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May 8, 2015

Android M to Give Users More Privacy Controls

That didn’t take long: hot on the heels of Google’s tacit confirmation that Android M would make an appearance at I/O later this month, Bloomberg reported that the new version of the mobile OS would offer greater control over a smartphone’s privacy settings.

According to the report, some Google insiders say that Android M will “give users more detailed choices over what aps can access,” which includes “photos, contacts or location.” That’s significant since so many apps that users download come with a laundry list of user [...]

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May 7, 2015

Judges Call NSA Metadata Collection Illegal

The latest legal pronouncement regarding the government’s collection of our phone metadata is in, as a federal court of appeals in New York has ruled that it is illegal for the NSA to do what it’s been doing with impunity for the last few years.

We’ve been fighting this fight for a while now…

The court’s three judges ruled unanimously, reported the New York Times on Thursday. The ruling explained that Section 215 of the Patriot Act—the section upon which the NSA judged the legality of [...]

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March 28, 2015

The Phone Insurance Claim System for Major Wireless Carriers is Laughably Easy to Defraud

We have all been there, you are buying a new smartphone and the sales associate asks if you would like to purchase phone insurance — you know, in case of an accident. You weigh the pricing options for a moment and think about your general clumsiness and decide to get the insurance. If you use one of the major carriers in the U.S. such as AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile, and/or Sprint the insurance you buy comes from a company called Asurion Insurance Services, Inc.

So what if they all use the same [...]

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March 20, 2015

How To: Protect Your Smartphone from Hackers and other Threats

It’s common knowledge that safeguarding your smartphone against cyber thieves is necessary in today’s highly technical and mobile world. In a matter of seconds, your device can be hacked and all of your personal information stolen including banking and credit card information. Even if you’ve taken some steps to safeguard your phone against potential threats, it’s always good to explore new and improved ways stay one step ahead of the bad guys. Here are a few ways to do this.

Security Apps

Whether you have an Android or Apple [...]

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March 18, 2015

Microsoft Announces Windows Hello and Passport

On Tuesday, Microsoft announced its plans to release Windows 10 in 190 countries around the world in 111 languages this summer, though the exact date is still unclear. The company also announced Windows Hello, a new biometric security function that’ll offer users new ways to log into their devices.

According to another of Microsoft’s Blogging Windows post from yesterday, Windows Hello relies on a number of different biometric factors to unlock devices for users. That includes fingerprint scanners, which have been in laptops for [...]

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February 25, 2015

Lawsuit Filed Against Lenovo Over Superfish Fiasco

That didn’t take long: this week, Ars Technica reported that a lawsuit has been filed against Lenovo for its Superfish adware, which compromised users’ security in the name of pumping targeted advertising into their web browsers. The suit was filed in federal court by a San Diego-based blogger named Jessica Bennett, who charges that Lenovo violated state and federal wiretap laws, along with trespassing and unfair competition law violations.

The lawsuit explains that while writing a blog post for a client on her Lenovo Yoga 2 [...]

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February 19, 2015

New Lenovo Computers Had “Superfish” Adware Pre-Installed Since September

If you bought a new Lenovo computer between this past September and January, you might have a problem. Today, news hit that adware called “Superfish” had been installed on Lenovo computers starting late last year, which has been now been revealed to pose a serious security threat to users.

The story first broke on The Next Web last night, which points the way back to posts on Lenovo’s forums that detail how Superfish relies on a “man-in-the-middle certificate” to show advertisements from third parties in users’ web browsers, [...]

 
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February 9, 2015

Don’t Freak Out: Samsung SmartTVs Hear You, But They Don’t Care

Samsung has grand plans for its upcoming line of SmartTV sets – specifically, they’ll be equipped to respond to voice commands and provide you with on-demand content. However, as was the case with the Xbox Kinect a few years ago, Samsung’s SmartTV might be a bit too smart for some consumers’ liking – the Internet is currently freaking out over the fact that the televisions can and will monitor what you say and feed that to third parties.

The story got its start a few days ago on the Daily Beast, with the understated headline [...]

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January 19, 2015

USA Hacked North Korea Four Years Ago

 

So how did the United States know that North Korea was responsible for hacking Sony Pictures Entertainment last year? Well, it seems that’s because the United States had actually hacked North Korea first, back in 2010, and left monitoring software that our government’s cyber-spies could track back to the nation.

The New York Times reports that the NSA, in cooperation with South Korea and other allies of the United States, hacked its way into “Chinese networks that connect North Korea to the outside world,” and [...]

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January 16, 2015

If Someone Asks for Your Password on Camera…

Well, it should be self-evident, but if someone with a video camera and a microphone asks you for your password on the street, you probably shouldn’t tell them.

That wasn’t immediately apparent for these folks, though:

Whoops.

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