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Hacker leads Gawker to warn subscribers

NEW YORK | Gawker Media Inc. is urging subscribers to change their passwords because someone has managed to hack into the company’s user database.

The company, which runs a series of irreverent blogs on media, technology and other issues, said in a posting on its website Sunday that the commenting passwords used on the sites were encrypted, but simple ones could be vulnerable to attacks by hackers’ computers.

The company also said passwords on other sites should be changed if they were the same as the ones stored by Gawker Media.

“We’re deeply embarrassed by this breach,” the posting on said. “We should not be in the position of relying on the goodwill of the hackers who identified the weakness in our systems.”

The Gawker breach is the latest in a recent series of cyber-attacks on websites. Last week, the Visa and MasterCard sites were inaccessible for a short time, likely because of attacks by supporters of the WikiLeaks website, angry that the credit card companies had stopped processing donations to WikiLeaks.


Basketball rules sold for millions

NEW YORK | A historic document that details the original rules of basketball, written 119 years ago as a winter sport for boys of a Massachusetts YMCA, was sold for more than $4 million on Friday to raise money for charity.

James Naismith wrote the 13 rules while a physical education instructor at the Christian association.

“Basketball is a pure invention,” said Selby Kiffer, senior specialist in American history documents at Sotheby’s, where the rules were sold by the Naismith International Basketball Foundation.

The sale price of $4.3 million includes a buyer’s premium. The proceeds will benefit the Naismith foundation, which promotes sportsmanship and provides services to underprivileged children around the world.

It was purchased by David and Suzanne Booth, who hope to bring the rules to the University of Kansas. He is an alumnus.


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