SF Muni public transit system hacked, resulting in free rides

This weekend has been very busy for shoppers. (Black Friday, it was in all the papers). And it was particularly busy in downtown San Francisco, home to the famous Union Square and many other high-end retailers. San Francisco Municipal Railway, or Muni as it is known locally, was apparently hacked Saturday. As a result, San Francisco station fare gates were open all day.

SFGate reports everything has since returned to normal, and Muni rep Paul Rose said “At this point there are not any indications of any impacts to customers. We’re doing a full investigation to find out exactly what we are dealing with.” Muni had to end up taping “out of service” notes to ticket machines.

Muni is essential to the day to day functioning of San Francisco, running through the heart of the city and other outlying stops, and a crippling strike taking down the system down would be a disaster. CBS SF Bay Area notes that “Inside sources say the system has been hacked for days.” SFGate reports that fare gates and ticket machines are now working normally after the hacking message appeared in agent computer screens and ticket machines were knocked out.

Train service itself was not affected during the incident. CBS quoted one rider as saying “I think it is terrifying. I really do think if they can start doing this here, we’re not safe anywhere.” Another straphanger wondered if the free fares were just a Black Friday promotional deal. There are other repercussions as well: transit agency workers aren’t sure if they will be paid this week, and Muni internal email was also impacted.

Motherboard states that “It’s also unclear whether charity was hacker’s true goal in breaching the San Francisco Municipal Transit Authority systems, or if the system was shut down in response to a more malicious attack.” It was also noted that this isn’t the first transit system hack. In 2008, a judge prevented a pair of MIT students from giving a presentation at the Def Con hackers conference that showed how to add value to the RFID-based cards used on the Boston T subway.

The Verge included this email from the hacker: “we don’t attention to interview and propagate news ! our software working completely automatically and we don’t have targeted attack to anywhere ! SFMTA network was Very Open and 2000 Server/PC infected by software ! so we are waiting for contact any responsible person in SFMTA but i think they don’t want deal ! so we close this email tomorrow!”

The message that flashed on Muni terminals and machines Saturday said, “You Hacked, ALL Data Encrypted. Contact For Key(cryptom27@yandex.com)ID:681 ,Enter.” So this appears to be a case of ransomware.

Cars

Rock out in the carpool lane with Singing Machine’s Carpool Karaoke microphone

Carpool Karaoke fans can count down the days till summer. That's when Singing Machine's Carpool Karaoke microphone will be available. Connect the Carpool Karaoke Mic to your car radio to make your next road trip a mobile karaoke party.
Gaming

Here’s everything we know about the zombie-infested, survival horror Days Gone

Days Gone, the first PS4 title from Sony's Bend Studio, looks to offer a different type of zombie game. Here's everything we know about the forthcoming title, from the setting to its gameplay.
Movies & TV

The best movies on Amazon Prime right now (February 2019)

Prime Video provides subscribers with access to a host of fantastic films, but sorting through the catalog can be an undertaking. Luckily, we've done the work for you. Here are the best movies on Amazon Prime Video right now.
Movies & TV

The best shows on Netflix, from 'Haunting of Hill House’ to ‘Norsemen’

Looking for a new show to binge? Lucky for you, we've curated a list of the best shows on Netflix, whether you're a fan of outlandish anime, dramatic period pieces, or shows that leave you questioning what lies beyond.
Web

Rid yourself of website notification requests in just a few easy steps

Wish you knew how to block browser and website notifications? You can do it on a case by case basis, but that can become dull after the 10th site has asked for your approval. Here's how to block them outright.
Computing

Don't take your provider's word for it. Here's how to test your internet speed

If you're worried that you aren't getting the most from your internet package, speed tests are a great way to find out what your real connection is capable of. Here are the best internet speed tests available today.
Computing

Decades-old Apple IIe computer found in dad’s attic, and it still works

A New York law professor went viral last weekend after he discovered an old Apple IIe computer sitting in his dad's attic. In a series of tweets, he showed that the vintage machine still works perfectly fine after 30 years.
Computing

Logitech’s G MX518 gaming mouse pairs classic looks with all-new tech

Logitech is relaunching one of its most popular classic gaming mice, the MX518. Now called the G MX518, it sports upgraded internals that give it a 16,000 DPI optical sensor and new and improved memory.
Computing

Microsoft could be planning a laptop with foldable screen, hints patent filing

Filed in late 2017 and titled "Bendable device with Display in Movable Connection With Body," the patent filing explains a new mechanism for laptops which can eliminate a hinge and allow the screen to fold shut from the inside,
Deals

From Chromebooks to MacBooks, here are the best laptop deals for February 2019

Whether you need a new laptop for school or work or you're just doing some post-holiday shopping, we've got you covered: These are the best laptop deals going right now, from discounted MacBooks to on-the-go gaming PCs.
Computing

Is AMD's Navi back on track for 2019? Here's everything you need to know

AMD's Navi graphics cards could be available as soon as July 2019 — as long as it's not delayed by stock problems. Billed as a successor to Polaris, Navi promises to deliver better performance to consoles, like Sony's PlayStation 5.
Deals

Here are the best Chromebook deals available in February 2019

Whether you want a compact laptop to enjoy some entertainment on the go, or you need a no-nonsense machine for school or work, we've smoked out the best cheap Chromebook deals -- from full-sized laptops to 2-in-1 convertibles -- that won't…
Computing

RTX might be expensive, but the 16 series could have the best Nvidia Turing GPUs

Set to debut at a step below the RTX 2060 on the price and performance spectrums, the GTX 1660 Ti and its other 16-series brethren could be Nvidia's killer mid-range cards of 2019 — especially with Tensor Core-powered DLSS.
Computing

Ryzen 3000 chips will be powerful, and they might be launched as early as July

AMD's upcoming Ryzen 3000 generation of CPUs could be the most powerful processors we've ever seen, with higher core counts, greater clock speeds, and competitive pricing. Here's what we know so far, based on both leaks and the recent…