NEWS

Morning Security Brief: Murder-Free Monday, Deniable Drones, Hotel Room Hack, and More

By Carlton Purvis

►There were no murders, stabbings, or shootings reported in New York on Monday. “The violence-free stretch spanned 36 hours, starting Sunday evening when a man was shot in the head and lasted until Tuesday morning with another shooting,” CNN reports. Police say Monday fits into a trend of dropping homicide rates and hope to end 2012 with the lowest murder rate in more than 50 years. There have been 366 murders so far this year. Police say before Monday, they can’t remember the last time the city had a murder-free day.

►Many people already know that DHS uses drones to watch U.S. borders, but did you know that it also flies them over Mexico to collect “pattern-of-life” information on drug traffickers and monitor drug interdiction operations? This information comes from anonymous sources that spoke for a piece by the Los Angeles Times examining the relationship between the U.S. and Mexico in regard to the drug war. Even more interesting: “ … the Predators have been scrubbed of the Homeland Security logo that usually appears on the aircraft's bulbous nose, to allow deniability in the event of a crash,” the Times reported.

►A man is accused of using a portable card scanner to “hack” his way into hotel rooms. Matthew Cook was arrested last month for breaking into several hotel rooms. The device can be created with less than $50 worth of parts and has been demonstrated at hacker conferences in the past.

►In other news, passengers on a flight in Milwaukee were temporarily removed from the plane after a man found a shotgun shell in his seat. ♦ The DoD is building a brain repository to study traumatic brain injuries. ♦ And police in Florida have arrested a 16-year-old who they say shot a killed security guard while trying to rob him. Larry Donell Brown is charged with “attempted armed robbery in connection with the murder, two counts of armed robbery in connection with the ATM cases, and grand theft of a firearm and being a felon in possession of a firearm as a result of investigators saying he stole a Taurus 9 mm firearm,” The Tampa Tribune reports.

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