IANS Blog RSS Feed


Poulin to CSO: We Hacked a Smart Building Using ?Old-School? Techniques

- Thu, 11 Feb 2016 00:00:00 GMT

The ?smarter? buildings get, the easier they are to hack? Maybe. IANS Faculty Chris Poulin, research strategist for IBM?s X-Force ethical hacking team, recently spoke to CSO?s Maria Korolov about a penetration test in which his team was able to gain access to all of the buildings operated by a building management company.

Privacy, Security Concerns Rise as States Mull Encryption Backdoor Requirements

- Wed, 27 Jan 2016 00:00:00 GMT

National Data Privacy Day (January 28th) certainly comes at an interesting time this year, as legislators in two of the most technology-centric U.S. states recently introduced similar bills that would force smartphone manufacturers to include encryption backdoors in their devices.

Fledgling Cyber-Insurance Market Tested by Early Denials, Lawsuits

- Wed, 20 Jan 2016 00:00:00 GMT

Cybersecurity insurance policies may be relatively new, but they have one important thing in common with established, legacy business coverage: They live and die in the fine print.

Hacker-Caused Ukrainian Power Outage Marks First Known Attack With Immediate, Direct Public Impact

- Tue, 05 Jan 2016 00:00:00 GMT

Security researchers have confirmed that a recently updated version of the highly destructive BlackEnergy malware package infected the systems of at least three power authorities in Ukraine, causing a massive outage that left thousands of homes in the Ivano-Frankivsk region of the country without electricity. 

Top 10 IANS Insights from a Tumultuous 2015

- Mon, 28 Dec 2015 00:00:00 GMT

Another year is in the books and what a year it was for infosec pros. From the Ashley Madison hack to the OPM breach, to Jeep commandeering and mysterious backdoors in popular networking gear, every week brought a new security twist that forced us all to keep our heads on swivels.

Herold: Misguided CISA Heightens Security, Privacy Concerns

- Mon, 21 Dec 2015 00:00:00 GMT

The controversial Cybersecurity Information Sharing Act (CISA) is now the law of the land, slipped into an eleventh-hour spending bill designed to keep the federal government running through 2016.

Patch Now: Rogue Code Leaves Gaping Hole in Juniper Gear

- Fri, 18 Dec 2015 00:00:00 GMT

Juniper Networks says unauthorized code could allow attackers to gain administrative access to its NetScreen appliances and decrypt VPN connections without leaving any trace of their actions. Users are urged to apply fixes immediately.

Poulin: Time to Realistically Acknowledge Vehicle Vulnerabilities

- Wed, 16 Dec 2015 00:00:00 GMT

The images and breathless banter were difficult to ignore: celebrity security researchers gaining remote command of an automobile, disrupting on-board systems before forcing the vehicle and its helpless driver into a ditch.

NIST to Infosec Pros: How Is Our Framework Working?

- Mon, 14 Dec 2015 00:00:00 GMT

The National Institute of Standards and Technology is asking infosec practitioners in the public and private sectors to comment on the efficacy of its cybersecurity framework as it prepares to update the popular, two-year-old document.

As Ransomware Attacks Evolve, Security Teams Must Prepare For New ?Drive-By? Tactics

- Thu, 10 Dec 2015 00:00:00 GMT

Another week, another evolution of the popular ransomware attacks. When we last wrote about it, researchers had discovered a new iteration ? ?Linux.Encoder.1? ? that enabled attackers to inject malware into Linux-powered websites and encrypt all files in the home and backup directories. Now, it appears the popular exploit kit Angler is being used to spread the latest version of CryptoWall and other ransomware on websites as part of ?drive-by? campaigns that begin with the deployment of password-stealing malware. 

Threats RSS Feed - Symantec Corp.



- Thu, 19 Jan 2017 00:00:00 +0000

Risk Level: Very Low. Type: Trojan.


- Thu, 19 Jan 2017 00:00:00 +0000

Risk Level: Very Low.


- Wed, 18 Jan 2017 00:00:00 +0000

Risk Level: Very Low. Type: Trojan.


- Wed, 18 Jan 2017 00:00:00 +0000

Risk Level: Very Low. Type: Trojan.


- Wed, 18 Jan 2017 00:00:00 +0000

Risk Level: Very Low. Type: Trojan.


- Wed, 18 Jan 2017 00:00:00 +0000

Risk Level: Very Low. Type: Trojan.


- Tue, 17 Jan 2017 00:00:00 +0000

Risk Level: Very Low. Type: Trojan.


- Mon, 16 Jan 2017 00:00:00 +0000

Risk Level: Very Low. Type: Trojan.


- Thu, 12 Jan 2017 00:00:00 +0000

Risk Level: Very Low. Type: Trojan.


- Thu, 12 Jan 2017 00:00:00 +0000

Risk Level: Very Low. Type: Trojan.


- Wed, 11 Jan 2017 00:00:00 +0000

Risk Level: Very Low. Type: Trojan.


- Wed, 11 Jan 2017 00:00:00 +0000

Risk Level: Very Low. Type: Worm.


- Wed, 11 Jan 2017 00:00:00 +0000

Risk Level: Very Low. Type: Trojan.


- Mon, 9 Jan 2017 00:00:00 +0000

Risk Level: Very Low. Type: Trojan.


- Mon, 9 Jan 2017 00:00:00 +0000

Risk Level: Very Low. Type: Trojan.


- Tue, 10 Jan 2017 00:00:00 +0000

Risk Level: Very Low. Type: Trojan.


- Fri, 6 Jan 2017 00:00:00 +0000

Risk Level: Very Low. Type: Trojan.


- Fri, 6 Jan 2017 00:00:00 +0000

Risk Level: Very Low. Type: Trojan, Virus, Worm.


- Fri, 6 Jan 2017 00:00:00 +0000

Risk Level: Very Low. Type: Trojan, Virus, Worm.


- Fri, 6 Jan 2017 00:00:00 +0000

Risk Level: Very Low. Type: Trojan, Virus, Worm.


- Fri, 6 Jan 2017 00:00:00 +0000

Risk Level: Very Low. Type: Trojan, Virus, Worm.


- Fri, 6 Jan 2017 00:00:00 +0000

Risk Level: Very Low. Type: Trojan, Virus, Worm.


- Thu, 5 Jan 2017 00:00:00 +0000

Risk Level: Very Low. Type: Trojan.


- Wed, 4 Jan 2017 00:00:00 +0000

Risk Level: Very Low. Type: Trojan.


- Mon, 2 Jan 2017 00:00:00 +0000

Risk Level: Very Low. Type: Trojan.


- Thu, 5 Jan 2017 00:00:00 +0000

Risk Level: Very Low. Type: Trojan.


- Mon, 2 Jan 2017 00:00:00 +0000

Risk Level: Very Low. Type: Trojan.

Security News Headlines - Yahoo! News


Trump heads to CIA after feud with intelligence agencies

- Sat, 21 Jan 2017 11:47:04 -0500

U.S. President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump arrive to a church service at the National Cathedral in Washington, U.S.By Jeff Mason and Roberta Rampton WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump plans to visit CIA headquarters on Saturday in what could be an effort to mend fences after he criticized spy agencies for their investigation into Russian hacking during the presidential election. White House spokesman Sean Spicer said on Twitter than more than 300 people would attend the event at the Central Intelligence Agency, based in Langley, Virginia. "Excited to thank the men and women of the intelligence community," Spicer said.

Hackers in Russia claim to shut down African Cup website

- Sat, 21 Jan 2017 11:43:49 -0500

Soldiers patrol during Gabon's soccer team training session at the Stade de l'Amitie, Libreville, Gabon, Saturday, Jan. 21, 2017, ahead of their African Cup of Nations Group A soccer match against Cameroon. (AP Photo/Sunday Alamba)LIBREVILLE, Gabon (AP) ? A group of Russian hackers claimed Saturday to have shut down the website of the African Cup of Nations soccer tournament in a protest at organizers holding it in Gabon, where President Ali Bongo Ondimba retained power in disputed and violent elections last year.

Champagne corks pop in Moscow at Trump's inauguration

- Fri, 20 Jan 2017 14:24:15 -0500

People watch the presidential inauguration ceremony for Donald Trump in a network and party location in Moscow, Russia, Friday, Jan. 20, 2017. A hundred Trump sympathizers, nationalist activists and spin doctors gathered at a hipster party location several hundred meters away from the Kremlin to celebrate. (AP Photo/Ivan Sekretarev)MOSCOW (AP) ? Champagne corks popped Friday in Moscow as Russians celebrated the start of Donald Trump's presidency, confident of better relations ahead between the two countries.

British Cycling chief Drake leaves job

- Fri, 20 Jan 2017 09:32:56 -0500

Ian Drake, the man who has presided over a golden era for British Cycling, stepped down as the governing body's chief executive on Friday, three months earlier than planned. Drake, who has been involved with British Cycling for 20 years, the last eight as chief executive, announced in October that he would be leaving his post. "British Cycling can confirm that Ian Drake has completed the handover phase following the announcement in October that he would be leaving the organization," a statement said.

Cycling-British Cycling chief Drake leaves job

- Fri, 20 Jan 2017 09:28:33 -0500

Ian Drake, the man who has presided over a golden era for British Cycling, stepped down as the governing body's chief executive on Friday, three months earlier than planned. Drake, who has been involved with British Cycling for 20 years, the last eight as chief executive, announced in October that he would be leaving his post. "British Cycling can confirm that Ian Drake has completed the handover phase following the announcement in October that he would be leaving the organisation," a statement said.

Spain says Russian detained for US is a top financial hacker

- Fri, 20 Jan 2017 07:32:15 -0500

Spanish police say a detained Russian computer programmer is one of that country's most important hackers and is wanted by the United States for suspected financial fraud amounting to some $5 million (5 ...

Spain arrests Russian bank-account hacker wanted by FBI

- Fri, 20 Jan 2017 04:46:17 -0500

Spain has arrested a 32-year-old Russian computer programmer at Barcelona airport who is alleged to have designed and used software to steal bank account details from banks and individuals, Spanish police said on Friday. Working with the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the man, named Lisov, was arrested by Spanish police on Jan. 13 as he waited to take a flight to another European country.

Security researcher finds the DDoS mastermind who took down the internet last fall

- Thu, 19 Jan 2017 23:40:20 -0500

A distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack can take down a site, a server, or various parts of the internet. Attackers send to the target incredible amounts of junk traffic which bring their target down, making it impossible for real users to access that online service. One such attack happened back in mid-October last year , and it took out a large number of sites ? the entire internet some would say ? including Twitter, Spotify, Reddit, PayPal, and others. Researchers found a Mirai botnet to be responsible for the entire thing, and now a renown security researcher thinks he has uncovered one of the creators of the Mirai botnet. Brian Krebs, who often writes about online security and data breaches over at his own site Krebs On Security , was attacked with the help of Mirai in September 2016, with his site being down for almost four days. Since then, he has carefully investigated the matter, and he now thinks he knows who that person is. After months of digging, Krebs wrote an extensive story about the case, which reads like a mob story. Only everything he explains happens online. ?The story you?re reading now is the result of hundreds of hours of research,? he said. ?At times, I was desperately seeking the missing link between seemingly unrelated people and events; sometimes I was inundated with huge amounts of information ? much of it intentionally false or misleading ? and left to search for kernels of truth hidden among the dross. ?If you?ve ever wondered why it seems that so few Internet criminals are brought to justice, I can tell you that the sheer amount of persistence and investigative resources required to piece together who?s done what to whom (and why) in the online era is tremendous,? he said, adding that that he even has a glossary for the story to make reading it easier. Krebs explained that the object of many DDoS has to do with money. For example, a company that provided DDoS protection for a living might employ DDoS attacks on potential customers, to convince them to buy their protection service. Did I tell you this reads like a mob story? Apparently, Paras Jha, who owns a DDoS protection provider called Protraf Solutions, is the guy responsible for the attack on Krebs and the internet. Check out the entire story at this link .

American man arrested in India for online child porn, police probe trafficking links

- Thu, 19 Jan 2017 11:28:08 -0500

By Jatindra Dash BHUBANESWAR, India (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - A 42-year-old American has been arrested in the southern Indian city of Hyderabad on suspicion of circulating child pornography on the internet, police said on Thursday, adding that they were investigating whether any of the victims had been trafficked. The man, working for a multinational law firm in Hyderabad since 2012, was arrested on Monday after police were alerted by Interpol to an IP address linked to online images and videos of children being sexually abused. Ukkalam Rama Mohan, the police superintendent in charge of fighting cyber crime in Telangana state, whose capital is Hyderabad, said the suspect had confessed to publishing and transmitting obscene images electronically.

11 paid iPhone apps on sale for free today

- Thu, 19 Jan 2017 10:55:54 -0500

Yesterday's list of paid iPhone and iPad apps on sale for free was one of our most popular lists of the month so far, and there are still a few apps from Wednesday that are on sale for free . But guess what: today's list is even better! We've got 11 fresh premium iOS apps on sale for you to check out today, and you'll find them all listed below. These are paid iPhone and iPad apps that have been made available for free for a limited time by their developers. There is no way to tell how long they will be free. These sales could end an hour from now or a week from now ? obviously, the only thing we can guarantee is that they were free at the time this post was written. If you click on a link and see a price listed next to an app instead of the word ?get,? it is no longer free. The sale has ended. If you download the app, you will be charged. Battery Doc Normally $1.99. Providing useful and relevant data revolving around battery health and general device information on a neat screen with unrivaled accuracy. As stated by apps400.com: ? apps400.com: "... accurate and precise unlike most other apps." ? Each button has a clearly labeled function and all screens are designed to be easily understood, granting access to basic information and for more detailed specs when needed. Different users need different information, ranging from very basic like battery health and state to advanced numbers about network traffic and detailed hardware information. Top Features: ? Unrivaled accuracy ? Direct access to information and data ? Proprietary algorithms for detailed uptime prognostics ? Limit warnings ? In-depth system information ? Per-service runtime analysis ? Available runtime per task calculation ? Extended runtime calculation on per app basis ? Save Device Information and collect it in iTunes While delivering important and useful information, Battery Doc proves its use when you need to know how much time is left for a specific task. Battery Doc precisely calculates how long the battery is able to play music, to watch video, to play games in 2D or 3D before it needs the next charging. Charging statistics not only counts how often the device is plugged and unplugged, the statistics only contain relevant charging cycles, and warn you when you should avoid charging your battery. A battery too hot or too cold when charging can damage both the battery and the iPhone, Battery Doc warns you when you try to charge your iPhone under critical circumstances. Optimizing Battery Life to make it last longer depends on of how your iPhone is used. Battery Doc tells you exactly which service is using how much of your remaining power, and can therefore tell you exactly how much longer your battery will last by disabling specific services. Furthermore, it tells you how long your battery will last if you use your iPhone just for one single, specific task like gaming or video watching. Extending battery life is a myth. Every app or tool with such a promise is fraud! Reducing Battery wear on the other side is real, and exactly the purpose of Battery Doc. When do you start taking care of your iPhones battery? Download Battery Doc Psiphon Pro VPN Normally $5.99. Psiphon Pro Once paid,Lifetime free use. No ads Psiphon VPN is the a Free for security, privacy and access vpn. - Access all websites and apps securely and privately from anywhere in the World. - Stay private and anonymous online, preventing anyone from tracking your online activities. - Get protected from hackers and snoopers on public WiFi connections. Look out for exciting new options in the near future. Millions of people in over 200 countries around the planet are already connecting to the Internet using Psiphon. Whether you can?t access your favourite news broadcast today, or want to provide an extra layer of protection when using public Wi-Fi services, Psiphon is the best tool for accessing the open Internet. Features: ? Automatic selection of protocols to provide effective, reliable connect every time. ? View how much traffic you have used with in-­app stats tracking. ? Fast enough to watch 4k video smoothly ? Unlimited bandwidth and no throttling ? Stable and reliable service Any question you feedback in app Download Psiphon Pro VPN Sidefari Normally $0.99. Sidefari is a simple web browser that is designed to act as a companion to Safari. Sidefari uses what's called a Safari View Controller from Apple to display a "mini" version of Safari that shares many features with the full Safari app, like content blockers. How can this help you? In iOS 10: Sidefari features an extension called "Open Modally in Safari" that will enable you to bring a Safari-based window inside of other apps that enable ways to share website URLs. Why would you want to do this? Perhaps you prefer the convenience of having some Safari features inside the same app, or if you're conscious about your privacy perhaps you don't want to use the custom web browser many apps have. ** Please note that in order for Sidefari to work in iOS 10, you need version 10.2 or greater. In iOS 9: When on an iPad, besides the "Open Modally in Safari" extension mentioned above, Sidefari shows as an extra Safari-based browser on the side of your screen thanks to multi-tasking. Now you'll be able to have two websites simultaneously on the same screen. ** Please note that compatible iPads include the iPad Air 2, iPad mini 4, and iPad Pro. Please refer to the "How to set up the extension" and "FAQ" sections inside the app to learn more about how to use Sidefari. Enjoy! Download Sidefari FLYN Normally $1.99. FLYN IS THE BEST OPTION TO KILL THE TIME AND GET RID OF THOSE BORED MOMENTS!! JUST TAP THE SCREEN TO JUMP AND TRY TO GET THROUGH AS MANY COLUMNS AS POSSIBLE GETTING COINS!! CHALLENGE YOUR FRIENDS AND SEE HOW FAR THEY CAN GET WITHOUT BUMPING AGAINST THE COLUMNS!! HOW FAR ARE YOU ABLE TO MAKE IT? Download FLYN Angry Birds Space Normally $0.99. The #1 mobile game of all time blasts off into space! Play over 300 interstellar levels across 10 planets ? including our very own Solar System! Whether it?s the icy orbs of Cold Cuts, the volcanic explosiveness of Red Planet, Utopia ? a planet made entirely of junk food, or even our own Solar System, each episode offers intergalactic fun at every turn! And the low-gravity environment of space results in spectacular gameplay ranging from slow-motion puzzles to lightspeed destruction. With brand new birds, special abilities, and a whole galaxy to explore, the sky is no longer the limit! ----- ?Intergalactic phenomenon worth every penny? ? AppCraver ?Takes the fundamental physics-based flinging of the original and turns it on its head... It's satisfying, yet completely familiar, and is heaps of pig-smashing fun.? ? Gamespot ?Anyone burnt out on vanilla bird flinging will enjoy the game's out-of-this-world adventure.? -- IGN ----- - Over 300 interstellar levels! - New playable characters! - Unique special abilities for each bird! - Zero-gravity space adventures! - Trick shots using planets? gravity! - Hidden bonus levels! - Beautifully detailed backgrounds! - Daily Missions! ----- Join the global phenomenon as it goes galactic! Become a fan of Angry Birds on Facebook: http://facebook.angrybirds.com Follow us on Twitter: http://twitter.angrybirds.com Terms of Use: http://www.rovio.com/eula Privacy Policy: http://www.rovio.com/privacy This application may require internet connectivity and subsequent data transfer charges may apply. Important Message for Parents This game may include: - Direct links to social networking websites that are intended for an audience over the age of 13. - Direct links to the internet that can take players away from the game with the potential to browse any web page. - Advertising of Rovio products and also products from select partners. - The option to make in-app purchases. The bill payer should always be consulted beforehand. Download Angry Birds Space Tasks+ Normally $0.99. Tasks+ is an awesome task manager to track your daily activities, specifically designed to seamlessly work in your phone and watch. Seamless Integration between Phone and Watch The seamless integration between the app on the phone and watch helps you track your tasks at your convenience. If you bought some eggs then mark it as complete without even taking your phone out by tapping on the task in your watch. Focused Features and Increased Productivity Create a task, assign a category, mark as favorite or complete a task, all in a few seconds with intuitive and simple to use features which helps you to spend more time on doing things rather than tracking them. Awesome Gesture Support Access the options available for each task like mark as complete or favourite, update category or delete using swipes. Also the default option for right and left swipes enables you to take actions without even tapping any button. Quick Add Button A simple but a super user friendly feature is the provision of a quick add button on the bottom right of the screen so that you can access the task add feature in a second. Consciously made simple The simple, clean and easy to use interface gets you started in seconds and the flow is purposely made simple and intuitive to help you focus on the tasks at hand rather on the app. Download Tasks+ Venus Calendar Normally $4.99. If you are tired of the same old boring way of keeping schedules and tedious data entry, then Venus Calendar is for you! The app allows you to plan out your day by writing it in sketches and doodles - much like you would do to an old wall calendar. Venus Calendar is designed for simplicity and sanity. Let go of all the alerts, notifications, and oppressive schedules eschewed by traditional calendar apps, and find a new a fresh way to get things done. Be creative. Express yourself. Make each day unique and different and fun. Try Venus Calendar. Because life isn't supposed to be a time clock you punch in and out of. It is a canvas where you paint your experiences, and leave your mark. Download Venus Calendar Live 2 Video Normally $1.99. Live 2 Video - Convert Live Photo to Video and Edit with Powerful Tools Having trouble editing and sharing Live Photo? With [Live 2 Video], you can convert Live Photo to video and edit it with powerful tools like split, crop, zoom, duplicate, mix, reverse, slo mo, effect, song, sound effect and text. - Convert Live Photo to video - Split Live Photo as you want - Duplicate each cut - Split each cut - Enable/disable each cut - Reposition each cut - Reverse each cut - Slo mo each cut - Apply effect to each cut - Add texts to each cut with powerful text editor - Add sound to each cut - volume, song, sound effect, narration - Zoom and crop each cut - Add background music - Save the edited Live Photo as video and gif - Integrated support for video, live photo and GIF Download Live 2 Video Hamado Music Normally $0.99. App Features: ? Full iOS9, iPhone 6 and 6 Plus Support! Music player: ? Full featured media player ? Sleep timer ? Lock screen playback controls ? Background music playback ? Fine scrubbing ? Album cover art ? auto search or upload your own Playlists: ? Smart iPod-like music playlists ? Create your own playlists Media Library ? Import music from your iPod library ? Tabs for Songs, Albums, Artists, Genres ? Tag editor Manager: ? Move, rename or delete tracks & songs ? Search by artist, title, album, genre ? Create and manage folders ? Sort by artist, track name, date, duration ? History of Recently listened tracks Enjoy this app!!! Download Hamado Music SlyTipper Normally $0.99. The waiter brings the check. Now comes the hard part: figuring out the tip. What?s that trick again? Move the decimal? Double the tax? Meanwhile your date is looking at you like you?re a moron. If you hate math, you?ll love SlyTipper®! Designed to look like a regular text message, you can calculate the tip without exposing your less than stellar math skills. Just shoot a quick text and calculate the exact percentage you want to give in seconds. Tipping your waiter shouldn?t be a math test. Forget the tricks and focus on the tips with SlyTipper®! Features: Simulated text message user interface Easy to read display Customizable percentages Allows for exclusion of tax Download SlyTipper The Detail Normally $2.99. ****The whole three-episode season is now available for free on iOS! No in-app purchases necessary. We'll just ask you to indulge us and enjoy some quick commercial breaks instead. **** ======= "The quality and love that?s clearly been invested in this game is there for all to see, and one that's worth the asking price." 4.5/5 - 148Apps "The Detail: Episode One - Where The Dead Lie sets things up nicely for the rest of the series. It's sharp, very well written, and you're never quite sure what the cast of characters are going to do next." 8/10 - Pocket Gamer "From experiencing heinous crimes daily to having to constantly stay on guard to budget issues that directly impede your ability to properly do your job, my time with The Detail was an experience I won?t soon forget." Great: 4 out of 5 stars - Gamezebo "No matter how you slice The Detail, it?s just a well crafted experience that will leave a lasting impression." 4.0 / 5.0 - AppleNApps ======= The Detail, a crime noir adventure in a modern American city. Controlling the actions of a bitter veteran detective investigating a brutal gangland murder and a reformed criminal trying to protect his family, the player is forced to make tough choices and deal with the resulting consequences of those moral dilemmas. The gameplay focuses on branching narrative mixed with interactive comics, and is completed by a professional audio track. The Detail combines the emotional impact of Telltale Games' The Walking Dead with the themes of a realistic crime drama like HBO's The Wire, delivered with our own unique visual style inspired heavily by graphic novels. This is city where cases matter, clearance rates matter, and on a good day even justice matters. Features - Character-driven experience with multiple playable characters - Branching storyline influenced by the player's choices - Mature themes for mature players - Ethical and moral challenges Awards & Recognitions "Game Connection America Selected Project Finalist 2014" San Francisco, 2014 "Strasbourg European Fantastic Film Festival Official Selection" Strasbourg, 2014 Download The Detail

Six Coolpad workers detained in patent dispute with former employer Huawei

- Thu, 19 Jan 2017 05:21:45 -0500

Journalists attend the presentation of the Huawei's new smartphone in ParisBy Sijia Jiang HONG KONG (Reuters) - Chinese smartphone maker Coolpad, part of the LeEco technology conglomerate, said six employees had been detained by authorities, accused of infringing the intellectual property rights of their former employer Huawei Technologies [HWT.UL]. The official Securities Times reported on Wednesday that the former Huawei engineers and designers had been detained for leaking company secrets to LeEco and Coolpad. The employees' lawyers and families say none of them took technology documents or codes from Huawei, a Coolpad unit, Yulong Computer Telecommunication Scientific (Shenzhen) Co Ltd, said in a statement.

The Latest: London mayor wants softer Brexit, market access

- Wed, 18 Jan 2017 18:38:24 -0500

Inside view at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2017. (AP Photo/Michel Euler)DAVOS, Switzerland (AP) ? The latest on the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland (all times local):

Ukraine's power outage was a cyber attack: Ukrenergo

- Wed, 18 Jan 2017 06:22:05 -0500

Dispatchers are seen inside control room of Ukraine's National power company Ukrenergo in KievBy Pavel Polityuk, Oleg Vukmanovic and Stephen Jewkes KIEV/MILAN (Reuters) - A power blackout in Ukraine's capital Kiev last month was caused by a cyber attack and investigators are trying to trace other potentially infected computers and establish the source of the breach, utility Ukrenergo told Reuters on Wednesday.     When the lights went out in northern Kiev on Dec. 17-18, power supplier Ukrenergo suspected a cyber attack and hired investigators to help it determine the cause following a series of breaches across Ukraine. Preliminary findings indicate that workstations and Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) systems, linked to the 330 kilowatt sub-station "North", were influenced by external sources outside normal parameters, Ukrenergo said in comments emailed to Reuters.

Obama hands down several high profile clemencies, pardons

- Wed, 18 Jan 2017 03:43:02 -0500

FILE - In this Oct. 17, 2016, file photo, retired Gen. James Cartwright arrives at US District Court in Washington. On Jan. 17, 2017, Obama pardoned 64 people including Cartwright, charged with making false statements during another leak probe. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, File)The Obama administration on Tuesday shortened the prison sentences of 209 people and granted pardons to another 64.

Obama hands down several high profile clemencies, pardons

- Tue, 17 Jan 2017 21:04:32 -0500

FILE - In this Oct. 17, 2016, file photo, retired Gen. James Cartwright arrives at US District Court in Washington. On Jan. 17, 2017, Obama pardoned 64 people including Cartwright, charged with making false statements during another leak probe. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, File)The Obama administration on Tuesday shortened the prison sentences of 209 people and granted pardons to another 64.

Exclusive: Canadian energy firms at bigger risk from cyber, bomb attacks - spy agency

- Tue, 17 Jan 2017 15:58:59 -0500

FILE PHOTO - A sign is pictured outside the CSIS headquarters in OttawaBy Ethan Lou CALGARY, Alberta (Reuters) - Canada's main spy agency last year warned energy companies about an increasing risk of cyber espionage and attacks on pipelines, oil storage and shipment facilities and power transmission towers using homemade explosives, according to a classified document seen by Reuters. The Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS) warning last May highlights an additional risk for the energy sector, where opposition to pipelines has ramped up in Canada, home to the world's third-largest oil reserves, and the United States. In the document, which features speaking notes prepared for a CSIS briefing with energy and utilities sector stakeholders, an unidentified official specifies a threat from foreign state-owned firms looking for confidential information about investments or takeovers.

Indiana cancer agency hacked for data won't pay ransom

- Tue, 17 Jan 2017 14:51:07 -0500

MUNCIE, Ind. (AP) ? An Indiana cancer services agency says it will replace and rebuild its data after a computer hack demanding a ransom.

Putin: Obama administration trying to undermine Trump

- Tue, 17 Jan 2017 14:22:23 -0500

Russian President Vladimir Putin speaks at a joint news conference with Moldovan President Igor Dodon in the Kremlin in Moscow, Russia, Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2017. President Vladimir Putin on Tuesday accused the outgoing U.S. administration of trying to undermine President-elect Donald Trump by spreading fake allegations. (Sergei Ilnitsky/Pool Photo via AP)MOSCOW (AP) ? President Vladimir Putin took a parting shot at the Obama administration Tuesday, accusing it of trying to undermine Donald Trump's legitimacy with fake allegations and "binding the president-elect hand and foot to prevent him from fulfilling his election promises."

The Spies Who Love Putin

- Tue, 17 Jan 2017 14:09:15 -0500

It?s tempting to look to the playbooks and historical traditions of the late Soviet Union to explain the audacity of today?s Russian intelligence activity, from its meddling in U.S. elections, to apparently killing Kremlin opponents abroad. But these activities are not just products of old ways or new geopolitics. They also stem from a shift in the activities of Russia?s political police force, the infamous Federal Security Service (FSB). Originally established to protect the Kremlin?s rule at home, it has increasingly moved into Russia?s foreign operations. A new cohort of secret policemen, ignorant of the traditions of spycraft and secure in Putin?s protection, has fundamentally altered the nature of Russian intelligence.

As US looks inward, China seeks a lead role on world stage

- Tue, 17 Jan 2017 13:20:02 -0500

China's President Xi Jinping speaks at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2017. (AP Photo/Michel Euler)DAVOS, Switzerland (AP) ? With the U.S. increasingly looking inward and China eager to take a lead on the global stage, Chinese President Xi Jinping on Tuesday cast his country as a champion of free trade and stability, a rebuke to the isolationist urges that helped carry Donald Trump to power.

Fraudsters use sham UK charity appeals to steal money via emails, social media

- Tue, 17 Jan 2017 11:42:09 -0500

By Magdalena Mis LONDON (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Fraudsters have been using social media and emails to trick British corporations and members of the public to donate money to fake charity appeals, the UK's charity regulator said on Tuesday. In one case, emails purporting to be from Migrant Helpline - a genuine charity supporting migrants - were sent to individuals and businesses with a link containing malware to steal banking details, the Charity Commission said. The emails contained details of a bogus donation to Syrian families and invited recipients to clink on a link to retrieve more information about their donation, Migrant Helpline said in a warning posted on its website.

Fraudsters use sham UK charity appeals to steal money via emails, social media

- Tue, 17 Jan 2017 11:32:43 -0500

By Magdalena Mis LONDON (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - Fraudsters have been using social media and emails to trick British corporations and members of the public to donate money to fake charity appeals, the UK's charity regulator said on Tuesday. In one case, emails purporting to be from Migrant Helpline - a genuine charity supporting migrants - were sent to individuals and businesses with a link containing malware to steal banking details, the Charity Commission said. The emails contained details of a bogus donation to Syrian families and invited recipients to clink on a link to retrieve more information about their donation, Migrant Helpline said in a warning posted on its website.

An insidious new Gmail phishing attack is tricking even the most careful of users

- Tue, 17 Jan 2017 10:13:09 -0500

A new phishing technique is fooling internet users into giving hackers access to their Gmail accounts. According to WordPress security plugin creator Wordfence , the way that the attack works is that hackers send emails to the contacts of compromised accounts containing a seemingly innocuous attachment. When the user clicks the attachment, a new tab opens in the browser that looks nearly identical to the Google sign-in page. If the user inputs their log-in information, it goes straight to the attacker. On Hacker News , a commenter describes an incident that occurred at his school last year in which several employees and students were tricked into handing over their account information to attackers after receiving compromised emails and opening the attachments, thus perpetuating the cycle: "It's the most sophisticated attack I've seen. The attackers log in to your account immediately once they get the credentials, and they use one of your actual attachments, along with one of your actual subject lines, and send it to people in your contact list. For example, they went into one student's account, pulled an attachment with an athletic team practice schedule, generated the screenshot, and then paired that with a subject line that was tangentially related, and emailed it to the other members of the athletic team." While the idea of having your Gmail account serve as a host for the chain of hacks to continue is frightening enough, the hackers will also have the ability to download and read through all of your private emails, as well as gain access to other information connected to your Google account (or whichever service is hacked). Here's what you need to look out for in your address bar to avoid this attack: As you can see, not only is the beginning of the string odd, but there is a script hidden behind a long wall of whitespace. You won't be able to see the script in your address bar without tapping on it and scrolling to the right, but there are several other signs to watch out for that are even more obvious. For example, here's what my address bar looks like when I navigate to Gmail in Chrome: See the green text and the "Secure" label in front of the address? That indicates that I've reached a safe, secure website, as opposed to the black text up above. Not every site is going to be certifiably secure like that, but if you are visiting a Google log-in page specifically and don't see it, alarms should go off in your head. Google might fix this eventually, but for now, just pay attention and look for green text. Furthermore, if you don't have two-factor authentication on your Google account (or any other account which contains sensitive information), treat this as a wake up call and set it up immediately.

As tax season approaches, so do scammers

- Tue, 17 Jan 2017 09:51:36 -0500

FILE - This March 22, 2013, file photo shows the exterior of the Internal Revenue Service building in Washington. Tax scammers have invented increasingly brazen ways to defraud consumers and even tax preparers. You can fight back by knowing the signs of fraudulent communications, reporting any you receive to the right authorities and staying up to date on your tax situation. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh, File)Last summer, Cindy Hockenberry decided she'd had it with threatening phone calls claiming she was behind on her taxes.

Russia ready to rebuild security ties with U.S. under Trump: Putin ally

- Mon, 16 Jan 2017 07:23:01 -0500

Russia is ready to resume cooperation with the United States on security issues such as the fight against terrorism and cyber crime, a close ally of President Vladimir Putin said, days before the inauguration of Donald Trump as president. Trump, who has praised Putin as "very smart", has signaled he wants to improve strained ties with Russia, despite U.S. intelligence agencies alleging the Kremlin chief ordered a cyber campaign to discredit rival Hillary Clinton during the 2016 presidential race. Russia denies it tried to sway the U.S. election by hacking or other means and Trump has played down the allegations.

Kremlin counts days to Trump's inauguration, blasts Obama

- Sun, 15 Jan 2017 15:00:57 -0500

FILE- In this Wednesday, Jan. 11, 2017 file photo Russian President Vladimir Putin attends a meeting with Russian prosecutors in Moscow, Russia. Careful not to hurt chances for a thaw in U.S.-Russia relations, President Vladimir Putin and other Russian officials have deferred questions about their plans for future contacts with Trump and any agenda for those talks until he takes office on Friday, Jan. 20, 2017. (Alexei Druzhinin/Sputnik, Kremlin Pool Photo via AP, File)MOSCOW (AP) ? With eager anticipation, the Kremlin is counting the days to Donald Trump's inauguration and venting its anger at Barack Obama's outgoing administration, no holds barred.

Whatsapp bug allows viewing of encrypted messages

- Fri, 13 Jan 2017 23:01:31 -0500

Whatsapp's messaging app supposedly ensures strong end-to-end encryption, with the idea being that only the people involved in a conversation will ever be able to read the messages. But as it turns out, a programming bug -- that Whatsapp has known about for some time and has not fixed -- theoretically allows Whatsapp to snoop on any encrypted messages sent over the platform. The Guardian  first reported on the bug , which was found by Tobias Boelter, a security researcher at the University of California, Berkeley. The security flaw is related to how Whatsapp handles offline messages, and appears to be the result of a decision by Whatsapp to favor a seamless user experience over total security. End-to-end encryption relies on both users having two parts of a secure key, used to encrypt and then decrypt the message. But to make sure that messages are always sent, even when the recipient is offline, Whatsapp appears to have compromised that system. According to  The Guardian , "WhatsApp has the ability to force the generation of new encryption keys for offline users, unbeknown to the sender and recipient of the messages, and to make the sender re-encrypt messages with new keys and send them again for any messages that have not been marked as delivered." In theory, that would allow WhatsApp -- or any government agency with the appropriate court order -- to snoop on supposedly secure messages. There is no evidence that this has been done, and since the security bug relies on proactive involvement by WhatsApp, it seems unlikely that illegal hackers could use this bug to spy on users. Still, it's a blow for WhatsApp's supposedly tight security. Professor Kirstie Ball, a privacy advocate, told the  Guardian  that   ?it is a huge threat to freedom of speech, for it to be able to look at what you?re saying if it wants to. Consumers will say, I?ve got nothing to hide, but you don?t know what information is looked for and what connections are being made.? Separately, a  Buzzfeed  investigation yesterday highlighted a danger associated with Signal, another secure messaging app that has grown in popularity in recent months.  Buzzfeed  pointed out that once you sign up for Signal with your phone number, the fact that you are using Signal is visible to anyone else who has your phone number. Since Signal is an app expressly designed for privacy advocates and whistleblowers, that might show guilt by association.

Phone hacking company falls victim to hackers

- Thu, 12 Jan 2017 18:58:42 -0500

FILE - In this July 18, 2011, file photo, an examiner at an FBI digital forensics lab views data extracted easily from a smartphone, in Salt Lake City. A digital forensics firm known for helping law enforcement crack into locked smartphones has fallen victim to hackers. Technology news website Motherboard said Thursday, Jan. 12, 2017, that it has obtained 900 gigabytes of data related to Israel-based Cellebrite. (AP Photo/Lynn DeBruin, File)Cellebrite, a digital forensics firm known for helping law enforcement crack into locked smartphones, has itself fallen victim to hackers.

Europe erects defenses to counter Russia's information war

- Thu, 12 Jan 2017 18:49:57 -0500

General view shows Spasskaya Tower and Kremlin wall in MoscowBy Andrea Shalal BERLIN (Reuters) - Nations in Europe, where Germany and France this year hold elections, are erecting defenses to counter possible Russian cyber attacks and disinformation to sway Western politics, but intelligence experts say this might be too little and too late. The issue of Russian "influence operations" has taken on new urgency after U.S. intelligence agencies released a non-classified assessment that President Vladimir Putin ordered a campaign to move the U.S. election in favor of Donald Trump. European nations and NATO are setting up centers to identify "fake news", bolstering cyber defenses and tracking use of social media which target Russian-speaking communities, far-right groups, political parties, voters and decision-makers.

Notorious iPhone hacking company has its secrets revealed by hack

- Thu, 12 Jan 2017 18:10:55 -0500

Cellebrite, an Israeli firm that supplies "forensics tools" to agencies around the world, including US law enforcement, appears to have suffered a serious hack.  Motherboard claims to have 900GB of Cellebrite data , supplied to it by an anonymous hacker. Among other things, the data reportedly shows that the Israeli firm has been selling its technology to regimes known for their human rights abuses, including Turkey, the United Arab Emirates, and Russia. Cellebrite is best known for its rumored involvement in helping the FBI crack the San Bernandino shooter's iPhone, as Apple fought an order to assist through the courts. In addition to helping the FBI in that case, Cellebrite also sells forensics devices and software to dozens of US law enforcement agencies and police departments. It's also actively involved in developing the "Textalyser," a device that would theoretically let cops know if a cellphone was being used right before a car accident. The hack feels very similar to the 2015 breach of HackingTeam , an Italian company that provided spying tools to governments around the world. HackingTeam was shown to have sold its products to government agencies in Sudan, Ethiopia and Bangladesh, among many others. The scope of Cellebrite's sales is not clear, but it's still not a good look to be providing computer hacking tools to a Turkish regime being constantly criticized for its crack-downs on journalists and freedom of speech. According to  Motherboard , the 900GB data dump was provided by an anonymous hacker that disapproves of Cellebrite's choice of customer. The data apparently includes snippets of Cellebrite's customer database, data dumps from Cellebrite devices, and even evidence obtained from target devices. Cellebrite seemingly confirmed the authenticity of the data breach to  Motherboard.  Since the data dump is not public, the backlash against Cellebrite is unlikely to be as bad as the one seen by HackingTeam, which was forced to stop exporting its software after its data was leaked. But even if there's no immediate consequence, details of an Israeli firm supplying digital weapons to nations like Russia isn't going to do wonders for its US sales.

Insurance gaps leave shipping exposed to growing cyber threats

- Thu, 12 Jan 2017 08:25:26 -0500

FILE PHOTO: An oil tanker sits anchored off the Fos-Lavera oil hub near MarseilleBy Jonathan Saul and Carolyn Cohn LONDON (Reuters) - Shipping companies grappling with the threat of cyber attacks on vessels are finding insurance policies often fall short, officials involved in both industries say, a risk that could feed through into global prices. Gaps in insurance for ship owners and the disruptions that could cause have the potential to drive up both industrial and consumer prices.  In a particularly secretive industry, information about the nature of attacks is scarce, which insurance and shipping officials say is an obstacle to mitigating the risk. There is also a gap in provision, because most existing cyber or hull insurance policies will not cover the risk of a navigation system being jammed or physical damage to the ship caused by a hacking attack.

China's Xiaomi targets 2017 sales of $14.5 billion after 2016 overhaul

- Thu, 12 Jan 2017 03:03:09 -0500

Attendants are silhouetted in front of Xiaomi's logo in BeijingBy Sijia Jiang HONG KONG (Reuters) - China's Xiaomi targets 2017 sales of over 100 billion yuan ($14.47 billion), Chief Executive Lei Jun said on Thursday, after a year that saw the firm fall down the smartphone vendor rankings while it overhauled its business. "The worst is over," Lei said at an annual meeting in Beijing, describing 2016 as a "make-up year". Seven-year-old Xiaomi was briefly the world's most valuable startup and had hopes to be China's equivalent of Apple Inc. But it fell out of the top five in China for smartphone vendors in 2016, after reaching No. 2 in 2015.

This machine makes you work out by shivering on your couch

- Wed, 11 Jan 2017 20:00:03 -0500

Machines that effortlessly make you burn calories and tone muscle and normally seen on the Shopping Channel sometime after 11PM, and spend less on science than on makeup artists for the infomercial. So when an Indiegogo comes along promising the same sort of thing, I wouldn't normally look twice. But a wealth of science , medical backing and peer-reviewed studies makes this look legitimately interesting. https://youtu.be/lEmloOai37o The premise behind BionicGym is simpler than most auto-weight-loss machines: shivering burns calories, so if you can attach electrodes that make your muscles shiver at a particular frequency, that will indeed burn calories. It doesn't sound like a pain-free workout, but rather just a more convenient alternative to going to the gym. The device uses electrical muscle stimulation (EMS), a fancy way of saying electrodes zap your muscles into movement. It's been used in clinical settings before, but the team behind BionicGym is trying to turn it into a commercial alternative to treadmills. In their test , which has been published in a properly peer-reviewed journal, an EMS device was used on a person for a series of exercise sessions, during which heart rate and oxygen uptake increased dramatically, just like you'd see during a normal gym session. As a proof of concept, EMS as an alternative to exercise seems to broadly work. The bigger question with BionicGym is how it will scale to different people in different settings, and whether the device can be manufacturered on schedule and under budget. Those are the same concerns with every crowdfunding campaign, and why you need to treat every project with a healthy dose of skepticism. One BionicGym will run $350 from the Indiegogo campaign . That's a lot of money for an idea, but also really just the same as a gym subscription for a few months.

Our solar system might have a ninth planet, and researchers have an idea of where it came from

- Wed, 11 Jan 2017 19:14:24 -0500

We all grew up learning that our sun has eight friends: Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune. Now, researchers who believe that a ninth planet is actually hanging around our galactic neighborhood have a theory as to how it got there. The scientists think that the yet unseen ninth planet may be a "rogue," which entered out solar system not at its inception, but long after the fact.  The theory of Planet Nine was born out of the movements of objects in the Kuiper belt, which is a disc-shaped collection of mostly small objects that exists beyond Neptune. In early 2016, Caltech scientists studying the peculiar orbits of objects in the Kuiper belt came to the conclusion that the only reason many of the Kuiper belt objects would behave in such a manner is if a massive planet was actually pulling them with its gravity. The world would have to be on the order of 10 times the size of Earth for the math to work out. As Space.com reports, a new paper by New Mexico State University undergrad James Vesper, with help from professor Paul Mason, accepts the theory that our solar system has a guest we didn't know about, and suggests a scenario that explains its existence. After running over 150 computer simulations to test the idea, Vesper claims that the unseen planet may actually be a rogue world that was grabbed by our solar system as it floated aimlessly in space. There are many, many rogue planets in space, and without a star to orbit they sometimes enter other solar system, either temporarily or for much longer stretches of time. In Vesper's simulations, a rogue world coming into contact with our solar system ended up sticking around, either by ejecting another planet or simply by sliding in and making a neat little orbit of its own. Further research is ongoing, and astronomers think they'll be able to either confirm or debunk the Planet Nine theory sometime this year.

AirPods are even more insanely popular than you could have guessed

- Wed, 11 Jan 2017 18:57:31 -0500

Following a lukewarm reaction to the announcement of AirPods and the subsequent release date delay, the skepticism surrounding Apple's wireless earbuds at launch was understandable. It was also misguided, as a new report from research firm Slice Intelligence shows that AirPods were likely responsible for a major uptick in wireless headphone sales over the 2016 holiday season. According to Slice's data, wireless headphones accounted for 75% of all headphone sales online through the month of December. On December 13th specifically (which happens to be that day Apple's AirPods finally hit the market), ten times more money was spent on headphones than the pre-holiday average. There is a legitimate argument to be made that wireless headphone sales had been catching up with wired headphone sales in recent months (which Slice's data also backs up), but it's hard to deny that AirPods had a major impact last month. This chart from Slice is possibly the most telling of all: Headphone sales were higher on AirPods launch day that on Prime Day, Black Friday or Cyber Monday. No other day of the year saw more headphone sales than the day Apple made its wireless headphones available. But the most impressive statistic of all comes from another chart, which shows how ten popular consumer electronics companies that produce and sell headphones fared before and after the launch of AirPods: Since the AirPods launched last month, Apple has received more than a 25% share of all wireless headphone revenue in the market. In other words, AirPods have been significantly more popular than headphones from household brands such as Bose and Beats (which Apple also happens to own). So we can make fun of AirPods all we want, but they're clearly no laughing matter .

Just what Uber needs: More creepy information about your personal life

- Wed, 11 Jan 2017 16:46:42 -0500

Everyone who converts from cabs to Uber tends to rave about the pricing and service. But one thing that Uber is not so great at is customer privacy. The company has come under fire before for allegedly following customer's rides and tracking location data from smartphones when you're not using the app. So although Uber's new "Calendar Shorcuts" feature sounds superficially useful, it might be worth thinking about whether you want to give Uber access to your entire calendar. The new feature, which is rolling out today, allows riders to integrate their calendar with Uber's app, if they so wish. Once you've done that, an upcoming calendar appointment will automatically appear in the Uber app as a destination, saving you the hassle of a few clicks. It's an obvious move for Uber, which is always trying to cut down on the "friction" between thinking about going somewhere, and stepping into an Uber. But it raises obvious privacy concerns: although the data might be anonymized or stay on your phone for now, Uber's shown a tendancy to use all the data at its disposal to enhance the service. Best case scenario, it's easy to see Uber using an algorithm to parse calendar appointments, predict demand, and pre-emptively assign drivers (or enable surge pricing) to handle a rush of Saturday night dinner appointments.

Microsoft is finally addressing privacy concerns in Windows 10

- Wed, 11 Jan 2017 16:20:47 -0500

Microsoft received plenty of criticism for the aggressive data collection practices attached to Windows 10. The company kept defending its choices, saying that it needs to collect certain data so that Windows 10 can operate smoothly and safely. But the company on Tuesday announced it?s ready to make some concessions, starting with a future Windows 10 update that will better protect your privacy. The company acknowledged in a blog post that many people ?have asked for more control over your data, a greater understanding of how data is collected, and the benefits this brings for a more personalized experience.? That?s why Microsoft is launching two experiences to help you manage your privacy. The first one is a new web-based privacy dashboard where you?ll be able to see what kind of activities and data Microsoft has access to, ?including location, search, browsing, and Cortana Notebook data across multiple Microsoft services.? This sounds very much like what?s available from Google on a user?s Account page. You?ll be able to check out your activity and delete your data at this address: account.microsoft.com/privacy . The second one is probably going to be more important to some people: a new privacy setup experience. Diagnostic data levels will be simplified in Windows 10 Creators Update, and beta users will have access to the new settings before anyone else. The new setup experience will let you customize settings, and it?ll be slightly different from the previous Express Settings features. Furthermore, the diagnostic data Microsoft will collect will now has just two levels, Basic and Full, down from the three levels in previous versions. At the Basic level, the amount of data collected has further been reduced. ?This includes data that is vital to the operation of Windows,? Microsoft said. ?We use this data to help keep Windows and apps secure, up-to-date and running properly when you let Microsoft know the capabilities of your device, what is installed, and whether Windows is operating correctly. This option also includes basic error reporting back to Microsoft.?

Read the full synopsis for the second half of ?The Walking Dead? season 7

- Wed, 11 Jan 2017 16:00:32 -0500

Despite introducing one of the most iconic villains from the comic book series, The Walking Dead has still yet to find its footing in season 7. The story moves too slowly and there are far too many filler episodes, especially for a show that takes a two month break after the first half of the season has aired. While it's impossible to know whether or not the writers will pick up the pace in the second half, the synopsis of season 7, part 2 shared by AMC this week is promising, especially for those who prefer action scenes. Here's the complete, lengthy synopsis for the upcoming story arc on The Walking Dead : The first half of Season 7 saw Rick (Andrew Lincoln) and the group broken by Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan), forced to fall under his will and brutally convinced to live under his rules. The second half of the season will focus on preparing for war and gathering the supplies and numbers to take Negan down once and for all. Rick?s group will find out yet again that the world isn?t what they thought it was. It?s much bigger than anything they?ve seen so far. While they have a singular purpose - to defeat Negan - it won?t come easy. More importantly, victory will require more than Alexandria. They need the numbers of the Kingdom and the Hilltop, but, similar to how Rick felt, Ezekiel (Khary Payton) and Gregory (Xander Berkeley) do not want bloodshed. To convince them otherwise will take more than speeches. The lengths Rick and the group will have to go to in order to find weapons, food and new fighters is nothing short of remarkable. We?ll meet new survivors in incredible places. We?ll see Rick and the group tested in ways we?ve never seen before. We?ll see treachery from people we trust. Rick is confident as he will see his group and many others band together with the common goal of taking down Negan. But no amount of planning will prepare the group for all-out war with Negan and his army. The show has relied on cliffhangers as heavily as any show on television recently, so we're hopeful that the war actually begins in season 7. Then again actor Jeffrey Dean Morgan (Negan) has already confirmed he'll be sticking around for season 8 , so we likely won't see the conclusion of the war until fall, at the earliest. In addition to the synopsis, AMC also published a few new photos from season 7B: The Walking Dead season 7 returns to AMC on February 12th.

Your fingerprint sensor could be hacked with a single photo

- Wed, 11 Jan 2017 15:18:12 -0500

Our fingerprints guard our digital lives more than ever before and, between Apple's Touch ID and the various fingerprint unlock features from Android manufacturers, biometric data is an increasingly hot commodity for hackers. Researchers from the National Institute of Informatics in Japan (NII for short) are taking the risk of stolen fingerprints extremely seriously. In fact, the scientists suggest that even something as simple as waving your fingers in the air could compromise your security, and they're hard at work on a technology for the public to hide their prints from the prying digital eyes that surround each and every one of us. "Just by casually making a peace sign in front of a camera, fingerprints can become widely available," Isao Echizen, a researcher from NII, told a local Japanese newspaper this week, PhysOrg reports . He also explained that if the lighting is right in a photo, even a smartphone camera could potentially capture enough fingerprint data to recreate a user's biometric identity. So how do you keep your prints safe from, well, everyone? The NII team thinks it has a solution. The group has created a film that can be applied to a person's fingers that obscures the print in photographs but doesn't prevent the user from using their fingers for biometric identification. The film is transparent but contains a titanium oxide, which is apparently the secret sauce. In a paper released by NII, the group says it is continuing development on the print-hiding film, but that it could be another two years before it's actually available. I guess you'll just have to keep your hands in your pockets until then.

Hackers cram Famicom Mini inside a Game Boy, and you?re going to want one

- Wed, 11 Jan 2017 14:59:53 -0500

The NES Classic Edition might be the hottest Nintendo gadget in years but over in Japan they don't really care. That's because the NES as we know it doesn't exist in the Japanese market. Instead, Japanese gamers got the Famicom, which is essentially an NES in a red and gold body, and since the company is feeling all nostalgic recently they also produced a tiny version of the console for release alongside the NES Classic. It's called the Famicom Mini, and even though it's awesome all on its own, some inventive hackers decided to make it portable by cramming the guts into the body of a classic Game Boy. The result is absolutely awesome. In a blog post on their site explaining how they pulled off the impressive feat, the modders known as Kei Studio give a thorough rundown of all the parts they used to make the conversion happen. For starters they nabbed a red original Game Boy, a 3.5-inch color LCD screen, HDMI downscaler, multiple rechargeable batteries and various other small components. Then, with the Famicom Mini torn apart, they began the process of disassembling, reassembling, and testing how all the parts would work together. Eventually they were able to piece together a working Mini board that could fit inside the Game Boy case, along with the controller board and buttons. Not satisfied with the already impressive accomplishment of making the hacked hardware functional, Kei Studio decided to give the Game Boy a Famicom makeover of its own, complete with gold trim and custom "Famicom Pocket" branding. The team made a pair of the devices, and with a special link cable they can actually play two-player games as well. The handhelds provide roughly two and a half hours of playtime on a single charge. That may not be enough for a Mario marathon, but it'll definitely help pass the time on the subway. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g3tYZUblBmM