security

Report: Egypt nixed Free Basics over Facebook’s refusal to spy

Report: Egypt nixed Free Basics over Facebook’s refusal to spy

In December, news surfaced that Egypt had shut down Facebook’s Free Basics Internet service, news that itself followed the social network’s troubles in India. The move was a sudden one, and officials made no public announcements about their reason for pulling the plug. According to new sources who have surfaced, Free Basics was canned because Egyptian government officials wanted access to spy on users, something Facebook reportedly rejected.

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FBI will use its new tech to unlock another iPhone, iPod

FBI will use its new tech to unlock another iPhone, iPod

The FBI's legal battle with Apple over the San Bernardino shooter's iPhone came to a sudden end when a third-party approached the government agency with a possible way to unlock the iPhone. The planned court case was halted while the government tested the method, and a few days later the announcement was made: they'd unlocked the iPhone sans Apple's help. Now that word is out, law enforcement across the country is begging the government to unlock their own suspects' phones.

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Google’s been hit with All Writs Act phone unlocking orders, too

Google’s been hit with All Writs Act phone unlocking orders, too

The government has been seeking All Writs Act court orders against both Apple and Google for several years, according to the American Civil Liberties Union, which discovered 63 legal cases that involved the law. The ACLU doesn’t know the outcome of these cases — whether the companies unlocked the phones or even if the court orders were granted — but present legal actions and past statements from prosecutors hint that such court orders were often granted, and sought to unlock smartphones’ passcodes.

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TrueCaller exposed 100 million Android users’ details to hackers

TrueCaller exposed 100 million Android users’ details to hackers

While our smartphones have definitely become more capable and smarter, the phone functionality itself has remained locked in the 20th century. There have been many attempts to make the phone app itself even smarter. Google's dialer app is one. Third-party TrueCaller, which is making its way to the likes of Cyanogen OS and BLU Products devices, is another. Yet for all the convenience that the service might bring, one single design flaw potentially exposed the private details of 100 million Android users who have downloaded the app in good faith.

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Mattel briefly lost $3m to thieves in phishing scam

Mattel briefly lost $3m to thieves in phishing scam

A Mattel executive was hit with a Chinese phishing scam, and it resulted in $3 million dollars being sent overseas, according to a source with knowledge of the matter. Neither the source nor the executive have been named, but the report claims the Mattel executive received an email seemingly from then-new company CEO Christopher Sinclair ordering a payment be made to a vendor in China.

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August Smart Keypad Review

August Smart Keypad Review

The smartphone may be the remote control for your smart home, but there are times when a simple button makes a lot of sense. August's Smart Keypad has eleven of them, a $79 add-on to the company's Smart Lock that allows you to unlock the door with a PIN code as well as grant access to visitors who might not have an iPhone or Android device.

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August Doorbell Cam Review

August Doorbell Cam Review

Home security is one of the cornerstones of the Internet of Things, and seeing who is at the door - and then optionally letting them in - is a growing market. August is following up its popular Smart Lock with the August Doorbell Cam, a handsome WiFi-connected streaming video camera which gives you a sneaky eye on the front door frame. At $199, though, before you've even bought the Smart Lock, it's not a cheap upgrade for your home security, but does the convenience make it worth it?

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Report: FBI cracked shooter’s iPhone, will drop case against Apple [update]

Report: FBI cracked shooter’s iPhone, will drop case against Apple [update]

According to an unnamed government official, the FBI has successfully cracked the San Bernardino shooter’s iPhone and will be dropping its legal case against Apple. News surfaced exactly one week ago that a third party had presented a possible method for bypassing the phone’s security. The legal case was put on hold while the agency tried it out, and now, says the source, the Department of Justice will soon withdraw its legal pursuit of Apple.

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Verizon’s anti-hacking team was hacked

Verizon’s anti-hacking team was hacked

Verizon’s anti-hacking team, a collective tasked with helping big-name companies hit by major data breaches, has itself become the victim of data theft. According to a new report, the Verizon Enterprise Solutions unit had data stolen on about 1.5 million customers, all of which went up for sale on an unspecified online cybercrime forum. The seller sought $100,000 in exchange for the database, or $10,000 for a 100,000-person sliver of it.

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Gmail security gets new spy warning, Safe Browsing alerts

Gmail security gets new spy warning, Safe Browsing alerts

Google is rolling out additional security features in Gmail, boosting the information users get about any nefarious activities that are going on. As well, the Internet giant has also teamed up with some other big players like Microsoft and Comcast to submit a draft IETF specification for “SMTP Strict Transport Security,” says Google. This is in response to an issue it sees with email encryption — namely, there are ways someone could “still tamper with” email encryption even if the user is sending mail over an encrypted connection.

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Facebook quietly developing impersonation security alerts

Facebook quietly developing impersonation security alerts

Most people have had to deal with an online bully at one point or another, but the harassment usually comes in the form of unwanted messages, whether they’re replies to tweets or comments on statues. Less common but no less problematic are online impersonations, a more involved form of online bullying in which one person creates an account pretending to be another person. Such actions can range from annoying to career-destroying, and now Facebook’s creating a tool to prevent it altogether.

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DoJ issues arrest warrants for alleged Syrian Electronic Army hackers

DoJ issues arrest warrants for alleged Syrian Electronic Army hackers

The Department of Justice has unsealed a pair of criminal complaints against three Syrian nationals said to be former and/or current members of the Syrian Electronic Army. The documents were unsealed in the U.S. District Court of the Eastern District of Virginia, and detail charges of conspiracies related to computer hacking, says the DoJ. Joining them are alleged instances of a terrorist attack hoax, an attempt to cause mutiny in the U.S. military, and more.

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