BetaNews Staff

The greatest threats to the Android ecosystem


All mobile apps can be hacked. A group of hackers with enough time and dedication can gain access to, and reverse engineer, even the most secure app environment.

Android represents 80 percent of the smartphone OS market, according to ABI research, and its open development environment exposes the platform to certain unique threats from hackers and malware.

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Why C++ is the perfect choice for modern app development


It feels a bit ironic to be discussing, in 2014, if C++ is a viable, or more importantly, a great choice for multi-device, multi-platform app development. It’s ironic in the sense that despite the attention Objective-C, Java, and C# get for app development, most of the software we use on a daily basis is written in C/C++ and after all these years represents the largest community of developers.

There are many reasons to use C++ for your current and future app development and I will discuss five key reasons after a brief history.

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Search engine Indexeus can tell you if your passwords are available to hackers online


While the rest of the world is debating the rights and wrongs of the "right to be forgotten" in the European Union, one Portuguese entrepreneur with remarkably few scruples has been making a fast buck out of the idea. Indexeus, designed by 23-year-old Jason Relinquo of Portugal, is a search engine that boasts a searchable database of "over 200 million entries available to our customers".

The site allows anyone to search through millions of records from some of the larger data breaches of late -- including the recent massive breaches at Adobe and Yahoo! -- listing huge amounts of information such as email addresses, usernames, passwords, Internet address, physical addresses, birthdays and other information that may be associated with those accounts.

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How to keep your smartphone safe in the age of industrialized hacking


The use of mobile devices for work purposes is on the up, creating all sorts of new opportunities for the modern worker. In fact, according to a recent report from Juniper Research, the number of employee-owned smartphones and tablets in the work place could exceed one billion by 2018. It is now possible to access your company resources whenever you need to, whether working from your living room, sat in a restaurant or chilling in the park.

When you do need to work from the office, smartphones and tablets are often a lot more convenient to use than a bulky laptop. The benefits of having a computer that fits in your pocket or bag are hard to ignore, especially for people who are always going from meeting to meeting.

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Honda's Asimo robot can now run, jump and recognize voices


The latest upgrade to Honda's Asimo has given the robot enhanced intelligence, the ability to run 5.6mph and enabled it to perform complex sign language.

Asimo was first introduced in 2000 and is seen as one of the leading attempts at creating a humanoid robot.

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Dell Latitude E5540: a well-specified corporate laptop [Review]


In all the furor over super-slim Ultrabooks and magically transforming hybrids, it's sometimes easy to forget that some people just need a basic portable. The Dell Latitude E5540 is aimed at those people. It's not a fundamentally exciting notebook by any stretch of the imagination, but it could be just what your company needs as a standard-issue everyday workhorse.

The design of the E5540 is decidedly inconspicuous, with matte black plastic the order of the day all round. This is very much a sober corporate notebook that won't cause any commotion in the meeting room. The full width of the 15in chassis has been used to provide a separate keypad alongside the keyboard, as well as discrete volume control buttons at the top. The keys are full-sized and have a comfortably firm action, making touch typing for long durations very pleasant. However, the keyboard isn't backlit, which is an unusual omission for a work-oriented laptop.

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US Secret Service warns of keyloggers at hotel business centers


Hotel operators were warned in a non-public advisory from the US Secret Service to be alert to the possibility of maliciously planted malware in their business center PCs.

Brian Krebs of KrebsOnSecurity reports that an advisory had mentioned the arrest of several suspects accused of infecting several major hotel computers in the Dallas area. In the above-mentioned case the criminals used stolen credit cards to register at the hotels, whereupon they made use of the business centers and downloaded key logger software which captured log-in information for services used by other guests -- including online banking data.

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How to prepare a business for the Internet of Things


If you follow what's trending in technology, you will by now know that the Internet of Things (IoT) is expected to create new possibilities for connected technologies, along with IT resource churn, as companies struggle to securely connect a deluge of devices, sensors and objects to the corporate network. According to IDC, there will be more than 212 billion devices connected to the web by 2020, including over 30 billion connected autonomous things.

The IoT hype focuses on how Internet-connected cars, homes, offices, appliances and gadgets will transform how we work, play and live; sensors in water bottles, web-enabled tennis rackets and every kind of conceivable wearable will capture the spotlight.

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Miniature Hero, Underpass, Badger, Rolling Thunder and Angry Pirate -- just some of GCHQ's secret spy programs


The hacking and spying techniques of the UK's Government Communications headquarters (GCHQ) have been exposed in the latest leak by Edward Snowden. The wide-ranging techniques include invasive methods for online surveillance, as well as some of the very techniques that the US and UK have harshly prosecuted young online activists for employing, including distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks and "call bombing".

The document is set out in a massive Wikipedia-style archive used by GCHQ to internally discuss its surveillance and online deception activities.

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40 percent of smartphones will have flexible displays by 2018


A new report suggests that smartphone manufacturers will be bending over backwards to create flexible screens in the next few years.

According to market research firm DisplaySearch, flexible smartphones will constitute 40 percent of the global smartphone market in 2018. That's a whopping increase from just 0.2 percent in 2013.

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Firms need to be ready for wearable technology


According to the Ponemon Institute, cybercrime costs the average UK business around £3 million a year. As applications, platforms and devices grow, so does the number of opportunities for hackers to develop sophisticated attacks. As wearable technology begins to infiltrate the workplace this will be yet another concern for IT, and another opportunity for the hacker.

Add this to the long list of concerns that IT Admins already face: Mobile devices, laptops, desktops, and servers all need to be maintained from an update perspective or companies increase their risk of being exposed. Moreover, different users require different technologies, complicating how IT manages the IT estate. With a plethora of new office technologies surfacing and an expectation from users to work from the devices that make them productive, how do IT departments prevent vulnerabilities across their estate?

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Apple's cut-price eBay store returns


Apple’s mysterious eBay Store is out of the wilderness and back online selling iPhones at prices that undercut the company’s own online refurbished store and pre-empt a new iPhone launch in September.

It’s being reported by Apple Insider that the storefront, which first appeared in 2012, is back on eBay’s site and selling "Apple Certified" iPhone 5 devices in a range of specifications -- something even Apple’s official refurbished site isn’t doing.

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Could a cloud integrator be your business's best option?


Three quarters of UK businesses are now officially "in the cloud" in one form or another. The universal, horizontal benefits of agility and utility are undeniable and compelling, but businesses still need to be able to translate these into competitive advantage.

Getting the most from your cloud investment can be a challenge. The fact is that not all clouds are created equal, and depending on your drivers, required outcomes and preferences, some will be a far better fit than others.

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Samsung 850 Pro: The best SSD of 2014? [Review]


At first glance, the untrained eye may see very little difference between Samsung's newest SSD, the 850 Pro, and its predecessor, the widely lauded 840 Pro. A black shell that clings on to the same dimensions of the previous model, the 850's only obvious distinguishing feature is an understated red square occupying the space where the 840's orange one once sat.

The differences between the two, however, are colossal. Under the hood, Samsung has spent the last year prepping its revolutionary 3D V-NAND technology that aims to alleviate the frustrating constraints associated with shrinking NAND lithography down to ever-smaller process nodes. Until now, most manufacturers would shrink the die, thus increasing bit densities, in a bid to reduce cost and offer higher capacity. However this was limited by 2D planar architecture, and Samsung with its 3D V-NAND technology has come up with a new approach of stacking cells instead of shrinking them.

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Yahoo's new mapping algorithm lets you take the happy route home


Yahoo has developed a GPS algorithm that allows users to select a route based on how beautiful it is, instead of time or distance.

Yahoo Labs and the University of Torino conducted the Shortest Path to Happiness study in order to offer "emotionally pleasant" routes to users.

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