Latest Technology News

Visits to high risk apps and websites increase 161 percent

endpoint security

There's been a huge shift to remote working this year, but new data shows that there has also been a 161 percent increase in visits to high-risk apps and websites as personal use of managed devices has nearly doubled.

The study from cloud security company Netskope finds that 64 percent of workers are now remote. Along with this increase in remote work has come an 80 percent increase in the use of collaboration apps as remote workers seek to remain connected with their colleagues

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Never forget another password with Bitwarden 1.20

The twin dilemma: how to create strong, secure passwords without forgetting them? The solution is obvious: make use of a password manager. They’re common as muck these days, but our favorite by far is the brilliant Bitwarden.

A quick precis of why we love Bitwarden: it has all the features you’d expect in a good password manager -- easy and convenient to use, while locking your sensitive data away in a watertight vault using end-to-end 256-bit AES encryption that ensures it remains private. There’s 2FA support for extra security, and it works across all your devices: desktop, mobile and browser.

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Enterprise IT staff spend one month a year managing identity and access

password on tablet

Anyone who's worked on a help desk or in tech support will know that a high percentage of requests relate to granting access to systems or resetting passwords.

In fact IT personnel expend a full month of work (21 days) each year on mundane identity and access management (IAM) tasks such as resetting passwords and tracking app usage, according to a study by password management company 1Password.

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ISPs are hit hardest by COVID-19 disruption

Coronavirus

We've already seen how lockdowns have been affecting internet speeds around the world, but what other impact has the pandemic been having on the web?

A new Internet Performance Report from ThousandEyes looks at the availability and performance of internet-related networks, including those of Internet Service Providers (ISPs), public cloud, Content Delivery Network (CDN) and Domain Name System (DNS) providers.

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Malware attacks using machine identities continue to increase

Attack button

Malware attacks using machine identities doubled from 2018 to 2019 and have increased eight fold over the last decade.

New threat analysis from machine identity management company Venafi looks at security incidents and third-party reports in the public domain, including high-profile campaigns such as, TrickBot, Skidmap, Kerberods and CryptoSink.

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How lockdown has affected global broadband speeds

Broadband speed dial

Average broadband speeds during COVID-19 lockdown measures that limited people's activities dropped by an average of 6.31 percent globally, according to a new report.

Internet advice site Cable.co.uk analyzed data from the Oxford Coronavirus Government Response Tracker (OxCGRT), and over 364 million broadband speed tests courtesy of M-Lab to compare average internet speeds in 114 countries both during and outside of their most stringent COVID-19 lockdown periods.

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Money (That's what email attackers want)

Cybercriminal with cash

A new report from email security and cyber resilience company Mimecast, released to coincide with this year's virtual Black Hat conference, reveals that threat actors are motivated by monetary gain more than stealing data or intellectual property.

It also finds that COVID-19 continues to be a major theme in current attacks, especially in certain sectors, and that opportunistic and malware-based campaigns are being launched at volumes never seen before, with manufacturing, retail/wholesale, finance/insurance, and media and publishing being the hardest hit.

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First time SOC staff frustrated by routine tasks

Frustrated computer user

Half of first-time security analysts working in Security Operations Centers (SOCs) plan to leave after just three months in the job, according to a study from SIRP Labs.

None of them plan to remain in their current role for longer than 18 months, and of all the 250 security analysts interviewed nearly half (48 percent) are considering leaving their role, within 11 months. The average amount of time spent in the same post is just 30 months.

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Using the HOSTS file to block Windows 10 telemetry? Microsoft now flags it as a severe security risk

Microsoft building in California

The telemetry features that are built into Windows 10 have people falling into one of a few camps. There are those who don't even know what telemetry is, those who know but don’t care that Microsoft is gathering data from their computer, and those who know what it is and consider it to be a massive invasion of privacy.

For anyone who counts themselves in this last group, there are numerous settings, tools and techniques that can be used to block telemetry in Windows 10. One of the more ingenious is making use of the HOSTS file (used to resolve hostnames), but now Microsoft has updated its Defender tool so this is detected as a "severe" risk, specifically "SettingsModifier:Win32/HostsFileHijack".

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Alexa, play a podcast on Pandora

Podcasts have been steadily gaining in popularity over the last several years, but thanks to COVID-19, it feels like interest has exploded recently. After all, people are stuck indoors -- whether unemployed or working from home -- and listening to a podcast is a great way to pass the time. Don't forget, Spotify recently paid Joe Rogan $100 million to get his podcast, The Joe Rogan Experience, on its platform exclusively.

Pandora may not be the most popular platform for listening to podcasts, but some people do, in fact, use it for that purpose. If you are one of those people, I have great news -- you can now start and listen to your favorite podcasts on Pandora using Amazon Alexa.

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Google Pixel 4a makes OnePlus Nord irrelevant -- if you don't care about 5G

If you are a hardcore Android fan, you should buy a Pixel. Google’s phones may not always have the best specs, but they do offer the purest experience. They are the only way to truly experience Android as Google intends it, including timely OS updates. They are free of bloat, unlocked, and often very affordable. Best of all, they offer a remarkable photography experience.

Today, Google officially announces the highly anticipated Pixel 4a. It isn’t a flagship device, but with a $349 price, the Android 10 smartphone is an amazing value -- as long as you don’t care about 5G.

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The Linux Foundation aims to improve open source software security

open source

Open source software has become commonplace in all sorts of environments. But its very nature means that those responsible for their users' or organization's security need to be able to understand and verify its security.

Today The Linux Foundation is announcing the formation of the Open Source Security Foundation (OpenSSF). This is a cross-industry collaboration that brings together leaders to improve the security of open source software by building a broader community with targeted initiatives and best practices.

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Get the new Windows 10 Start menu -- and other Insider features -- without being an Insider

Being a Windows Insider obviously carries some risks. You may install a build which doesn’t play at all nicely on your PC, resulting in features breaking, or worse. The plus side is you do get to try out cool new features before anyone else.

Recently Microsoft introduced an updated Start menu with theme-aware tiles, and an improved Alt-Tab experience which shows all open tabs from Microsoft Edge. Although you officially need to be an Insider to enjoy these, there is a sneaky workaround that will allow you to get them without having to join the program.

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New platform helps businesses make better security decisions

security meter

Businesses were already facing increasingly complex security environments thanks to cloud use and digital transformation projects, and with the advent of COVID-19 things have become more difficult still.

Breach and attack simulation specialist AttackIQ is launching its new Security Optimization Platform to equip cybersecurity leaders with better insights and help them make better decisions and improve business outcomes.

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HyperX launches affordable Cloud Core Gaming Headset + 7.1

If it feels like HyperX releases a lot of gaming headsets, that's because it does. Yeah, Kingston's gaming brand seems to like having a large offering of headsets for some reason. While that can be confusing for some consumers, ultimately, having choice and a diverse product line is a good thing. It ensures there are models for all budgets and needs.

Today, HyperX launches the Cloud Core Gaming Headset + 7.1. As the name implies, it offers virtual 7.1 surround sound. The wired headset looks to be attractive and comfortable too. It even comes with a USB breakout box with controls. Best of all, it is very much affordable at less than $70.

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