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Briefs

Cyberattack cripples South Korean banks

– A Chinese Internet address was the source of a cyberattack on one of the South Korean companies hit in a massive computer shutdown that affected five other banks or media companies, initial findings indicated Thursday.

It’s too early to assign blame – Internet addresses can easily be manipulated and disguised – but suspicion for Wednesday’s shutdown quickly fell on North Korea, which has threatened Seoul with attack in recent days because of anger over U.N. sanctions imposed for its Feb. 12 nuclear test.

Experts say hackers attack via computers in other countries to hide their identities.

The crash Wednesday caused computer networks at major banks and top TV broadcasters to crash simultaneously. It paralyzed bank machines across the country and raised fears that this heavily Internet-dependent society was vulnerable.

Governor calls death ‘act of intimidation’

The night before Gov. John Hickenlooper signed Colorado’s toughest gun laws in a decade, his prisons director was shot dead when he answered the door of his home.

Tom Clements, 58, executive director of the Department of Corrections, was killed about 8:30 p.m. Tuesday at his home in Monument, north of Colorado Springs, Hickenlooper said in a statement on Facebook.

The governor said in a televised news conference that the shooting was “an act of intimidation,” though it wasn’t directed at his cabinet in general. Hickenlooper, a first-term Democrat, signed the gun laws Wednesday in a private ceremony.

Companies accept fracking standards

Some of the nation’s biggest oil and gas companies have made peace with environmentalists, agreeing to a voluntary set of tough standards for fracking in the Northeast that could lead to a major expansion of drilling.

Under the program announced Wednesday, drilling and pipeline companies will be encouraged to submit to an independent review of their operations. If they are found to be abiding by measures to protect the air and water from pollution, they will receive the blessing of the new Pittsburgh-based Center for Sustainable Shale Development, created by environmentalists and the energy industry.

Jury urges death for Ohio Craigslist killer

An Ohio jury on Wednesday recommended the death penalty for a self-styled street preacher convicted of killing three down-and-out men lured by bogus Craigslist job offers.

The same jury that convicted Richard Beasley made its recommendation after hearing from his mother and other witnesses who testified on his behalf in the penalty phase of his trial. The judge set his sentencing for Tuesday.

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