Iain Thomson

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Ev Williams

Twitter cofounder to sell chunk of his stock for personal reasons

Ev Williams, the cofounder of Twitter and Medium, has revealed that he'll be selling a large chunk of his stock in the microblogging site to fund other activities. There's nothing wrong with Twitter that prompted the selloff, he insisted, and indeed praised recent changes the firm has made. But the vast majority of his net …
Iain Thomson, 06 Apr 2017
washington

Democrats draft laws in futile attempt to protect US internet privacy

Less than a week after President Trump signed the law allowing ISPs to sell customers' browsing habits to advertisers, Democratic politicians are introducing bills to stop the practice. On Thursday, Senator Ed Markey (D-MA) submitted a bill [PDF] that would enshrine the FCC privacy rules proposed during the Obama …
Iain Thomson, 06 Apr 2017
data

Put down your coffee and admire the sheer amount of data Windows 10 Creators Update will slurp from your PC

Next week Microsoft will begin the slowish rollout of its big update to Windows 10, the Creators Update. Right now, it's doing a little damage control, and preempting complaints about privacy, by listing the types of information its operating system will automatically and silently leak from PCs, slabs, and laptops back to …
Iain Thomson, 06 Apr 2017
Woman says oops after data breach... or spome other mistake, possibly. Illustration by Shutterstock/sergey sobin

Scottrade admits server snafu blabbed 20,000 customer files to world

Online brokerage Scottrade has admitted sensitive loan applications from roughly 20,000 customers were exposed to the world by a fumble-fingered third-party supplier. The cockup occurred when IT services biz Genpact uploaded the sensitive information to an Amazon-hosted server and didn't lock the box down – allowing its …
Iain Thomson, 05 Apr 2017
bank robbery

Brazilians whacked: Crooks hijack bank's DNS to fleece victims

Rather than picking off online banking customers one by one, ambitious hackers took control of a Brazilian bank's entire DNS infrastructure to rob punters blind. The heist, detailed by security engineers at Kaspersky Lab, took place over about five hours on Saturday October 22, 2016, after the miscreants managed to get control …
Iain Thomson, 05 Apr 2017
border

US border cops must get warrants to search citizens' gadgets – draft bipartisan law emerges

Four members of Congress – two Republicans and two Democrats – have introduced legislation that steers US border officials toward obtaining warrants before searching American citizens' phones and laptops. The Protecting Data at the Border Act would not only require a warrant from a judge to rummage through citizens' devices, …
Iain Thomson, 05 Apr 2017

Startup remotely 'bricks' grumpy bloke's IoT car garage door – then hits reverse gear

An Internet of Things maker has just had first-hand experience of the Streisand effect – after remotely killing a customer's Wi-Fi garage door for being rude. Garadget builds and sells a so-called smart door opener that can be operated remotely from a smartphone app. Once installed, Garadget's $99 gizmo wirelessly connects to …
Iain Thomson, 04 Apr 2017
burn

Alabama man gets electrocuted after sleeping with iPhone

An iPhone user is trying to raise awareness about the dangers of sleeping with your electronics after nearly getting electrocuted in the night. Wiley Day, 32, from Huntsville, Alabama, fell asleep with his iPhone charging on the sheet beside him. A few hours later he woke up in agony with bands of pain around his neck and the …
Iain Thomson, 03 Apr 2017
grave

Microsoft taking CodePlex behind the shed and shooting it by Christmas

Redmond's open source code repository CodePlex is to close on December 15, 2017 and Microsoft is advising users to move their stuff over to GitHub. The writing has been on the wall for CodePlex since early 2015, when Microsoft started its own projects on rival GitHub's servers. Since then, Redmond reports that interest in its …
Iain Thomson, 31 Mar 2017
boot

Yee-hacked! Fired Texan sysadmin goes rogue, trashes boot business

A former IT administrator working at a cowboy boot manufacturer has pled guilty to hacking the servers and cloud accounts of his employer after they fired him and had him removed from the building. Joe Vito Venzor, 41, had been employed by the Lucchese Boot Company in El Paso, Texas, but he was let go on September 1 last year …
Iain Thomson, 31 Mar 2017
server

WONTFIX: No patch for Windows Server 2003 IIS critical bug – Microsoft

Microsoft will not patch a critical security hole recently found and exploited in IIS 6 on Windows Server 2003 R2 – the operating system it stopped supporting roughly two years ago. The buffer overflow bug can be exploited to inject malicious code into a vulnerable machine and execute it, allowing an attacker to gain control …
Iain Thomson, 31 Mar 2017
launch

SpaceX wows world with a ho-hum launch of a reused rocket, landing it on a tiny boring barge

Pics Elon Musk's promised revolution in affordable orbital delivery has begun: today his upstart SpaceX successfully launched a refurbished rocket from Earth, carrying a commercial satellite into orbit, and then landed the rocket's first stage on a sea barge. For any miserabilists hoping for drama, failure, and explosions, no such …
Iain Thomson, 30 Mar 2017
constitution

Minnesota, Illinois rebel over America's ISP privacy massacre, mull fresh info protections

President Trump has yet to sign off on congressional legislation that allows American ISPs to sell their subscribers' online habits to advertisers – but US states aren't waiting for his signature and are moving to protect their constituents' privacy. On Tuesday, the Minnesota House of Representatives introduced legislation to …
Iain Thomson, 30 Mar 2017
Ron Wyden

Hey FCC, when you're not busy screwing our privacy, how about those SS7 cell network security flaws, huh?

US Democrats have written to America's communications watchdog the FCC complaining the mobile industry needs a kick up the backside to fix serious flaws in its networks. Last week the FCC's Communications Security, Reliability and Interoperability Council (CSRIC) published its final report [PDF] into the Signaling System 7 …
Iain Thomson, 30 Mar 2017
handcuffs

Silicon Valley staffing agency boss charged with H‑1B visa fraud

Jayavel Murugan, CEO of staffing agency Dynasoft Synergy, is accused of faking letters from Silicon Valley bosses so he could ship cheap foreign workers into America. Murugan, 46, and his associate Syed Nawaz, 40, are formally charged [PDF] with 26 counts of visa fraud, conspiracy to commit visa fraud, use of false documents, …
Iain Thomson, 30 Mar 2017

Alabama joins anti-web-smut crusade with mandatory opt-out filters

Yet another American state has seen legislation introduced to include mandatory anti-pornography filters on any internet-capable device – or else. Alabama state rep Jack Williams (R-Montgomery) has proposed House Bill 428 that is virtually identical to red-tape put forward in North Dakota and South Carolina. If enacted, from …
Iain Thomson, 29 Mar 2017
Elon Musk

Racist Tesla staff drilled my buttocks, claims employee in lawsuit

Tesla is facing a lawsuit from an employee at its car factory who is making lurid claims about racial discrimination in the workplace. DeWitt Lambert, 44, was working at Tesla's Fremont, California, factory where he claims [PDF] racial abuse was commonplace and management did nothing to stop it after his complaints. He says …
Iain Thomson, 28 Mar 2017
web snoop

So my ISP can now sell my browsing history – what can I do?

So, the US House of Representatives has voted away internet privacy (in concert with the Senate), and the legislation will be heading to the White House for Trump's imprimatur. He's expected to sign quickly, so as internet users it's time to get really serious about privacy. Under the terms of the legislation, your ISP would …
Iain Thomson, 28 Mar 2017
search

FYI Docs.com users: You may have leaked passwords, personal info – thousands have

Thousands of netizens inadvertently shared passwords and other highly private information with the rest of the planet – via Microsoft's publicly searchable Docs.com service. Docs.com allows people to exchange documents between friends and colleagues, and the wider world, and can be searched for keywords. It sounds like a neat …
Iain Thomson, 27 Mar 2017
psycho

LastPass scrambles to fix another major flaw – once again spotted by Google's bugfinders

For most of us, Saturday morning is a time for a lie in, a leisurely brunch, or maybe taking the kids to the park. But for some it's bug-hunting time. Tavis Ormandy, a member of Google's crack Project Zero security team, was in the shower and thinking about LastPass – after finding a number of flaws in the password manager …
Iain Thomson, 27 Mar 2017
drone

Bloke whose drone was blasted out of sky by angry dad loses another court battle for compo

An appeals court has snubbed a drone owner's demand for $1,500 compensation from a furious dad who blew the flying gizmo out of the sky when it hovered over his family. In July 2015, William Merideth, 47, was at home in Hillview, Kentucky, America, when his daughter came in from sunbathing in the garden to say there was a …
Iain Thomson, 25 Mar 2017
Visa

Ever visited a land now under Islamic State rule? And you want to see America? Hand over that Facebook, Twitter, pal

US embassies have been told to examine social media accounts of visa applicants who have ever set foot in Islamic-State-controlled areas. The edict was sent out earlier this month by Secretary of State Rex Tillerson in diplomatic cables. These memos, leaked to journalists and revealed on Friday, direct officials to identify " …
Iain Thomson, 25 Mar 2017
Bezos

Amazon dodges $1.5bn US tax bill: It's OK to run sales through Europe out of IRS reach – court

Champagne corks will be popping in Seattle after US taxmen lost their case against American web giant Amazon over the non-payment of taxes on overseas earnings. On Thursday, the US Tax Court ruled [PDF] in favor of Amazon, saying it was legal for the internet souk to channel its European sales through a low-tax Luxembourg …
Iain Thomson, 24 Mar 2017
SpaceX robot

Spotted: Bizarre SpaceX rocket-snatching machine that looks like it belongs on Robot Wars

Pic A robot has been spotted on the landing pad of SpaceX's floating barge Of course I still love you, and the rocket biz is refusing to say what it is for. Coming soon from SpaceX! Click to enlarge (Source: Stephen Marr, used with permission) This photo of the machine was taken by a couple flying over the Florida port where …
Iain Thomson, 23 Mar 2017
Riot police

If you were cuffed during Trump's inauguration, cops are trying to crack your smartphone

Vid The inauguration of President Donald Trump in the US capital was marked by protests, with cops collaring more than 200 people on the day. Now court documents reveal the US government's efforts to crack the arrestees' locked phones and slurp their contents. The filings [PDF] – submitted to the Washington DC Superior Court – …
Iain Thomson, 23 Mar 2017

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