Tech Thoughts Daily Net News – October 8, 2012

Cybercriminals plotting massive banking Trojan attack, security firm warns – An international gang of cyber crooks is plotting a major campaign to steal money from the online accounts of thousands of consumersat 30 or more major U.S. banks, security firm RSA warned. In an advisory, RSA said it has information suggesting the gang plans to unleash a little-known Trojan program to infiltrate computers belonging to U.S. banking customers and to use the hijacked machines to initiate fraudulent wire transfers from their accounts.

Enable Flash in Chrome Only When You Want It With Flash Control – Adobe Flash is slowly being replaced with HTML5, but many websites still use Flash for videos, banners, and games. FlashControl (free) offers a simple solution, letting you selectively enable Flash in Google Chrome.

Facebook ID will give access to UK government websites – The UK Government is pressing ahead with potentially controversial plans that will let citizens to log on to a range of Government services using external digital identities such as Facebook, online banks and mobile phone accounts.

How to know when it’s time to replace your router – How’s your home network these days? Does it seem slower than usual, or just plain slow? Do you find that you don’t get good coverage in all corners of your house? Do you intermittently lose your connection to your ISP? Any of these issues may be a sign that it’s time for a new router. I say “may” because there are lots of other reasons you’re getting slow or inconsistent performance.

Tech Thoughts Daily Tech News 2

8 Great Games Like The Sims – Need a break from Sim life? Try living in these other worlds for a while.

How to run your business in Evernote – Evernote was designed for individuals, but businesses have been adopting it in increasing numbers, finding unique ways to put it to use. Evernote itself has taken notice of this, and later this year it will be launching Evernote for Business, which could elevate Evernote’s business utility even further. Meanwhile, if you’re new to Evernote, or are just dipping your toes into it, here’s how to put the little app that could to its best use.

Can Email Be Fixed? – Despite the fact that, in today’s world, email should be a primary point of contact, many people are incredibly cavalier about it. That’s because it’s fatiguing to plow through the onslaught of spam and meaningless crap, just to unearth the occasional important message.

YouTube expands original programming push to Europe – Video platform will add 50 new original-content channels, including country-specific channels in France, Germany, and Britain.

Game Consoles Drive Up Time Men Spend in Front of TV – According to new data from Nielsen, game consoles are helping to bridge the TV-time gender gap.

AMD OverDrive: Easily overclock an AMD rig – Low framerates can make or break a 3D game. When overclocked, most video cards push past their posted limits with ease and offer better gains than CPU boosts when it comes to gaming. Although many utilities to tweak graphics cards exist, AMD’s OverDrive is an especially good choice for AMD-based systems.

Free and Cheap Software for Benchmarking like a Pro – Whether you’re a power user or a novice, there has never been a better time to learn about benchmarking. Just about every major tech blog or hardware site uses one or more of the suites in this roundup. Despite the power, they’re easy to use.

Microsoft’s IE9 suffers vicious parody treatment – You’ve seen that rather dynamic Internet Explorer 9 ad, haven’t you? The one that’s pulsating and powerful? Well, here’s a slightly different take.


Info-stealing Trojan posing as Panda Cloud Antivirus – Researchers from Spanish antivirus vendor Panda Security are warning potential users about information-stealing malware disguised as their Panda Cloud Antivirus solution. The file – named 2.4.exe – is equipped with the well-known Panda icon but, once run, installs the DarkAngle Trojan on the victim’s computer.

Ransomware encrypts files claiming SOPA piracy charges – A new variant of ransomware wants you to believe you have been caught pirating software, music and movies and you must pay a fine under the SOPA act. Except there is no SOPA act.

Trojan disguised as image delivered via Skype messages – Skype users beware. The spamming campaign has surfaced in the last few days and is being propagated via compromised Skype accounts. The offered links don’t lead to an image, but to a malicious executable (skype_02102012_image.exe) posing as one.

Searching for images on Bing? Beware malicious search engine poisoning – Trust your search engine results? Read how image searches within Bing are being poisoned by attackers in order to drive web traffic to malicious sites.

World of Warcraft exploit sees entire cities die – Yesterday there were mass deaths across entire cities in World of Warcraft with the locations confirmed as having their populations depleted including Draenor, Orgrimmar, Stormwind, Ragnaros, Tarren Mill, and Twisting Nether . While players were initially amused, it soon turned to concern as it was realized entire realms were full of dead players and non-player characters. Blizzard was quick to respond and confirmed late yesterday that an exploit had been used by someone to carry out the mass in-game murder. Thankfully a hotfix has been issued and Blizzard has promised such a thing cannot happen again, unless of course another exploit is found that enables it.

Company News:

Motorola Wins App Patent Battle Against Microsoft – A German court sided with Motorola in a patent battle against Microsoft, finding that the now Google-owned Motorola does not infringe on an app-related patent held by Redmond.

Samsung doubles profits, but bill for legal loss awaits – Samsung Electronics says stronger-than-expected sales of its Galaxy smartphones sent operating profits up 90 percent in the latest quarter, but analysts warned its results could take a hit in the coming months as it books legal damages owed to Apple.

Qualcomm Joins AMD, ARM, Samsung on HSA Foundation – Qualcomm is the latest member of the Heterogeneous System Architecture Foundation, joining the likes of Advanced Micro Devices, ARM and Samsung Electronics in creating a single architecture spec for chips that leverage both compute and graphics capabilities.

First Windows 8 PCs appear early, crapware included – Microsoft’s official launch party for Windows 8 is still weeks away, but one well-known retailer has jumped the gun. Cable shopping giant HSN has five Windows 8 PCs for sale.

Webopedia Daily:

Chat Abbreviation – Used in real-time text-based communications — such as instant messaging, e-mail, online gaming services, chat rooms, discussion boards and mobile phone text messaging (SMS) — chat abbreviations are acronyms and slang terms used to shorten the amount of text you type when chatting online or on a cellphone. For example, if you are in a chatroom and someone types a funny statement, you could answer with LOL (short for Laughing Out Loud) instead of typing the full phrase out. Chat abbreviations are used in many different online groups and by people of all ages.

Off Topic (Sort of):

Microsoft uses Kinect to scan Isaac Newton’s death mask – Microsoft and the Royal Society of London teamed up recently to mix science, history, and computer game peripherals. The Kinect motion sensor has many different uses, whether it’s helping a disabled mom send an email or enabling people to create 3D objects using their hands. Now the Kinect has been used to recreate Isaac Newton’s face in 3D.

Civil Rights CAPTCHA asks how you feel about gay people being beaten with sticks – If you want to put a spanner in the works of automated bots leaving spam comments on your blog, or creating fake accounts on your website, one of the things you may deploy is a CAPTCHA system. Now one group has put a civil rights spin on things.

Fact-Checking Samsung’s Latest Apple Attack Ad – As a veteran technology journalist, I’m too jaded to be swayed by commercial advertising, especially something as silly and insubstantial as a 30-second TV spot. And yet, I can’t help but watch Samsung’s latest attack ad and think, “Zing!” Fortunately,’s Russell Holly is here to provide a much needed fact-check.

Declassified: Air Force plans for a flying saucer – This mysterious saucer from the 1950s was meant to fly at speeds of up to Mach 4. Most mysteriously, it was designed by… Canadians.

Google Honors Niels Bohr With Atomic Doodle – Search giant recognizes the Danish physicist and pioneer of quantum physics with a homepage doodle to commemorate the 127th anniversary of his birth.

Today’s Quote:

History teaches us that men and nations behave wisely once they have exhausted all other alternatives.”

–     Abba Eban

Today’s Free Downloads:

Google Drive 1.5.3449 – Google Drive-keep everything, share anything. Google Drive is everywhere you are—on the web, in your home, at the office and on the go. So wherever you are, your stuff is just…there.

YoWindow 3.0.107 – Watch weather like never before on Windows and Mac. See the weather picture, not just numbers. This is a new way of weather watching. Enjoy the weather!

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