UK spies attack via LinkedIn, Slashdot pages; Hot PC Games for Holiday Season; Google Launches Person Finder; Android Call Blocker; Power tips – Windows 7; New IE Zero-Day Targets Memory; 7 free apps for puppy training; Security holes in D-Link router; ‘Dating’ apps are ruining America; How Silicon Valley Helped the NSA; McCain Calls For Resignation/Firing of NSA’s Alexander.
UK spies continue “quantum insert” attack via LinkedIn, Slashdot pages – According to a new report by Der Spiegel, the British signals intelligence spy agency has again employed a “quantum insert” technique as a way to target employees of two companies that are GRX (Global Roaming Exchange) providers. The lead author of the story in the German magazine is Laura Poitras, one of the journalists known to have access to the entire trove of documents leaked by former National Security Agency (NSA) contractor Edward Snowden.
Google Launches Person Finder After Typhoon Yolanda – Following Friday’s devastating typhoon in the Philippines, Google has launched a Person Finder that allows individuals to post messages and search for the status of family and friends affected by the disaster.
Power tips for molding Windows 7 to your will – You can get a lot more mileage out of Windows 7 if you perform a few tweaks and tap in to some timesaving tricks.
Hot PC Games for the 2013 Holiday Season – With some of the most anticipated PC game releases delayed until 2014, we have put together a list of the hottest PC titles that have and will become available this holiday season.
Microsoft confirms SkyDrive is coming to the Xbox One – Microsoft has finally confirmed that it will indeed have a SkyDrive app for the Xbox One and it will be ready for the console’s scheduled launch of November 22nd.
Block unwanted calls on your Android phone with Call Blocker – Android’s Contact application allows you to set up auto-reject of incoming calls on a per-contact basis. But that’s the extent of the built-in abilities. For users who want a bit more incoming call control, there are apps on the Google Play Store that handle call blocking. One such tool is Call Blocker by NQ Mobile Security.
Get a powerful desktop search tool in DocFetcher – No matter what platform you run, desktop search is crucial. Even if you’re obsessive about organization, files are going to wind up missing — when they do, you need to be able to locate them. Some platforms don’t have powerful search tools. In that case, you need to add on a third-party tool to improve desktop search. One such tool is DocFetcher, and it’s as easy to use as it is powerful.
Sit, Ubu, sit: 7 free apps for training your new puppy – I took a look at several free iOS and Android apps that are perfect for training your new puppy without leaving your home. Even if you do end up taking your puppy to obedience school when he’s ready, these apps will help you lay the groundwork for a happy, healthy, well-trained dog.
Music industry seeks a refrain from unlicensed lyrics sites – The National Music Publishers Association said it sent take-down notices to what it claims are 50 websites that post lyrics to songs and generate ad revenue but may not be licensed.
MPAA, RIAA: Kids need to learn 3 Rs – reading, writing and NO RIPPING – First unveiled in September, the plan calls for elementary schoolchildren (up to grade 6, or 12 years old) to be given lessons on copyright infringement and media sharing. Dubbed “Be a Creator,” the curriculum is touted as a means for educating students about handling and sharing digital content. According to co-creators iKeepSafe, the curriculum would include lessons and media presentations as well as handouts aimed at teachers and parents. (Thumbs Down – A shameful illustration of how enterprise can corrupt.)
Three steps for keeping your business connected when frankenstorms attack – The emergence of cloud-based services means that businesses have a wide range of options for maintaining communications and protecting vital information resources in the event of a disaster.
Review: Google’s Nexus 5 is a flawed phone at a great price – After a long wait the Nexus 5 is finally here. The price and specs make it seem like a great deal, but has the Nexus line lost its edge?
Best Buy ‘Black Friday’ Deals Begin at 6pm on Thanksgiving – Better chow down early on Thanksgiving if you want to take advantage of Best Buy’s Black Friday deals. The big box retailer plans to open at 6 p.m. local time on Nov. 28. More than 1,000 Best Buy stores will open at 6 p.m. on Thanksgiving in 47 states and remain open until 10 p.m. local time on Black Friday, Nov. 29.
Alibaba rakes in $5.75B in online sales in just one day – As far as Internet shopping goes, the Chinese holiday Singles’ Day makes the US’ Cyber Monday look like child’s play. Alibaba Group, China’s largest e-commerce company, broke single-day online sales records during the country’s biggest shopping holiday. Topping $5.75 billion, the site matched last year’s online sales in the first 13 hours of the 24-hour shopping day, which was on Sunday, according to Bloomberg. Last year, Alibaba’s single-day online sales record totaled $3.14 billion.
New IE Zero-Day Used in Watering Hole Attack Targets Memory – Attackers are exploiting serious vulnerabilities in Internet Explorer in a watering hole attack, researchers from security firm FireEye warned. Users tricked into accessing the infected website are hit with malware that infects the computer’s memory in a classic drive-by attack.
New security holes found in D-Link router – A new spate of vulnerabilities have been found in a D-Link router, a security researcher said Monday. The D-Link 2760N, also known as the D-Link DSL-2760U-BN, is susceptible to several cross-site scripting (XSS) bugs through its Web interface, reported ThreatPost.
Microsoft to fix IE zero-day bug today with security patch – Microsoft has announced that a zero day bug discovered in many versions of Internet Explorer will be fixed via a security patch later today, to be released as part of “Patch Tuesday”.
Online banking, mobile malware on the rise in the holiday season – According to Trend Micro, consumers are being placed at risk due to rising rates of malware aimed at online banking and malicious applications.
How web-browser automation helps purveyors of malware – Once again, convenience is at odds with security. Learn how web browsers making life easy for users also helps the bad guys.
International Space Station experienced “virus epidemics” due to infected USB drive – The international space station’s computer systems were infected by an unspecified virus this year, according to Kaspersky. The malware made its way into space on a removable device carried by Russian astronauts, and though the extent of the damage hasn’t been specified, it has been revealed that on occasion, the station has suffered “virus epidemics”.
Apple to near 50% market share in Japan in 2014 – Apple has seen a large boost in adoption in Japan over the last couple years, and as the trend holds, it is expected the company will near 50-percent market share in the nation some time next year. Current estimates have iPhone sales more than doubling over 2012’s sales, and growth for the company has officially eclipsed that of Greater China and other areas, both domestic and abroad.
Foxconn mulls building TVs, display panels in Arizona – The company’s CEO Terry Gou announced his interest in building the facilities when Arizona Gov. Janice Brewer visited him in Taiwan. Both Foxconn and Arizona officials have been in talks about an investment for about the last two years, the company said in an email.
Amazon, U.S. Post Office team up for Sunday deliveries – Sunday deliveries are coming to New York and L.A. ahead of a larger roll out in 2014, and weekend shipments are still free for Amazon Prime members.
Intel reportedly in talks to sell Web TV service to Liberty Global – Chipmaker has reportedly been looking to unload the service, which was expected to be launched this year but has been delayed.
Apple’s TV plans on hold — again, DisplaySearch says – Apple is finding it a formidable task to bring out a TV and is instead shifting focus to wearable devices, says NPD DisplaySearch.
VMware acquires Desktone: Is your next desktop going to live in the cloud? – VMware announced that it has acquired desktop as a service supplier Desktone. Does this signal that your next desktop will live in some cloud service provider’s data center?
Games and Entertainment:
Sony Online Entertainment is charging $60 to alpha test a free-to-play MMO – How much will it cost you to get a glimpse of the next version of EverQuest before everyone else? $60. SOE is calling these early access charges the “Founder’s packs,” and it’s $60 for alpha access or $20 for beta access. However, if you really want to drop some cash, $100 will get you alpha access, your name in the Landmark credits, and some pay-to-win items.
Microsoft starts shipment of its Xbox One exclusive games – Microsoft has announced that its Xbox One exclusive games, including “Ryse: Son of Rome”, “Dead Rising 3”, “Forza Motorsport 5” and “Zoo Tycoon” have gone gold and have started shipping.
Are Consoles Pushing Gamers to the PC? – Years ago, PC gamers and console gamers stayed within their silos and didn’t even consider coming out. After all, to be a PC gamer was a badge of honor. And to play console games was to say that investing in new GPUs and high-end keyboards and mice was a mistake. But things are changing.
PC Game Streaming Is Going to Be Huge – As Sony and Microsoft prepare to launch their next big game consoles, there’s something far more exciting on the horizon. It’s the idea that if you already own a powerful gaming PC, you might not need a dedicated game console at all. Valve and Nvidia are both working on ways to deliver high-end gaming to any television, and to other screens around the house. Your gaming rig would handle all the intensive computing, then it would stream the video and audio to a less powerful device over your wireless router.
10 awesome PC games that feel just like work – If you think your job is hellish, try one of these curiously strenuous games.
The Top 10 Interactive Games for Story Lovers – As technology improves, video games promise more than just shinier guns to shoot. More powerful and flexible tools are giving developers the freedom to take games in exciting and brave new directions. Now narrative can be as important as fun action or even gameplay itself. Storytelling in games is evolving and we are finally getting close to settling that long-standing debate of whether or not games are art.
Microsoft fixes Windows 8.1 mouse issues, but not for all games – For PC gamers, at least, it looks like most of Windows 8.1’s issues are now fixable–especially if you’re comfortable with registry edits.
Off Topic (Sort of):
‘Dating’ apps are ruining America – Two teenage boys plop down on a bench aboard a Manhattan-bound train and trade stories about girls. It’s just another Saturday in New York. But these stories are strange—the dudes aren’t talking about classmates or friends, they’re talking about girls they’ve never met. Girls whose photos they swipe through like a deck of trading cards. America, we need to talk about dating apps. They are ruining everything.
Play-i robots teach kids to code, available summer 2014 – The Google-backed venture Play-i will start shipping robots to future programming geniuses in the summer of 2014, the company has announced. The colorful, round little robots–dubbed Bo and Yana–receive commands from a smartphone or tablet through a programming interface app designed for children ages 5 and up. The capabilities of Bo and Yana are pretty complex, but early testing by the company indicates the age-graduated programming languages are working.
Australian postal service introduces video stamps – Australia has rolled out a new kind of stamp with a QR code that lets you record a personal video message to send with your package.
13 smart bike gadgets that take the stupid out of cycling – If you have any interest in cycling, you should check out what’s on the high-tech horizon of biking gear.
Tin Can app relays messages to phones without Internet, cell reception – Tin Can works by connecting phones via their Wi-Fi radios, but it doesn’t require reception from any network. Messages can be sent by this connection, and they can be sent to more than one phone. The range is only about 100 feet, depending on the phone, according to the app’s Google Play page. But because of the relay capability, one message could potentially spread to many phones over a large area using other relay points.
Two-thirds of the world’s population will have LTE coverage by 2019 – Smartphone subscriptions will triple and smartphone traffic will increase by a factor of 10.
Something to think about:
“Don’t worry about people stealing an idea. If it’s original, you will have to ram it down their throats.”
– Howard Aiken
Today’s Free Downloads:
Earth Alerts 2013.2.40 – Earth Alerts is a Windows-based application that allows you to monitor in near real-time a variety of natural hazard events that are occurring anywhere around the world. Alert notifications, reports, and imagery provide the user with a convenient way to view natural phenomenon as they occur, whether close to home or some far-flung corner of the globe!
Tweaking.com – Registry Backup 1.6.8 – Tweaking.com – Registry Backup is a free backup tool that will use the Windows Volume Shadow Copy Service to backup your system registry. This tool is part of Tweaking.com – Windows Repair.
In Pursuit of Freedom – The Pushback Continues:
Privacy Pretense: How Silicon Valley Helped the NSA – Last month, Silicon Valley purported to be shocked by revelations that the National Security Agency (NSA) has routinely accessed the servers of tech giants Google and Yahoo, which store data for hundreds of millions of users. In response, the companies pledged to step up privacy protections. There is only one problem: Such protections run counter to the business model and public policy agenda that tech companies have pursued for decades.
Senator McCain Calls For The Resignation Or Firing Of the NSA’s General Alexander – Sen. John McCain is a stalwart of the Senate, a former candidate for president, prisoner of war and fighter pilot. As such, his voice is among the most prominent of the American Congress, and when he speaks, foreign powers listen in order to get a feel of the wind of our political climate.
What NSA spying on Google means for your business – The NSA has been revealed to be collecting data from the communication links used by Google and Yahoo data centers. What does this mean for you and your business?