A new Web site spoofs the PayPal Inc.’s online payment site and attempts to trick PayPal customers into divulging sensitive account and billing information. The fake Web site is the latest example in what security experts say is a rising trend of “brand spoofing” scams. PayPal customers are directed to the site by an e-mail message that appears to come from the Mountain View, Calif., company. The message claims that due to a “recent system flush,” customers need to verify their identity and enter their billing information or risk having their account canceled.

Spammer faces jail time for wire fraud

An e-mail spammer who promised people cash for stuffing envelopes in a bogus work-at-home scheme has agreed to pay more than US$200,000 to victims and may be sentenced to close to five years in prison for wire fraud, the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced recently. Nelson Barrero, one of the owners of Corp., pled guilty in May to one count of wire fraud and one count of mail fraud in U.S. District Court in East St. Louis, Ill., after an investigation by the U.S. Postal Inspection Service. Sentencing is scheduled for Sept. 5 in U.S. District Court in East St. Louis.

Oracle plans September 10i database launch

Oracle Corp. plans to announce the next version of its database software in September at the OracleWorld event in San Francisco, a company executive said recently. The product, referred to as Oracle10i, is a major upgrade from Oracle 9i, the current version of Oracle’s database software. The new release will focus on manageability, increased capacity, expanded clustering support and will include grid computing features. Oracle 10i also will add new support for XML and Web services, Oracle said.

Hacker challenge ends in feuding

A recent competition to test the skills of malicious hackers fell apart after poor planning by contest organizers and infighting among different hacker groups crippled the Web site,, responsible for keeping score in the competition. The site, designated by contest organizers to keep score of the expected 6,000 defacements, was quickly overwhelmed with traffic.

Oracle extends PeopleSoft offer

Oracle Corp. has given PeopleSoft Inc. shareholders an extra 11 days to accept its offer to acquire all common stock of PeopleSoft, and announced that the holders of one in nine shares have so far accepted the deal. The deadline to accept the tender has been pushed back to Aug. 15, Oracle announced. Recently, 34,753,434 shares had been tendered in and not withdrawn from the offer, Oracle said. There are 316,606,000 PeopleSoft shares outstanding, according to the Nasdaq Web site.

NEC tops 100km with quantum cryptosystem

NEC Corp., TAO, and Japan Science and Technology Corp. have tested a quantum cryptography system with a distance between transmitter and receiver of over 100 kilometers for the first time, the companies said. Maintaining the integrity of the quantum communication is technically very difficult. The partners achieved the milestone of transmitting and detecting a single light photon over the distance through normal low-cost optical fiber.

Sun’s bundling plan nearing completion

Sun Microsystems Inc. plans to announce the first beta of its Project Orion software package at the end of July or early August, with the final product scheduled to ship before year’s end, a source close to Sun said this month. Project Orion is the code name for Sun’s plan to bundle its various software products with its Solaris operating system. The package will include all of Sun’s infrastructure products such as the Sun ONE (Open Net Environment) Web Server, Application Server and server management products. Analysts have said that Sun is looking at aggressive per employee pricing of between US$100 and US$200 for the software bundle.