12-11-2019  6:57 am   •   PDX Weather    •   SEA weather  
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NORTHWEST NEWS

San Francisco Aims to Rein in Tests of Tech Ideas on Streets

Entrepreneurs would not be allowed to test their products in San Francisco's public space unless the tech in question is declared a "net public good."

Portland-area Residents May Vote on Funding for Homeless

There may be a measure on the November 2020 ballot to fund likely hundreds of millions of dollars for increased social services

Black Food Professionals See Opportunities to “Scale Up” in School Cafeterias and on Store Shelves

Two Portland women are addressing disparities in the local food scene with Ethiopian and Haitian flavors, ingredients

Portland Fire Chief Sara Boone Climbing Historic Ladders

In 1995, Boone was the first African American woman hired by Portland Fire & Rescue; this year she became its first African American Chief

NEWS BRIEFS

EPA Approves Funding for Oregon and Washington to Improve Drinking Water, Wastewater Infrastructure

States estimate $190 million for wastewater, $35 million for drinking water projects in Oregon, and $120 million for...

Conservation Breakthrough for Endangered Butterfly

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Meet 80 Local Authors at OHS 52nd Holiday Cheer Book Sale and Signing

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Need for Blood Doesn’t Stop for Holidays – Donors Needed

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North Carolina Court Decision Upholds Removal of Confederate Monument

Lawyers argued that the monument was installed at the end of Reconstruction to further the false “Lost Cause” narrative,...

Police: Man arrested for riding on young mule deer's back

RILEY, Ore. (AP) — Police say a young man was arrested after he was caught on video riding on the back of a mule deer that was trapped in a fenced area in rural eastern Oregon.Oregon State Police say 18-year-old Jacob Belcher of Riley was arrested Friday and charged with wildlife harassment...

Man arrested on 25 years’ worth of child sex abuse charges

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — A man was arrested last week on dozens of child sex abuse charges, some of which date back to 1994. The Oregonian/OregonLive reports Michael Hern has pleaded not guilty to 26 counts related to the sexual abuse of at least six children, who were between 4 and 15 years...

New Missouri coach Eli Drinkwitz predicts success

COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — Eli Drinkwitz was saying all the right things after being introduced as the new football coach at Missouri, laying out his vision for the once-proud program with unwavering confidence and bold proclamations.Then the former Appalachian State coach made a minor...

LSU's Burrow, Auburn's Brown named AP SEC players of year

LSU quarterback Joe Burrow is a unanimous selection as the offensive player of the year on The Associated Press All-Southeastern Conference football team.The top-ranked Tigers also have the SEC’s coach of the year in Ed Orgeron and the newcomer of the year in freshman cornerback Derek...

OPINION

Will You Answer the Call for Moral Revival?

In embracing and expanding the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Revs. Barber and Theoharis have asked Presidential candidates to consider a debate that focuses exclusively on poverty ...

What I’m Thankful For This Season

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Congressional Black Caucus Members Visit U.S.-Mexico Border: “Mistreatment of Black Immigrants is Another ‘Stain on America’”

Members said they witnessed first-hand the deplorable treatment and plight of Black immigrants ...

Portland, I'm Ready

Last month I had the privilege to stand with hundreds of supporters and announce my intention to run for re-election ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Jersey City's mayor says gunmen targeted kosher market

JERSEY CITY, N.J. (AP) — The mayor of Jersey City said Wednesday it's clear that the gunmen in a furious shooting that left six people dead targeted a Jewish market.Mayor Steven Fulop refused to call it an anti-Semitic attack but said surveillance video shows the gunmen driving slowly...

YouTube cracks down on racist, sexist and similar insults

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — YouTube is taking another step to curb hateful and violent speech on its site. The video streaming company said it will now take down videos that lob insults at people based on race, gender expression, sexual orientation or other “protected attributes.”...

PBS, Netflix, MSNBC among 2020 duPont-Columbia award winners

NEW YORK (AP) — Groundbreaking reporting on the separation of families at the U.S.-Mexican border, the growth of America's white supremacist movement and the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi will be honored at the 2020 Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Awards, Columbia’s...

ENTERTAINMENT

NFL, NCAA football fuel Fox TV's win of the prime-time week

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Fueled by both college and pro football, Fox won a rare title as champ of the broadcast week among networks. Fox's Thursday night NFL airing of the Dallas Cowboys and Chicago Bears was the week's top show of any kind with 18.23 million viewers, and its broadcast of the Big...

The Associated Press picks the top moments on TV from 2019

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Adam Sandler on plunging into the Safdies' 'Uncut Gems'

TORONTO (AP) — Adam Sandler was waiting to be thrown into a midtown fountain on Sixth Avenue for a scene in Josh and Benny Safdie’s “Uncut Gems” when he noticed a familiar face on the sidewalk.The Safdies like to capture as much authentic New York energy as possible in...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

AP source: Yanks land ace Cole on record 4M, 9-year deal

SAN DIEGO (AP) — The New York Yankees landed the biggest prize of the free agent market, adding Gerrit Cole...

Santa, soldiers bring joy to town with river erosion crisis

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Saudi Aramco gains 10% in debut to clinch top seat at jumi.8T

RIYADH, Saudi Arabia (AP) — Saudi Arabia's oil company Aramco gained 10% in its first moments on the stock...

No Christmas tinsel in Iraq, in solidarity with protesters

BAGHDAD (AP) — The Christmas tree in the middle of a central Baghdad plaza occupied by anti-government...

Turkey doesn't rule out force to halt drilling off Cyprus

ANKARA, Turkey (AP) — Turkey could use its military forces to halt any exploratory gas drilling in waters...

French government raises retirement age as strikes grind on

PARIS (AP) — France's prime minister said Wednesday the full retirement age will be increased for the...

McMenamins
CNN and The Skanner News



The U.S. National Security Agency has secretly succeeded in breaking much of the encryption that keeps people's personal data safe online, according to reports by The New York Times, The Guardian and ProPublica.

The reports, produced in partnership and published Thursday, are the latest to emerge based on documents leaked by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden to Britain's Guardian newspaper.

According to the reports, the NSA, alongside its UK equivalent, Government Communications Headquarters, better known as GCHQ, has been able to unscramble much of the encoding that protects everything from personal e-mails to banking systems, medical records and Internet chats.

The agencies' methods include the use of supercomputers to crack codes, covert measures to introduce weaknesses into encryption standards and behind-doors collaboration with technology companies and Internet service providers themselves.

"Through these covert partnerships, the agencies have inserted secret vulnerabilities -- known as backdoors or trapdoors -- into commercial encryption software," The Guardian says.

And the agency spends $250 million a year to get corporations and tech companies to cooperate.

The Guardian cites a 2010 GCHQ memo that it says describes a briefing on NSA accomplishments given to GCHQ employees.

"For the past decade, NSA has lead (sic) an aggressive, multi-pronged effort to break widely used Internet encryption technologies," the memo reportedly says. "Vast amounts of encrypted Internet data which have up till now been discarded are now exploitable."

A second memo is quoted as saying that when the British analysts, who often work alongside NSA officers, were first told about the program, "those not already briefed were gobsmacked."

Another document states that GCHQ has been working to find ways into the encrypted data sent via four big Internet firms, Google, Yahoo, Facebook and Microsoft's Hotmail, the reports claim.

GCHQ told CNN it had no comment on The Guardian report.

The reports claim that the NSA worked to develop more covert ways of unscrambling online data after losing a public battle in the 1990s to insert a government "back door" into all programming.

'Foundation of web security'

Computer security expert Mikko Hypponen believes the revelation is the most important leak to date from Snowden.

"It may not have gained as many headlines as some of his other stories, because most people don't understand how crypto systems work. If indeed U.S intelligence does indeed have such a wide range of systems, then I'm surprised," he told CNN.

Crypto encryption is relevant to everyday applications that everyone uses, for example in communications and transactions, he said. "Now we learn that the foundation of web security has been compromised."

Hypponen, the chief research officer for F-Secure, said he believes the NSA and GCHQ had probably cracked the encryption by placing moles in key companies at key locations. "Any major service provider must have sizable amounts of moles from intelligence agencies. Remember that the NSA has 35,000 people working for it," he said.

"The ordinary user should not be worried by these revelations -- it's obvious that intelligence agencies are not interested in hacking financial transactions -- but they should be outraged."

He suggested those outside the United States should be the most concerned.

"How many U.S. politicians use French cloud-services? Almost none. But how many French politicians use U.S. cloud services? All of them," he said. "Remember that 96 percent of the planet's inhabitants are foreigners to the United States, so it's wrong that the U.S. has a legal right to access foreign communications."

Public concern

The scope of hidden U.S. surveillance programs has been brought to public light through leaks to media outlets by Snowden, who fled the United States and is now in Russia under temporary asylum. He faces espionage charges.

The revelations have led many Americans, according to polls, to harbor skepticism about the NSA programs. They've also generated concern in Congress as well as from privacy groups and libertarians.

Last month, President Barack Obama sought to allay people's unease over the work of the intelligence agency in an interview with CNN "New Day" anchor Chris Cuomo.

Obama said he was confident no one at the NSA is "trying to abuse this program or listen in on people's e-mail." The president chalked much of the concern with domestic snooping on changes in technology.

"I think there are legitimate concerns that people have that technology is moving so quick," Obama said. "What I recognize is that we're going to have to continue to improve the safeguards and as technology moves forward, that means that we may be able to build technologies that give people more assurance."

CNN's Bharati Naik contributed to this report.

 

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