Latest Technology News

GNOME 3.24 Linux desktop environment is here

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My absolute favorite desktop environment for Linux is GNOME. Quite frankly, if the DE went away tomorrow, I might have to rethink my use of Linux entirely. Yeah, I am that passionate about it. Environment aside, the GNOME also includes a collection of applications, creating a coherent user experience.

Today, GNOME reaches version 3.24, code-named "Portland." While it looks great, it is hardly a monumental change. Moving from 3.22, we see some new features and applications, but on the UI front, there are improved icons too. In fact, they have doubled from 256×256px to 512×512px! Not only can these icons scale larger, but they are more vibrant and intricate too. Overall, there are many new aspects of GNOME to excite fans.

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User-Agent based attacks are a low-key risk that shouldn't be overlooked

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Old, unpatched vulnerabilities allow hackers to take over systems using the User-Agent string -- an elementary part of virtually every HTTP request.

It is a known fact that while the majority of vulnerabilities discovered or reported are fixed by the vendor and a patch is issued, many systems end up not being patched in a timely manner or even at all, for that matter. There are many possible reasons for that, the most common being:

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DoubleAgent exploit uses Windows' Microsoft Application Verifier to hijack antivirus software

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Security researchers at Cybellum have revealed details of a zero-day exploit that makes it possible for an attacker to take full control of antivirus software. The technique can be used to take control of just about any application, but by focusing on antivirus tools, the illusion of safety offered to victims means they are likely to be completely unaware of what is happening.

The attack works by exploiting the Microsoft Application Verifier that's built into Windows. It is possible to replace the tool with a custom verifier which can then be used to inject malicious code into any chosen application. A number of well-known antivirus tools -- including Avast, BitDefender, ESET, Kaspersky, and F-Secure -- are vulnerable, while patches have been released for others.

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Three penetration testing tips to out-hack hackers

Hacker silhouette

It should come as no surprise that hackers have been busy lately. According to my go-to resource on hacking stats, the Identify Theft Resource Center, breaches jumped from 780 in 2015 to 1,093 in 2016. Is there a way to take a proactive approach to data security that doesn’t involved investing in more firewalls or virus protection software and ultimately get to the real-source of vulnerabilities?

Yes and yes. The answer is penetration testing, or pen testing for short. It’s a white-hat approach that challenges organizations to expose the vulnerabilities inside their own systems by understanding how a cybercriminal could exploit their internal information.

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Three UK suffers new data breach

Three

A couple of bizarre incidents happened to Three users in the UK recently, and the media are suspecting the company might be facing a new data breach.

According to a report by The Guardian, some customers, logging into their accounts, were "presented with the names, addresses, phone numbers and call histories of strangers."

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OnePlus 3T gets Midnight Black color option as new limited edition

OnePlus 3T midnight black back

When OnePlus unveiled an all-black OnePlus 3T, dubbed the "colette edition," I did not believe that this color option would be available again in the future. It was, after all, a limited edition. As it turns out, OnePlus had other plans. This is one of those times I'm glad I was wrong.

OnePlus just took the wraps off the Midnight Black OnePlus 3T, which, like the colette edition, is also a limited edition. However, unlike the previously mentioned model, OnePlus fans will have a better chance of getting one, as there will be more units offered and they will be more easily available.

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Businesses make automated security a part of DevOps

Security Lock

Mature development organizations make sure automated security is built into their DevOps practice early, everywhere and at scale, according to a new report by Sonatype.

The report, entitled 2017 DevSecOps Community Survey, is based on a poll of 2,292 IT professionals, and also says IT organisations continue to struggle with data breaches.

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Bear 1.1 unveils loads of improvements, including improved tagging, export

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Shiny Frog has released Bear 1.1, its Evernote-baiting, notetaking app for Mac and iOS. Mac users gain Touch Bar support and wider drag-and-drop support, while iOS users can now take "smart" web clippings using the app extension.

Although Bear operates a two-tier platform, with free and Pro licenses available, the update treats both equally, providing new features for both groups of users as it aims to stake a claim in the note organizing marketplace.

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Now you can broadcast live to Facebook from your desktop or your favorite games

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Facebook Live has been with us for a little while now, but it has been limited by the fact that it has only been possible to broadcast from mobile devices. Today this changes as Facebook opens up broadcasting to desktop and laptop users too.

On top of this, Facebook is adding the ability to stream from other software or external hardware. This has many uses, but the social network suggests that gamers might like to use it to broadcast their gaming sessions live online.

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New Google report shows Android security is improving

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Today Google published its third annual Android Security Year in Review, the day after the launch of the developer preview of Android O. Looking back at 2016, the report details the steps the company has taken to keep Android users and their data safe. Google cites a crackdown on Potentially Harmful Apps as a particular success, and points to the fact that security updates have been issued to 735 million devices.

But it’s not all good news. Many of the security improvements are to be found in Android 7 Nougat which is only available on a limited number of devices. Additionally, a large number of handsets are not eligible for the monthly security updates the company pushes out.

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Malware campaign targets users in Latin America

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A modified version of a threat that first appeared in 2014 is successfully targeting users in Latin America according to the SPEAR research team at threat prevention specialist Cylance.

Attackers using the El Machete malware -- first identified by Kaspersky -- have moved to new C2 (command and control) infrastructure, based largely around dynamic DNS domains, in addition to making some minimal changes to the malware in order to evade signature-based detection.

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IBM announces price-competitive cold storage solutions

ibm

IBM is jumping on the cold storage bandwagon, offering a service and trying to take Amazon, Microsoft, and Google a piece of their pie. The company recently announced the launch of IBM Cloud Object Storage Cold Vault, which basically stores data that only needs to be accessed every once in a while.

There will also be a cold storage service with "pay as you use" model, called IBM Cloud Object Storage Flex, coming later this year.

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OnePlus announces early access program for official OxygenOS builds

OnePlus 3 front

OnePlus is among the few smartphone makers that let their fans test software updates before they're released to the public. Its beta program has two such "streams", or rings if you prefer, which give members access to closed or open betas. But now the company is adding one more.

OnePlus just announced the MP Early Access Program, a new stream to test builds that it deems ready for prime time before they're pushed to the official -- MP -- channel. Why? Simple: to catch any bugs that might have slipped through.

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Google Maps gets real-time location sharing

Google Maps Samsung Smarthone

When it comes to Google, many people are concerned about privacy, and rightfully so. Look, the company makes money through advertising and data collection. In other words, if you rely on the search giant's services, such as Gmail and Maps, the company probably knows a lot about you -- including the locations that you visit.

While exposing your location is normally something people try to avoid from a security perspective, today, Google is making it easier to do so. No, the search giant isn't doing it without your permission -- it is actually a very cool new feature. The company is enabling Google Maps users to share their real-time location with others. The reason that this is cool (and not scary) is that the user can choose with whom they share the location, and for how long it is shared. Your phone will even keep you notified that you are sharing your location -- just in case your plans change and you forget to shut it off. In other words, it is totally optional.

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SuperPhoto enhances your pics with hundreds of fun effects

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SuperPhoto is a fun Android, iOS and Windows app which can revamp your photos with more than 300 effects in the free build, 1,500+ if you buy the full version.

There are filters to turn your pictures into works of art: Painting, Stencil, Banksy, Pencil Drawing, Stylize, Pastel, Cartoonize, Warhol, more.
The program can frame all or part of your image on a cube, a bubble, in a banknote, on a t-shirt, in a newspaper ad, in a TV, and more.

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