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Security News This Week: Oct. 23, 2023

The 23andMe user data leak may be far worse than believed

With the Israel-Hamas war intensifying by the day, many people are desperate for accurate information about the conflict. Getting it has proven difficult. This has been most apparent on Elon Musk’s X, formerly Twitter, where insiders say even the company’s primary fact-checking tool, Community Notes, has been a source of disinformation and is at risk of coordinated manipulation.

Case in point: An explosion at a hospital in Gaza on Tuesday was followed by a wave of mis- and disinformation around the cause. In the hours following the explosion, Hamas blamed Israel; Israel blamed militants in Gaza; mainstream media outlets repeated both sides’ claims without confirmation either way and people posing as open source intelligence experts rushed out dubious analyses. The result was a toxic mix of information that made it harder than ever to know what’s real.

On Thursday, the United States Department of the Treasury proposed plans to treat foreign-based cryptocurrency “mixers”—services that obscure who owns which specific coins—as suspected money laundering operations, citing as justification crypto donations to Hamas and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad, a Gaza-based militant group with ties to Hamas that Israel blamed for the hospital explosion. While these types of entities do use mixers, experts say they do so far less than criminal groups linked to North Korea and Russia—likely the real targets of the Treasury’s proposed crackdown.

Please select this link to read the complete article from WIRED.

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