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Android Ransomware Hits Smart TVs
Posted by News Fetcher on June 13 '16 at 11:54 AM
By manishs from Slashdot's more-security-woes department:
Reader Trailrunner7 writes: Security researchers have discovered a variant of the FLocker Android ransomware that not only infects mobile devices, but also can infect smart TVs running certain versions of the operating system. FLocker ransomware has been active for more than a year now, and it is many ways a typical piece of mobile ransomware. It is designed to scare victims into paying a ransom -- $200 in this case -- by locking the infected device and throwing up a screen that accuses the victim of some fictitious crime. The ransomware doesn't appear to encrypt files on an infected device, but it locks the screen so the user can't open any other apps or take any other actions until paying the ransom. Researchers at Trend Micro said they have seen various versions of FLocker over the last year and the activity level of the ransomware has varied. The newest version of the malware, however, includes the ability to infect art TVs, many of which run Android.

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Microsoft Announces Xbox One S, Project Scorpio Gaming Consoles
Posted by News Fetcher on June 13 '16 at 11:54 AM
By manishs from Slashdot's new-console department:
Details of Microsoft's rumored new console have dropped ahead of the company's conference at E3 tradeshow Monday. It appears the long-anticipated smaller and more powerful variant of company's current console is real. According to a leaked press render, Microsoft will be announcing the Xbox One S (where S stands for Slim) at the gaming event. The Xbox One S will be 40 percent smaller than the Xbox One, and pack in more powerful processing and graphics muscle. According to the render, the Xbox One S will come with a 2TB hard drive, and feature support for 4K video playback and High Dynamic Range. According to separate reports, the Xbox One S is likely to be priced at $399 for the 2TB variant. Update: 06/13 16:58 GMT by M : Microsoft has officially taken the wraps off the product. It will be available for purchase starting August. AnandTech has more details.Also at its event, Microsoft announced Xbox Play Anywhere. The Verge reports: It lets you buy participating cross-platform games once, and own them on both platforms. If you buy a game on Xbox One it will simply appear in your Windows 10 library, and vice versa, and your saved games, achievements, and other information will carry over between the two versions.Microsoft also unveiled "Project Scorpio", a high-powered Xbox One launching next year that is capable of supporting 4K content as well as virtual reality headsets. "We are creating more choice in your gaming experience than ever before," said Xbox chief Phil Spencer to open Microsoft's E3 conference. No word on its pricing yet.

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Apple Announces Its New Desktop OS macOS Sierra Featuring Siri, Apple Pay
Posted by News Fetcher on June 13 '16 at 10:34 AM
By manishs from Slashdot's new-os department:
After playing with the names of cats and a few California landmarks, Apple at WWDC 2016 announced that its desktop operating system will now be called macOS -- and its first version update is macOS Sierra. It comes with a range of new features including Siri, the digital voice assistant. The move comes roughly a year and a half after Microsoft brought its Cortana virtual assistant to desktop platform Windows 10. Sierra also supports Apple Pay payment service via Safari web browser. Ars Technica reports about some other features of macOS Sierra: Universal Clipboard answers a longstanding complaint of Mac and iOS users -- copying and pasting now works automatically between an iOS device and a desktop Mac device. iCloud now plays an expanded sync role, too, letting you move files and folders from Mac to Mac or from Mac to iOS. Another new feature called Optimized Storage can sweep through old documents and files and push them to iCloud, clearing up local disk space for other uses. It also can automatically dump your trash, clear your web history, and do some other behind the scenes sweeps. Tabs are coming to more and more applications. Federighi said that Apple wants tabs on all multi-window applications, and says that tabs can be flipped on without developer modification.

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Older Android Wear Watches Will Miss Out On the v2.0 Update
Posted by News Fetcher on June 13 '16 at 10:34 AM
By manishs from Slashdot's messed-up-system department:
An anonymous reader writes: Google hasn't officially made any announcements about what watch hardware will receive the Android Wear 2.0 update when it's released later this year, but it looks like at least a few of the first-generation watches will be missing out. LG says it has no plans to update the original LG G Watch, and now Motorola says it plans to drop support for the original Moto 360. Given Samsung's disinterest in continuing on with new Android Wear hardware, the future doesn't look rosy for the Samsung Gear Live, either. This news comes just two years after Android Wear and many of these watches were originally introduced.

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Symantec Will Acquire Controversial Surveillance Firm Blue Coat Systems For $4.65 Billion
Posted by News Fetcher on June 13 '16 at 09:13 AM
By manishs from Slashdot's acquisition-day department:
Reader LichtSpektren writes: Symantec will acquire Blue Coat for approximately $4.65 billion in cash, the security firm announced on Monday. The transaction has been approved by the boards of directors of both companies and is expected to close in the third calendar quarter of 2016. Greg Clark, CEO of Blue Coat, will be appointed CEO of Symantec and join the Symantec Board upon closing of the transaction.If Blue Coat name sounds familiar to you, it is because this controversial surveillance firm was recently in the news for receiving a grant for a powerful encryption certificate by its now-parent company Symantec.

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Microsoft Announces the Xbox One S, Its Smallest Xbox Yet
Posted by News Fetcher on June 13 '16 at 09:13 AM
By manishs from Slashdot's new-console department:
Details of Microsoft's rumored new console have dropped ahead of the company's conference at E3 tradeshow Monday. It appears the long-anticipated smaller and more powerful variant of company's current console is real. According to a leaked press render, Microsoft will be announcing the Xbox One S (where S stands for Slim) at the gaming event. The Xbox One S will be 40 percent smaller than the Xbox One, and pack in more powerful processing and graphics muscle. According to the render, the Xbox One S will come with a 2TB hard drive, and feature support for 4K video playback and High Dynamic Range. According to separate reports, the Xbox One S is likely to be priced at $299, hinting that the original Xbox One will see a price drop later today. We will update the story when things become official. Update: 06/13 16:58 GMT by M : Microsoft has officially taken the wraps off the product. Everything except the Xbox One getting a price cut from the earlier reports is true. AnandTech has more details.

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Hacker Puts 51 Million iMesh Accounts For Sale On Dark Web
Posted by News Fetcher on June 13 '16 at 09:13 AM
By manishs from Slashdot's security-woes department:
An anonymous reader shares a ZDNet report: User accounts for iMesh, a now-defunct file sharing service, are for sale on the dark web. The New York-based music and video sharing company was a peer-to-peer service, which rose to fame in the file sharing era of the early-2000s, riding the waves of the aftermath of the "dotcom" boom. LeakedSource, a breach notification site that allows users to see if their details have been leaked, has obtained the database. The group's analysis of the database shows it contains a little over 51 million accounts. The database, of which a portion was shared with ZDNet for verification, contains user information that dates back to late-2005 when the site launched, including email addresses, passwords (which were hashed and salted with MD5, an algorithm that nowadays is easy to crack), usernames, a user's location and IP address, registration date, and other information -- such as if the account is disabled, or if the account has inbox messages.

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Microsoft's 4K-capable Xbox One S Is 40% Smaller Than Company's Current Gen Console: Report
Posted by News Fetcher on June 13 '16 at 07:55 AM
By manishs from Slashdot's new-console department:
Details of Microsoft's rumored new console have dropped ahead of the company's conference at E3 tradeshow Monday. It appears the long-anticipated smaller and more powerful variant of company's current console is real. According to a leaked press render, Microsoft will be announcing the Xbox One S (where S stands for Slim) at the gaming event. The Xbox One S will be 40 percent smaller than the Xbox One, and pack in more powerful processing and graphics muscle. According to the render, the Xbox One S will come with a 2TB hard drive, and feature support for 4K video playback and High Dynamic Range. According to separate reports, the Xbox One S is likely to be priced at $299, hinting that the original Xbox One will see a price drop later today. We will update the story when things become official.

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Walgreens Cuts Ties With Blood-Test Startup Theranos
Posted by News Fetcher on June 13 '16 at 07:54 AM
By manishs from Slashdot's house-of-cards department:
An anonymous reader writes: Walgreens has announced that it's terminating its partnership with blood-testing startup Theranos. All 40 of the "Theranos Wellness Centers" in Walgreen's Arizona drugstores will be shut down immediately, closing what has been a primary link between Theranos and would-be consumers, and further wounding the troubled startup's revenue. "In light of the voiding of a number of test results, and as the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has rejected Theranos' plan of correction and considers sanctions, we have carefully considered our relationship with Theranos and believe it is in our customers' best interests to terminate our partnership," said Walgreens senior vice president Brad Fluegel in a press statement.

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Legacy Yahoo Messenger App Being Retired
Posted by News Fetcher on June 13 '16 at 06:35 AM
By manishs from Slashdot's rip department:
Reader Irishman writes: Looks like August 5, 2016 is the last day for people clinging to the old desktop version of Yahoo Messenger. A new version is supposedly in the works but otherwise, it will be the mobile app or the web version. From a PCMag report: According to a new announcement from Yahoo, the company is officially killing off the old version of Messenger for good. You might be able to find it to download from some software archive website, but you won't be able to use it to chat with your friends. Yahoo is also switching up how it archives previous conversations. Any conversation histories you currently have (from using Messenger) are archived in Yahoo Mail, but they'll be going away on August 5 as well. You'll be able to export them to your desktop or laptop if you really need to save whatever it is you have typed to your friends.

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Microsoft Is Buying LinkedIn For $26.2 Billion
Posted by News Fetcher on June 13 '16 at 06:35 AM
By manishs from Slashdot's things-Microsoft-buys department:
Microsoft on Monday announced it is acquiring LinkedIn, the social network for professionals, for a whopping sum of $26 billion -- or $196 per share, in cash. The transactions, the companies say, has already been approved by both boards. As part of the agreement, LinkedIn will get to keep its branding, and will become part of Microsoft's productivity and business processes segment. Jeff Weiner will remain CEO of LinkedIn, and now report to Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella. In a statement, Nadella said: The LinkedIn team has grown a fantastic business centered on connecting the world's professionals. Together we can accelerate the growth of LinkedIn, as well as Microsoft Office 365 and Dynamics as we seek to empower every person and organization on the planet.LinkedIn has over 430M members on its network. LinkedIn's purchase marks Microsoft's 196th acquisition of another company -- it is incidentally also its most expensive purchase. Four years ago, Weiner laughed at the idea of a Microsoft buyout. Update: 06/13 13:31 GMT by M :According to Bloomberg, LinkedIn shares surged 49 percent in premarket trading in New York to $194.63. Microsoft fell 3.7 percent to $49.60.

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Interviews: Ask Perl Creator Larry Wall a Question
Posted by News Fetcher on June 13 '16 at 03:53 AM
By EditorDavid from Slashdot's go-ahead-and-ask department:
Larry Wall created the Perl programming language (as well as the Unix utility patch, and the Usenet client rn ). This Christmas saw the release of Perl 6 -- a "sister" language to the original Perl -- that's also free and open source, after 15 years of development. Now Larry has agreed to give some of his time to answer your questions (joking that "I doubt my remarks will be quite as controversial as, say, Donald Trump's, but I suspect I could say an interesting thing or two...") Larry also gave Slashdot's very first interview back in 2002 -- so it's high time we had him back for more heartfelt and entertaining insights. Ask as many questions as you'd like, but please, one per comment. (And feel free to also leave your suggestions for who Slashdot should interview next.) We'll pick the very best questions -- and forward them on to Larry Wall himself.

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Ask Slashdot: Can Technology Prevent Shootings?
Posted by News Fetcher on June 12 '16 at 11:41 PM
By EditorDavid from Slashdot's after-Orlando department:
An anonymous reader wonders if there's a technological response to mass shootings like this Sunday's attack in Orlando, Florida:
We're in for a sadly obvious debate now with all of the usual scapegoats, but instead of focusing on who's to blame, it'd be better to identify some specific actions that could actually generate real increases in public safety going forward... If we're looking for radical changes in the way we live, does technology have a role? Is the answer smart gun technology? Mandatory metal detectors at night clubs? Better data analysis algorithms for the federal government? Bulletproof fabrics?

Share your best ideas in the comments. Could there be a technological solution to the problem of mass shootings?

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Severe Chrome Bug Allowed Arbitrary Code Execution
Posted by News Fetcher on June 12 '16 at 08:52 PM
By EditorDavid from Slashdot's browser-bugs department:
An anonymous reader quotes an article from Softpedia:
Google has recently patched a high severity security bug in the Chrome browser that allowed crooks to send malicious code to your browser and take over your entire system... Cisco's Aleksandar Nikolic was the researcher that discovered and reported the issue to Google, who even awarded him $3,000 for his efforts.

Chrome's built-in PDF reader PDFium used an OpenJPEG library to parse JPEG2000 files, and in Chrome it was lacking a crucial heap overflow check, according to a post on the Talos security blog. "By simply viewing a PDF document that includes an embedded jpeg2000 image, the attacker can achieve arbitrary code execution on the victim's system."

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Autonomous Robot Intentionally Hurts People To Make Them Bleed
Posted by News Fetcher on June 12 '16 at 06:15 PM
By EditorDavid from Slashdot's feeling-wounded department:
Asimove's first law of robotics has been broken, writes an anonymous reader, sharing this article from Fast Company:
A Berkeley, California man wants to start a robust conversation among ethicists, philosophers, lawyers, and others about where technology is going -- and what dangers robots will present humanity in the future. Alexander Reben, a roboticist and artist, has built a tabletop robot whose sole mechanical purpose is to hurt people... The harm caused by Reben's robot is nothing more than a pinprick, albeit one delivered at high speed, causing the maximum amount of pain a small needle can inflict on a fingertip.
Though the pinpricks are delivered randomly, "[O]nce something exists in the world, you have to confront it. It becomes more urgent," says the robot's creator. "You can't just pontificate about it.... " But the article raises an interesting question. Is he responsible for the pain which his robot inflicts?

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How ISIS Finally Hacked the Arkansas Library Association
Posted by News Fetcher on June 12 '16 at 04:57 PM
By EditorDavid from Slashdot's little-rocks department:
An anonymous reader shares this story from earlier in the week:

"ISIS hacking crews aren't the most talented hackers you'll find," reports Softpedia, noting that the terrorist group had finally succeeded in leaking the addresses and phone numbers of of over 800 employees of Arkansas high school and college libraries. "The Arkansas State Police is not working on the case," reports Newsweek, "and is leaving the follow-up to the Arkansas Library Association." In addition, "It appears that the FBI does not believe the threat from ISIS's cyber-hacks and lone-wolf directives is serious enough to occupy its resources on each individual." The ISIS hacking crew's previous targets have included a church's website in Michigan, a Japanese dance instructor, and an SEO optimization site which they'd apparently mistaken for Google.
One small-town library director told Newsweek that he personally found their library hack "vaguely amusing".

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World Reacts To The Worst Mass Shooting In U.S. History
Posted by News Fetcher on June 12 '16 at 03:32 PM
By EditorDavid from Slashdot's awfulness-in-Orlando department:
An anonymous reader quotes a report from CNN: Fifty people were killed inside Pulse, a gay nightclub, Orlando Police Chief John Mina and other officials said Sunday morning, just hours after a shooter opened fire in the deadliest mass shooting in U.S. history. At least 53 more people were injured, Mina said. Police have shot and killed the gunman, he told reporters. The shooter is not from the Orlando area, Mina said. He has been identified as Omar Saddiqui Mateen, 29, of Fort Pierce, about 120 miles southeast of Orlando, two law enforcement officials tell CNN. Orlando authorities said they consider the violence an act of domestic terror. The FBI is involved. While investigators are exploring all angles, they "have suggestions the individual has leanings towards (Islamic terrorism), but right now we can't say definitely..." In the discussion on this submission, Slashdot readers reported that Reddit is among the sites that have removed some discussions about the shooter's identity, with one reader even reporting "Posts directing people where and how to give blood have been removed."

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NASA And The UAE Will Collaborate On A Journey To Mars
Posted by News Fetcher on June 12 '16 at 02:04 PM
By EditorDavid from Slashdot's space-diplomacy department:
An anonymous reader quotes an article from Gizmodo:
The United States and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) announced an agreement Sunday that would allow the two nations to collaborate on matters of space and aeronautics research, including the potential journey to Mars... "NASA is leading an ambitious journey to Mars that includes partnerships with the private sector and many international partners," said NASA Administrator Charles Bolden. "I am confident this new framework agreement with the UAE Space Agency will help advance this journey."
Bolden recently wrote on his blog that "Every single nation can play a part in our journey to Mars, in our scientific journey of discovery and in the next phase of humanity's development as a spacefaring people." UAE Space Agency Chairman Dr. Khalifa Al Romaithi added today that "we believe that working alongside international partners is the best way to accelerate the development of space technologies and the space sector within the UAE." Vice notes that the UAE has had a small "presence" in outer space for about 30 years, and had been working on becoming the first Arab Islamic country to send an unmanned probe to Mars.

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Manifesto Calls For 'Rebel Cities' To Reject Surveillance
Posted by News Fetcher on June 12 '16 at 12:41 PM
By EditorDavid from Slashdot's I'll-be-seeing-you department:
Presto Vivace quotes an article from the Coding Rights magazine Oficina Antivigilancia urging readers to "connect with other rebel cities and collectives". It was re-posted on Decentralize.Today by a Guatemalan Human Rights Lawyer (and member of the Creative Commons Board of Directors).
To free ourselves from surveillance and other repressive and authoritarian forms of power...we must immediately activate the mechanisms of law that allow us to oversee the functions of mass surveillance systems in our cities. And do this collectively, in coordination with other cities affected by the problem. Just as there are Smart Cities networks we should form our own Rebel Cities networks where surveillance is rejected and participatory democracy is affirmed, a democracy framed in respect for human rights and diversity, focused on collective solutions, which is the true path to safer cities. Not cameras.

We can then simultaneously activate collaborative mechanisms to prevent their expansion. Make freedom of information requests for public information detailing their costs. Demand studies on their results. Take serious legal action in face of possible illegal uses of surveillance for discriminatory policies. Demand from authorities protection of personal data where it exists, and where it does not, demand that human rights authorities undertake feasibility studies, weighing the impact on individual guarantees before installing systems. Democracy begins and ends there. In its exercise.

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New York Thieves Wearing Apple Store T-Shirts Steal $16,000 In iPhones
Posted by News Fetcher on June 12 '16 at 12:41 PM
By EditorDavid from Slashdot's genius-bar department:
An anonymous reader quotes this article from a TV station in New York about a "brazen daylight heist" made possible by wearing the right t-shirt:
Two thieves put on Apple store employee T-shirts and headed past the Genius Bar to the repair room, grabbed what they could and walked out with more than $16,000 worth of stolen iPhones... Police said just one hour before, the same thieves may have stolen three iPhones 6's worth $1,900 from the Apple Store on 14th Street and Ninth Avenue in the West Village... Earlier this year, three thieves pulled off two similar, but much more lucrative heists, at the Upper West Side Apple Store at Broadway and 67th Street, a training center for Apple employees. Once again, they dressed as Apple employees and stole a total of $49,000 worth of iPhones.

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