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Intel Buys Yogitech, Aims To Improve Safety of Autonomous Cars and IoT Systems
Posted by News Fetcher on April 05 '16 at 01:53 PM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's hang-on-boo-boo department:
An anonymous reader writes: Intel has acquired the Italian company Yogitech to improve upon Internet of Things (IoT) security and Advanced Driver Assistance Systems. Yogitech's flagship technology known as faultRobust is designed to keep circuits functional and prevent device failure. Since Intel provides chips for IoT devices, it makes sense for the company to be interested expanding that effort with Yogitech's technology. Intel's Atom and Quark chips are used in IoT devices, and it bundles hardware- and software- based security and networking layers in with those chips. The most obvious use for Yogitech's technology is with autonomous vehicles, where the circuitry can be used to reduce errors related to braking and identification of objects. It may also be used in industrial machines, where the chances of equipment hurting the process or a worker could be reduced.

According to Intel, 30 percent of the IoT market will require functional safety systems. Intel didn't comment how much they paid to buy the company.

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New Website Lets Anyone Spy on Tinder Users
Posted by News Fetcher on April 05 '16 at 12:31 PM
By manishs from Slashdot's security-woes department:
An anonymous reader cites an article on The Guardian: Tinder isn't as private as many of its users think, and a new website which aims to exploit that is causing concern among users of the dating app Swipebuster promises to let Tinder users find out whether people they know have an account on the dating app, and even stalk them down to their last known location. The website charges $4.99 to let someone see whether the target is using Tinder, and can narrow down results by first name, age, gender and location. But it doesn't do so by hacking into Tinder, or even by "scraping" the app manually. Instead, it searches the database using Tinder's official API, which is intended for use by third-party developers who want to write software that plugs in with the site. All the information that it can reveal is considered public by the company, and revealed through the API with few safeguards.

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Nvidia Creates a 15B-Transistor Chip With 16GB Bandwidth Memory For Deep Learning
Posted by News Fetcher on April 05 '16 at 11:13 AM
By manishs from Slashdot's affinity-for-transistors department:
An anonymous reader cites a report on VentureBeat: Nvidia chief executive Jen-Hsun Huang announced that the company has created a new chip, the Tesla P100, with 15 billion transistors, 16GB high-bandwidth memory for deep-learning computing. It's the biggest chip ever made, Huang said. "We decided to go all-in on A.I.," Huang said. "This is the largest FinFET chip that has ever been done." The chip has 15 billion transistors, or three times as much as many processors or graphics chips on the market. It takes up 600 square millimeters. The chip can run at 21.2 teraflops. Huang said that several thousand engineers worked on it for years.

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Cyber Commander Says It's 'Not Realistic' To Shut Down Internet
Posted by News Fetcher on April 05 '16 at 11:13 AM
By manishs from Slashdot's how-to-deal-with-amusing-people-101 department:
An anonymous reader links to a report on Washington Examiner: It simply would not be possible to shut down areas of the Internet that terrorists use to conduct malicious activity, the head of U.S. Cyber Command told a Senate panel on Tuesday. "In a very simplistic way, people ask why can't we shut down that part of the Internet. ... Why are we not able to infiltrate that more?" Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., asked Cyber Command leader Adm. Mike Rogers during a hearing on the agency's budget for fiscal 2017. Manchin maintained it was a common question from his constituents. "I've had people ask me, can't you just stop it from that area of the world where all the problems are coming, be it Syria or in parts of Iraq or Iran," he said. "I'm not just trying to find an answer, because that question is asked like shut her down, like you do your telephone, but it doesn't work that way," Manchin concluded.

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We Live In The Dark Ages of Internet Security, Says Kaspersky Labs CEO
Posted by News Fetcher on April 05 '16 at 11:13 AM
By manishs from Slashdot's security-woes department:
An anonymous reader cites a report on TheMerkle: It is never a positive sign when one of the world's leading security firms mentions how the world is currently in the "Dark Ages" of computer security. That particular statement was made by Kaspersky Labs CEO Eugene Kaspersky during the NCSC One conference in The Hague. Enterprises and consumers need to step up their protection sooner rather than later, as the number of security threats keeps increasing. Update: 04/05 18:41 GMT by M :Reader Rob MacDonald has posted the following insightful comment (slightly edited for clarity and length): We're in the dark ages by design. We've allowed the alphabet agencies to compromise our security, at every level, including hardware. The one that doesn't have an exploit at shipping, gets intercepted and modified in transit. The encryption algorithms we've been using were compromised at such a level it took this long to see it.

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WhatsApp Enables End-To-End Encryption For All Forms of Communications By Default
Posted by News Fetcher on April 05 '16 at 09:52 AM
By manishs from Slashdot's setting-precedent-for-everyone-else department:
Popular instant messaging app WhatsApp, on Tuesday, announced that it is turning on end-to-end encryption for all its users by default. The company says that every call a user makes, every text message they send, all photos and videos they share will now be more secure. Furthermore, the encryption status of any chat is visible under the chat's preferences screen. The announcement comes a little over a year after the Facebook-owned company partnered with Open Whisper Systems, a nonprofit software group that develops collaborative open source projects with a mission to "make private communication simple." The end-to-end encryption feature is available on the latest version of the app. In a blog post, Open Whisper Systems further explains the feature: Once a client recognizes a contact as being fully e2e capable, it will not permit transmitting plaintext to that contact, even if that contact were to downgrade to a version of the software that is not fully e2e capable. This prevents the server or a network attacker from being able to perform a downgrade attack. In a blog post, WhatsApp writes: While WhatsApp is among the few communication platforms to build full end-to-end encryption that is on by default for everything you do, we expect that it will ultimately represent the future of personal communication. WhatsApp has also made available the technical details about how the two companies implemented this feature (PDF). For those of you who haven't heard of WhatsApp, it's an instant messaging and voice calling app. The free service, which is available across all popular platforms, is used by more than a billion people worldwide every month. A report on Wired says that a team of only 15 engineers enabled this security feature for over a billion users. Privacy researcher and activist Christopher Soghoian rightfully adds, "Google has no excuse."

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Icelandic Prime Minister Resigns After Panama Data Leak
Posted by News Fetcher on April 05 '16 at 09:52 AM
By manishs from Slashdot's the-truth-is-out-there department:
Omar Valdimarsson, reporting for Bloomberg: The Panama secrecy leak claimed its first scalp after Icelandic Prime Minister Sigmundur David Gunnlaugsson resigned following revelations about his personal finances. The decision was announced in parliament after the legislature had been the focus of street protests that attracted thousands of Icelanders angered by the alleged tax evasion of their leader. Gunnlaugsson, who will step down a year before his term was due to end, gave in to mounting pressure from the opposition and even from corners of his own party. The Panama documents leak, printed in newspapers around the world, showed that the 41-year-old premier and his wife had investments placed in the British Virgin Islands, which included debt in Iceland's three failed banks. An article on The Guardian sheds more light on this: The leaked documents from the Mossack Fonseca law firm show Gunnlaugsson and his wife, Anna Sigurlaug Palsdottir, bought a British Virgin Islands-based offshore company, Wintris Inc, in December 2007 to invest her share of the proceeds of the sale of her father's business, Iceland's only Toyota importer. Gunnlaugsson sold his 50% stake to his wife for a symbolic $1 at the end of 2009, eight months after he was elected to parliament as an MP for the centre-right Progressive party. He failed, however, to declare an interest in the company either then or when he became prime minister in 2013. His office has said his shareholding was an error due simply to the couple having a joint bank account and that it had "always been clear to both of them that the prime minister's wife owned the assets." The transfer of ownership was made as soon as this was pointed out, a spokesman said. The prime minister denies he was required to declare an interest.

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Scientists To Open Mass-Cloning Factory in China This Year To Clone Cows, Pets, Humans
Posted by News Fetcher on April 05 '16 at 09:52 AM
By manishs from Slashdot's partner-that-truly-resonates-with-you department:
An anonymous reader writes: Scientists in China are planning to open a mass-cloning factory by the end of the year. The ambitious and futuristic facility hopes to be mass-producing one million cows every 12 months by 2020. Not only will it clone cattle, but the factory, which will be located in the northern Chinese port of Tianjin, will also cater to more specific needs by genetically engineering police dogs and thoroughbred race horses. It is part of a $21m plan which is backed by the Boyalife group in collaboration with South Korean company Sooam Biotech Research Foundation.

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Tomorrow's PS4 Update To Add Game Streaming for PC and Mac, Privacy Features
Posted by News Fetcher on April 05 '16 at 08:32 AM
By manishs from Slashdot's playstation-4-camp department:
An anonymous reader cites a report on Polygon: The PlayStation 4's newest software update will be out tomorrow, April 6, adding PC remote play capabilities, a new live streaming channel, and several improvements to its social networking features, among others. With the update, the PS4 will support remote play on PCs running Windows 8.1 or Windows 10 or later and Mac OS X 10.10 and 10.11.You can read more about it on PlayStation's official blog post.

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Aussie Pirates Have Another Year Not To Worry About Warnings
Posted by News Fetcher on April 05 '16 at 08:32 AM
By manishs from Slashdot's what-makes-Australia-a-delightful-place department:
An anonymous reader shares an article on TorrentFreak: Internet pirates in Australia may now have at least another year, possibly longer, not to worry about a "three strikes" style system landing on their shores. According to Communications Alliance CEO John Stanton, copyright holders and ISPs will give the new site blocking regime a chance to get established before revisiting the graduated response. Somewhat explains why this gentleman -- if he was indeed downloading copyright infringing content -- has been able to get away with all the torrenting he has done.

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Facebook Guesses What's In Pictures To Help Visually Impaired
Posted by News Fetcher on April 05 '16 at 07:12 AM
By manishs from Slashdot's good-guy-Facebook department:
Reader itwbennett writes: Taking the issue of bad image metadata into its own hands, starting today, Facebook will tell users of screen readers what appears in the photos on their timeline. Jeremy Kirk explains: "To describe the images, Facebook built a computer vision system with a neural network trained to recognize a number of concepts, including places and the presence of people and objects. It analyzes each image for the presence of different elements, and then composes a short sentence describing it that is included in the web page as the 'alt' text of the image."These users are often neglected by technology companies. Which is why it's encouraging to see Facebook address the issue. Twitter also recently took a step to improve the user experience of visually impaired people on its social networking website.

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FBI Says a Mysterious Hacking Group Has Had Access to US Govt Files for Years
Posted by News Fetcher on April 05 '16 at 07:12 AM
By manishs from Slashdot's strange-confessions department:
Lorenzo Franceschi-Bicchierai, reporting for Motherboard: The feds warned that "a group of malicious cyber actors," whom security experts believe to be the government-sponsored hacking group known as APT6, "have compromised and stolen sensitive information from various government and commercial networks" since at least 2011, according to an FBI alert obtained by Motherboard. The alert, which is also available online, shows that foreign government hackers are still successfully hacking and stealing data from US government's servers, their activities going unnoticed for years. [...] In the alert, the FBI lists a long series of websites used as command and control servers to launch phishing attacks "in furtherance of computer network exploitation (CNE) activities [read: hacking] in the United States and abroad since at least 2011."

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Alphabet's Nest To Deliberately Brick Revolv Hubs
Posted by News Fetcher on April 05 '16 at 07:12 AM
By manishs from Slashdot's incredibly-bad-decisions department:
Nest, a Google-owned company, will deliberately break one of its own products come May 15. The company has announced plans to disable Revolv, a hub that allows customers to electronically control lights in their homes. Entrepreneur Arlo Gilbert raises some important questions: Google/Nest's decision raises an interesting question. When software and hardware are intertwined, does a warranty mean you stop supporting the hardware or does it mean that the manufacturer can intentionally disable it without consequence? Tony Fadell seems to believe the latter. Tony believes he has the right to reach into your home and pull the plug on your Nest products. [...] To be clear, they are not simply ceasing to support the product, rather they are advising customers that on May 15th a container of hummus will actually be infinitely more useful than the Revolv hub. Google is intentionally bricking hardware that I own. That's a pretty blatant "fuck you" to every person who trusted in them and bought their hardware. They didn't post this notice until long after Google had made the acquisition, so these are Google's words under Tony Fadell's direction. Revolv was acquired by Nest in 2014, and it is believed that all Nest wanted from the acquisition was talent and workforce. An older version of Revolv website reveals that its hub was marketed to have "free lifetime service subscription," "free monthly updates for additional device support," and "free future firmware updates to automatically activate new radios." James Grimmelmann, a professor of Law, tweeted, "I didn't realize that Revolv promised free lifetime service. That makes the shutdown a deceptive trade practice as well as an unfair one." Aaron Parecki, co-founder of IndieWebCamp, wrote, "Your friendly reminder that without open standards, you're not "buying" smarthome hardware, you're renting it."

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Ubuntu Budgie Could Be The New Flavor of Ubuntu Linux
Posted by News Fetcher on April 05 '16 at 05:52 AM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's upcoming-releases department:
prisoninmate writes: Budgie-Remix maintainer David Mohammed informs Softpedia about the progress made with the upcoming operating system, whose ultimate goal is to become an official Ubuntu Linux flavor, possibly under the name of Ubuntu Budgie. Even Canonical founder Mark Shuttleworth said in a Google+ comment last month that it will definitely support if there is a community around the packaging. Since their initial report, it looks like the developer managed to get in contact with the Ubuntu MATE project leader Martin Wimpress, who urged him to target Ubuntu 16.10 for an official status of his soon-to-be-named Ubuntu flavor built on top of the Budgie desktop environment created by the team of developers from Solus Project.

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China Censors Online Discussion About Panama Papers
Posted by News Fetcher on April 05 '16 at 01:52 AM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's why-am-I-not-surprised department:
An anonymous reader quotes a report from BBC: China appears to be censoring social media posts on the Panama Papers document leak which has named several members of China's elite, including President Xi Jinping's brother-in-law. Hundreds of posts on networks such as Sina Weibo and Wechat on the topic have been deleted since Monday morning. According to the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ), the Panama Papers show that Mr. Deng acquired two offshore companies in 2009, at a time when Mr. Xi was rising in politics. State media appeared to black out the news. But many on microblogging network Sina Weibo and mobile chat network Wechat were discussing the topic on Monday morning, sharing Chinese translations of details of the story, including information on Mr. Deng. A hashtag created on the topic quickly trended. Checks by the BBC found that by the end of the day many of those posts had disappeared, with at least 481 discussions deleted from the hashtag's Weibo topic page, and other posts shared on Wechat also deleted. The website Freeweibo.com, which actively tracks censorship on Weibo, listed "Panama" as the second-most censored term on the network.

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Tech Firms Have An Obsession With 'Female' Digital Servants
Posted by News Fetcher on April 04 '16 at 11:02 PM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's female-personas department:
An anonymous reader writes: Alexa, Tay, Siri, Cortana, Xiaoice, and Google Now. These technologies all have one thing in common -- they are digital servants aimed at a mass-market audience that feature a "female" voice or persona. And it's not just the voice or persona of the digital persona we interact with that is biased. The results of those interactions also demonstrate male favoritism. It took Apple more than four years to fix Siri's responses to questions about abortion services, and yet the company didn't seem to have any problem programming Siri to search for prostitutes and Viagra. Here's the gender breakdown for the tech workforce of each company: Microsoft: 83.0% male, 16.9% female Google: 82.0% male, 18.0% female Apple: 79.0% male, 22.0% female Amazon: 61.0% male, 39.0% female

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Toyota Teams With Microsoft On Connected Cars
Posted by News Fetcher on April 04 '16 at 07:41 PM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's way-of-the-future department:
An anonymous reader quotes a report from USA TODAY: Toyota announced an enhanced relationship with Microsoft on Monday aimed at delivering "connected car" services to drivers in ways they probably never could have imagined. Already, drivers ask the infotainment system in their cars for restaurant recommendations, but many locations often would require that a driver turn around. But with Toyota Connected, the system might be modified to only recommend restaurants on the highway ahead -- and then only the kinds of food that the driver usually prefers. Road information can be delivered to drivers based on driving patterns -- knowing the routes they usually take. Auto insurance could be priced more accurately because the system could report on a driver's actual miles and routes traveled. Medical-related sensors could also be built into the car, like heartbeat monitors or sensors on the steering wheel. Some of the services could be offered to customers wirelessly by being beamed directly into their cars, but Lobenstein said that customer privacy considerations will be paramount. Toyota Connected hopes to have its first products within a year. Toyota Connected, as it's called, is built on Microsoft's Azure cloud computing platform. Toyota plans to invest $5.5 million in the new venture, even though much of the technology will be based on their current research and development for smart automobiles.

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US Army Hopes To Outfit Soldiers With Tiny Drones By 2018
Posted by News Fetcher on April 04 '16 at 06:21 PM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's high-tech-warfare department:
An anonymous reader quotes a report from Engadget: The U.S. Army has requested industry information on the feasibility of making tiny drones that would help infantry gather intelligence on a small scale, such as peeping over a hill or around a building. its dream recon machine would weigh no more than a third of a pound, launch within one minute and fly for at least 15 minutes. Ideally, the drones would be in service as soon as 2018. "[A nano-drone] will send real-time video back to the operator to give them real-time situational awareness of what's in the immediate vicinity," says Phil Cheatham, the deputy branch chief for electronics at the Army's Maneuvers Center for Excellence (MCOE). Cheatham says he and his team want something cheap enough to deploy with every squad, noting the Army already uses satellite imagery and larger drones to provide broader battlefield intelligence.

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Risks To Human Health Will Accelerate As Climate Changes, White House Warns
Posted by News Fetcher on April 04 '16 at 05:01 PM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's the-day-after-tomorrow department:
An anonymous reader quotes a report from The Washington Post: More deaths from extreme heat. Longer allergy seasons. Increasingly polluted air and water. Diseases transmitted by mosquitoes and ticks spreading farther and faster. Those are among the health risks that could be exacerbated by global warming coming decades, the Obama administration warned in a new report Monday. The study, more than 300 pages long and several years in the making, focuses on what the White House has described as one of the gravest threats to the nation: major health problems associated with climate change. It details direct effects, such as the potential for worsening air quality to trigger thousands more premature deaths from respiratory problems or an uptick in annual deaths from crushing heat waves. While every American could be affected, administration officials said Monday, the brunt of the harm is most likely to fall disproportionately on the most vulnerable populations, such as pregnant women, children, the poor, the elderly, minorities, immigrants and people with disabilities.

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Massachusetts AG Sues ITT Tech For Exploiting Computer Network Students
Posted by News Fetcher on April 04 '16 at 05:01 PM
By BeauHD from Slashdot's he-said-she-said department:
alphadogg quotes a report from Networkworld: Browsing through the latest news releases from ITT Technical Institute you'd never think the for-profit school would be capable of the things that Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey says the state is suing it for. The school, which boasts of over 130 locations in 38 states, touts its efforts for women in STEM, its donation of laptops to public schools in Indiana and its record giving for United Way. But AG Healey is suing ITT Tech "for engaging in unfair and harassing sales tactics and misleading students about the quality of its Computer Network Systems program, and the success of the program's graduates in finding jobs." ITT Educational Services, however, rejected the AG office's claims and lashed out at the office for the manner in which it has brought the suit. ITT's statement reads in part: "The litigation follows the Office's wide-ranging fishing expedition that lasted for more than three years..." If the state wins, the school could be forced to reimburse students for tuition and fees, though ITT says it will defend itself against the charges.

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