Nov 07 05:01


Two Former Twitter Employees Charged With Spying For Saudi Arabia, May Be Involved In Khashoggi Murder
For all those still seeking details about Saudi Arabia’s murder of Jamal Khashoggi, it may be time to give Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey a call.

Two former Twitter employees were charged with spying for Saudi Arabia, the Justice Department unveiled on Wednesday in San Francisco, in a case which the WaPo said "raises concerns about the ability of Silicon Valley to protect the private information of dissidents and other users from repressive governments."

The complaint unsealed Wednesday in U.S. District Court in San Francisco detailed a coordinated effort by Saudi officials to recruit employees at the social media giant to look up the private data of thousands of Twitter accounts. The accounts included those of a popular journalist with more than 1 million followers and other prominent government critics.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

(Sigh) President Trump, a word, please.

I understand that you greatly admire your two BFFs in the Middle East, The Butcher of Yemen, Prince Mohammed bin Salman, and the Butcher of Gaza, Israel's Bibi Netanyahu, primarily because they seem to be able to get away with anything, including murder, and never seem to have to pay a moral or political price for their actions.

I would like to politely suggest, Mr. President, that those days may well soon be over for both men.

Former Prime Minister Netanyahu was unable to create a majority for the Israeli government, and is awaiting his fate on corruption charges.

IF in fact these charges indicated above are proven true, your BFF in Saudi Arabia, the Butcher of Yemen, may well be facing a "coup-coup-a-CHOO!!", courtesy of other family members who never believed he should have been given the title of Crown Prince by his dad in the first place.

IF, in fact, by some miracle, you are re-elected in 2020, I would strongly caution you to only have around you moral and ethical people who really care about the future of this country (not just the fatness of their own wallets), and understand that the actions of this current administration appear to be those archetypal "last gasps of an empire in decline", and wish to see this country change course before it is too late.

And it well may be too late to save any vestiges of this country; I say that as someone who cares about this future of the US (because Mike and I have young family and we want to see them all thrive and survive); unfortunately, its leadership has dug itself into so many holes, post World War II, from which there is no return, that I cannot begin to enumerate them.

And one final observation, President Trump; your having positioned yourself as this country's "Merchant of Death in Chief", by signing off on weapons sales to Saudi Arabia, in its continuing, unmitigated genocide in Yemen, has not done much to endear you to those people in this country, and on the planet (I am one of them) who sincerely wish to see this country prosper by promoting peace, prosperity, innovation and through intelligent, moral, hard-won negotiations.

Nov 06 19:43

Setting up the perfect Windows 10 Installation | Faster, Lighter, and Functional

-Update to the Latest
-Block Updates
-Debloat Script
-Disable Privacy Settings
-High Performance Power Settings
-Disable Indexing
-Disable Firewall (ONLY ON SECURE NETWORKS!)

Nov 06 16:43

NVIDIA Fixes Security Flaws in GPU Driver, GeForce Experience

Users are urged to update their GeForce, Quadro, NVS, and Tesla Windows GPU display drivers by applying the security update available on the NVIDIA Driver Downloads page. Some of the affected driver versions will receive patches during the week of November 18 as per NVIDIA.

The company also advises customers to patch their GeForce Experience software by downloading the latest version from the GeForce Experience Downloads page or by launching the client to have it applied via the automatic update mechanism

Nov 06 16:40

Facebook executives planned 'switcharoo' on data policy change: court filings

began cutting off access to user data for app developers from 2012 to squash potential rivals

Nov 06 13:31


The ACLU has sued the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and other federal agencies, making claims that the government is improperly withholding information on how it uses a facial recognition database on millions of Americans. The civil rights organization also asks for a “federal court to intervene and order the FBI and related agencies to turn over all records concerning their use of face recognition technology,” according to a legal document.

“Because of the FBI’s secrecy, little is known about how the agency is supercharging its surveillance activities with face recognition technology,” Kade Crockford of the American Civil Liberties Union wrote in a post on its website.

The public has a right to know when, where, and how law enforcement agencies are using face recognition technology, and what safeguards, if any, are in place to protect our rights.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I find that I do have a "hug and a punch" relationship with this organization, but on this issue, I am having a "hug and let's do coffee" moment, with their actions here.

Nov 06 11:38

Netflix will stop working on older Samsung smart TVs next month

Some Samsung smart TVs will no longer include Netflix support starting Dec. 2, a Netflix representative said Tuesday. The change is due to technical limitations.

Nov 06 11:27

Heads up from Internet of S*!# land: Best Buy's Insignia 'smart' home gear will become very dumb this Wednesday

FYI: US mega-retailer Best Buy will switch off the "smart" portion of its Insignia-branded smart home gadgets this coming Wednesday, rendering them just plain old dumb gear.

Folks who've bought these soon-to-be-internet-less Internet-of-Things gizmos can apply for some money back in the form of a gift card, though a full refund is off the cards, literally.

“As the Insignia Connect platform will be discontinued on November 6, 2019, this process will determine your eligibility for compensation for your eligible Insignia Connect products,” Best Buy stated on its webpage about the shutdown. An FAQ with more details is here.

"The compensation will not be a full refund of your product, and will be determined by product type."

Nov 06 11:17

Remember the Uber self-driving car that killed a woman crossing the street? The AI had no clue about jaywalkers

The self-driving Uber car that hit and killed a woman walking her bike across a street wasn’t designed to detect “jaywalking pedestrians.”

That's according to an official dossier published by the US National Safety Transportation Board (NTSB) on Tuesday.

The March 2018 accident was the first recorded death by a fully autonomous vehicle. On-board video footage showed the victim, 49-year-old Elaine Herzberg, pushing her bike at night across a road in Tempe, Arizona, moments before she was struck by the AI-powered SUV at 39 MPH.

Now, an investigation by the NTSB into the crash has pinpointed a likely major contributing factor: the code couldn't recognize her as a pedestrian, because she was not at an obvious designated crossing.

Nov 06 08:52

Israeli spyware targeted Americans

An Israeli company enabled the hacking of American citizens’ phones – possibly including some belonging to government officials.

The NSO Group’s spy software used a security vulnerability in WhatsApp to hijack the phones of at least 1,400 people in the spring, a Reuters report revealed on Thursday.

The news agency spoke to sources familiar with an internal WhatsApp investigation into the breach.

The targets were spread across more than 20 countries, many of them US allies, Reuters reported.

Their sources stated that a “significant” number of the known victims were high-profile government and military officials.

Some of the victims are in the United States, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Mexico, Pakistan and India, according to Reuters’ sources.

Nov 06 08:44

Fitbit is doomed: Why everything Google buys turns to garbage

Late last week, Google announced its intention to purchase Fitbit, the beleaguered health tracker manufacturer, in an attempt to vitalize its wearables business, with the presumed intent of producing a Pixel Watch to rival Apple and Samsung's offerings sometime in the future.

You'll have to excuse my pessimism. I fully expect this to result in a total catastrophe for Fitbit's employees, products, and customers. Just about everything Google has ever purchased has been discarded like garbage or has been completely devalued as a result of the company's inability to successfully integrate acquired businesses into its culture.

Nov 05 19:37

More Smartphone Lawsuits Expected. RF Radiation Exceeds Outdated Federal Safety Levels Up to 500%

By B.N. Frank

An article published in the Chicago Tribune in August revealed that 11 smartphone models exceed very outdated federal RadioFrequency (RF) exposure safety limits.

How outdated? No “safe” levels of RF radiation have even been scientifically determined for children or pregnant women. Health experts including the American Academy of Pediatrics have warned that children are more susceptible to harm from all sources of wireless radiation and have encouraged reducing their exposure everywhere including in medical buildings, schools, etc.

Because of the Chicago Tribune article, Fegan Scott law firm started a class action lawsuit...

Nov 05 17:20

8chan Relaunches As 8kun

After months offline due to a sustained assault by our Big Tech oligarchs, 8chan is finally back online after relaunching as 8kun.

Nov 05 16:01

Apple, Google, Facebook move aside: State Duma mulls making Russian-made software mandatory for mobile devices

A bill obligating all devices in Russia to have local software pre-installed on them is being considered by the Parliament. If it becomes law, there are fears that Apple could leave the $3 billion market altogether.

The legislation, which passed the first reading by the MPs on Tuesday, stipulates that any smartphone, computer or smart TV sold in Russia must have Russian applications by default on it. Such software, it claims, is friendlier and more attractive for Russian users than Western counterparts.

Nov 05 15:55

AMD, a chipmaking underdog, is having its day

Two things explain the firm’s resurgence. One is a better product. In 2012 AMD rehired Jim Keller, a well-regarded chip designer who had been at Apple. AMD had long been competing on price—its chips were slower than Intel’s but much cheaper. Mr Keller’s “Zen” chips, unveiled in 2017, are still cheap. But they are now as zippy as Intel’s, or even zippier: AMD’s top-end server chip, for instance, is faster than its Intel counterpart in many tasks, and costs half as much. Zen chips have won a string of contracts with Microsoft and Sony (for new games consoles), Google (data centres) and Cray (supercomputers), among others.

The second reason is that, while AMD has improved, Intel has stumbled. The firm makes its own chips. Its latest and greatest manufacturing process, which should have delivered a big performance boost, is years late, leaving the firm to rehash existing designs.

Nov 05 15:31

Boeing's poor information security posture threatens passenger safety, national security, researcher says

Boeing's poor information security practices threaten aviation safety and national security, security researcher Chris Kubecka told an audience at the Aviation Cyber Security conference in London today.

Boeing test development networks are publicly exposed to the internet, Kubecka said, and at least one of Boeing's email servers is infected with multiple strains of malware. Kubecka believes that the infected email servers are being used to exfiltrate sensitive intellectual property including code used in both civilian passenger aircraft as well as aircraft Boeing sells to the US military.

Nov 05 15:23

Actively exploited bug in fully updated Firefox is sending users into a tizzy

Scammers are actively exploiting a bug in Firefox that causes the browser to lock up after displaying a message warning the computer is running a pirated version of Windows that has been hacked.

The message, which appears without any user interaction upon visiting a site, reads:

Please stop and do not close the PC... The registry key of your computer is locked. Why did we block your computer? The Windows registry key is illegal. The Windows desktop is using pirated software. The Window desktop sends viruses over the Internet. This Windows desktop is hacked. We block this computer for your safety.

The message then advises the person to call a toll-free number in the next five minutes or face having the computer disabled.

Nov 05 09:08

Executives at more than half of organizations worldwide say they are not prepared for cyberattacks, troubling new report claims

More than 4,000 cyberattacks occur daily worldwide, half of organizations across the globe admit they are not prepared for such events.

A new report has found that only 49 percent of chief information security officers believe in their company's ability to respond to a hacking incident or data breach.

Executives in the US were found to be the most confident with 72 percent stating they are fully prepared, but just a quarter of organizations in Japan said they could handle a cyberattack.

Nov 05 09:02

Uh Oh, Siri ?— Researchers Hack Smart Speakers With Lasers

Ars Technica reports that the attack exploits a vulnerability in microphones that use micro-electro-mechanical systems, or MEMs. The microscopic MEMs components in these microphones respond to light as if it were sound.

“We show how an attacker can use light-injected voice commands to unlock the target’s smart-lock protected front door, open garage doors, shop on e-commerce websites at the target’s expense, or even locate, unlock and start various vehicles (e.g., Tesla and Ford) if the vehicles are connected to the target’s Google account.”

Researchers tested Siri, Alexa, Google Assistant, Facebook Portal, and tablets and phones. All devices that use MEMS microphones are susceptible to this laser attack.

Nov 05 08:31

Alexa, Siri, Google Assistant smart speakers – they're all open to remote laser attacks

Researchers have found that MEMS microphones are so sensitive they can interpret light as sound, allowing an attacker to shoot silent commands to voice assistants from afar.

Nov 05 08:31

Sidewalk Labs’ Smart Cities Will Create A For-Profit Social Credit System That Controls Judges And Police

By MassPrivateI

Smart city surveillance is much worse than anyone could have imagined.

Two years ago, I revealed how a CIA “signature school” was installing thousands of CCTV cameras and microphones in smart cities, but Sidewalk Labs wants to take public surveillance to a whole new level.

The Globe And Mail revealed that Sidewalk Labs’ “Yellow Book,” a guidebook designed to help Google employees build a smart city from the ground up, would give their employees control of public services...

Nov 05 06:03


We’ve become increasingly comfortable with facial recognition technology. We use it to unlock our phones and to skip the security line at the airport. But the convenience of facial recognition is blinding us to its dangers.

Georgetown University School of Law privacy expert Clare Garvie put together a video that explains why you should be concerned about the growing use of facial recognition technology, even if you think you have “nothing to hide.”

According to Garvie, police databases now contain images of nearly half of all Americans. She argues that without some restrictions on facial recognition, we’re rapidly hurtling toward a Chinese-style surveillance state.

As Garvie puts it, Americans are basically in a perpetual police lineup.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I don't know how much this future "Minority Report" world, courtesy of the government of the Unhinged, Surveilled State of Amerika, scares the stuffing out of you, but it sure as heck scares the stuffing out of me!!

Nov 05 04:47


A team of academics from Swinburne University and VicHealth studied 1,520 Victorians aged 12 to 25, and examined their experience of loneliness, asking questions about their symptoms of depression and social anxiety. The study confirmed that loneliness - the biggest driver behind symptoms of depression - has become a global epidemic tied to the rise of social media.

Here's what they found: One in four young people - aged 12 to 25 - reported feeling lonely for three or more days within the last week. Among 18 to 25 year olds, one in three - 35% - reported feeling lonely three or more times a week. We also found that higher levels of loneliness increases a young adult’s risk of developing depression by 12% and social anxiety by 10%, according to the WEF.

Nov 05 04:41



Mozilla is urging Congress to reject the broadband industry's lobbying campaign against encrypted DNS in Firefox and Chrome.

The Internet providers' fight against this privacy feature raises questions about how they use broadband customers' Web-browsing data, Mozilla wrote in a letter sent today to the chairs and ranking members of three House of Representatives committees. Mozilla also said that Internet providers have been giving inaccurate information to lawmakers and urged Congress to "publicly probe current ISP data collection and use policies."

DNS over HTTPS helps keep eavesdroppers from seeing what DNS lookups your browser is making. This can make it more difficult for ISPs or other third parties to monitor what websites you visit.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Everyday working people deserve to have the tools for privacy and security in their systems; and the problem is, the more data the Feds collect, the less intelligible it becomes, until it becomes so overwhelming, as to become utterly useless.

Nov 04 15:21

While You Slept, Government Created Internal Passports

By Peter C. Earle

Looking back, Social Security Numbers and the cards bearing them broke ground for the path to a national identification system — thank you, Franklin Delano Roosevelt. For decades there have been pointed reminders that the cards were intended to be account numbers and not integrated into a government registry of American citizens.

The Real ID represents the “last mile” in the ability of the state to track individuals in real time. With various electronic, social media, and cellphone tracking measures, there is always a delay; and one can choose not to use social media, not to own a cellphone, and opt into other methods of extricating oneself from the prying eyes of the NSA or other government agencies. But the Real ID — in particular, coupled with biometrics — fulfills Orwellian conceptions of the total surveillance state...

Nov 04 15:16

Mozilla Asks Congress to Investigate ISPs Data Collection Practices

Mozilla's push is the latest in a burgeoning debate over DNS-over-HTTPS (DoH), with Mozilla deciding to encrypt it's users browsing data by default, and Google's Chrome soon enabling DoH by default if possible for a particular user.

"Our recent experience in rolling out DNS over HTTPs (DoH)—an important privacy and security protection for consumers—has raised questions about how ISPs collect and use sensitive user data in their gatekeeper role over internet usage," the letter, signed by Marshall Erwin, senior director of trust and security and Mozilla, reads. "With this in mind, a congressional examination of ISP practices may uncover valuable insights, educate the public, and help guide continuing efforts to draft consumer privacy legislation."

Nov 04 09:32

ACLU Sues FBI And Other Agencies, Defending Privacy Rights Of Americans Against Facial Recognition

By Aaron Kesel

The ACLU has sued the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and other federal agencies, making claims that the government is improperly withholding information on how it uses a facial recognition database on millions of Americans. The civil rights organization also asks for a “federal court to intervene and order the FBI and related agencies to turn over all records concerning their use of face recognition technology,” according to a legal document...

The ACLU lawsuit names the FBI, Justice Department and Drug Enforcement Administration, alleging the agencies “failed to produce any responsive documents” in response to a Freedom of Information Act request...

Nov 04 09:02

Millions of Android device owners are warned to delete emoji keyboard app ‘ai.type’ that has tried to buy $18 million worth of premium content without users' permission

Android device users have been warned to deleted a popular, free-to-download emoji keyboard app that makes purchases without the user's knowledge.

Installed more than 40 million times, 'ai.type' purports to be a customisable, intelligent on-screen keyboard developed by Israeli firm ai.type LTD.

However, researchers at mobile technology firm Upstream have revealed that the app has made millions of unauthorised purchases of premium digital content.

The app hides its unwanted activity so such is not visible onscreen, sometimes masking itself as legitimate popular apps like audio platform SoundCloud.

Nov 04 08:49

Project Silica proof of concept stores Warner Bros. ‘Superman’ movie on quartz glass

Microsoft and Warner Bros. have collaborated to successfully store and retrieve the entire 1978 iconic “Superman” movie on a piece of glass roughly the size of a drink coaster, 75 by 75 by 2 millimeters thick.

It was the first proof of concept test for Project Silica, a Microsoft Research project that uses recent discoveries in ultrafast laser optics and artificial intelligence to store data in quartz glass. A laser encodes data in glass by creating layers of three-dimensional nanoscale gratings and deformations at various depths and angles. Machine learning algorithms read the data back by decoding images and patterns that are created as polarized light shines through the glass.

Nov 03 18:27

Bipartisan law targets Google and its rivals to end 'secret' online search algorithms that critics say censor political speech and manipulate users

Google, Facebook and other internet giants would disclose the algorithms they use to return search results under new legislation proposed by US law makers.

The bipartisan Filter Bubble Transparency Act also would require the online companies to offer users an unfiltered search option that delivers results without any algorithmic tinkering.

Senator John Thune, a Republican from North Dakota, filed the bill on Friday. The legislation was co-sponsored by Republican senators Jerry Moran of Kansas and Marsha blackburn of Tennessee, as well as Democrats Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut and Mark Warner of Virginia.

Nov 03 18:24

The Deadly Consequences of Rounding Errors

When almost everything in society is represented digitally, almost everything in society is vulnerable to seemingly tiny errors.

Nov 03 18:20

Amazon Alexa Could Be Used To Prosecute Case In Florida — But Is There Probable Cause?

By Aaron Kesel

If a precedent is set, this could allow police to use any recorded audio/video in the future during a criminal proceeding.

That means everything from doorbells like Amazon’s Ring surveillance network that connect directly to smartphone apps, fridges with built-in cameras, and even washing machines and smart light bulbs are now potential witnesses in court. We don’t think even George Orwell could have predicted that we would be spied on by our appliances. This is a massive potential overreach by police investigators...

Nov 03 12:13

Will Uber Food Delivery Drones Be As Problematic As Their Self-Driving Vehicles?

By B.N. Frank

It wasn’t that long ago that a self-driving Uber killed an Arizona pedestrian. More recently a whistleblower reported that the company’s automated vehicles still weren’t safe – despite Uber’s claims that they were.

Drones have been associated with some high-profile catastrophes too. A quick search on YouTube renders an extensive collection of scary videos. Unfortunately, this hasn’t deterred companies like Walgreens and CVS from using them for deliveries. Apparently, untrustworthy Uber isn’t deterred either. Good Luck, San Diego...

Nov 03 11:09

Verizon Installing Approx. 1000 4G and 5G “Smart Poles” in California, Colorado, Ohio, and Utah Despite Increasing Lawsuits, Opposition, and Warnings

By B.N. Frank

Before the insidious “Race for 5G” began telecom companies had been warning their investors that they may eventually be held liable for causing harm with their products and transmitters. Regardless, they continued to invent, manufacture and market products for everybody – from cradle to grave.

This being said – 5G is just the tip of an enormous iceberg that’s only getting bigger...

Nov 02 07:11

Apple to Ship 80 Million 5G Phones by 2020 Despite Lawsuits Against Other Smartphone Models and 5G Causing Phones to Overheat

By B.N. Frank

Apple is being sued because some of their current phone models exceed federal RF safety limits. Regardless, the company seems to be confident that people will still want to buy their new 5G phones even though the telecom industry has provided NO scientific evidence that 5G is safe and many doctors and scientists say it isn’t.

Another bummer – 5G has also been reported as making phones, modems, and base stations overheat. When the phones overheat, they switch back to 4G. Phone users have been told to apply ice packs and crank a/c in order to operate 5G again. Popular tech enthusiasts are not impressed. Regardless, none of this has obviously deterred Apple...

Nov 01 10:12

iPhone owners should delete these 17 apps now, security experts warn

APPLE has confirmed that 17 applications have been removed from the App Store after they were found to be secretly committing fraud behind users’ backs to quietly collect advertising revenue from their smartphones. Here’s which apps were called out, so you can immediately delete any that are still sitting pretty on your iOS home screen.


The full list of infected apps:

RTO Vehicle Information
EMI Calculator & Loan Planner
File Manager – Documents
Smart GPS Speedometer
CrickOne – Live Cricket Scores
Daily Fitness – Yoga Poses
FM Radio – Internet Radio
My Train Info – IRCTC & PNR (not listed under developer profile)
Around Me Place Finder
Easy Contacts Backup Manager
Ramadan Times 2019
Restaurant Finder – Find Food
BMI Calculator – BMR Calc
Dual Accounts
Video Editor – Mute Video
Islamic World – Qibla
Smart Video Compressor

Nov 01 08:51

New Chrome 0-day Bug Under Active Attacks – Update Your Browser Now!

Attention readers, if you are using Chrome on your Windows, Mac, and Linux computers, you need to update your web browsing software immediately to the latest version Google released earlier today.

With the release of Chrome 78.0.3904.87, Google is warning billions of users to install an urgent software update immediately to patch two high severity vulnerabilities, one of which attackers are actively exploiting in the wild to hijack computers.

Without revealing technical details of the vulnerability, the Chrome security team only says that both issues are use-after-free vulnerabilities, one affecting Chrome's audio component (CVE-2019-13720) while the other resides in the PDFium (CVE-2019-13721) library.

Nov 01 04:37


This spring, a team of engineers at WhatsApp detected a series of suspicious calls on the messaging service’s networks, many of them emanating from phone numbers in Sweden, the Netherlands, Israel, and other countries. At first, WhatsApp wasn’t sure what was happening. Then the engineers, working with their counterparts at Facebook, which owns WhatsApp, realized that the voice and video calls were somehow infecting targeted phones with advanced spyware, using a penetration method that the company had never encountered before. Most disturbing to the investigators was that it appeared many of the targeted phones became infected whether the calls were answered or not—what’s known as a zero-click vulnerability.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Color me completely unsurprised at this development; Tel Aviv doesn't give a damn about the truth of what is happening to the Palestinian people, and will use every foul and filthy tech-centric way they can find, to choke the life out of any telling of punishing, real events happening the West Bank, East Jerusalem, or Gaza.

Oct 31 09:51

Microsoft Warns of Windows Slow Startup Due to Persistent Memory

Microsoft acknowledged a new known issue impacting several Windows versions and leading to unexpectedly slow startups on computers configured to use persistent memory.

"After you configure a Windows-based computer to use large amounts of memory, including persistent memory, the computer takes longer than expected to start up," says Microsoft in a newly published support document that was re-published after being removed yesterday.

"Additionally, increased CPU usage occurs for a short time after startup. Increased CPU usage occurs when an application frees and reallocates large ranges of memory in rapid succession."

Oct 31 07:51

The Curious Case of Edward Snowden

Op-Ed by Makia Freeman

Edward Snowden, the whistleblower who rose to extraordinary fame in June 2013 when he facilitated classified documents from the NSA to be made fully open and public, is an intriguing case. Some (with blind allegiance the USG and MIC [Military Industrial Complex]) view him as a traitor who should be imprisoned for life or killed. Others view him as a hero, genuine activist and champion of the right to privacy. There are also some who view him with skepticism, finding his story and claims beyond the bounds of credibility. With the publication of his recent book Permanent Record, and to some extent his recent interview with Joe Rogan, he has again become a focus of attention. We have learnt much more about his background and story. Now is a good opportunity to ask: who is Edward Snowden, and can we fully trust his story?...

Oct 31 06:04

Israeli mercenaries are a threat to democracy and human rights around the world

Recent reports have revealed that a cyber-spying company in the United Arab Emirates has been hiring former Israeli intelligence officers. DarkMatter, which has intimate links with the UAE government, has been paying exorbitant sums in an effort to lure these spooks away from Israel. Their pay packets are said to amount to as much as a million dollars each.

When the spotlight is thrown on them, such “cybersecurity” firms often disclaim responsibility for the malign results of their work. They frequently claim to be involved only in legitimate security measures, and only helping recognised governments. The reality, though, is very different.

Oct 31 05:53

WhatsApp Claims That an Israeli Tech Firm’s Spyware Targeted Human-Rights Activists and Journalists

his spring, a team of engineers at WhatsApp detected a series of suspicious calls on the messaging service’s networks, many of them emanating from phone numbers in Sweden, the Netherlands, Israel, and other countries. At first, WhatsApp wasn’t sure what was happening. Then the engineers, working with their counterparts at Facebook, which owns WhatsApp, realized that the voice and video calls were somehow infecting targeted phones with advanced spyware, using a penetration method that the company had never encountered before. Most disturbing to the investigators was that it appeared many of the targeted phones became infected whether the calls were answered or not—what’s known as a zero-click vulnerability.

Oct 30 18:29

This New Android Malware Can Survive a Factory Reset

Here’s a fun one: There’s new Android malware making the rounds that is not only irritating—thanks, pop-up ads—but it’s also incredibly difficult to remove from your Android device once you’re infected.

Though this somewhat-new “xHelper” malware has affected a low number of Android users so far (around 45,000, estimates Symantec), the fact that nobody has any clear advice on how to remove it is a worrisome fact. While the odds are good that you won’t get hit with this malware, given its low installation rate so far—even though it’s been active since March—you should still know what it does and how to (hopefully) avoid it.

As Malwarebytes describes, xHelper starts by concealing itself as a regular app by spoofing legitimate apps’ package names.

Oct 30 14:42

Newly released video game challenges players to survive the climate apocalypse

fun !

Ever wonder how you'll survive an apocalyptic climate crisis?

Oct 30 10:33


China seems to be going all-in with the mission to integrate blockchain technology into the state machinery and the world probably shouldn’t ignore the possible ramifications. Especially not now — after President Xi Jinping’s open and substantiated endorsement of the technology a few days ago.

Oct 30 10:31

Paradise Ransomware Decryptor Gets Your Files Back for Free

A decryptor for the Paradise Ransomware has been released by Emsisoft that allows victims to decrypt their files for free.

For over two years, the Paradise Ransomware has been encrypting victims and users have been unable to recover their files unless they recovered from backups or paid the ransom.

Today, Emsisoft has released a decryptor for the Paradise Ransomware that allows victims going back as far as 2017 to decrypt their files without paying a ransom.

Oct 30 10:28

How iPhone iOS update means Apple workers can STILL listen into your conversations recorded by Siri unless you opt out or delete them

The latest Apple update will record users' conversations with Siri, before allowing workers to listen in and review them - unless users opt out.

Apple is resuming the use of humans to review Siri commands and dictation with the latest iPhone software update iOS 13.2 - available now.

Oct 30 09:00

Who Is Watching You?

Welcome to the age of ordinary objects that stealthily spy on us—from inside our cars, our homes, and our offices. That smartphone game you play in a waiting room, the mobile app that gives you a weather forecast, the photo you share with online friends—all have the ability to reveal intimate details about your life. Our increasingly digital world has created mountains of data, and there are precious few laws to safeguard the information.

But that doesn't mean you can't protect yourself. According to one of three nationally representative Consumer Reports surveys that guided this special report, 60 percent of Americans now bar mobile apps from accessing the camera, GPS data, and contact list on their phones. And half protect their online accounts with two-factor authentication.*

Oct 29 17:45

xHelper Trojan Variant Reinstalls Itself After Removal, Infects 45K

A new xHelper Trojan dropper variant capable of reinstalling itself after being removed or following factory resets has infected more than 45,000 Android devices over the last six months.

xHelper's creators mainly deliver it onto devices of targets from the U.S., India, and Russia in the form of a malicious app component with stealth capabilities that allow it to hide from the system's launcher.

Trojan droppers are malware strains used to deliver other more dangerous malware to already infected systems such as banking Trojans, clicker Trojans, and ransomware.

Oct 29 17:43

Ransomware Attack Causes School 'District-Wide Shutdown'

A ransomware attack hitting Las Cruces Public Schools forced the district to shut down the entire computer system to contain the infection.

Exchanging information with schools is impaired as email and other forms of computer-based communication is no longer possible at this moment.

The district activated the crisis response team and is working to restore critical services. It is unclear at this point how long the systems will be down.

Oct 29 13:52

The number that shows Google's search engine slowing down at a worrying rate

Google's search engine growth is slowing down at an alarming rate, the internet giant has revealed.

Financial results released by Google's parent company Alphabet showed that paid clicks on its search engine - a crucial measure of growth - had grown by just 18pc year-on-year in the third quarter of the year. A year ago, growth in paid clicks was 62pc.

It comes after decades of tremendous growth, suggesting that users are increasingly reticent to click on adverts while using Google to browse the web.

Oct 29 09:59

Aruba’s Facial Recognition Will Identify 2 Million Tourists At Car Rental Stations, Hotels And The Airport

By MassPrivateI

Think twice before planning your family vacation to Aruba next year. Big Brother has big plans to monitor American tourists.

A recent article in Breaking Travel News, revealed that the government of Aruba and the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTCC) are bringing facial recognition CCTV cameras to car rental stations and at least 15 hotels on the island by 2020...

Oct 29 08:31

'First Internet connection' made over military ARPANET 50 years ago

Tuesday marks the 50th anniversary of a milestone event that helped shape the modern Internet -- the first-ever computer linkup and the first electronic message sent over the U.S. Defense Department system, known then as ARPANET.

On Oct. 29, 1969, student programmers Charley Kline at the University of California-Los Angeles and Bill Duval at Stanford Research Institute transmitted the letters "LO" over an early network funded by the Advanced Research Projects Agency -- its acronym lending to the network's name.

"It was inadvertent, but it turned out to be prophetic and powerful that the message we delivered was 'LO,' as in 'lo and behold,'" said UCLA professor Leonard Kleinrock, who was hired to head the project.

What did the message mean?

Kleinrock, a longtime computer networking expert, said Kline had attempted to type the word "login," but the system crashed after he typed the first two letters.

Oct 29 08:21

Top Linux developer on Intel chip security problems: 'They're not going away.'

Greg Kroah-Hartman, the stable Linux kernel maintainer, could have prefaced his Open Source Summit Europe keynote speech, MDS, Fallout, Zombieland, and Linux, by paraphrasing Winston Churchill: I have nothing to offer but blood sweat and tears for dealing with Intel CPU's security problems.

Or as a Chinese developer told him recently about these problems: "This is a sad talk." The sadness is that the same Intel CPU speculative execution problems, which led to Meltdown and Spectre security issues, are alive and well and causing more trouble.

The problem with how Intel designed speculative execution is that, while anticipating the next action for the CPU to take does indeed speed things up, it also exposes data along the way. That's bad enough on your own server, but when it breaks down the barriers between virtual machines (VM)s in cloud computing environments, it's a security nightmare.

Oct 29 08:03

Mozilla Provides Workaround for Firefox 70 Not Loading Sites

Mozilla provides a temporary workaround for Firefox 70 not properly loading websites and page elements until a fix will be issued with a future release.

The workaround requires you to change the preference using the following procedure:

In the address bar, type about:config and press Enter.
A warning page may appear. Click I accept the risk! to continue to the about:config page.
Search for
Change the preference to false.

Oct 29 05:10

Owners of old iPhones and iPads MUST update their software by midnight on Saturday or risk having their devices forced offline, Apple warns

People using an iPhone 5 need to update its software or their phone will stop working on Sunday.

Apple has warned that from 12am on Sunday, November 3, iPhone 5 owners won't be able to connect to the internet unless they have iOS 10.3.4.

Web browsing in Safari, emails, App Store, iCloud and maps will all go offline for people who don't keep their phone up to date.

Those with the iPhone 4S and various older iterations of the iPad will also need to update the software on their devices.

The problem has stemmed from a GPS issue which only occurs once every 19 years and happened in April, causing some devices to lose track of time.

Oct 28 18:16

Blogger and WordPress Sites Hacked to Show Sextortion Scams

Scammers are hacking into WordPress and Blogger sites and using the hacked accounts to create posts stating that the blogger's computer has been hacked and that they were recorded while using adult web sites.

Oct 28 18:09

Amazon is saying nothing about the DDoS attack that took down AWS, but others are

Amazon has still not provided any useful information or insights into the DDoS attack that took down swathes of websites last week, so let’s turn to others that were watching.

One such company is digital monitoring firm Catchpoint, which sent us its analysis of the attack in which it makes two broad conclusions: that Amazon was slow in reacting to the attack, and that tardiness was likely the result of its looking in the wrong places.

Even though cloud providers go to some lengths to protect themselves, the DDoS attack shows that even a company as big as Amazon is vulnerable. Not only that but, thanks to the way that companies use cloud services these days, the attack has a knock-on impact.

“A key takeaway is the ripple effect impact when an outage happens to a third-party cloud service like S3,” Catchpoint noted.

Oct 28 17:08

PG&E Sued By Insurance Companies When “Smart” Meters Caught Fire on California Homes

By B.N. Frank

Many people are aware that California utility company PG&E is being held accountable for playing a significant role in the state’s devastating wildfires.

What many may not know is that insurance companies have taken legal action against PG&E after their “Smart” Meters caught fire on California homes...

Oct 28 15:45

Facebook employees slam Mark Zuckerberg in letter for allowing politicians to ‘weaponize’ the platform with false paid-for ads and warn the false information could influence the 2020 election

Facebook employees are railing against CEO Mark Zuckerberg for controversial ad policies that they say protects political misinformation.

In a letter written and signed by hundreds of workers at the company, employees criticized Facebook and Zuckerberg for the company's refusal to correct misleading information that appears in paid political advertisements.

'Misinformation affects us all. Our current policies on fact-checking people in political office, or those running for office, are a threat to what FB stands for,' wrote the employees.

'We strongly object to this policy as it stands. It doesn’t protect voices, but instead allows politicians to weaponize our platform by targeting people who believe that content posted by political figures is trustworthy.'

Oct 28 08:17 free speech video platform rolls out new features: Video categories, channel subscribes, viewer donations and more, the free speech alternative to YouTube, has now rolled out a series of promised new features that help video content creators get more visibility (and build followers).

Oct 28 08:15

US Govt Grants Adobe a License to Continue Venezuela Business

Adobe will not discontinue its Digital Media services in Venezuela after the U.S. government granted the company a license to keep providing all of its services and products.

This follows a previous decision the company announced on October 7 to deactivate all accounts in Venezuela starting October 28 due to the U.S. government's Executive Order 13884 issued on August 5, 2019.

Oct 28 07:47

iPhone 5 users risk losing internet access

Apple iPhone 5 users have been warned to update their software before the weekend or face losing access to the internet.

The technology giant said users who did not download iOS 10.3.4 by 3 November would be locked out of features that rely on the correct time and date.

This includes the App Store, email, web browsing and storage service iCloud.

While it is not the latest version of the operating system, it is the most up-to-date available for the model.