Good morning, and happy MLK Day. Here are some of the stories we’re following today:
1. NSA breached N. Korea's computer systems before Sony hack
Top U.S. officials who blamed North Korea for the hack attack on Sony Pictures Entertainment did so with knowledge gleaned from a top-secret penetration of the secretive state's computer systems by the National Security Agency, according to a New York Times report independently confirmed by NBC News. The Times reported that the NSA breached North Korea's computer systems before the Sony hack. NBC News has been told that U.S. intelligence agencies did not have any warning of the Sony hack, and that the first the government learned of the attack was on Nov. 24, when the company alerted the FBI's cyber unit. Read more in NEWS.
2. Genetically-modified cattle with human DNA could hold Ebola cure
Researchers hope cattle — genetically modified with human DNA — could hold the key to producing an antibody that can cure the deadly Ebola virus. When the cattle are vaccinated against diseases like Ebola, their bodies are expected to produce an immune system response that researchers hope be transferred to humans with the disease. The approach is similar to the idea behind transfusing plasma from Ebola survivors into patients, which has been utilized, although researchers are still determining whether the measure is effective. Read more in HEALTH.
3. Five killed in crashes caused by Northeast ice storms
Icy rain pelted parts of the Northeast on Sunday, causing traffic nightmares and hundreds of crashes throughout New York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey and New England. At least one person was killed and 30 other people were injured in a pileup on an interstate in Pennsylvania. Four more people died in crashes in Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Connecticut because of extremely slick roads. Weather.com warned that the Monday morning commute in parts of the Northeast could see residual problems from the wet and slippery conditions. Read more in WEATHER.
4. Nabbed Kentucky teen told cops he’s ‘very scared’
Dalton Hayes, 18, and his girlfriend, Cheyenne Phillips, 13, were found sleeping in a Toyota Tundra in Florida and arrested without incident after a nearly two-week crime spree that spanned several states. Hayes is being held behind bars while Phillips was placed in the care of state child services. Hayes, who is due in court Monday before his likely extradition, told a Kentucky sheriff that "he was very scared, and he wanted to come home," the sheriff said.
5. Patriots and Seahawks headed to Super Bowl XLIX
In a remarkable comeback, the Seattle Seahawks secured their place in the Super Bowl by defeating the Greenbay Packers in overtime. The New England Patriots then crushed the Indianapolis Colts 45-7 to take their place. The Super Bowl will be played on Feb. 1 in Glendale, Arizona, and broadcast on NBC. Read more in SPORTS.
6. Bernice King: 'Remember! Celebrate! Act!' on MLK Day
On the 30th Martin Luther King Jr. Day, King's daughter Bernice King writes that Americans should "make a commitment to nonviolence as a way of life which we, at The King Center, refer to as Nonviolence 365. This means making a conscious choice to use Martin Luther King, Jr.'s principles and methods of nonviolence to defuse violence, peacefully resolve disputes and reconcile adversities in our homes, communities, the nation, and even the world." Read more in NBCBLK.
And now this ...
Les Baugh lost both his arms in an accident and spent 40 years without them, but thanks to researchers at Johns Hopkins University, he now has robotic arms. Even better, he can control them with his brain.