Latest Technology News

Hackers exploit serious unpatched Netgear router DNS vulnerability


Netgear is yet to patch a publicized vulnerability that affects its routers. The security hole, which is described as 'serious', has already been exploited but Netgear is yet to act. The exploit allows attackers to change the affected routers' DNS settings and it is estimated that over 10,000 routers have already been attacked.

Netgear had been informed of the vulnerability by two security companies, but is still to release a firmware update to plug the hole. The exploit was privately revealed back in July by Swiss company Compass Security, but separately discovered and publicly published by researchers at Shellshock Labs in September who explain that it allows for "full remote unauthenticated root access" of routers.

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LoopPay hack does not affect Samsung Pay users


Samsung has hit a spot of trouble, with the news that LoopPay, a US-based subsidiary of the company, has been targeted by hackers.

This is particularly important because as the New York Times reports, LoopPay’s magnetic secure transmission technology is the cornerstone of Samsung’s mobile payment system.

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ARCHOS announces the privacy-centric GranitePhone to take on the Blackphone


Smartphone owners will often argue over which mobile platform is the most secure, but if you're looking for the ultimate security, you need to step away from the mainstream. Silent Circle is probably the best known off-the-beaten-track company thanks to its ultra-secure Blackphone, but now there is a new contender: the GranitePhone by SIKUR.

Just as the Blackphone 2 runs the custom-made Silent OS 2.0, so the GranitePhone is driven by Graphite OS. It's a handset aimed at not only governments and businesses looking to secure their communications and data, but also individuals who are particularly concerned about their privacy.

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Dell might snap up EMC for $50 billion

Dell logo

A merger between Dell, private-equity firm Silver Lake and EMC might be on the cards, as the storage giant considers a few options. The merger would cost Dell $50 billion (£32 billion), making it the largest single-tech acquisition ever.

The move does make sense for Dell, as it moves from a consumer PC manufacturer to a data storage, security and enterprise service provider. EMC would be a large boost for the company’s revenue and add a large clientele to the portfolio.

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Lastpass sold to LogMeIn -- should Linux users panic?


Cloud-based password managers are amazing solutions for keeping your login credentials safe and secure. I used to trust Google Chrome for this, but I did not want to be tied to one browser. Ultimately, I settled on Lastpass. My reason was simple -- it supports Linux, as it is entirely browser-based. The beautiful 1Password, and other alternatives, do not work on Chromebooks or my favorite open source distributions, sadly.

Today, however, Lastpass drops a bombshell, announcing it has been bought by the company LogMeIn. I am not familiar with this new owner, but many people are unhappy -- the comment section on the announcement is full of outrage. If you only use Windows, Mac, iOS or Android, there are alternatives, so you can switch if things get bad. Users of Chrome OS, Ubuntu, Fedora and other such operating systems? Not so much. Should we Linux users panic?

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Mozilla to drop NPAPI plugins from Firefox


Mozilla will kill "most" NPAPI plugins in Firefox almost two years after Google took the same action with Chrome. Back in September 2014, Google announced that NPAPI support would be removed starting in January 2015. Mozilla is now playing catch-up, and plans to end NPAPI support by the end of 2016.

When Google announced its decision, speed, stability, and security were cited as reasons for ditching plugins, and Mozilla is taking much the same line. The company also points out that many features and functions that only used to be possible through the use of NPAPI plugins can now be achieved through native web APIs. But what is this going to mean for users?

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Uber blames Lyft CTO for data theft

finger point pointing accuse accusation

Uber is laying blame for the February 2015 hack and data theft on none other than its main competitor -- Lyft.

Back in February 2015, someone broke into Uber’s servers and stole data of more than 50,000 its drivers, and now Uber claims the thief’s IP address points to Lyft’s chief of technology Chris Lambert.

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Who's looking at your screen and how can you stop them? [Q&A]

Screen snooping

We can all remember seeing kids at school hunched over their desks to prevent anyone seeing what they were writing on their test papers. But when it comes to hiding sensitive information on your screen things aren’t that easy.

How big a problem is eavesdropping in this way and what can be done to guard against it? To find out, we spoke to Dr Bill Anderson, Chief Product Officer of technology company OptioLabs which has just announced a collaboration with AMD to help solve the issue.

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Hide data inside JPGs with Free File Camouflage


Image steganography is a clever technique for hiding files inside JPEGs, so that the contents appear unchanged, but anyone who knows the secret can easily extract its contents.

Free File Camouflage isn’t so clever -- in fact, it uses the most basic approach we’ve ever seen -- but there are still a few reasons why you might want to give it a try.

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US businesses fear Safe Harbor dismissal will affect European operations

scared frighten fear cat

Small and medium-sized enterprises (SME) in the US are saying that the suspension of the Safe Harbor law might mean end of overseas operations for them, Reuters reported on Thursday.

The Safe Harbor law allowed companies in the United States to transport data regarding its European users to the States. It was struck down recently, by the European Court of Justice.

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The benefits of moving from VMware to the cloud

cloud migrate

VMware has long been a favorite with businesses. But there's evidence that with the advent of second generation cloud many companies are considering a move away from VMware to a more flexible option that gives them better control over configuration and costs.

IaaS specialist ProfitBricks is helping businesses migrate their systems from VMware to the cloud and has a lot of experience in the field.

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Panic over: iOS adblockers fail to trigger the 'adblockolypse'


For a company that doesn’t rely on advertising to make its money, Apple was never going to lose anything by allowing adblockers into the App Store unlike, say, Google.

Still, the recent move has certainly proved divisive. On one hand, websites that rely on advertising to survive have been bracing themselves for a loss of revenue, while many iPhone users have welcomed the change. Web pages reportedly load quicker in Safari without adverts, and if you’re on a capped mobile data plan you’ll benefit from the savings created by not downloading ads. The big question was always whether the move would impact advertisers in any meaningful way, and the early indications are that it has certainly made a difference, although it’s far from the "adblockolypse" many predicted.

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Own an Xbox 360? Play online for free this weekend

Microsoft Corporation

Gaming consoles have become exceedingly more powerful over the years, offering more realistic graphics. While better-looking games are appreciated, I would argue that the more important advancement is online multiplayer. Thanks to Xbox Live Gold, playing games against people all over the world could not be easier. True, Microsoft's consoles were not the first to gain online multiplayer support, but the company was arguably the first to get it right.

While Xbox One is all the rage nowadays, its predecessor, the 360, is still a great console. In fact, its low price and huge game library makes it a very smart buy. If you own an Xbox 360, but haven't invested in Xbox Live Gold (are you crazy?), today is your lucky day. Starting today, and through Sunday (October 9-11), you can play online for free.

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Microsoft is setting Lumia 950, Lumia 950 XL up to fail [Update]

Failure Fail Grade F

Microsoft appears to be making sure that its new Windows 10 Mobile flagships, Lumia 950 and Lumia 950 XL, have no chance of succeeding in the fierce high-end smartphone market. The software giant has, once again, made the terrible mistake of going down the carrier exclusivity path, which will hurt sales across major markets like the US and Europe and significantly affect the platform's credibility.

Microsoft has decided that its long-term Windows Phone carrier partner, AT&T, should be the sole mobile operator to offer Lumia 950, while in Europe the flagship smartphone will only be carried by Deutsche Telekom (and, hopefully, its subsidiaries). Even worse, there seems to be no talk of carrier availability for Lumia 950 XL in US. And you wonder why Windows Phone's market share just can't seem to grow...

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Kiss goodbye to the Control Panel in Windows 10, its days are numbered


For Windows stalwarts, the move to Windows 10 has meant embracing a number of changes. Since Windows 8, Microsoft has been keen to push its modern interface, and this is a drive that continues with renewed strength in Windows 10. In ushering in the new, the old has to be let go -- and one of the next features for the chop is the Control Panel.

At the moment, Windows 10 users have something of a strange, split experience when customizing the operating system and changing settings. Some things are handled by the old-fashioned Control Panel, others by the Settings app. Microsoft's Gabe Aul and Brandon LeBlanc have made it clear that the Control Panel is due to die.

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