Have Hyderabadi cricketers actually been treated unfairly

first_imgVVS Laxman’s retirement came all of a sudden in 2012ReutersAmidst all the debate that took place around the absence of Ambati Rayudu and Rishabh Pant from the Indian ICC 2019 World Cup squad, what stood out most was Rayudu’s tweet. But even more interesting was the retweet by another out-of-favour Indian cricketer – Pragyan Ojha.The left-arm spinner last represented India in Sachin Tendulkar’s farewell series against West Indies in late-2013. Interestingly, he was the man-of-the-match in his last Test. Ojha retweeted the comments of Rayudu and added his own views to it.Now, Ojha didn’t reveal who are those ‘Hyderabadi cricketers’ that have been in ‘similar situations.’ But does he have a point when he suggests that cricketers belonging to this proud city have had a raw deal?If we look at the most prominent cricketers from Hyderabad, one can find grievances that all of them can have. But that doesn’t necessarily mean that there is any systematic bias against these cricketers. However, let’s first look at these prominent names and their possible complaints.Mohammad AzharuddinIt is very difficult to have sympathy for this legendary batsman from Hyderabad. After all, many would say it were his own actions that led to his career ending in disgrace. While the courts may have acquitted him and there are not any official sanctions against the former India captain, he still carries the taint of match-fixing. However, he can carry the grouse of not being allowed to play his 100th Test and being forced to end his career with 99. Of course, that is a partisan view.VVS LaxmanOne of the most aesthetically pleasing players in the world and a true match-winner, Laxman’s exit from the team was very, very surprising (pun intended). In 2012, he was picked in the Indian Test side to face New Zealand in a two-match home series. But all of a sudden, VVS announced his retirement. Speculation was rife that he had been told by the selectors that this would be his last series and he responded by ending his career himself. How much truth there was in these rumours, we don’t know. But it has to be said that Laxman’s form had declined substantially in the last year of his career and his place in the team was under doubt. But for hard-core fans of the batting wizard, that won’t be any consolation. Pragyan Ojha (L) put out a tweet suggesting Hyderabadi players getting a raw dealBCCIPragyan OjhaNow we come to the main aggrieved party. Does Ojha have reason to feel hurt by the selectors? He certainly does. The Orissa-born cricketer had become a regular member of the Indian Test team by late 2010 and was acting as a deputy to Harbhajan Singh. But for some reason, Indian selectors convinced themselves that he cannot do well on non-Asian pitches. Every time India needed a second spinner outside the sub-continent, they went to Amit Mishra – be it the South Africa tour of 2010-11 or England tour of 2011.Ojha, in order to prove his worth on non-friendly pitches, played a season of county cricket for Surrey in 2011. Even the former India captain Sourav Ganguly was impressed with his performances in English conditions. But the selectors kept ignoring him and when they decided to replace Ashwin during the South Africa tour of 2013, they went to Ravindra Jadeja and not Ojha.But even before that, the left-arm spinner was getting a raw deal from his team. After emerging as India’s best bowler in the four-Test series against England in 2012, he was dropped for the first two matches of the next series – vs Australia. Imagine the highest run-scorer from a series getting dropped for the first half of the next series. It seems impossible but this is exactly what Ojha faced.His problem got compounded when the ICC decided to crack down upon suspicious bowling actions and he too had to undergo remodelling. But since then, Ojha has made a comeback but without the selectors giving him another opportunity. So, one can understand why he feels aggrieved. Among all the Hyderabadi cricketers, it’s this one who has been treated most unfairly by the selectors and team management.last_img read more

Budget Session likely to be stormy

first_imgWith less than a fortnight to go for the presentation of the Budget 2016, the divide between the two main Indian political parties – the BJP and the Congress – seems to be widening.While the BJP-led NDA government headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi is under attack for its handling of JNU students over the Afzal Guru death anniversary issue, the Congress is keen to take on the government head-on, using macroeconomic data and the latest political development to good effect, just days before Finance Minister Arun Jaitley is set to present the budget on Feb.29.At a press conference last Friday in New Delhi, Abhishek Singhvi, spokesperson for the Congress, took on the Modi government on a range of issues, from the alleged fake encounter of Ishrat Jahan to the JNU protests, besides the state of the economy.”Let us presume that Ishrat Jahan was a suspected terrorist. What is the course of action the BJP is proposing? That she should be liquidated in a false encounter? As a civilised country governed by law and order, should we not proceed by trying her in the court of law as Ajmal Kasab and Afzal Guru were tried? The BJP was advocating hanging them by the nearest lamp-post. How is India different from a banana republic if we too resort to such practices?” BusinessLine reported Singhvi as saying.Mocking the government for holding events such as “Make in India” without showing commensurate results on the ground, he said: “This clueless government has no idea on how to revive it (the economy) and they seem to move from one slogan and event to another without even attempting to address the real crisis at hand.”Singhvi also said that apart from the fact that 29 state-owned banks have written off Rs 1.14 lakh crore of bad debts during 2013-2015, the rupee, which was at 58.5 to a dollar when the BJP came to power, has dropped to 68.38, a fall of 17 percent. The NDA government is facing a grim situation, notwithstanding the description of Asia’s third largest economy as a “bright spot” by the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund.Retail inflation at a 17-month high in January, factory output (IIP) registering a second straight month of contraction in December, third quarter GDP growth rate coming at 7.3 percent, the lowest in the past three quarters, and merchandise exports registering decline for the 13th month in a row in December have emboldened the Congress – which was reduced to its lowest tally in its history after the 2014 general elections – to question the government’s performance on the economic front.Given the current political circumstances, Jaitley, who often says that “all political parties are with the government on economic legislations except the Congress,” may find it difficult to secure their support, given that they would find it politically expedient to go with the Congress.After all, the JD(U), the RJD and the Communists have found a common cause to take on the government and would not like to break ranks with the GOP (read the Congress) over the GST legislation, more so when crucial Assembly polls to five states – Assam, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, West Bengal and Puducherry – are round the corner. It would be politically naive to expect the Congress and the larger Opposition to support the NDA government at a time when it is politically weak.To use a stock market phrase, the Modi government is going through a bearish phase, much like the Sensex that posted its single biggest weekly fall in a year last week.The Budget Session needs to be seen in this context. The probability – a high one at that – of a united Opposition taking on the government over the JNU students’ issue and the Ishrat Jahan encounter case could mar the session. On the other hand, if the government is seen as unable to pass key economic legislations during the session, it would send the wrong signals to the marlets.last_img read more

Gold prices near 2year high on safe haven demand as Brexit looms

first_imgGold prices in the Indian market crossed the psychological mark of Rs. 31,000 per 10 gram on Thursday, the highest level seen in the past 22 months, while the BSE Sensex though fell by about 400 points in the morning session but later recovered to close about 200 points down, reports NDTV Profit .On Wednesday, the metal lost Rs. 130 to close at Rs. 29, 670.The spike is in line with the global market where the safe-haven asset touched $1317 an ounce.In international markets, gold reached the $1300 an ounce mark after the U.S. Federal Reserve kept the interest rates unchanged and hinted at less monetary policy tightening in future, increasing the opportunity cost of the non-interest yielding metal.According to HSBC analyst James Steel, the Fed’s decision to leave the rates unchanged and the tone of the statement could point to a bullish market for gold in the near-term, adding that the central bank’s policies appear “long-term supportive of gold.”The Fed’s caution comes ahead of Britain’s referendum on June 23 to decide if Britain will remain with or leave the European Union. According to some experts, a Brexit could cause recession, an event that can exert pressure on the global economy and bolster the appeal of gold.India’s gold import registered a four-month low to $1.47 billion in May, 39 percent lower than $2.42 billion in the corresponding month last year.last_img read more

iPhones cosmetics recovered from 5 Biman crew

first_img.Customs intelligence officials recovered eight iPhones and some cosmetics from five cabin crew members of Biman Bangladesh Airlines at Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport on Tuesday, reports UNB.Based on secret information, a team of Customs Intelligence and Investigation Directorate (CIID) searched the bags of the five cabin crew – identified as Morzina Akhter Elin, Salma Sultana, Farzana Gazi, Moinuddin Adnan and Roman Sikder -soon after their flight arrived at the airport from Abu Dhabi.According to the baggage policy, a crew member could bring in up to $300 worth of goods, but these products were detained due to lack of proper buying documents.During preliminary interrogation, they revealed that they (cabin crew) were carrying the seized goods for one Tanim Raj, a local businessman, in exchange for money, said the director general of CIID Moinul Khan.Biman Bangladesh Airlines has been directed to take departmental action against the five crew members for breaching the rules to bring in the seized costly mobile phone sets and cosmetics, including perfumes, he said.last_img read more

Rangpur Metropolitan Police bill passed in JS

first_imgThe Jatiya Sangsad on Thursday passed a bill to form Rangpur Metropolitan Police with a view to improving the law and order and strengthening the police services to ensure public security in Rangpur metropolitan area, reports UNB.Home minister Asaduzzaman Khan moved the bill titled Rangpur Metropolitan Police Bill, 2018 which was passed by voice vote.In November 2017, the cabinet approved the draft law to form the separate police force for Rangpur Metropolitan area, which was placed in parliament on 11 February.The bill empowered the police force of the metropolitan area to award pecuniary punishment and jail-terms for violation of laws. It can fine up to Tk 10,000 and one-year jail subjected to types of crimes.The draft law was framed in the light of the existing Sylhet Metropolitan Police Act 2009 and Barisal Metropolitan Police Act, 2009.As per the bill, the police members will have to execute the orders of the competent authorities, apply full power of the police officers concerned to prevent or resist any possible criminal offence and resist all public nuisances.In 2012, Rangpur City Corporation was formed with 203 square kilometre areas and nearly eight lakh dwellers.last_img read more

Texas Officials See Long Road From Harvey For State Transportation Network

first_imgBob Daemmrich for The Texas TribuneThe highway into Rockport is still covered in water on Monday, Aug. 28, 2017, days after Hurricane Harvey made landfall.Alongside thousands of Texas homes and businesses impacted by Hurricane Harvey, floodwaters also damaged hundreds of roads and highways across the region.Prolonged flooding can wash out bridges, knock down traffic signals and signs and cause asphalt to buckle. Last week, the federal government directed $25 million to the Texas Department of Transportation to help the agency begin repairing the region’s vast transportation system.But that funding won’t last very long, said TxDOT Deputy Executive Director Marc Williams.“The size and the duration of this storm is beyond anything we’ve ever experienced in this state,” he said.As of Friday, more than 290 roads were closed in the areas affected by Harvey. TxDOT spokesman Bob Kaufman said the agency was making repairs where they could get in. But conditions needed to get better before they can fully begin the recovery process.“While roads are underwater, all we can do is put up barricades and redirect traffic, for the most part,” Williams said.More than 2,400 TxDOT employees are currently addressing the damage from Hurricane Harvey. The department is still assessing the disaster, so they’re unsure of how long recovery will take and the total cost.Texans in Congress are already in the middle of talks to vote on a federal aid package for Harvey recovery efforts later this month.Ryan Murphy/Dartmouth Flood ObservatoryPreliminary flood data collected by the Dartmouth Flood Observatory using satellite imagery shows the extent of flood water across Southeast Texas. Because cloud cover can limit the availability of data, this represents the minimum likely extent of the flood water.On Friday, Gov. Greg Abbott said state lawmakers have “smartly kept a lot of money” in the Rainy Day Fund, the state’s savings account. The fund, which is largely made up of tax revenue on oil and gas production, was projected to have a balance of $10.3 billion at the end of August, according to a recent estimate from the Texas Comptroller’s Office. But Abbott confirmed he didn’t plan to call a special session for Harvey relief, meaning lawmakers are unlikely to use much of that fund until 2019.Hurricane Ike was the last major hurricane to hit Texas in 2008. According to a report issued by TxDOT in 2012, the final cost to repair roads and highways after Ike was over $150 million.State crews managed to clear roads four days after Ike. Hurricane Harvey lingered in Texas for nearly a week, resulting in record-breaking rainfall and extensive flooding. The longer duration of Hurricane Harvey is expected to have caused more damage to the state’s transportation system than Ike.“I think we’re safe to say that it’s going to exceed the $25 million,” Williams said. Sharelast_img read more

Play this Super Luigi U for the Wii U

first_imgNintendo’s first DLC for Super Mario Bros. U has finally arrived. That might sound like great news for Wii U — DLC for a Mario game — but if you’re a casual player get ready to be frustrated quickly.As one of their launch day titles, Super Mario Bros. U is one of those games you expect just about every Wii U owner to buy. As we wait for some of the new titles announced at E3 2013 to arrive, Nintendo has released a Luigi-focused DLC that can be purchased as an add on to the existing SMBU or as a standalone digital only title. The add-on puts you in the bright green overalls of Mario’s taller twin, who is also trying to race his way to rescue Princess Peach. Luigi’s adventure is a little different than Mario’s, and in many ways this game is significantly more challenging to complete.Super Luigi U starts off just as the original did, with Bowser and his crew storming the castle and taking the Princess. From Luigi’s perspective, he’s got to get to the castle as quickly as possible, with very little time to stop and enjoy much of anything. All of Luigi’s levels start with the time warning sound, offering just 100 seconds on the clock to complete the level. During boss fight levels, you have 100 seconds to get through the actual level and an additional 100 seconds for the boss fight. Skilled players will have no problem taking on the first few levels in under 45 seconds, but this mechanic makes exploring the levels fairly challenging.Playing Luigi is slightly different from playing Mario, as you now have access to his extra hang-time when he jumps. This little bit can often make a big difference in getting through the level, especially when used with the flying squirrel acorn and some of the other new abilities. You’ll find some familiar companions like Yoshi along the way, but you’ll also find reasons to go back to previous levels and play through them again, like when you have to chase down Nabbit to recover items he has stolen from Toadstool.As DLC’s go, Luigi U is great. It’s a challenging addition to Mario U that offers just enough variety to keep things interesting. The 100-second limit gets frustrating as you move into the other parts of the map, and the first time you forget that Mario can’t jump as high as Luigi or hang in the air for a second as he jumps you’ll want to throw your controller… but overall it is a great DLC.You can grab this game from the Wii U shop for $19.99 as an add-on or $29.99 as a standalone title, and even if you don’t want the DLC there’s now an update for SMB U that allows you to play with the new Pro Controller. VIEW PHOTO GALLERY Title Screen Luigi UTitle Screen Luigi UScratched out signBoss Fight Luigi UYoshi Luigi UNabbit catch Luigi Ulast_img read more

A Test of the Copernican Principle

first_img This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. However, as physicists Robert Caldwell of Dartmouth College in Hanover, New Hampshire, and Albert Stebbins of Fermilab in Batavia, Illinois, point out, the Copernican principle has never been confirmed as a whole. In a recent paper published in Physical Review Letters called “A Test of the Copernican Principle,” the two researchers set out to prove the 500-year-old principle using observations of the cosmic microwave background (CMB).“The Copernican principle is a cornerstone of most of astronomy, it is assumed without question, and plays an important role in many statistical tests for the viability of cosmological models,” Stebbins told PhysOrg.com. “It is also a necessary consequence of the stronger assumption of the Cosmological Principle: namely, that not only do we not live in a special part of the universe, but there are no special parts of the universe – everything is the same everywhere (up to statistical variation). “It is a very handy principle, since it implies that here and now is the same as there and now, and here and then is the same as there and then. We do not have to look back in time at our current location to see how the universe was in our past – we can just look very far away, and given the large light travel time, we are looking at a distant part of the universe in the distant past. Given the Cosmological Principle, their past is the same as our past.”Cosmic DistortionWhen the universe was just 400,000 years old, matter and radiation decoupled and left a remnant radiation that still pervades the entire universe today. By measuring the tiny temperature fluctuations of this CMB radiation, scientists can learn things about the universe such as its shape, size, and rate of expansion. In the latter case, the observations show that the universe is expanding at an ever-accelerating rate, leading scientists to speculate about the existence of dark energy, new laws of gravity, and other possible – and often exotic – theories.But what if the universe’s accelerating expansion is just an illusion? As Caldwell and Stebbins explained, this scenario is entirely plausible if the Copernican principle is loosened a bit. If, instead of the universe being homogenous and isotropic as the Cosmological Principle states, there is rather “a peculiar distribution of matter centered upon our location,” then the universe would be centered on a low-density, matter-dominated void. Such a universe would be non-accelerating, and there would be no need for dark energy or other similar theories. That’s why it’s important to know if the Copernican principle is correct: it will ensure that CMB observations haven’t been misinterpreted to indicate cosmic acceleration when there is none. To test the principle, Caldwell and Stebbins developed a “CMB-distortion test”: they looked for deviations of the CMB spectrum from a perfect blackbody as might have been caused by a large, local void. A void or other “non-Copernican structure” would cause ionized gas to move relative to the CMB, and the Doppler-shifted CMB scattered toward us could contain detectable deviations from a blackbody. “In essence, we use the reionized Universe as a mirror to look at ourselves in CMB light,” the researchers explained. “If we see ourselves in the mirror, it is because ours is a privileged location. If we see nothing [i.e. no peculiar distortions] in the mirror, then the Copernican principle is upheld.”The Hubble BubbleAs an initial test, Caldwell and Stebbins focused on a universe model consisting of a simple, spherically symmetric void, which is also known as a “Hubble bubble.” This void universe resembles an open (low-density) universe embedded inside a flat (medium-density) universe. The size of the void depends on how gas is distributed throughout the universe. Basically, gas can exist in three zones – neutral, reflection, and Doppler – depending on its redshift. Depending on how these three zones overlap, the void can come in five sizes, from small to “superhorizon,” where the void encompasses the entire observable universe.Using their CMB-distortion test, the researchers calculated that only the smaller void models could lead to the type of distortion associated with a violation of the Copernican principle. Then, by analyzing data for the CMB spectrum, they were able to rule out nearly all of these non-Copernican Hubble bubble void universes – meaning the Copernican principle passed this first test. However, Caldwell and Stebbins also noted that other models – such as those with a higher density or smaller radius – may still exist that evade this test.The researchers added that this is not the first time that bits of the Copernican principle have been tested, but it is one of the first tests of the remaining radial inhomogeneity on very large scales. Caldwell explained that, in 1995, physicist Jeremy Goodman of Princeton proposed a similar test of spectral distortions. Goodman’s implementation resulted in a weaker constraint, or test, of the Copernican principle.“This [large-scale testing] is not easy to do because, when we look far away, we are looking back in time, and it is difficult to say whether what we see is due to changes with time, which does not violate the Copernican principle, or changes with distance, which does,” Stebbins explained. “Thus, it is a hard question to answer, which is why it has not been done.”More TestsIn the future, the scientists plan to further pinpoint the CMB distortions that could be caused by a local non-Copernican structure, and also apply the test to other more general universe models. These tests should be useful in potentially ruling out alternative hypotheses for dark energy, as Caldwell explained. More fundamentally, the tests could either verify the foundation of centuries of astronomical work, or – and the chance is slim – suggest that the Copernican principle may not be as certain as we think.“If our test of the Copernican principle were to fail, it would probably not be believed, and a variety of other observations would be required to test it,” Stebbins said. “If all these further tests confirmed the large void, then we would have to rethink our ideas about dark energy, or, namely, unthink them. “I think the scientific community would not be too unhappy with the idea of a large under-dense region – it is not hard to think of ideas of how they might come to be, even in the context of a hot big bang model. What is hard to understand is why we would be so close to the center of one. No doubt someone would come up with an ‘anthropic’ argument for it – but I’ve thought a bit about that, and don’t really think there is a salable anthropic explanation. (By the way, I don’t think there is a salable intelligent design reason, either.) In the end, we might have to live with the Walter Cronkite explanation ‘… and that’s the way it is …. ’”More information: Caldwell, R. R. and Stebbins, A. “A Test of the Copernican Principle.” Physical Review Letters 100, 191302 (2008). Copyright 2008 PhysOrg.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed in whole or part without the express written permission of PhysOrg.com. This image shows a cross-section of a void universe with an observer (O) in the center, in violation of the Copernican principle. CMB photons (yellow lines) can scatter off reionized gas, and some may lead to CMB distortions. Credit: Caldwell, R. R. and Stebbins, A. ©2008 APS. Explore furthercenter_img Earth not center of the universe, surrounded by ‘dark energy’: cosmologists report Citation: A Test of the Copernican Principle (2008, May 22) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2008-05-copernican-principle.html The Copernican principle states that the Earth is not the center of the universe, and that, as observers, we don’t occupy a special place. First stated by Copernicus in the 16th century, today the idea is wholly accepted by scientists, and is an assumed concept in many astronomical theories.last_img read more

The Coolest Tech Startups at CES 2014

first_imgJanuary 9, 2014 5 min read LAS VEGAS — At the 2014 International CES, amid all the new tablets and smartphones and audio systems and mega-huge TVs, is an area called Eureka Park. It’s where technology startups come together to show off their shiny gadgets and services. It’s where entrepreneurialism and innovation bubble over here at the big tech show. It’s fun. It’s inspiring. And the enthusiasm is contagious.I spent time checking out the startups here and speaking with the entrepreneurs behind these big ideas. While this is by no means an exhaustive list, here are a few of the startups I found particularly interesting:LifeLoggerWe already have Google Glass, so do we really need another camera on our face? Well, until someone creates a similar app or service for Glass, LifeLogger seems pretty cool.It’s a tiny, extraordinarily light camera that you can wear on a type of headband that shoots video as you walk around. The video is streamed to the LifeLogger cloud service where it is stored.The LifeLogger service is smart. It can read and identify the words on signs, so it knows the places you walked by. It can add geo-tags so you remember which areas or regions you were in. It can also identify voices and faces, so it can help you remember who you were with.”This is the future of augmented memory,” LifeLogger’s Drago Bojkov said. LifeLogger can be useful for marketers and online bloggers, for people who love to travel and even for educational purposes. This video can give you a better sense of how it works:Related: The Connected Home: A Huge Opportunity But Slow to Catch OnMojioYou’ve probably heard of car insurance companies that install technology on vehicles to monitor things like how often you use the car, how fast you drive, etc. Mojio is a startup that wants to put everything you can ever want to know about your vehicle into the palm of your hand via a smartphone app.Mojio is a cloud-connected device that plugs into your vehicle’s diagnostics port (works with any vehicle made after 1996) and monitors details such as such as speed, fuel level, location and more. The connection can also alert you if your car is being towed or broken into, the company says. Because the device is attached to the car and synced to the cloud, the information is always on and available, no matter if you and your smartphone are near the car or not. So, for instance, you can lend your car to someone and you can be notified the moment your car is driven outside a pre-determined area, or gets into an accident. Pretty cool.Launching in beta next month, Mojio is expected to release its first official version sometime in the second quarter. The company says it is working with a host of developers, including car companies, retailers and auto service providers to create their own apps for cars that will be supported by Mojio.Related: Intel Wants to Make Computers Think More Like HumansBounce ImagingI included this Boston-based company in my preview of this year’s CES. The idea and the technology is impressive. Started by MIT M.B.A. students Francisco Aguilar and David Young, Bounce Imaging Inc. develops low-cost, throwable sensors and cameras. The goal: make it so first responders don’t have to enter dangerous rooms or situations blind. The shape and approximate size of a baseball, the ball rolls into a space and six wide-angle lenses capture pictures and record audio. The data is transmitted over Wi-Fi and the images are stitched together to give you a complete visual idea of what a space looks like and who or what is in it. The device can also detect radiation and carbon monoxide levels. It seems like it would be perfect for first responders and perhaps the military.Related: A Tech Entrepreneur’s Insider Tips for Exhibiting at CESThe Clio from ClearView AudioI must admit, I don’t usually get excited by audio tech. And I don’t pretend to be any kind of expert. But the Clio from ClearView Audio caught my eye for one simple reason: You can barely see it.This speaker system features a curved, “optically clear” acrylic glass that dispenses sound waves in multiple directions. The sound is produced by stereo speakers and a two-inch subwoofer.Translation: if you’re tired of the typical black box audio system, this one might be worth a test drive. I tried to take a picture of the device but, really, there wasn’t any point. As the company says, it virtually disappears. Perhaps this short video will give you a better sense: Growing a business sometimes requires thinking outside the box. Related: A True Transformer: Asus Announces a Laptop-Tablet That Runs Android and Windows Free Webinar | Sept. 9: The Entrepreneur’s Playbook for Going Global Register Now »last_img read more

Business Execs Who Stay in Asian Luxury Hotels Fall Prey to Cyber

first_imgNovember 10, 2014 3 min read Security researchers have uncovered a sophisticated industrial espionage campaign that targets business executives in luxury hotels across Asia once they sign on to computers using in-room wireless connections they consider private and secure.The attacks, which go well beyond typical cybercriminal operations, have claimed thousands of victims dating back to 2009 and continue to do so, Kaspersky Lab, the world’s largest private security firm, shows in a report published on Monday.Executives from the auto, outsourced manufacturing, cosmetic and chemical industries have been hit, the security firm said. Others targeted include military services and contractors.In 2012, the FBI issued a general warning to U.S. government officials, businessmen and academics, advising them to use caution when updating computer software via hotel Internet connections when traveling abroad.Kaspersky’s report goes further in detailing the scale, methods and precise targeting of these attacks on top business travelers.The movements of executives appear to be tracked as they travel, allowing attackers to pounce once a victim logs on to a hotel Wi-Fi network. Hackers cover their tracks by deleting these tools off hotel networks afterward.”These attackers are going after a very specific set of individuals who should be very aware of the value of their information and be taking strong measures to protect it,” said Kurt Baumgartner, principal security researcher for Kaspersky, the world’s largest privately held cybersecurity firm.Unsuspecting executives who submit their room number and surname while logging on to their hotel room’s wireless network are tricked into downloading an update to legitimate software such as Adobe Flash, Google Toolbar or Microsoft Messenger, Kaspersky said. Because attacks happen at sign-on, encrypted communications set up later offer no defense against attack.The same elite spying crew has used advanced keystroke-logging software and encryption-breaking at multiple hotel chains across Asia, it said.Kaspersky declined to name the executives involved or the luxury destinations targeted but said it had informed the hotels as well as law enforcement officials in affected locations.Ninety percent of the victims came from five countries — Japan, Taiwan, China, Russia and South Korea. Business travelers to Asia from Germany, Hong Kong, Ireland and the United States have also been duped, Baumgartner said.The Kaspersky report said a key mystery remains how attackers appear to know the precise travel itinerary of each victim, which points to a larger compromise of hotel business networks that researchers say they are continuing to probe.(Reporting By Eric Auchard; Editing by Clara Ferreira Marques) Free Webinar | Sept. 9: The Entrepreneur’s Playbook for Going Global This story originally appeared on Reuters Growing a business sometimes requires thinking outside the box. Register Now »last_img read more