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Updated: 7 min 27 sec ago

Hackers' Website Breached by Hacker

Tue, 17/05/2016 - 3:22pm
The Nulled, one of the most popular hacker forums with more than 470,000 members has suffered a data breach. As a result of which, email addresses and private messages of all these members have leaked. According to a report on BBC, the leaked data contained more than 5,000 purchase records relating to the exchange of stolen information. From the BBC report: Researchers at Risk Based Security said the data dump contained the "complete forum's database" including 12,600 invoices, usernames, members' PayPal addresses and IP addresses. It also contained millions of forum posts and private messages detailing illegal activities. And some of the data could be used to work out members' identities, if they did not take steps to conceal it. Risk Based Security added the website had used message board software with known vulnerabilities, and the site also used a weak hashing algorithm to protect members' passwords.

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Campaign Demands Telecoms Unlock the FM Radio Found in Many Smartphones

Tue, 17/05/2016 - 2:41pm
An anonymous reader cites an article on CBC: Your smartphone may include an FM radio chip but, chances are, it doesn't work. Now, an online campaign has launched in Canada, putting pressure on telecoms and manufacturers to turn on the radio hidden in many cellphones. Titled, "free radio on my phone," the campaign says that most Android smartphones have a built-in FM receiver which doesn't require data or Wi-Fi to operate. The U.S. arm of the campaign believes iPhones also have a built-in radio chip but that it can't be activated. Apple wouldn't confirm this detail. The radio chip in many Android phones also lies dormant. But the campaign says it can easily be activated -- if telecom providers ask the manufacturers to do it. In Canada, however, most of the telecoms haven't made the move to get the radio turned on. They'd prefer that you stream your audio, depleting your phone's costly data plan, claims campaign organizer, Barry Rooke.

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Apple, Microsoft and Other US Tech Companies Undergoing 'Security Reviews' in China

Tue, 17/05/2016 - 2:00pm
An anonymous reader writes: Chinese government is keeping an ever watchful eye on the companies doing business in the country, especially when foreign companies compete with local ones. To that end, the Chinese authorities have begun a security review among many different American technology companies like Apple and others. These, while mostly done out of the public sphere, seem to target issues like encryption and data storage. According to a report from the New York Times (paywalled; alternate source), government representatives have been questioning engineers and executives from different technology companies with regards to these issues for the last nine months. The so-called security reviews are being done by the Cyberspace Administration of China, with the government committee including experts tied to the country's military and security agencies.The Verge has more details.

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Warren Buffett Buys $1 Billion Stake In Apple

Tue, 17/05/2016 - 1:00pm
An anonymous reader quotes a report from CNN: Berkshire Hathaway, the conglomerate run by Buffett, disclosed in a regulatory filing Monday that it purchased more than 9.8 million shares in Apple during the first quarter. It marks Berkshire's first investment in Apple. Berkshire acquired its position at an average price of about $109 a share. Apple's stock price has since fallen to just above $90, meaning that Berkshire's stake in Apple is now worth about $888 million. The Apple purchase is the second big tech investment by Berkshire, which has been steadily adding to its stake in IBM during the past few years. Until recently, Buffett had been famous for his lack of investments in the tech sector. But Apple fits perfectly in Buffett's wheelhouse. The company is a leader in its market and the stock is extremely cheap, trading for just 11 times this year's earnings estimates. Apple also has a pristine balance sheet, with $232.9 billion in cash. At the end of April, billionaire investor Carl Icahn sold his entire stake in Apple, citing the risk of China's influence on the stock. Last week, Didi, China's ride-sharing service and rival to Uber, announced Apple invested $1 billion in the company. There's been a lot of money shuffling taking place as of late as Apple tries to reinvigorate the market after it had its first earnings decline in more than a decade.

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Twitter To Stop Counting Photos And Links In 140-Character Limit

Tue, 17/05/2016 - 10:00am
An anonymous reader writes: Twitter will stop counting photos and links as part of its 140-character limit for tweets in as soon as two weeks, according to a source familiar with the matter. Right now, links take up 23 characters, even after Twitter automatically shortens them. In January, the Chief Executive Officer Jack Dorsey said the company was looking for new ways to display text on Twitter, and would experiment based on how people use the service. The company considered raising the limit of characters to as many as 10,000. The reason it abides by a 140-character limit is because it allows for tweets to be sent within a mobile text message, which was a common form of sending tweets back in 2006 when the site debuted. Earlier this month, it was reported Twitter blocked U.S. intelligence agencies from having access to a widely used data mining service it partly owns.

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Fake Hacker Found Guilty Following Gutsy Mitt Romney Extortion Scheme

Tue, 17/05/2016 - 7:00am
An anonymous reader writes: "Michael Mancil Brown, 37, of Franklin, Tennessee, faces up to thirty years in prison, a fine up to $250,000, and orders of restitution to victims, because of a daring stunt he pulled off in 2012 that involved fake hacking the PricewaterhouseCoopers consulting firm, and US presidential candidate Mitt Romney. Back in 2012, Brown had the bright idea to write a letter alleging to have hacked PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) servers and stolen tax documents prior to 2010 for Mitt Romney and his wife, Ann," writes Softpedia. The "hacker" asked for $1 million in Bitcoin, and after publishing details about his fake hack online, he almost received it from a "third-party," but not before the FBI arrested him and then uncovered his lie. Last Friday, Brown was found guilty and then convicted of six counts of wire fraud and six counts of using facilities of interstate commerce to commit extortion.

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ISS Completes 100,000th Orbit of Earth

Tue, 17/05/2016 - 3:30am
An anonymous reader quotes a report from Phys.Org: The International Space Station, the space laboratory that showcases cooperation between Russia and the United States, on Monday orbited Earth for the 100,000th time, Russian mission control said. Traveling at an altitude of about 250 miles (400 kilometers) and a speed of about 17,500 miles (28,000 kilometers) per hour, the space station circles the Earth once every 90 minutes. The ISS has now traveled 2.6 billion miles "or about the distance of 10 round trips to Mars," NASA said on the station's official Twitter feed. From two modules, it has grown to 15 modules, occupying a space the size of a football pitch and represents around $100 billion in investment. "Such a long lifespan of the ISS proves that mankind has the necessary technologies for constant presence in orbit, that we have the potential for further space exploration," said Matyushin.

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Microsoft To License Nokia Brand To Foxconn, Says Report

Tue, 17/05/2016 - 1:33am
SmartAboutThings quotes a report from Windows Report: It's no secret that Microsoft's phone business isn't going according to plan. Last quarter alone saw a 46% drop in phone revenue, slightly better than the 49% drop the quarter before that. And now it seems that Microsoft is finally realizing this: according to rumors, the tech giant is considering licensing 50% of its mobile business to Foxconn -- in other words, the Nokia brand it had purchased for 10 years, until 2024. It appears that negotiations have reached very advanced stages, with Microsoft and Foxconn currently deliberating the final clauses of the deal. Some of the implications of such a deal could mean about 50 percent of the Microsoft Mobile members would be looking for new jobs. The rest of the team is said to join the Microsoft Surface team, and may be tasked with working on an upcoming Surface Phone which has been rumored for some time now.

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Highly-Conductive Shark Jelly Could Inspire New Tech

Tue, 17/05/2016 - 12:50am
An anonymous reader writes: Researchers from UC Santa Cruz, the University of Washington, and the Benaroya Research Institute at Virginia Mason found shark jelly to have the highest proton conductivity ever seen in a biological material. The jelly's conductivity begins to approach that of leading proton-conducting polymers. Tiny organs in the skin of sharks, skates and rays, called the ampullae of Lorenzini, are key to the ability. Scientists believe that the jelly is what has been able to allow these animals to detect weak electric fields produced by their prey, as the organs, which are visible as pores in the skin, are connected to electrosensory cells via long, jelly-filled canals. Marco Rolandi, a co-author on a paper detailing the findings in Science Advances, sees potential use for the "shark jelly" in the development of new or enhanced materials or even the creation of new sensor technology. "The observation of high proton conductivity in the jelly is very exciting," Rolandi said. "We hope that our findings may contribute to future studies of the electrosensing function of the ampullae of Lorenzini and the organ overall, which is itself rather exceptional."

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Raspberry Pi Zero Gains Camera Support, Keeps $5 Price

Tue, 17/05/2016 - 12:07am
An anonymous reader writes: The Raspberry Pi Zero has received its first major hardware upgrade today: a camera connector. The new addition of a camera connector works well with the two new Sony imaging modules announced last month. The board will retain its $5 price, too. Eben Upton, Raspberry Pi founder, said in a blog post that "through dumb luck, the same fine-pitch FPC connector that we use on the Compute Module Development Kit just fits onto the right hand side of the board." The team was able to close the feature gap between the Zero and larger Pi boards by moving the surface components towards the left, and rotating the activity LEDs. The CSI connector on the Zero is 3.5mm smaller than the adapter on the Pi 3, so you will need to invest in a new cable if you've already invested in a camera module for an existing project.

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CIA Watchdog 'Mistakenly' Destroyed Its Only Copy Of A Senate Torture Report

Mon, 16/05/2016 - 11:24pm
An anonymous reader writes: According to Yahoo News, the CIA inspector general's office "mistakenly" destroyed its only copy of a mammoth Senate torture report at the same time lawyers for the Justice Department were assuring a federal judge that copies of the document were being preserved. Agency officials described the deletion of the document to Senate investigators as an "inadvertent" foul-up by the inspector general. "CIA inspector general officials deleted an uploaded computer file with the report and then accidentally destroyed a disk that also contained the document, filled with thousands of secret files about the CIA's use of 'enhanced' interrogation methods," reports Yahoo News. The Senate Intelligence Committee and Justice Department knew about the incident last summer, sources said. However, the destruction of a copy of the sensitive report was never made public, nor was it reported to the federal judge at the time who was overseeing a lawsuit seeking access to the still classified document under the Freedom of Information Act. Despite this incident, a CIA spokesperson has said another unopened computer disk with the full report is still locked in a vault at agency headquarters. "I can assure you that the CIA has retained a copy," wrote Dean Boyd, the agency's chief of public affairs, in an email. Feinstein is calling for the CIA inspector general to obtain a new copy of the report to replace the one that disappeared. A 500-page summary was released in 2014, and concluded that the CIA misled Americans on the effectiveness of "enhanced interrogation." Specifically, the interrogations were poorly managed and unreliable.

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Amazon To Sell Its Own Private-Label Groceries

Mon, 16/05/2016 - 10:41pm
An anonymous reader writes: The Wall Street Journal reports Amazon will soon roll-out its own private-label brands of common household items like coffee, diapers, and other perishable groceries. Such offerings include baby food, tea, coffee, spices, and even laundry detergent, and will live under the brand names Happy Belly, Wickedly Prime, and Mama Bear. The products are expected to go on sale as soon as this month, available exclusively for Amazon Prime members. The idea to sell private-label products is nothing new for Amazon. It's been selling consumer electronics devices under its Amazon Basics line for quite some time now. They launched several in-house clothing brands earlier this year as well. In 2014, the company had to recall its Element brand diapers due to a design flaw. With a wider array of private-label goods, especially edible goods, the stakes are only higher, as one recall could severely hurt the company's reputation.

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Iran Is Arresting Models Who Pose Without Headscarves On Instagram

Mon, 16/05/2016 - 9:58pm
An anonymous reader writes: The Tehran cybercrimes court said the country has arrested eight people working for online modeling agencies deemed to be "un-Islamic." The women models were arrested for starring in photos on Instagram and elsewhere without wearing their headscarves, which has been required in public since 1979. A total of 170 people have been identified by investigators for being involved in online modeling, including 59 photographers and make-up artists, 58 models and 51 fashion salon managers and designers. The court's prosecutor Javad Babaei announced the the threats on TV, claiming modeling agencies accounted for about 20 percent of posts on Instagram from Iran and that they had been "making and spreading immoral and un-Islamic culture and promiscuity." He added, "We carried out this plan in 2013 with Facebook, and now Instagram is the focus."

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The Intercept Releases First Batch Of New Docs Leaked By Snowden

Mon, 16/05/2016 - 9:15pm
executioner quotes a report from The Intercept: The Intercept's first SIDtoday release comprises 166 articles, including all articles published between March 31, 2003, when SIDtoday began, and June 30, 2003, plus installments of all article series begun during this period through the end of the year. Major topics include the National Security Agency's role in interrogations, the Iraq War, the war on terror, new leadership in the Signals Intelligence Directorate, and new, popular uses of the internet and of mobile computing devices. You can download this batch directly here, or download the documents via Github.

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The Intercept Releases First Batch Of New Docs Leaked By Edward Snowden

Mon, 16/05/2016 - 9:15pm
executioner quotes a report from The Intercept: The Intercept's first SIDtoday release comprises 166 articles, including all articles published between March 31, 2003, when SIDtoday began, and June 30, 2003, plus installments of all article series begun during this period through the end of the year. Major topics include the National Security Agency's role in interrogations, the Iraq War, the war on terror, new leadership in the Signals Intelligence Directorate, and new, popular uses of the internet and of mobile computing devices. You can download this batch directly here, or download the documents via Github.

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One Million Dormant Xbox Live Gamertags Can Be Yours Starting Wednesday

Mon, 16/05/2016 - 8:15pm
An anonymous reader shares an Ars Technica report: Are you the type to dash madly toward any new online service's sign-up page even if you think you'll never touch it again, just to lock down your username of choice? As any good geek knows, handles are a precious commodity, especially for free services that don't have explicitly advertised nickname-recycling policies. One online ecosystem, Xbox Live, may have a respite in store for users who want to remove extraneous numbers or characters from their Gamertag of choice. A Monday announcement from Xbox Live PR chief Larry "Major Nelson" Hryb confirmed that a slew of "nearly one million" dormant Gamertags will be made available for qualified Xbox Live Gold members starting on Wednesday, May 18, at 2pm EDT.

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John McAfee Tried to Trick Reporters Into Thinking He Hacked WhatsApp

Mon, 16/05/2016 - 7:30pm
John McAfee, best known for creating McAfee security suite, apparently tried to trick journalists into believing that he is capable of breaking WhatsApp's end-to-end encryption and reading the private conversations. Gizmodo reports that McAfee tried to do so by sending journalists with compromised smartphones -- riddled with malicious tools such as keylogger. From the report: "[John McAfee was offering to a different couple of news organizations to mail them some phones, have people show up, and then demonstrate with those two phones that [McAfee] in a remote location would be able to read the message as it was sent across the phones," cybersecurity expert Dan Guido, who was contacted by a reporter trying to verify McAfee's claims said. "I advised the reporter to go out and buy their own phones, because even though they come in a box itâ(TM)s very easy to get some saran wrap and a hair dryer to rebox them."

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Jail Sentence For Popular YouTube Pranksters

Mon, 16/05/2016 - 6:50pm
Turns out crossing a line, even for a prank by a YouTube star, can go bonkers. An anonymous reader cites a BBC report: Four members of the controversial Trollstation YouTube channel have been jailed in connection with fake robberies and kidnappings. The group were involved in a fake robbery at London's National Portrait Gallery and a fake kidnapping at Tate Britain in July 2015. The channel, with 718,000 subscribers, has built a reputation for filming staged pranks around the city. A fifth member was imprisoned in March following a bomb hoax.The Crown Prosecution Service's Robert Short said: "The hoaxes may have seemed harmless to them, but they caused genuine distress to a number of members of the public, who should be able to go about their daily business without being put in fear in this way. We hope these convictions send a strong message that unlawful activities such as these will not be tolerated in London."

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Apple To Launch Startup Accelerator, Three Apple Stores In India, Says Report

Mon, 16/05/2016 - 6:10pm
Apple plans to set up three of its own retail stores -- the iconic Apple Store -- in India, reports FactorDaily. The stores will be setup in Delhi, Bangalore, and Mumbai in the next 18 months. The report adds that Apple also plans to unveil a startup accelerator in the country which would incubate ideas largely around apps built for iOS. The publication claims that these announcements will be made public later this week when Apple CEO Tim Cook visits India. With the growth of iPhone sales starting to decline, and India being one of the handful places to show an increasingly growing interest in its phone, Apple has shifted its focus in the recent months to actively target Indian market.

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Al-Qaeda Calls For the Execution Of Bill Gates and Others To 'Damage the US Economy'

Mon, 16/05/2016 - 5:30pm
An anonymous reader writes: Al-Qaeda's official online propaganda magazine, Inspire, contains a montage of violent images -- things like guns and blood -- next to an image of Bill Gates. The terrorist group is urging its followers to murder successful business folks, such as Gates, which is absolutely sickening. The terrorist group says that murdering high ranking people can damage the U.S. economy.

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