John Lister

Fri
08
Mar
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Google: Update Chrome Immediately

Google has issued an urgent warning for Chrome users to update their browser if needed. That's because a security flaw is being actively exploited. The flaw in question is referred to as a "zero-day exploit." In an ideal world, software developers ... discover a bug and get some time before hackers find out about it and start taking advantage. In this case, the hackers did so before Google could develop a fix and get it out to users. Google is keeping the full details of the flaw secret for now to avoid giving even more criminals clues on how to exploit it. It says it won't say any more ... (view more)

Tue
05
Mar
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No More Passwords: 'Keys' to Become New Standard

The demise of the password has come a step closer this week with the adoption of a new standard for physical "keys" for logging in to websites. "WebAuthn," as it's called, makes it easier for sites to let users log in through a physical method - ... rather than relying on users having to remember a password. These methods range from USB devices that act like a physical key to biometric devices such as fingerprint or eye scanners. The big hope is that such devices reduce the need to rely on passwords which can be guessed or stolen in data breaches. Browsers Already On Board Having a ... (view more)

Mon
04
Mar
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Online Chat Tool Charges a Penny Per Character

A new online chat service costs one cent for every character in a message. It appears to be both a business idea and a social experiment. The site has the straightforward name called "Expensive Chat," and has the equally to-the-point description of ... "Spend money to chat with strangers who spend money to chat with strangers." Users can register to pay with their bank card or through third-party payment site "Stripe." Once they are setup, every time they write a message, they'll see a reminder of the price based on its length. They'll have to confirm the message and their willingness ... (view more)

Thu
28
Feb
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Bill Gates Predicts Breakthrough Technology

Bill Gates has picked 10 technologies he thinks will break through in 2019. Perhaps surprisingly for the Microsoft founder, only one is even partially related to computers. Gates made the picks after being chosen as the first ever guest editor of ... the MIT Technology Review annual list. His only real computer-related choice was artificial intelligence-based assistants (which appear on PCs as well as mobile devices and gadgets) doing a better job of understanding human language. That's always tough, because human speech doesn't follow mathematical logical rules and often depends on context. ( ... (view more)

Wed
27
Feb
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YouTube Kids Videos Give Suicide Tips

Some videos on YouTube's Kids app contain instructions on how to commit suicide. It casts serious doubt on YouTube's claims to "curate" the content available to children. YouTube Kids is a dedicated app for mobile devices and smart televisions. The ... content it hosts is also available at a dedicated website. YouTube describes the service as being a "fun, family-friendly place for children and families." The app is designed to be easy to use, even for young children. Although parents can create individual accounts for each child which learn their viewing tastes and make ... (view more)

Tue
26
Feb
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New Energizer Phone Has Beast of a Battery

Energizer has made a smartphone that is not surprisingly all about the battery. Though to be fair, it's got six times the capacity of some leading models. The few people who've seen the phone say it's bordering on impossibly big, but that it does ... provoke debate about the way phones suck up electricity. The Android-based handset is called the Energizer Power Max P18K Pop. It has a battery capacity of 18,000 mAh. To put that into context, it's three times more than a Motorola phone that's specifically marketed around long battery life. It's also around six times more than many flagship Android ... (view more)

Thu
21
Feb
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Symantec: Popular Microsoft Apps Hijack PCs

At least eight apps in the official Microsoft Store were secretly designed to use a computer's resources without permission. It undermines Microsoft's efforts to promote the store as a "safe source of software." In the past few years, Microsoft has ... heavily pushed the idea of Windows users getting software from an app store - similar to the way mobile devices work - rather than the more traditional method of getting programs from a third-party sources and installing them directly to the PC or smartphone / tablet. There's even a special 'S' mode for Windows 10 that only allows the ... (view more)

Wed
20
Feb
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Report: Most Password Managers Not Secure

Security researchers say some major password manager tools could be flawed. But they also say it's still sensible to use them, just with a degree of caution. It's a fact that using the same password for multiple sites is a massive security risk. ... That's because if one site gets hacked, it could mean that hackers can use the same password on another website to gain access to potentially sensitive information, resulting in identity theft or financial loss. Password manager tools (such as Roboform and Dashlane ) aim to overcome two big dilemmas with online passwords - which is keeping passwords ... (view more)

Tue
19
Feb
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Windows 7 Users: Get this Critical Update (due March)

Microsoft has warned an update coming next month is absolutely critical for users running Windows 7. Without it, computers won't be able to use any future Windows security and feature updates, leaving users extremely vulnerable to malware infections ... (or worse). It's all to do with a change in the way Microsoft delivers security updates in a secure manner. Whenever Microsoft releases an update, it comes with a digital signature to prove that it came from Microsoft's servers and that the code it contains has not been tampered with. You can think of these security measures much the same way when ... (view more)

Thu
14
Feb
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Popular VPN App Laced with Malware, Steals Data

Security researchers have warned a notorious piece of malware has returned to Android. It's in disguise, posing as a legitimate and popular VPN application. Researchers at the security firm Bitdefender have dubbed the malware as "Triout," which was ... first spotted last August. It's a particularly nasty piece of malware as it carries out multiple hostile acts. (Source: bitdefender.com ) These include recording phone calls, reading incoming SMS messages, taking pictures and videos, and collecting location data such as GPS coordinates. Triout is designed to operate without being detected ... (view more)

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