COMPUTERS/INTERNET/SECURITY | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED


COMPUTERS/INTERNET/SECURITY

Mar 14 10:19

Video Game Industry Stalls, Stocks Plunge. What’s Going On?

Video games have become the largest entertainment industry worldwide by revenue: $138 billion in 2018 – beating TV ($105 billion), film box office ($41 billion), and digital music ($17 billion). But in 2019, after two decades of incessant growth, something unthinkable is lining up to happen: Sales are projected to decline, according to analysts at Pelham Smithers, cited by Bloomberg.

A lack of big hits, expensive flops, consumer frustration, and a slowdown in China all are to blame, according to the analysis. While true in general, it does not tell the whole story: A gamer-revolt against practices, deeper trouble in China, a decline in mobile gaming, and changing spending patterns have stalled growth and are beginning to cause serious waves.

Mar 14 10:16

Google Play apps with 150 million installs contain aggressive adware

Google removes 210 apps after outside researchers report them as abusive.

Mar 14 10:10

Telegram apparently got 3 million signups during Facebook outage

Facebook's loss may be Telegram's gain.

The founder of the messaging service said Thursday that people flocked to Telegram during the long Facebook outage that knocked out not only its namesake social network, but also corporate siblings Messenger, WhatsApp and Instagram.

"I see 3 million new users signed up for Telegram within the last 24 hours," Telegram boss CEO Pavel Durov wrote. "Good. We have true privacy and unlimited space for everyone."

Mar 14 10:02

New WordPress Flaw Lets Unauthenticated Remote Attackers Hack Sites

If for some reason your WordPress-based website has not yet been automatically updated to the latest version 5.1.1, it's highly recommended to immediately upgrade it before hackers could take advantage of a newly disclosed vulnerability to hack your website.

Mar 14 10:00

San Diego Has Been Turned Into A Massive Chinese-Style Public Surveillance Network

By MassPrivateI

Can you imagine a city in the United States secretly creating a Chinese-style public surveillance network that can identify everyone? Can you imagine that same city secretly creating a Chinese-style public watchlisting network?...

Mar 14 08:25

People hate competent robots, says study

I don't know what to think about robots anymore.

Last weekend, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez suggested that we should be excited about their coming. They should make us happier. It's just the system, she said, that needs a lot of work.

Now, though, I've stumbled into a study that reveals some of humans' more deeply felt anxieties about our new robots overlords.

Mar 13 19:11

Facebook confirms it was NOT hacked as the site along with Messenger and Instagram remain down HOURS into global outage

Facebook confirmed the platform-wide issue Wednesday afternoon, but had not yet released a fix as of about four hours after the outage first struck.

While there has been speculation that the site may have been targeted by a distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attack, the firm said this is not the case.

Mar 13 15:06

Owner of MAGA-Friendly Yelp Knockoff Threatens to Call FBI After Researcher Exposes Security Holes

The rollout of a Yelp-like phone app aimed at helping Donald Trump’s supporters find businesses friendly to MAGA-hat wearing chuds is going about as well as you’d imagine.

After security flaws in the app were made public Monday night, the developer behind “63red Safe” flipped his shit online and threatened to sic the FBI on the researcher who had outed its sloppy source code.

63red rolled out roughly a week ago, as the Daily Beast first reported, and is geared toward enabling users to rate restaurants, for example, based on whether they “serve persons of every political belief” and “allow legal concealed carry,” among other criteria unrelated to the quality of their food or cleanliness of their bathrooms.

Mar 13 14:54

Facebook turns to Twitter to explain outages

Facebook, the world's largest social network, relied on Twitter on Wednesday to explain that its apps were experiencing outages around the world.

Some users of Facebook (FB) and other platforms owned by the tech giant, including Instagram, Messenger and WhatsApp, experienced problems accessing the services. Many people went on Twitter to vent their frustration.
The outages began Wednesday afternoon and appeared to affect people in multiple areas, including the US, Central and South America, and Europe, according to tweets and the outage-tracking site DownDetector.com.

Mar 13 13:18

U.S. Rolling Out Biometric ID Exit Program In Top Airports Nationwide With Full Implementation Expected By 2021

By Aaron Kesel

Activist Post previously reported that the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) wanted to develop advanced facial recognition technology that scans the faces of travelers as they enter and leave the U.S. border checkpoints. Last year we saw those efforts have expanded to airports with numerous tests throughout the U.S. However, now according to 346 pages of documents obtained by the nonprofit research organization Electronic Privacy Information Center, those efforts are expanding even more with plans of implementing the technology in as many as 20 different top airports by 2021, as a part of U.S. President Donald Trump’s “Biometric exit” agenda, which was originally signed into law under the Obama administration...

Mar 13 11:00

Venezuela Update: Massive Blackout, US Unconventional Warfare?

While Venezuela struggled with the most massive blackout in its history, president Maduro said there is evidence that a US cyber-attack caused the blackout. Meanwhile, Trump administration officials continue the offensive against Venezuela and the NYT uncovers false reporting

Mar 13 10:51

‘Credibility of US Imperial Blackmail’ Hangs on Success of Venezuela Policy

Washington has withdrawn its diplomats from Venezuela and Caracas has begun a new probe into self-proclaimed Interim President Juan Guaido for the power outages that, among other things, cut the capital’s water supply. A journalist told Sputnik that US moves, while backed by “disturbing language,” are a tacit admission of the coup’s defeat.

In a letter address to Congress Tuesday, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo asked for $500 million of "appropriate resources" in next year's budget for the Department of State to "respond to the crisis" or "support a democratic transition" in Venezuela.

Mar 13 10:24

Facebook & Instagram experience massive outage across US & Europe

Millions of Facebook and Instagram users have been forced to vent their frustration via Twitter after the social media networks experienced an unexplained outage across the US and Europe.

For about an hour users from the US and Canada to Chile and Italy have reported being unable to log in or post on their feeds from 12:01pm EDT, according to DownDetector.

Mar 13 10:19

Race Toward Quantum Computing

Researchers have created a new device that allows them to probe the interference of quasiparticles, potentially paving the way for the development of topological qubits.

Qubits, the units used to encode information in quantum computing, are not all created equal. Some researchers believe that topological qubits, which are tougher and less susceptible to environmental noise than other kinds, may be the best medium for pushing quantum computing forward.

Quantum physics deals with how fundamental particles interact and sometimes come together to form new particles called quasiparticles. Quasiparticles appear in fancy theoretical models, but observing and measuring them experimentally has been a challenge. With the creation of a new device that allows researchers to probe interference of quasiparticles, we may be one giant leap closer. The findings were published Monday in Nature Physics.

Mar 13 08:57

China offers help to Venezuela to restore power amid nationwide blackout

China says it is ready to help Venezuela to restore its power grid. The South American country suffered a five-day blackout, with Caracas accusing Washington of cyber “sabotage.”

Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang said Beijing had noted reports that the power grid had gone down due to a hacking attack.

“China is deeply concerned about this,” Lu said, adding that Beijing “hopes that the Venezuelan side can discover the reason for this issue as soon as possible and resume normal power supply and social order.

Mar 13 08:44

ZUCKERBERG WANTS FACEBOOK TO BUILD A MIND-READING MACHINE

All was going to plan. Zuckerberg had displayed a welcome humility about himself and his company. And then he described what really excited him about the future—and the familiar Silicon Valley hubris had returned. There was this promising new technology, he explained, a brain-computer interface, which Facebook has been researching.

The idea is to allow people to use their thoughts to navigate intuitively through augmented reality—the neuro-driven version of the world recently described by Kevin Kelly in these pages. No typing—no speaking, even—to distract you or slow you down as you interact with digital additions to the landscape: driving instructions superimposed over the freeway, short biographies floating next to attendees of a conference, 3D models of furniture you can move around your apartment.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

In the future, Zuckerberg wants the entire notion of "informed consent", which has been a basemark American value for a long period of time, thrown out as "antique", and "impossible to gauge", at this point in the 21st century.

And don't think for one second that once such a machine is perfected, it will not get into the hands of those who should never be allowed to use it, and not for good, but for pure evil.

If you haven't seen it, please get Terry Gilliam's film, "Brazil", the Director's Cut, and see how the technology employed by the government, destroyed lives.

It is a brilliant, brutal view of what happens when power and technology are fused, in the interests of total control over a society; and how the end result means "neutralizing people", both physically and psychologically, who may think "differently."

Mar 13 06:51

Mind Reading: These Neuroscientists Can Predict Your Choices 11 Seconds Before You Make Them

A team of neuroscientists can predict your choices 11 seconds before you consciously make them. What does this kind of mind-reading mean for privacy?

Mar 13 04:20

PROPOSED BAN ON SOCIAL MEDIA GUN PICTURES PROVES GUN CONTROL IS TOTAL CONTROL

“If you post it on social media, that’s probable cause for us to come get the guns out of your house,” Democrat Florida State Senator Jason Pizzo proclaimed in a Facebook video three years ago. “That’s it. It’s now on you to explain why you have a gun in your house and why it’s on social media…”He was stumping at the time to change the law to deny the right to keep and bear arms to young adults old enough to vote, marry, sign binding contracts and serve in the military. Pending that, he wanted parents to call the police on their children if they saw them posting pictures and videos with guns online.

Mar 12 15:21

Researchers Find Critical Backdoor in Swiss Online Voting System

Researchers have found a severe issue in the new Swiss internet voting system that they say would let someone alter votes undetected. They say it should put a halt to Switzerland’s plan to roll out the system in real elections this year.

Mar 12 15:20

Two-Thirds of Android Antivirus Apps Are Total BS

Austrian antivirus-testing lab AV-Comparatives tested 250 antivirus apps in Google Play against 2,000 malware samples. They found that only 80 of the apps could stop even a minimal amount of malware.

"Less than one in 10 of the apps tested defended against all 2,000 malicious apps, while over two-thirds failed to reach a block rate of even 30 percent," the lab said in a press release.

To make sure you're protecting your Android device properly, stick to apps from well-known antivirus companies.

Mar 12 15:12

'Yelp for conservatives' MAGA app leaks users data

In media interviews, Scott Wallace, the app's creator said he built the app after a series of incidents where conservatives were forced to leave or take MAGA gear off to eat at restaurants or enter various businesses across the US.

But according to Baptiste Robert, a French security researcher who goes online under the pseudonym of Elliot Anderson (the name of the main character from the Mr. Robot TV show about hackers), the 63red Safe app is leaking almost all of its data.

Robert says the app's source code contains the credentials of its author, but also a list of API endpoints to which it connects to store or retrieve data.

This backend API doesn't use any form of authentication, Robert said. This means that anyone can look at the app's source code, get the API endpoints, and then extract data from the app's server with no challenge or restriction.

Mar 12 15:09

The UK's Extremely Dumb Plan to Force Porn Sites to Verify Users' Ages May Come Next Month

When it does takes effect, all adult websites operating in the UK (in theory) will be required to direct users to a landing page without any pornographic content. Getting beyond that page will require users to acquire credentials from a recognized age verification provider—the most prominent one of which, AgeID, is owned by MindGeek, which in turn owns a sprawling network of porn sites including PornHub and RedTube. Proposed solutions to age verification have included letting companies search applicants’ social media feeds, verifying ages with text messages, having users provide official documentation like a passport, or even requiring post office employees to give out codes.

...

As Wired noted, this is an awful idea for a number of reasons, including that it gives the age verification services unprecedented power to track users’ tastes in porn, and said database could somehow end up hacked or otherwise compromised.

Mar 12 14:39

Maduro: Two suspected of sabotage on Venezuela's power system detained

Maduro: Two suspected of sabotage on Venezuela's power system detained. Caracas, Mar 12 (UNI) The Venezuelan authorities have detained two people on ... on the country's power system, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro. ... They are being questioned," Maduro said

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Jim Stone says they were caught with a computer virus.

Mar 12 12:51

Privacy fears as report reveals MILLIONS of online photos are being used to train facial recognition AI without users' consent

Many facial recognition systems are being trained using millions of online photos uploaded by everyday people and, more often than not, the photos are being taken without users' consent, an NBC News investigation has found.

In one worrying case, IBM scraped almost a million photos from unsuspecting users on Flickr to build its facial recognition database.

Mar 12 10:25

POPULATION CONTROL IS THE NEW NAME OF THE GAME: KREMLIN VIES WITH CHINA TO SEE WHO CONTROLS THE INTERNET BETTER

SOURCE: WOLF STREET
BY FRED DUNKLEY, SAFEHAVEN.COM:
In a thinly veiled attempt to gain control of the internet, the Russian State Duma has passed two bills designed to do two things: ostensibly halt the spread of “fake news” and keep people from spreading information that “disrespects” the government. But Russians aren’t having it.
On Sunday, thousands took to the streets across the country to protest the government’s “digital sovereignty bill” that will require all Russian telecoms companies to reroute internet traffic through the state telecom regulator, Roskomnadzor. It means censorship and what protesters are now calling the rise of the “internet iron curtain”.

On March 7, the Russian State Duma—the lower house of parliament—passed the two bills, and now they go up for a second vote later this month. If passed, they will be signed into law by President Putin. In Moscow alone on Sunday, some 15,000 took to the streets, Reuters reports.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Intelligent people in all countries where this kind of censorship is attempted, will find a way around such strictures; I am sure that some very smart Russians, will certainly find a way to make this happen.

Mar 12 09:40

Venezuela Suffers major Power Outages After Alleged Cyber Attack

An blackout has covered most of Venezuela over the past several days after the country’s main electricity generator, the Guri Dam, failed. The Maduro administration alleges that the failure was due to cyber attacks and pointed the finger at the US government that has called for Maduro’s ouster. Venezuela’s Communications Minister reported that a cyberattack had taken place against the dam’s computerized system forcing its turbines to stop. Venezuela intends to present evidence of the attack to the United Nations Human Rights Commission and to other international bodies. Meanwhile, US-backed “Interim President” Juan Guaido is using the crisis to call for the armed forces to back his efforts in ousting the Maduro government and tweeted, “electricity will return once the usurpation ends.”

Mar 12 09:20

“Lights Out!” Did Trump and His Neocons Recycle Bush-Era Plan to Knock Out Venezuela’s Power Grid?

For nearly four days, much of Venezuela has been without power, bringing the country’s embattled economy to a near standstill. Though power is now returning, the outage saw U.S. officials and politicians blame the Venezuelan government for the crisis while officials in Caracas accused the U.S. of conducting “sabotage” and launching cyberattacks that targeted its civilian power grid as well as of employing saboteurs within Venezuela.

Although many mainstream media outlets have echoed the official U.S. government response, some journalists have strayed from the pack. One notable example is Kalev Leetaru, who wrote at Forbes that “the United States remotely interfering with its [Venezuela’s] power grid is actually quite realistic.”

Mar 12 08:40

Windows 10 tip: When you should (and shouldn't) pause updates

If you're too busy to deal with the latest Windows 10 update right now, just hit Pause to delay Windows Update for up to five weeks. This option even cancels pending updates, leaving you free to keep working without fear of interruption.

Mar 12 08:34

VENEZUELA BLACKOUT: CYBER ATTACKS, SABOTAGE AND MIGHTY CUBAN INTELLIGENCE

During the past few days, Venezuela was suffering a major blackout that left the country in darkness. The crisis started on March 7 with a failure at the Guri hydroelectric power plant, which produces 80% of the country’s power. Additionally, an explosion was reported at Sidor Substation in Bolivar state.

Since then, the government has been struggling to solve the crisis with varying success.

President Nicholas Maduro says that the blackout is the reason of “the electric war announced and directed by American imperialism.” According to Maduro, electrical systems were targeted by cyberattacks and “infiltrators”. He added that authorities managed to restore power to “many parts” of the country on March 8, but the restored systems were knocked down after the country’s grid was once again attacked. He noted that “one of the sources of generation that was working perfectly” had been sabotaged and accused “infiltrators of attacking the electric company from the inside.”

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Oh? And just who do massive economic sanctions hurt, Mike?

Mar 12 08:18

Jigsaw Chrome Extension Tunes Out Internet Toxicity

What if you could turn a dial and tune out an abusive tweet in your Twitter mentions or an insulting comment on Facebook?

Today, Google's sister company Jigsaw released an experimental Chrome browser extension called Tune, which lets users control how much "toxicity" they want to see in comments across the internet. Tune is built on Perspective, Jigsaw's API that trains machine learning (ML) models to identify and score comments that could be perceived as abusive or harassment.

At launch, the browser extension works across social media sites including Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Reddit, and comment platform Disqus. It acts as a knob that lets users set the "volume" of conversations. Turn it up to see everything, or turn it down all the way to "zen mode" to replace toxic comments with small colored dots.

Mar 11 12:55

Trump Regime Electricity War in Venezuela More Serious than First Believed

On Thursday, Venezuela’s Guri dam hydroelectric power plant was cyberattacked at 5:00 PM during the late afternoon rush hour to cause maximum disruption.

Up to 80% of the country was affected, damage done more severe than initially thought. Weeks or months of planning likely preceded what happened – US behind it? considerable expertise needed to pull it off.

On Friday, another cyberattack occurred, followed by a third one on Saturday, affecting parts of the country where power was restored, further complicating resolution of the problem, Maduro saying:

After power was restored to about 70% of the country, “we received another attack, of a cybernetic nature, at midday…that disturbed the reconnection process and knocked out everything that had been achieved until noon,” adding:

“(O)ne of the sources of generation that was working perfectly” was sabotaged again…infiltrators…attacking the electric company from the inside.”

Mar 11 12:54

US Is Pushing Venezuela to the Brink by Attacking Its Power Grid

The Hybrid War on Venezuela just took a dark turn – literally – after the US used cyber weapons and insider sabotage to attack the country’s power grid last week, cutting off most of its electricity and creating a chain reaction of negative consequences all throughout the Bolivarian Republic. According to unverified reports cited in one of RT’s recent articles on the topic, the Guri hydroelectric power plant – which provides 80% of the country’s power – failed (possibly due to a cyberattack), which was followed by an explosion at the Sidor Substation that was sustaining most of the country’s power in the aftermath of the aforementioned.

Mar 11 10:56

Thousands of Russians protest against internet restrictions

Lawmakers last month backed tighter internet controls contained in legislation they say is necessary to prevent foreign meddling in Russia’s affairs. But some Russian media likened it to an online “iron curtain” and critics say it can be used to stifle dissent.

People gathered in a cordoned off Prospekt Sakharova street in Moscow, made speeches on a stage and chanted slogans such as “hands off the internet” and “no to isolation, stop breaking the Russian internet”.

The rally gathered around 15,300 people, according to White Counter, an NGO that counts participants at rallies. Moscow police put the numbers at 6,500.

“If we do nothing it will get worse. The authorities will keep following their own way and the point of no return will be passed”, said 28-year-old protester Dmitry, who declined to give his full name.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Actually, we need more of that sort of thing here to deal with the censorship being imposed on our internet!

Mar 11 10:46

Smart alarms left 3 million cars vulnerable to hackers who could turn off motors

Ring the alarm.

Two popular smart alarm systems for cars had major security flaws that allowed potential hackers to track the vehicles, unlock their doors and, in some cases, cut off the engine.

The vulnerabilities could be exploited with two simple steps, security researchers from Pen Test Partners, who discovered the flaw, said Friday.

The problems were found in alarm systems made by Viper and Pandora Car Alarm System, two of the largest smart car alarm makers in the world. The two brands have as many as 3 million customers between them and make high-end devices that can cost thousands. Like other smart devices, smart car alarms offer people convenience, allowing owners to find their cars from a distance and unlock their doors from their phones.

Mar 11 10:43

Internet Collapses in Venezuela with 80% Offline; Twitter, YouTube, SoundCloud Blocked

In the midst of a second nationwide power outage in Venezuela, the vast majority of the country is engulfed in a massive internet outage. The first electrical blackout, which swept across the nation on Thursday, left Venezuela with only two percent connectivity amid the ongoing presidential crisis. Most of the country has been offline since Thursday with limited or no connectivity being reported across large swaths of the South American nation. The NetBlocks Group, a private internet watchdog organization based in the UK, reported on Saturday that 96 percent of the country was offline:

Mar 11 08:21

UNIVERSAL STUDIOS IS RFID CHIPPING THEIR SODA CUPS TO LIMIT REFILLS

A room at a Universal Studios Florida hotel tonight will cost you $197-$536 (plus admission tickets to the park), but make sure that you do all your soda drinking in one compact session, because Universal has deployed the creepily named Validfill RFID system, which limits your self-service (that is, you do the labor) soda refills to two hours after purchase, and after the time window expires, "you are denied soda by a robot voice."

Mar 11 06:57

Ransomware Attack on Jackson County Gets Cybercriminals $400,000

A ransomware attack hit the computers of Jackson County, Georgia, reducing government activity to a crawl until officials decided to pay cybercriminals $400,000 in exchange for the file decryption key.

The attack affected computer systems in all departments of the County, including those for email and emergency services. However, radio communication and phones remained fully functional, so people could still call 911.

Mar 10 10:19

YOUTUBE TERMINATES MIDDLE EAST OBSERVER AFTER ALMOST 10 YEARS ONLINE

After almost 10 years online, over 250 videos, almost 13,000 subscribers, and about 8 million total video views, YouTube has terminated the Middle East Observer (MEO) channel on its platform.

Mar 10 10:18

THE RISE OF TOTALITARIAN TECHNOLOGY

Is technological progress bad for human autonomy? That’s the question posed by Shoshana Zuboff in “The Age of Surveillance Capitalism,” a book that recounts the ways in which corporations and governments are using technology to influence our behavior. Zuboff is just the latest to chime in on “totalitarian technology” (or “total tech”), a term that describes devices and algorithms by which individuals forfeit their privacy and autonomy for the benefit of either themselves or some third party.

Mar 10 09:44

NSA in 'deliberate process' over future of surveillance program, says spy chief

The National Security Agency is preparing to potentially abandon a controversial surveillance program exposed by former intelligence contractor Edward Snowden, the agency’s director indicated.

Paul Nakasone, head of both the NSA and U.S. Cyber Command, vaguely discussed the future of the government’s once-secretive system for obtaining and analyzing domestic telephone records, or metadata, in light of a senior congressional aide recently claiming that it was quietly suspended.

“We are in a deliberative process right now,” Mr. Nakasone said Wednesday at the RSA security conference in San Francisco, attendees reported. “We’ll work very, very closely with the administration and Congress to make recommendations on what authority should be reauthorized.”

Mar 09 10:53

Photos: New devices leading the foldable smartphone revolution

If early indications are anything to go on, 2019 is going to be the year a new form factor finally enters the smartphone market: Foldable smartphones. These types of devices have been rumored for quite some time, and now we're finally seeing their entry en masse into the market.

A couple of big players--Samsung and Huawei--plan to release folding screen devices later in 2019, but they aren't alone. Several of the devices in this gallery are coming in 2019 and 2020, and several others are rumored to be on the way--one foldable phone is already available.

Mar 09 09:37

The Age of Tyrannical Surveillance: We’re Being Branded, Bought and Sold for Our Data

Uncle Sam wants you.

Correction: Big Brother wants you.

To be technically accurate, Big Brother—aided and abetted by his corporate partners in crime—wants your data.

That’s what we have been reduced to in the eyes of the government and Corporate America: data bits and economic units to be bought, bartered and sold to the highest bidder.

Those highest bidders include America’s political class and the politicians aspiring to get elected or re-elected. As the Los Angeles Times reports, “If you have been to a political rally, a town hall, or just fit a demographic a campaign is after, chances are good your movements are being tracked with unnerving accuracy by data vendors on the payroll of campaigns.”

Your phones, televisions and digital devices are selling you out to politicians who want your vote.

Mar 09 05:27

Zuckerberg suppresses my viral article “Ilhan Omar’s Tropes Are True”

My Ilhan Omar article (at Unz) had hundreds of FB likes yesterday—then they suddenly disappeared. One Zuck dislike wipes out a million likes. Looks like I got Zucked!

Now why would a guy like Zuckerberg want to cover up Jewish-Zionist wealth and power?

So please, “like” this story on Facebook! Oh, wait a minute, I forgot. Facebook has banned VT urls. Try posting one and see what happens!

To hell with Facebook>>>

(*!)

Mar 07 19:03

Inside China's mass surveillance system: Chat log leak of over 360 MILLION records reveals 'shocking' amount of personal data government collects from citizens

A leak of around 364 million online records in a Chinese database, including private messages and ID numbers, has again highlighted the size and scope of Beijing's mass surveillance system.

The files show a wealth of information linked to online accounts, including GPS locations, file transfers, and chat logs, according to the database discovered by Victor Gevers, a security researcher at Dutch non-profit GDI Foundation.

The data collection appears indiscriminate -- some conversations are simply banter between teenagers, like one commenting on someone's weight and clothing size.

Mar 07 18:38

Valve finally bans controversial Rape Day game from Steam citing 'unknown costs and risks,' after worldwide outrage - despite its 'allow everything' content policy

The zombie apocalypse game, which was not yet for sale but slated to arrive in April, is touted as a story of 'violence, sexual assault, necrophilia and incest’ and would allow players to ‘verbally harass, kill people, and rape women.’

While players weren't able to buy it yet, they could add it to their wishlist as of February 19.

After news of its disturbing content sparked massive public outcry over the last few weeks, with gamers and non-gamers alike demanding for it to be taken down, Valve now says Rape Day will not be available on Steam.

Mar 07 18:37

Facebook is tracking people who don't even have an ACCOUNT: These Android apps automatically send private information without your knowledge

Data from several Android apps automatically sends data to Facebook - even if the user does not have an account with the social media giant.

Apps such as Yelp, Indeed and Duolingo automatically send user information to the company when an Android user opens the app.

This flaw was first pointed out by Privacy International in December when an investigation found 23 popular apps all did the same thing.

Most firms, including Spotify, Skyscanner and Kayak, have since corrected the issue but a handful have yet to rectify the privacy concern, the report claims.

It is also believed the apps for Apple iOS devices also 'exhibit similar behaviour'.

Mar 07 18:32

Facebook cracks down on anti-vaxxers: Firm says pages spreading misinformation about vaccines will no longer show up in recommendations (but it WON'T remove them entirely)

Facebook says it will no longer show anti-vaccination groups or pages in its recommended content as the site faces mounting pressure to curb misinformation.

But, it won’t remove anti-vaxxers altogether.

In a blog post today, the firm said it is instead working to ‘tackle vaccine misinformation’ by giving it less of an audience and promoting more accurate information.

"More accurate information" = corporate propaganda

Mar 07 15:36

TRACKING JOURNALISTS THROUGH A SECRET DATABASE

The President has little appreciation for liberty or the dangers of a growing police state. And those working under him understand this and act accordingly.

He is as bad as most other presidents. The only difference being that there is a group of about 30% of the population, MAGA people, who don't understand this and believe he is going to protect them from the expanding state.

Wow. Big scoop by @nbcsandiego: The Trump administration created a "secret database of activists, journalists, and social media influencers tied to the migrant caravan and in some cases, placed alerts on their passports." https://t.co/n1l4uDt300

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Really?!? I would actually want to see the list, before I jump on board here.

Now, can @nbcsandiego provide the list they assert is actually real?!?

I have to have proof, not just an assertion.

Mar 07 12:40

Violent New Video Game 'Rape Day' Slammed For Glorifying Sexual Assault (PHOTOS)

A disturbing new video game called “Rape Day,” which was supposed to be available for purchase on the online gaming platform Steam in April, will no longer be available on the website after it came under widespread condemnation from many users.

The game was created by "Desk Plant" and is described on Steam's website as a "visual novel where you control the choices of a sociopath during a zombie apocalypse. You can verbally harass, kill people and rape women as you choose to progress the story."

Mar 07 12:26

An Ancient Japanese Shrine Debuts a Buddhist Robot 

Kyoto, Japan’s ancient former capital, is home to temples, shrines, and imperial gardens. As the birthplace of Japanese tradition, the city attracts some 53 million tourists every year.

Recently, the famed 400-year old Kodaiji Temple in Kyoto unveiled a modern makeover. The world’s first sutra-chanting android deity, modelled after Kannon the Buddhist Goddess of Mercy, was introduced to the public last week. Kannon is worshiped by thousands of temples in Japan as a deity who helps people in distress; now the country’s fascination with robotics has made its way into that worship.

Kodaiji Temple Administrator Tensho Goto wanted to spread the word of Buddhism to a younger generation losing touch with the tradition. He enlisted the help of pioneer Professor Hiroshi Ishiguro, head of intelligent robotics at Osaka University, who has made a name for himself in robotic research on the world stage.

Mar 07 11:13

12,449 Data Breaches Confirmed in 2018, a 424% Increase Over the Previous Year

The number of confirmed data breaches during 2018 reached 12,449, a 424% increase when compared with 2017, 47% of all compromised identity records having been exposed in breaches experienced by organizations from the United States and China.

Mar 07 11:11

Windows 10 KB4482887 Cumulative Update Causing Major Stuttering in Games

The February KB4482887 Cumulative Update for Windows 10 Version 1809 is causing major graphics performance issues in multiple games, from FPS drops and mouse input lag to severe stuttering and lag spikes according to numerous user reports.

Mar 07 10:10

WHY THE U.S. IS TERRIFIED THAT HUAWEI CONTROLS THE WORLD'S 5G NETWORK

With 29 billion connected devices by 2022, one security expert claims, “Whoever gets to dominate 5G infrastructure will become the owner of the next generation of the world’s telecoms infrastructure.” That company is Huawei. ? TN Editor
US lobbying against Chinese firm Huawei, one of the biggest phone makers and telecommunications kit providers in the world, hit a new level this week during the phone industry’s big annual conference.

Around 100,000 technology vendors, carriers, and device makers head to Mobile World Congress in Barcelona every year both to strike deals and to showcase emerging technologies. This year, the conversation was dominated almost exclusively by 5G, as carriers look to introduce next-generation, superfast mobile networks.

The conference was heavily sponsored by Huawei, as the firm made its big pitch about its 5G capabilities.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

The problem here is not China's emerging grasp of this technology; the problem is that the US has fallen way behind, in its grasp of the importance of this technology.

Mar 07 09:51

Every WiFi router can now be hacked with “Krack” attack … No passwords are safe

Since this is a “fundamental flaw” in the system itself, no amount of password changing can protect you. Fortunately, this type of hacking can only be done by somebody within close range of the router itself, which means that routers in private homes are less vulnerable. Using public networks at coffee shops and restaurants makes you far more vulnerable to attack. If you must use a public network check for the little gold padlock that shows the network is secure.

Certain websites, like banking and online shopping sites, use more secure technology, and can be identified by the little padlock that appears within the address bar.

Tech companies like Google and Apple have either already released updates to address the issue, or have promised to do so. Although such updates will make your network far more secure, techies are also encouraging internet users to “patch” – or update – their routers.

Mar 07 07:44

NSA-Cyber Command Chief Recommends No Split Until 2020

The commander of the nation’s top military cybersecurity organizations, the National Security Agency and U.S. Cyber Command, has recommended they split from each other next year, Defense One has confirmed. That’s another delay for an organizational change first planned for in 2016 and since slowed to allow officials time to sort out the authorities for the civilian agency and military command and ensure that both entities can perform well independently.

Mar 07 07:27

Trump Looks To Nationalize 5G

Trump apparently wants to control 5G in a ‘state-run’ socialist twist to American capitalism - and now there are indications that it could become part of the 2020 election campaign.

Over the weekend, President Donald Trump’s 2020 campaign team renewed its controversial pitch on nationalizing the country’s 5G network. In other words, the government would have control of 5G airwaves and lease access to private wireless providers.

Kayleigh McEnany, a Trump 2020 campaign spokeswoman, told Politico that a wholesale 5G market would drive down costs and provide access to millions of Americans who are currently underserved.

“This is in line with President Trump’s agenda to benefit all Americans, regardless of geography," McEnany said. Trump's 2020 campaign manager, Brad Parscale, has been also pushing for a plan that would involve a nationwide 5G network.

Mar 06 16:49

Ransomware Pretends to Be Proton Security Team Securing Data From Hackers

A recent variant of the GarrantyDecrypt ransomware has been found that pretends to be from the security team for Proton Technologies, the company behind ProtonMail and ProtonVPN.

This ransomware family was found by ransomware researcher Michael Gillespie in October 2018 and while it has never achieved a large-scale distribution like other ransomware, it has seen a steady trickle of victims since it has been released.

Mar 06 14:19

‘We are not bots!’ In Berlin, Thousands Protest Proposed EU Regulation on Internet Upload Filters

By Filip Stojanovski

An estimated 5,000 people gathered in Berlin on March 2 to protest a proposed EU copyright rule that could radically shift the dynamics of posting and sharing content online.

Among other provisions, Article 13 of the draft EU Copyright Directive would require internet platforms like YouTube to install “upload filters” — a technical mechanism that would block users from uploading copyright-protected content, effectively imposing a system of “prior censorship” on major internet and social media platforms...

Mar 06 13:44

Triton is the world’s most murderous malware, and it’s spreading

The rogue code can disable safety systems designed to prevent catastrophic industrial accidents. It was discovered in the Middle East, but the hackers behind it are now targeting companies in North America and other parts of the world, too.

Mar 06 13:39

iPhone sales are falling, and Apple’s app fees might be next

“As iPhone sales slip, Apple has been positioning its booming digital-services business as its new profit engine,” Michael Liedtke writes for The Associated Press. “But there could be a snag in that plan.”

“A brewing backlash against the rich commissions Apple earns from all purchases and subscriptions made via iPhone apps could undercut the app store, which generates about a third of the company’s services revenue,” Liedtke writes. “Late last year, Netflix rebelled against Apple’s fees, which can range from 15 percent to 30 percent. Analysts fear other companies may follow. And attorneys representing consumers in a pending Supreme Court case charge that Apple is an unfair monopolist in the market for iPhone apps. An adverse decision in that case could open a legal door that might eventually force Apple to cut its generous commissions.”

Mar 06 13:32

U.S. users are leaving Facebook by the millions, Edison Research says

All the bad press about Facebook might be catching up to the company. New numbers from Edison Research show an an estimated 15 million fewer users in the United States compared to 2017. The biggest drop is in the very desirable 12- to 34-year-old group. Marketplace Tech got a first look at Edison's latest social media research. It revealed almost 80 percent of people in the U.S. are posting, tweeting or snapping, but fewer are going to Facebook.

Mar 06 12:16

Scientists Want You To Get A Brain Chip To Make You Smarter; And Intelligence Agencies Absolutely Won't Abuse This Technology Implanted In Humans

By Aaron Kesel

The next big evolutionary Orwellian technology is coming. Soon you will be able to implant yourself with a brain chip to be super smart, CBS Chicago reported.

Elon Musk has previously criticized humans at a conference in Dubai. He expressed that artificial intelligence would surpass human beings and that we would be irrelevant if we didn’t merge with machines. Musk plans to do this with his "Neuralink" product that can make anyone superhuman by connecting their brain to a computer chip...

Mar 06 08:36

New Google Chrome Zero-Day Vulnerability Found Actively Exploited in the Wild

You must update your Google Chrome immediately to the latest version of the web browsing application.

Security researcher Clement Lecigne of Google's Threat Analysis Group discovered and reported a high severity vulnerability in Chrome late last month that could allow remote attackers to execute arbitrary code and take full control of the computers.

The vulnerability, assigned as CVE-2019-5786, affects the web browsing software for all major operating systems including Microsoft Windows, Apple macOS, and Linux.

Without revealing technical details of the vulnerability, the Chrome security team only says the issue is a use-after-free vulnerability in the FileReader component of the Chrome browser, which leads to remote code execution attacks.

What's more worrisome? Google warned that this zero-day RCE vulnerability is actively being exploited in the wild by attackers to target Chrome users.

Mar 06 08:19

Huawei’s Plan to File Lawsuit Against US Government ‘Very Valid’

This week, Meng Wanzhou, the CFO of Chinese telecommunications giant Huawei, filed a lawsuit in Canada, claiming her constitutional rights were violated during her arrest, while the company itself intends to file a lawsuit against the US administration over its law banning US federal agencies from purchasing Huawei products.

Jude Woodward, the author of the new book "The US vs China: Asia's new Cold War?" told Radio Sputnik's Loud & Clear Wednesday that Huawei's reported plans to sue the US government over its ban on Huawei products is valid, given the lack of evidence provided by the US government over its claims that the Chinese company spies on US technology.

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