.com, also the home of the best disk maintenance and recovery utility ever written Spinrite 6.

Bandwidth for Security Now is provided by CacheFly.

SN 624: Twelve and Counting

This week we have a Marcus Hutchins update, the backstory on the NIST's rewrite of their 15-year-old password guidance, can DNA be used to hack a computer? Can stop sign graffiti be used to misdirect autonomous vehicles?, the final nail in the WoSign/StartCom coffin, why we need global Internet policy treaties, this week in "researchers need protection", a VPN provider who is doing everything right, Elcomsoft's password manager cracker, a bit of errata and miscellany... and some closing the loop feedback from this podcast's terrific listeners.

We invite you to read our show notes.

Hosts: Steve Gibson and Leo Laporte

Download or subscribe to this show at https://twit.tv/shows/security-now.

You can submit a question to Security Now! at the GRC Feedback Page.

For 16kbps versions, transcripts, and notes (including fixes), visit Steve's site: grc.com, also the home of the best disk maintenance and recovery utility ever written Spinrite 6.

Bandwidth for Security Now is provided by CacheFly.

Sex estimation of the tibia in modern Turkish: A computed tomography study.

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Sex estimation of the tibia in modern Turkish: A computed tomography study.

Leg Med (Tokyo). 2016 Nov;23:89-94

Authors: Ekizoglu O, Er A, Bozdag M, Akcaoglu M, Can IO, García-Donas JG, Kranioti EF

Abstract
The utilization of computed tomography is beneficial for the analysis of skeletal remains and it has important advantages for anthropometric studies. The present study investigated morphometry of left tibia using CT images of a contemporary Turkish population. Seven parameters were measured on 203 individuals (124 males and 79 females) within the 19-92-years age group. The first objective of this study was to provide population-specific sex estimation equations for the contemporary Turkish population based on CT images. A second objective was to test the sex estimation formulae on Southern Europeans by Kranioti and Apostol (2015). Univariate discriminant functions resulted in classification accuracy that ranged from 66 to 86%. The best single variable was found to be upper epiphyseal breadth (86%) followed by lower epiphyseal breadth (85%). Multivariate discriminant functions resulted in classification accuracy for cross-validated data ranged from 79 to 86%. Applying the multivariate sex estimation formulae on Southern Europeans (SE) by Kranioti and Apostol in our sample resulted in very high classification accuracy ranging from 81 to 88%. In addition, 35.5-47% of the total Turkish sample is correctly classified with over 95% posterior probability, which is actually higher than the one reported for the original sample (25-43%). We conclude that the tibia is a very useful bone for sex estimation in the contemporary Turkish population. Moreover, our test results support the hypothesis that the SE formulae are sufficient for the contemporary Turkish population and they can be used safely for criminal investigations when posterior probabilities are over 95%.

PMID: 27890111 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

Effect of in vitro selenium supplementation on sperm quality in asthenoteratozoospermic men.

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Effect of in vitro selenium supplementation on sperm quality in asthenoteratozoospermic men.

Andrologia. 2017 Aug 06;:

Authors: Ghafarizadeh AA, Vaezi G, Shariatzadeh MA, Malekirad AA

Abstract
Sperm DNA damage, excessive oxidative stress and decrease in motility ‎may lead to low fertilisation or poor‎ assisted reproductive techniques outcomes in asthenoteratozoospermic ‎men. Selenium was considered as essential element for male reproductive functions. Selenium has important role in enzymatic process for elimination of excessive reactive oxygen species and helps to maintain membrane integrity. The aim of this study was to determine the effect of selenium supplementation on sperm quality, DNA fragmentation, mitochondrial membrane potential and membrane lipid peroxidation during sperm sampling in vitro at different times. In this experimental study, semen samples were collected from 50 asthenoteratozoospermic men. Samples were divided into two groups as control group and test group (incubated with 2 μg/ml selenium at 37°C for 2, 4 and 6 hr). Motility and viability were assessed based on WHO 2010 criteria. Mitochondrial membrane potential, sperm DNA fragmentation and malondialdehyde levels were evaluated in each group. Results revealed that motility, viability and mitochondrial membrane potential were significantly higher in the test group (p < .05). Also malondialdehyde levels were significantly lower in the test group (p < .03). DNA fragmentation significantly decreased in the test group after 6 hr of incubation (p < .02). In conclusion, in vitro selenium supplementation may protect spermatozoa from maltreatment effect of reactive oxygen species (ROS) during sperm sampling via keeping enzymatic and antioxidant process in optimum condition.

PMID: 28782302 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]

Investigation of metabolites for estimating blood deposition time.

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Investigation of metabolites for estimating blood deposition time.

Int J Legal Med. 2017 Aug 05;:

Authors: Lech K, Liu F, Davies SK, Ackermann K, Ang JE, Middleton B, Revell VL, Raynaud FJ, Hoveijn I, Hut RA, Skene DJ, Kayser M

Abstract
Trace deposition timing reflects a novel concept in forensic molecular biology involving the use of rhythmic biomarkers for estimating the time within a 24-h day/night cycle a human biological sample was left at the crime scene, which in principle allows verifying a sample donor's alibi. Previously, we introduced two circadian hormones for trace deposition timing and recently demonstrated that messenger RNA (mRNA) biomarkers significantly improve time prediction accuracy. Here, we investigate the suitability of metabolites measured using a targeted metabolomics approach, for trace deposition timing. Analysis of 171 plasma metabolites collected around the clock at 2-h intervals for 36 h from 12 male participants under controlled laboratory conditions identified 56 metabolites showing statistically significant oscillations, with peak times falling into three day/night time categories: morning/noon, afternoon/evening and night/early morning. Time prediction modelling identified 10 independently contributing metabolite biomarkers, which together achieved prediction accuracies expressed as AUC of 0.81, 0.86 and 0.90 for these three time categories respectively. Combining metabolites with previously established hormone and mRNA biomarkers in time prediction modelling resulted in an improved prediction accuracy reaching AUCs of 0.85, 0.89 and 0.96 respectively. The additional impact of metabolite biomarkers, however, was rather minor as the previously established model with melatonin, cortisol and three mRNA biomarkers achieved AUC values of 0.88, 0.88 and 0.95 for the same three time categories respectively. Nevertheless, the selected metabolites could become practically useful in scenarios where RNA marker information is unavailable such as due to RNA degradation. This is the first metabolomics study investigating circulating metabolites for trace deposition timing, and more work is needed to fully establish their usefulness for this forensic purpose.

PMID: 28780758 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]

acdc – Automated Contamination Detection and Confidence estimation for single-cell genome data.

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acdc - Automated Contamination Detection and Confidence estimation for single-cell genome data.

BMC Bioinformatics. 2016 Dec 20;17(1):543

Authors: Lux M, Krüger J, Rinke C, Maus I, Schlüter A, Woyke T, Sczyrba A, Hammer B

Abstract
BACKGROUND: A major obstacle in single-cell sequencing is sample contamination with foreign DNA. To guarantee clean genome assemblies and to prevent the introduction of contamination into public databases, considerable quality control efforts are put into post-sequencing analysis. Contamination screening generally relies on reference-based methods such as database alignment or marker gene search, which limits the set of detectable contaminants to organisms with closely related reference species. As genomic coverage in the tree of life is highly fragmented, there is an urgent need for a reference-free methodology for contaminant identification in sequence data.
RESULTS: We present acdc, a tool specifically developed to aid the quality control process of genomic sequence data. By combining supervised and unsupervised methods, it reliably detects both known and de novo contaminants. First, 16S rRNA gene prediction and the inclusion of ultrafast exact alignment techniques allow sequence classification using existing knowledge from databases. Second, reference-free inspection is enabled by the use of state-of-the-art machine learning techniques that include fast, non-linear dimensionality reduction of oligonucleotide signatures and subsequent clustering algorithms that automatically estimate the number of clusters. The latter also enables the removal of any contaminant, yielding a clean sample. Furthermore, given the data complexity and the ill-posedness of clustering, acdc employs bootstrapping techniques to provide statistically profound confidence values. Tested on a large number of samples from diverse sequencing projects, our software is able to quickly and accurately identify contamination. Results are displayed in an interactive user interface. Acdc can be run from the web as well as a dedicated command line application, which allows easy integration into large sequencing project analysis workflows.
CONCLUSIONS: Acdc can reliably detect contamination in single-cell genome data. In addition to database-driven detection, it complements existing tools by its unsupervised techniques, which allow for the detection of de novo contaminants. Our contribution has the potential to drastically reduce the amount of resources put into these processes, particularly in the context of limited availability of reference species. As single-cell genome data continues to grow rapidly, acdc adds to the toolkit of crucial quality assurance tools.

PMID: 27998267 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

SN 623: Inching Forward

This week we discuss and look into DigiCert's acquisition of Symantec's certificate authority business unit, LogMeIn's LastPass Premium price hike, the troubling case of Marcus Hutchins' post-Defcon arrest, another instance of WannaCry-style SMBv1 propagation, this week's horrific IoT example, some hopeful IoT legislation, the consequences of rooting early Amazon Echoes, the drip drip drip of Wikileaks Vault 7 drips again, Mozilla's VERY interesting easy-to-use secure large file encrypted store and forward service, the need to know what your VPN service is really up to, a bit of errata, miscellany, and some closing-the-loop feedback from our always-attentive terrific listeners.

We invite you to read our show notes.

Hosts: Steve Gibson and Leo Laporte

Download or subscribe to this show at https://twit.tv/shows/security-now.

You can submit a question to Security Now! at the GRC Feedback Page.

For 16kbps versions, transcripts, and notes (including fixes), visit Steve's site: grc.com, also the home of the best disk maintenance and recovery utility ever written Spinrite 6.

Bandwidth for Security Now is provided by CacheFly.

Development of the Oriental Latrine Fly, Chrysomya megacephala (Diptera: Calliphoridae), at Five Constant Temperatures.

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Development of the Oriental Latrine Fly, Chrysomya megacephala (Diptera: Calliphoridae), at Five Constant Temperatures.

J Med Entomol. 2017 Mar 01;54(2):290-298

Authors: Gruner SV, Slone DH, Capinera JL, Turco MP

Abstract
Chrysomya megacephala (Fabricius) is a forensically important fly that is found throughout the tropics and subtropics. We calculated the accumulated development time and transition points for each life stage from eclosion to adult emergence at five constant temperatures: 15, 20, 25, 30, and 35 °C. For each transition, the 10th, 50th, and 90th percentiles were calculated with a logistic linear model. The mean transition times and % survivorship were determined directly from the raw laboratory data. Development times of C. megacephala were compared with that of two other closely related species, Chrysomya rufifacies (Macquart) and Phormia regina (Meigen). Ambient and larval mass temperatures were collected from field studies conducted from 2001-2004. Field study data indicated that adult fly activity was reduced at lower ambient temperatures, but once a larval mass was established, heat generation occurred. These development times and durations can be used for estimation of a postmortem interval (PMI).

PMID: 27816915 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]