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Ex-soldier stole 300 from safe at security office of New Cross Hospital

A former soldier who completed two tours of Iraq has been ordered to pay more than 700 after he admitted stealing 300 from New Cross Hospital.

Father-of-three Lee Rowlands, aged 30, of Evans Street, Whitmore Reans, pleaded guilty at Walsall Magistrates’ court on Thursday after being charged with theft by an employee. The court heard how Rowlands, who previously spent six years in the army and completed two tours of Iraq, stole 300 from an unsecured safe at the car parking security office of New Cross Hospital. He was working as a security supervisor at the time. He was ordered by magistrate Mrs Jayne Heathcote to pay a fine of 250, down from 375 for his early guilty plea, costs of 185, compensation to the NHS of 300 and a victim surcharge of 30, totalling 765. The theft took place between February 1 and March 5 this year when Rowlands was working in the security office. The unsecured safe contained money collected from parking passes given out to those working at the hospital. The court heard how CCTV installed in the security office was angled to cover the safe, but would only reveal the person s back. When Mr Rowlands colleagues realised money had not been accounted for, they installed an additional camera when he was on annual leave. This camera showed Mr Rowlands take 40 from the safe .

He was arrested and interviewed at Wolverhampton Central Police Station on March 13 where he admitted taking the money and he had stolen 300 in total from February. Ms Rachel Smith, prosecuting, said: It was confirmed there was 40 in the safe before Rowlands was seen on camera removing something from the safe . The 40 was not there when it was checked after his visit. Defending Rowlands, Mr Nayan Patel said: He admits he is suffering from post-traumatic-stress-disorder following his two tours of Iraq. Rowlands is currently suspended from work, where the court heard, he continues to earn 1,000 a month, though his contract is expected to be terminated following his appearance in court.

Security guard beaten and left injured for hours after savage attack …

A security guard was savagely beaten and left lying seriously injured for hours after a brutal attack at a Brierley Hill factory.

The guard, aged 73, was attacked after he challenged a man found near the factory office yesterday afternoon. The attack happened at Stoke Forgings, a steel components manufacturing plant, based off Vine Street, at around 1pm. Police say the guard was hit numerous times, leaving him with serious head injuries. He was only discovered by a colleague starting work later at around 7pm. He remains in a critical condition in hospital today. The factory unit has been sealed off by officers while forensic inquiries take place. Detective Inspector Colin Mattinson from Force CID said: The security guard is currently detained in a critical condition in hospital. “This was a sustained and violent attack on an elderly man. “We believe he challenged a man found inside the premises which led to the unprovoked attack taking place.

Enquiries are continuing and we are studying CCTV and carrying our forensic investigations at the scene. “We are still trying to establish what the man was doing inside the premises and what, if anything was stolen. I would ask anyone who saw anything in the Vine Street area yesterday or anyone who has knowledge of this attack to call us as soon as possible on 101 or call Crimestoppers confidentially on 0800 555 111.

Patrols have been stepped up in the area after the attack.

After CIA leaks, tech giants scramble to patch security flaws

After CIA Leaks, Tech Giants Scramble To Patch Security Flaws

(Image: file photo)

Several tech giants have said they are examining a trove of documents leaked earlier this week that purport to show the CIA’s ability to hack into phones, computers, and smart TVs. The documents, released by WikiLeaks1, did not contain exploit code that could be used by hackers to carry out attacks, but the documents do provide details of vulnerabilities that may help security researchers identify some flaws in tech products, including Android devices and iPhones. Apple, Google, Microsoft, and Samsung were all named in the thousands of released documents, which are believed to have come from the CIA’s Center for Cyber Intelligence. The CIA has so far not commented directly on the authenticity of the leak, but on Wednesday it suggested that the release had damaged national security by helping its adversaries “with tools and information to do us harm.”

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange said in a Thursday press conference that he will give the tech companies “exclusive access”2 to some of the technical details it has of the CIA’s hacking tools, as part of an effort to expedite the security patching process. But so far there has been no such evidence of sharing files with tech companies, however. Apple said in a statement3 that it will “rapidly address any identified vulnerabilities” it finds in its Macs or iPhone software. Google, too, said it will4 “implement any further necessary protections” and that its analysis is ongoing.

Microsoft said it was “looking into” the reports, but didn’t comment further. But security experts say that many of the vulnerabilities have already been patched. Jon Sawyer, an Android security researcher, said that most of the Android bugs listed have been already patched.

“The list seems to be limited to Android 2.2 to 4.4.4 — we are on Android 7.1.1 now,” said Sawyer . He said that many of the bugs related to legacy versions of Android and older devices. “Vague descriptions of bugs is no more worrisome than the fact they know any software has unknown vulnerabilities,” he said, adding that Google was “in no worse position than they were a week ago.”

An analysis by F-Secure showed that the majority of Android users are still using Android 4.45 . Google’s own statistics shows that the software version is third6 behind Android 5 and Android 6. Will Strafach, an iOS security researcher, said that “essentially, there is nothing” in the documents that point to working vulnerabilities of iOS 10 and later. Almost 80 percent of users are currently on a version of iOS 10, says Apple7. Strafach said the Samsung smart TV vulnerability, which required an older firmware version and physical access to the device, had also been fixed. In a brief statement, a Samsung spokesperson said the company was “urgently looking into the matter.”

Linux, the open-source operating system, was also listed in the cache of documents. “Linux is a very widely used operating system, with a huge installed base all around the world, so it is not surprising that state agencies from many countries would target Linux along with the many closed source platforms that they have sought to compromise,” said Nicko van Someren, chief technology officer at The Linux Foundation, speaking to BBC News8. He emphasized that the rapid release of security patches “enable the open source community to fix vulnerabilities and release those fixes to users faster.” But the status of other products isn’t fully known.

In the cache, close to two-dozen antivirus products, including Kaspersky, Symantec, and Avast, were listed as having vulnerabilities that were exploitable by the CIA. According to the Associated Press9, the CIA used unflattering terms to deride antivirus makers, many of which the agency exploited through vulnerabilities in their software. In one case, a flaw in Kaspersky antivirus allowed the CIA to “bypass Kaspersky’s protections,” but founder Eugene Kaspersky told an AP reporter that the vulnerability was fixed “years ago.”

Avira, another antivirus maker, said it fixed a “minor vulnerability” within hours of the documents’ release. Cindy Cohn, director of the Electronic Frontier Foundation, said the CIA had “failed to accurately assess the risk of not disclosing vulnerabilities.” “Even spy agencies like the CIA have a responsibility to protect the security and privacy of Americans,” she said.

WikiLeaks said so far it has released only a fraction of what it says it obtained, and that more files will be released in the coming days and weeks.

References

  1. ^ released by WikiLeaks (www.zdnet.com)
  2. ^ give the tech companies “exclusive access” (www.zdnet.com)
  3. ^ in a statement (www.zdnet.com)
  4. ^ said it will (www.zdnet.com)
  5. ^ still using Android 4.4 (labsblog.f-secure.com)
  6. ^ the software version is third (developer.android.com)
  7. ^ says Apple (developer.apple.com)
  8. ^ speaking to BBC News (www.bbc.com)
  9. ^ to the Associated Press (hosted.ap.org)