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Security

Half Of People Click Anything Sent To Them (arstechnica.com)

Want to know why phishing continues to be one of the most common security issue? Half of the people will click on anything without thinking twice ArsTechnica reports: A study by researchers at a university in Germany found that about half of the subjects in a recent experiment clicked on links from strangers in e-mails and Facebook messages -- even though most of them claimed to be aware of the risks. The researchers at the Friedrich-Alexander University (FAU) of Erlangen-Nuremberg, Germany, led by FAU Computer Science Department Chair Dr Zinaida Benenson, revealed the initial results of the study at this month's Black Hat security conference. Simulated "spear phishing" attacks were sent to 1,700 test subjects -- university students -- from fake accounts. The e-mail and Facebook accounts were set up with the ten most common names in the age group of the targets. The Facebook profiles had varying levels of publicly accessible profile and timeline data -- some with public photos and profile photos, and others with minimal data. The messages claimed the links were to photos taken at a New Year's Eve party held a week before the study. Two sets of messages were sent out: in the first, the targets were addressed by their first name; in the second, they were not addressed by name, but more general information about the event allegedly photographed was given. Links sent resolved to a webpage with the message "access denied," but the site logged the clicks by each student.
Intel

Lenovo's 'Yoga Book' Laptop Is So Thin It Needs A Touchscreen Keyboard (gizmodo.com) 12

An anonymous reader writes: At IFA in Berlin, Lenovo announced the Yoga Book, a laptop that measures in at just 0.38-inches thick, making it the thinnest laptop currently available. In order for it to retain such a slim profile, the keyboard needed to be redesigned. The Yoga Book features what is called the Halo Keyboard, a touchscreen keyboard that is separated from the display and doubles as a drawing tablet. Gizmodo reports: "Officially it's called the Halo Keyboard, and if you've ever tried to quickly type on a tablet's software keyboard than you'll be familiar with the experience. Only it's a little nicer because the keyboard is separated from the display, so it doesn't suck up screen real estate, and it has a pleasantly rough texture. It's also got haptic feedback, which in the case of a touchscreen keyboard is sort of like sticking lipstick on the pig. A press of a button turns the keys off and turns the keyboard into a drawing tablet. From there, it behaves a lot like a Wacom tablet, directly reporting pen input into your chosen app. It even reads pen inputs through paper laid over the input panel." Some other specs of this 2-in-1 laptop/tablet include an Intel Atom processor, 64GB of onboard storage with support for a microSD card, 13 hours of battery life, 4G LTE, 802.11 AC Wi-Fi, front and rear cameras, and a 10.1-inch, 1080p display.
Transportation

Senate Committee Expected To OK Autonomous Car Bills in Michigan (detroitnews.com) 25

Michael Wayland, and Melissa Burden, reporting for The Detroit News: Michigan legislators could vote as early as next week on sweeping autonomous vehicle bills that would allow self-driving cars on any Michigan road without a human driver behind the wheel. The Senate's Economic Development and International Investment Committee is holding a public hearing on the bills at 10 a.m. Wednesday at Nexteer Automotive, 3900 E. Holland, in Buena Vista Township in Saginaw County. The seven-member committee is expected to send the bills to the Senate floor for a vote as early as Tuesday. If approved, the bills would need approval of the House before heading to Gov. Rick Snyder's desk. "We're very, very sure that this is going to move out of committee tomorrow," Sen. Mike Kowall, R-White Lake Township, who introduced the legislation, told The Detroit News on Tuesday. "We've aired out just about everything over the sun."
Government

FDA Finds Flaws In Theranos' Zika Tests (techcrunch.com) 29

An anonymous reader quotes a report from TechCrunch: This past week, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration mandated testing for the Zika virus at all U.S. blood centers. That juices demand for Zika-testing technology, but one company that isn't welcome to provide it yet is Theranos. The beleaguered blood analysis startup has run afoul of the FDA, yet again, The Wall Street Journal reports (Warning: may be paywalled). Specifically, regulators found that in developing and testing a new Zika-diagnostic technology, Theranos failed to use proper patient safety protocols, the type approved by an institutional review board. Such protocols are critical in ensuring the ethical treatment of patients involved in studies, and their safety. Theranos had sought the same FDA authorization, but voluntarily withdrew its request once regulators called the startup out, this time, on the safety protocols issue.
Earth

SETI's 'Strong Signal' Came From Earth (arstechnica.com) 54

Yesterday, it was reported that Russia has detected a strong signal around 11 GHz coming from HD164595, a star nearly identical in mass to the Sun and located about 95 light years away from Earth. Well, long story short the signal came Earth. Ars Technica reports: "First, astronomers with the search for extraterrestrial intelligence downplayed the possibility of an alien civilization. 'There are many other plausible explanations for this claimed transmission, including terrestrial interference,' Seth Shostak, a senior astronomer with SETI, wrote. Now the Special Astrophysical Observatory of the Russian Academy of Sciences has concurred, releasing a statement on the detection of a radio signal at the RATAN-600 radio astronomy observatory in southern Russia. 'Subsequent processing and analysis of the signal revealed its most probable terrestrial origin,' the Russian scientists said."
Businesses

No Coding in Palo Alto? City Takes On Silicon Valley Growth (siliconbeat.com) 157

An anonymous reader writes:The birthplace of Hewlett Packard and Xerox Parc and founding place of Facebook is now considering whether to enforce a zoning regulation banning firms whose "primary business is research and development, including software coding," according to the New York Times. As the Times wrote, "To repeat: The mayor is considering enforcing a ban on coding at ground zero of Silicon Valley." Palo Alto Mayor Patrick Burt told the Times: Big tech companies are choking off the downtown. It's not healthy. Palo Alto is a software capital. It has also become a company town, with Palantir Technologies renting 20 downtown buildings, as Marisa Kendall wrote. Other notable tech firms there include Tesla, SAP, Flipboard, VMWare and many others. It has become a center for automation and cars and is home to Ford's research and development center.
Google

Google Search For Android Now Finds Info Hidden Inside Apps (pcworld.com) 21

An anonymous reader writes: First Google created a centralized place to search the web, and now Google has a centralized spot to search your Android phone. The company just announced a new feature for the Google App called In Apps. As its name implies, In Apps lets you search for content inside your Android apps, such as a specific song, contact, or note in Google Keep. To start, the new feature will only work with a select number of apps, including Gmail, Spotify, and YouTube. Google also has plans to add Evernote, Facebook Messenger, Glide, Google Keep, LinkedIn, and Todoist in the coming months. All app searches happen on your device itself, not Google's servers, which means you don't need an Internet connection to use the feature. It's not clear how often the app will index your content or how much of a hit it will take on your battery or device performance.
Security

After Breaches At Other Services, Spotify Is Resetting Users' Passwords (vice.com) 24

And now, Spotify is asking its users to reset their passwords. The popular music streaming service is "actively resetting a number of users' passwords," Motherboard reports, adding that the company is doing this because of the data breaches at other services and websites. In an email to customers, the company said, "Don't worry! This is purely a preventative security measure. Nobody has accessed your Spotify account, and your data is secure." The move comes less than a week after Dropbox began resetting its users' passwords. Earlier today we learned that the cloud storage had been hacked, and as many as 68 million accounts are affected.
Hardware

Samsung Delays Shipments of Galaxy Note 7 For Quality Control Testing (theguardian.com) 38

Samsung unveiled its latest flagship smartphone, the Galaxy Note 7 earlier this month. But the company is now delaying its shipments as it conducts additional quality control testing delaying its shipments as it conducts additional quality control testing. The Guardian adds: There have been several unconfirmed local reports of users claiming that the battery of the Galaxy Note 7 battery exploded during charging. Samsung did not elaborate on what further testing was required and to where shipments of the high-priced phablet were being delayed. Quality-control problems delaying the release of the latest Samsung flagship phablet could be a major blow for the worldâ(TM)s largest smartphone manufacturer. Its recent sales saw it capture more market share and return to solid profits, but high sales of the Note 7 along with the Galaxy S7 line are required to maintain momentum in the second half of the year.
Security

SWIFT Discloses More Cyber Thefts, Pressures Banks On Security (reuters.com) 22

Jim Finkle, reporting for Reuters:SWIFT, the global financial messaging system, on Tuesday disclosed new hacking attacks on its member banks as it pressured them to comply with security procedures instituted after February's high-profile $81 million heist at Bangladesh Bank. In a private letter to clients, SWIFT said that new cyber-theft attempts -- some of them successful -- have surfaced since June, when it last updated customers on a string of attacks discovered after the attack on the Bangladesh central bank. "Customers' environments have been compromised, and subsequent attempts (were) made to send fraudulent payment instructions," according to a copy of the letter reviewed by Reuters. "The threat is persistent, adaptive and sophisticated - and it is here to stay." The disclosure suggests that cyber thieves may have ramped up their efforts following the Bangladesh Bank heist, and that they specifically targeted banks with lax security procedures for SWIFT-enabled transfers. The Brussels-based firm, a member-owned cooperative, indicated in Tuesday's letter that some victims in the new attacks lost money, but did not say how much was taken or how many of the attempted hacks succeeded.
Security

Hackers Stole Account Details for Over 60 Million Dropbox Users 55

The Dropbox hack is more severe than we expected. Motherboard has the details: Hackers have stolen over 60 million account details for online cloud storage platform Dropbox. Although the accounts were stolen during a previously disclosed breach, and Dropbox says it has already forced password resets, it was not known how many users had been affected, and only now is the true extent of the hack coming to light. Motherboard obtained a selection of files containing email addresses and hashed passwords for the Dropbox users through sources in the database trading community. In all, the four files total in at around 5GB, and contain details on 68,680,741 accounts. The data is legitimate, according to a senior Dropbox employee. Security expert Troy Hunt has corroborated on Motherboard's claims, and has updated Have I Been Pwned website where you can go and see if you're among one of the victims.
Windows

Acer Unveils Slim Windows 10 Notebooks, Convertible Chromebook, Curved Screen Laptop (zdnet.com) 40

Ahead of this week's IFA consumer electronics trade show in Berlin, Acer has unveiled a range of notebook computers. The company has a new 13-inch Chromebook R 13 laptop, which it says can also be used as a tablet. There's a new line of Windows 10 Swift notebooks and Spin convertible laptops that are powered by Intel's just unveiled seventh generation Core processors. The Chromebook R13 sports a screen resolution of 1920x1080 pixels, and is powered by a MediaTek quad-core processor coupled with 4GB of RAM. It also houses a USB Type-C, USB 3.0, and HDMI ports. It offers as much as 12-hour of battery life. ZDNet adds:The 14-inch Spin 7 features an aluminium unibody design and is powered by an Intel Core i7 processor, with up to 8GB RAM, and 256 GB solid state disk storage. It weighs 1.2 kg (2.6 pounds) with a width of 10.98mm (0.43 inches). It also includes two USB 3.1 Type-C ports. The Spin 7 goes on sale in the US and Europe in October, with prices starting at $1,199 and 1,299 euro respectively. Heading up Acer's ultra-slim lineup is the aluminium construction, black and gold Swift 7. It features a 13.3-inch full-HD IPS display and Intel 7th generation i5 processor, with a 256GB SSD and 8GB RAM. It boasts fast wireless and dual USB 3.1 Type-C ports. Acer is promising nine hours of battery life for the device, which weighs 1.1kg (2.48 pounds) and has a height of 9.98mm (0.39 inches), making it the slimmest in the Swift series. It will be available in the US and Europe in October from $999 and 1,299 euro respectively.
Security

Transmission Malware On Mac, Strike 2 (macrumors.com) 47

New reader puenktli writes: Just five months after Transmission was infected with the first 'ransomware' ever found on the Mac, the popular BitTorrent client is again at the center of newly uncovered OS X malware. Researchers at security website We Live Security have discovered the malware, called OSX/Keydnap, was spread through a recompiled version of Transmission temporarily distributed through the client's official website. OSX/Keydnap executes itself in a similar manner as the previous Transmission ransomware KeRanger, by adding a malicious block of code to the main function of the app, according to the researchers. Likewise, they said a legitimate code signing key was used to sign the malicious Transmission app, different from the legitimate Transmission certificate, but still signed by Apple and thereby able to bypass Gatekeeper on OS X.
Operating Systems

Fedora 25 Alpha Linux Distro Now Available (betanews.com) 34

An anonymous reader writes: Today, Fedora 25 Alpha sees a release. While the pre-release distribution is not ready for end users, it does give testers an early start at poking around.
Keep in mind what an Alpha release is folks -- this is pre-Beta. In other words, it is littered with bugs, and you should definitely not run it on a production machine. There are already some show-stopping known issues -- a couple are related to dual-booting with Windows (scary). One bug can destroy OS X data when dual-booting on a Mac!

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