By Dan Whitcomb LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - California lawmakers on Tuesday took a major step toward outlawing the use of so-called "ransomware" to hijack computers for money, passing a bill through its first committee with the support of law enforcement. The legislation, which would call for hackers using ransomware to be prosecuted under a statute similar to extortion but geared specifically to cyber crime, easily cleared the state senate's public safety committee. Senate Bill 1137 moves next to that body's appropriations committee. It must be approved by both houses of the California legislature and be signed by Governor Jerry Brown to become law. A spokesman for the measure's author, state Senator Bob Hertzberg, said the measure, which was co-sponsored by the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office, had been met with little opposition so far. "We don't anticipate any problems with the bill, it seems to be getting very strong support," said Andrew LaMar, communications director for Hertzberg, a Democrat. Authorities say ransomware attacks, in which hackers use malicious software to lock up data in computers and leave messages demanding payment have surged this year. More than $209 million in ransomware payments were made in the United States alone during the first three months of 2016, according to FBI statistics cited by Hertzberg's office. In March, Hollywood Presbyterian Hospital in Los Angeles paid a ransom of $17,000 to regain access to its systems. Los Angeles prosecutors, in a letter to the state senate's public safety committee, said that the bill was needed because current extortion laws are not well tailored toward prosecuting ransomware attacks. While such attacks have been around longer than a decade, security experts say they have become far more threatening and prevalent in recent years because of state-of-the-art encryption, modules that infect backup systems, and the ability to infect large numbers of computers over a single network. Run-of-the-mill ransomware attacks typically seek 1 bitcoin, now worth about $420, which is about the same as the hourly rate that some security consultants charge to respond to such incidents, according to security firms who investigate ransomware cases. (Reporting by Dan Whitcomb,; additional reporting Jim Finkle in Boston; edting by Andrew Hay)
- MMA Junkie
The year is 2022 and Mickey Mouse is out here catching strays.
- The Telegraph
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have been “demoted” on the Royal family’s website to bottom billing alongside the Duke of York.
In order to ensure his children have a 'normal' upbringing, Prince William reportedly told royal staff they can't wear this particular item of clothing.
"Obviously this means the lawyer must have given Trump actual legal advice," mused one social media wit.
An off-duty Massachusetts National Guard member aggressively confronted a tour bus full of senior citizens thinking they were migrants
In a livestream of the pursuit, the off-duty officer slammed US immigration policy and referenced DeSantis' sending migrants to Martha's Vineyard.
"Movie-making is very hard work over a very long period of time that consists of so many moments of joy slapped up against an equal number of feelings of self-loathing," the Oscar winner said.
- Fox News
Meghan Markle was labeled the "difficult" duchess by former staffers. Royal expert Neil Sean explains what's next for Markle and Prince Harry after the bombshell claims were made.
The DOJ is having such a hard time finding document digitization vendors willing to work with Trump that it requested more time for the special master review
The DOJ asked for one more day to choose someone to digitize the 11,000 files for the special master in its Mar-a-Lago investigation.
A slight shift was also made on the pages for Prince William and Kate Middleton, the new Prince and Princess of Wales
Kate Middleton Will Receive the Majority of Queen Elizabeth’s Jewelry Collection—But There’s a Catch
The royal family has been sorting through Queen Elizabeth’s affairs ever since she passed away at age 96. They already confirmed that her corgis have found a new home, but the world is wondering what will happen to Her Majesty’s jewelry collection. Tim Graham Picture Library/Getty Images Kate Middleton will reportedly receive the “lion’s share” of Queen Elizabeth’s accessories. However, King Charles’s wife Camilla Parker Bowles (aka the Queen Consort) will get to pick first. Max Mumby/Indigo/Get
- Rolling Stone
The Kremlin chooses to escalate the war in Ukraine with a dangerous gamble, but the signs of an unraveling are becoming clearer both at home and abroad
“I feel so good turning 50, and this is about expressing that sense of energy and optimism.”
NASCAR officials handed out two sizable penalties Tuesday for rough driving, docking William Byron and Ty Gibbs for their roles in separate incidents in last weekend’s Cup Series race at Texas Motor Speedway. Byron was hit with a 25-point penalty in both the driver and team owner standings for bumping Denny Hamlin out of position […]
- The Advocate
Buttigieg did not come to play.
In Katie Nicholl's upcoming book "The New Royals," she writes that Queen Elizabeth intervened when Meghan Markle clashed with a royal staffer.
- Seahawks Wire
On the bright side, their ex isn't doing much better.
- The Root
No one has ever accused women’s college basketball coach Kim Mulkey of being the warm and fuzzy type. That’s never been more apparent than in her response to former player Brittney Griner’s wrongful detainment in Russia.
- Bradenton Herald
Here’s what to know Tuesday as Bradenton and Manatee County prepare for a possible major hurricane.
- Women's Health
Addison Rae, 21, was spotted in Los Angeles this week sporting spandex booty shorts and her epic, sculpted butt. Addison is all about Pilates and pasta.
Week two saw Sarah Michelle Gellar tearfully cheering on her best friend Selma Blair, Teresa Giudice dedicating her dance to her late father and one couple's chemistry raising eyebrows