John Lister

Tue
02
Feb
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Hotmail, Outlook Email Limits Force $70/yr Fee

Long-time Hotmail and Outlook users may face a choice between seeing old messages deleted or paying $70 a year. Microsoft is legitimately enforcing storage limits but critics say it didn't do enough to remind users they were approaching those ... limits. The policy affects users of Outlook.com, with those most likely to be affected being Hotmail users that migrated over back in 2013 when Hotmail closed. As part of the move, users could keep their old Hotmail address, but were subject to a 15GB storage limit as with all other Outlook users. That includes both sent and received messages and file ... (view more)

Thu
28
Jan
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Twitter Truth Seekers to Label 'Misleading' Posts

Twitter is asking volunteers to add notes explaining why posts are misleading. It calls it a "community-driven approach to help address misleading information on Twitter." The company appears to believe that using volunteers will make it easier to ... address quickly-spreading misinformation rather than rely on paid staff. It says the project, dubbed Birdwatch, won't involve labeling posts as "true" or "false". It also won't involving hiding or removing any posts as already happens after staff review reports of users breaching the site's guidelines. Volunteers Will Reach Consensus Birdwatch will ... (view more)

Wed
27
Jan
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Google Says Cookie-Free Advertising Works

Google believes it's found a way to replace privacy-breaching cookies while still letting advertisers find success. It's testing a way to effectively combine data from thousands of users to target ads. Cookies fall into two main types: first and ... third party. First-party cookies are generally uncontroversial as they simply identify a user on a website, including any previous activity such as website preferences. For example, a premium website could let somebody log in to an account and then use cookies so they don't have to log in again for a set period such as a week. Third-party cookies are ... (view more)

Tue
26
Jan
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Ransomware Gets Doubly Dangerous

Ransomware infections used to be about forcing victims to pay to regain access to their files. Now it appears more and more scammers are treating it as an exercise in blackmail. A new cybersecurity report says 18 known ransomware gangs have switched ... their focus to threatening to publish stolen data unless the victim pays up. That's led to some businesses paying the ransom even though they had access to backups in order to restore their files. Traditionally ransomware has been about file encryptions. Scammers get access to a victim's computer or network through malware, then the infection " ... (view more)

Thu
21
Jan
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Online Shopping Prices May Be Manipulated

Mysterious algorithms could harm online shoppers by aiding collusion according to a newly-published paper. Because the effects are personalized, it could be tricky to prove wrongdoing. The claims come in a researched paper published by the United ... Kingdom's Competition ... (view more)

Wed
20
Jan
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Dating App 'Politics' Filter Turned Against Rioters

A dating app has removed – and then replaced – a filter for political views among potential partners. Bumble discovered some users were taking advantage of the filter to "entrap" people involved in the recent breach of the US Capitol. Bumble is a dat ...ing app that works like several others in that it shows users potential matches in their geographic area. If two users both indicate an interest in each other's profile, they can begin communication. However, unlike most such services, with a male-female match, only the woman can initiate contact and begin an exchange of messages. Users can filter ...ref="/news/10884/dating-app-politics-filter-turned-against-rioters" class="more-link">view more)

Tue
19
Jan
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Google, Facebook Face News Fees

Google and Facebook could have to pay a fee to show content from Australian news organizations. The proposed laws have upset not just the tech giants, but the United States government. The Australian proposals follow a government investigation that ... concludes the two companies have too much control in the media market. It pointed to several regional newspapers closing and advertising revenue falling for publications at the same time Google and Facebook benefit from using news extracts on Google News and in Facebook posts. No Surprise Algorithm Changes Under the laws, Google and Facebook would ... (view more)

Thu
14
Jan
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WWW Creator Reenvisions How Personal Data is Stored

World Wide Web creator Tim Berners-Lee wants to rethink the way people control online data. He says his "pods" proposal would bring the online world closer to his original vision of the web. Berners-Lee has launched an open-source project and ... associated business to try to counter what he sees as the web's biggest problem: major companies collecting user data and exploiting it as a core part of their business. His new idea is "pods", or personal online data store. This would involve users having a space on a server that acted like a digital safe and contained a range of data. This could be ... (view more)

Wed
13
Jan
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Samsung Program Repurposes Old Phones

Samsung wants to turn old phones into home gadgets. Its evolving its Galaxy Upcycling program to make it easier to convert handsets. The program launched in 2017 as a largely internal project where Samsung staff tried to find ways to use old phones ... for new purposes. This often involved taking advantage of the various sensors in a phone even if its specifications were now too low to run the latest operating systems and apps. Baby Monitor Among New Use Ideas At that point the project appeared to be more about creativity than solving significant problems. For example, one design used a motion ... (view more)

Tue
12
Jan
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100M Users Still Using Windows 7

As many as 100 million PCs could still be running Windows 7 according to a newly-published estimate. That's despite Microsoft withdrawing support for the 11-year old system last year. The estimate comes from Ed Bott of ZDNet and is based on data ... published at analytics.usa.gov. That brings together site visitor data from most US government agencies. It means the figures will primarily represent visitors from the United States. (Source: zdnet.com ) Bott notes that across the agencies, 8.5 per cent of visitors in the past 90 days were running Windows 7 and 3.4 percent running Windows 8 or 8.1. ... (view more)

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