Data Security

Here’s how Google Play scans your Android phone

Here’s how Google Play scans your Android phone

Google has a system enacted through Google Play for Android devices called Verify Apps. Google's latest Android Security State of the Union (for the year 2014) includes clarification on what the company is scanning on your phone - both inside Google Play-downloaded apps and in apps you've downloaded elsewhere. Verify Apps scans your phone's apps for security risks in Google Play apps, and Safety Net provides protection for (and from) apps outside of Google Play. Yes, Google Play is scanning your phone - no, it's not something to freak out about.

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Google’s 2014 Android Security State of the Union

Google’s 2014 Android Security State of the Union

This week Google has released their 2014 Android Security Year in Review, also known as their Android Security State of the Union. The year 2014 was big for Android in that there were two major updates to the ecosystem in a 12 month period, both Android 4.4 KitKat and a preview for Android L, what would eventually become Android 5.0 Lollipop. In this year, Google gave security a kick in the pants. Full disk encryption improvements, secure multi-user support, and improved authentication are just three of the collection of locks Google has snapped on their open mobile operating system Android.

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You can finally opt out and remove Verizon’s “supercookie”

You can finally opt out and remove Verizon’s “supercookie”

Verizon Wireless is finally letting users completely opt out of its tracking program which uses undeletable tracking codes called "supercookies". Prior to this, customers no longer received targeted advertizing after opting out from Verizon's data collection program. Still, customers' browsing history and metadata was being stored by Verizon. Under its data collection program, Verizon tracks personal data by tagging customers with a unique customer identifier code. This "supercookie" code was un-removable under Verizon's previous opt-out policy wherein users could halt the gathering of their browsing habits, but they would still be tagged with a customer identifier code. Now, users can ask Verizon to remove their customer ID code supercookie.

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Infinit brings their file transfer software to iOS & Android

Infinit brings their file transfer software to iOS & Android

Email, cloud storage links, AirDrop, NFC — file storage transfer is a pain. Though effective most of the time, those methods aren’t effective all the time. There’s a better way (I promise). Already available for OS X and Windows, the Infinit file transfer service is also going to be available for iOS and Android, starting today. With a few taps, you can take your files — any size or type — and shuffle them to other devices. The transfer doesn’t compress file sizes, and once initiated, can’t be killed by loss of signal.

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1Password for iOS update rolls in impressive new Safari extension

1Password for iOS update rolls in impressive new Safari extension

AgileBits’ 1Password is, far and away, the best password tool around. It can help create secure passwords, lock them away in a vault, and is typically a few clicks or long-presses away. Available for Android, Windows, OS X and iOS, the team recently updated their iOS app to take advantage of Safari extensions in a big way. Rather than hopping between apps on your phone to enter the correct log-in credentials for a site, 1Password has made their offering a bit more like the desktop offering.

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GitHub still experiencing ‘evolving’ DDoS attack

GitHub still experiencing ‘evolving’ DDoS attack

GitHub, the go-to online repository for projects created in code, is suffering an online DDoS attack. Though the team reports service interruptions are quieting, there’s reason to believe the attack is ongoing. GitHub has been able to “mitigate” the effects of the attack, but also say it’s “evolving”, and whoever may be responsible is morphing their strategy and methodology to continue the disruption. Though not exactly confirmed — and GitHub hasn’t said as much — the attack is believed to have originated in China.

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Stolen Uber accounts being sold on dark web for $1

Stolen Uber accounts being sold on dark web for $1

Thousands of stolen Uber user accounts are said to be selling on a dark web marketplace for as little as $1 each, according to a new report from Motherboard. These account details are described as being compromised without either the owners or Uber knowing, and thus can be used at will once purchased. This means someone would be able to log in to the app with someone else's account, and then order rides, which would be charged to the payment info on file.

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Your Twitch account has been locked-down: Here’s why

Your Twitch account has been locked-down: Here’s why

If you’ve been trying to log-in to your Twitch account and found it to be more difficult than normal, there’s a really good reason for that. According to a quick blog post on Twitch’s website, there “may have been unauthorized access to some Twitch user account information.” Until the post, Twitch was calling the issue an “internal tech issue”. It’s not known what was affected, but Twitch is on lockdown until further notice. You can still get in, but expect unique visits to require a password.

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FREAK security hole: Passwords on Android and iOS apps at risk

FREAK security hole: Passwords on Android and iOS apps at risk

At first, we thought the FREAK security vulnerability was isolated to Internet browsers. Then, it became clear that Windows OS is vulnerable to FREAK attacks. The latest news is that this problem is now able to affect smartphones and mobile devices through apps on Android and iOS. The FREAK vulnerability is a security backdoor created by an old Clinton administration era government policy which required all exported software and hardware to have weak encryption keys. Obviously their policy was passed without much foresight. FREAK attacks cripple HTTPS security, allowing for sensitive data like passwords and credit card information to be snatched by hackers savvy to the susceptibility.

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Yahoo’s new security features: On-demand passwords and e2e encryption

Yahoo’s new security features: On-demand passwords and e2e encryption

Security and privacy are becoming more and more important as we transmit much more than just words via email. Yahoo is developing two new technologies to protect your data and create security solutions. Soon, any sensitive data that you send using email, from business documents to personal information, can be kept secure using an advanced end-to-end (e2e) encryption plugin for Yahoo Mail. And, if you forget your password, Yahoo has come up with a new solution for that as well. Yahoo is calling their new password retrieval system On-demand passwords.

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