Articles by Lisa Vaas

About Lisa Vaas

I've been writing about technology, careers, science and health since 1995. I rose to the lofty heights of Executive Editor for eWEEK, popped out with the 2008 crash, joined the freelancer economy, and am still writing for my beloved peeps at places like Sophos's Naked Security, CIO Mag, ComputerWorld, PC Mag, IT Expert Voice, Software Quality Connection, Time, and the US and British editions of HP's Input/Output. I respond to cash and spicy sites, so don't be shy.

Dating site buys back 20 million hacked email addresses

Rose. Image courtesy of Shutterstock.

Despite the hacker putting the email addresses up for sale, the undisclosed sum is apparently not ransom, it's an "award", says hacked site Topface.

Hotels that block personal Wi-Fi hotspots will get busted, says FCC

Hotels that block personal Wi-Fi hotspots will get busted, says FCC

So ends Marriott's campaign to block guests' hotspots and force guests to pay for its own Wi-Fi, even though they don't threaten security.

Cop who stole nude photos from arrested women's seized phones escapes jail time

CHP car. Image courtesy of Ken Wolter/Shutterstock.

Sean Harrington pleaded no contest to felony charges related to secretly forwarding suspects' photos to his and other officers' phones.

Massive DEA license plate reader program tracks millions of Americans

DEA tracking millions of license plates in "forfeiture" program

The DEA is using license plate reader cameras to capture information on an enormous number of motorists, with nearly 800 million license plates stored in a database used by federal and local authorities.

Ubisoft yanks keys for online games purchased via unauthorised parties

Ubisoft yanks keys for online games purchased via unauthorised parties

Far Cry 4 and other games disappeared over the weekend, leaving a trail of ex-Ubisoft fans in their wake, stripped of games Ubisoft thinks were "fraudulently" bought on third-party sites.

Google asked to muzzle Waze 'police-stalking' app

Police alert on Waze

US police are typically the ones to surveil, not the other way around, as Google's crowd-sourced, police-mapping traffic app is doing. Now sheriffs are asking Google to pull the plug on it.

Pinterest to sell ads based on what you're thinking of buying

Pinterest. Image courtesy of Twin Design/Shutterstock.

Been pinning pictures of fancy kitchens? Well, isn't that interesting, says every appliance maker on the planet.

School rule-breakers to hand over Facebook and Twitter passwords

Students who cyberbully may forfeit social media passwords

US school students in the state of Illinois may be forced to give up their social media passwords if they're suspected of cyberbullying or of otherwise breaking school rules.

Silk Road 2.0 deputy arrested after 6-month attack on Tor

Feds arrest alleged Silk Road 2.0 deputy after 6-month attack on Tor

Brian Richard Farrell, aka " DoctorClu", was arrested last week. A search warrant shows that the drug market's kingpins were unmasked after a 6-month assault on Tor.

People happily give away their (bad) passwords to TV reporter

Facepalm. Image courtesy of Shutterstock.

Say hello to the people in the street who show us how social engineering works. Hint: say you're from Jimmy Kimmel, sound interested, and ask about their pet!

Gamergate target Zoe Quinn launches network to battle online harassment

Gamergate target Zoe Quinn launches network to battle online harassment

Crash Override pre-emptively warns would-be swatting victims and has gotten one police department to knock with hands, not boots.

Police seize robot and its shopping, including drugs, master keys and stash can

Police seize robot's Darknet shopping, including drugs, jeans and stash can

"The Random Darknet Shopper" robot enjoyed a 3-month shopping spree on the Darknet, which included ordering 10 tablets of 120mg MDMA.

Why the US was so sure North Korea hacked Sony: it had a front-row seat

US and North Korea. Image courtesy of Shutterstock.

A newly released, top-secret document traces the NSA's infiltration of North Korean systems back to 2010, when it piggybacked on South Korean "implants" on North Korea's networks and "sucked back the data".

Hackers for hire? Hacker's List - for those with no ethics or espionage skills

Hackers. Image courtesy of Shutterstock.

Prying open a boyfriend's private accounts is just one of the crimes listed on 'Hacker's List' - a Task Rabbit/Craigslist-esque hackers-for-hire website.

Cops arrest another man after Christmas PlayStation/Xbox DDoS

Arrest. Image courtesy of Shutterstock.

Police have arrested a second man in connection with the Lizard Squad's Grinch-like Christmas attack on gamers.

Thieves hijack miles from American and United Airlines accounts

American airlines plane. Image courtesy of anderm/Shutterstock.

Usernames and passwords stolen from a third party were used to book free trips or upgrades on American and United Airlines: yet another sad tale of password reuse!

Marriott's stopped blocking your Wi-Fi hotspots

marriott no wifi 250

Post-big-bucks fine, Marriott has now stopped blocking personal Wi-Fi devices at hotels.

Sextortionist who preyed on teens via Facebook and Skype gets 53 months

Jail. Image courtesy of Shutterstock.

Andrew McBride, who preyed on victims as young as 13, has been sentenced to 53 months in jail and three years of monitoring after that.