Cloud-surfing orgs under attack, Microsoft antivirus for Chrome, Windows 10 S bypass, non-RSA gigs, and more
Roundup Here's a roundup of this week's security news, beyond what we've already covered.
How much do AI gurus really get paid? And is NIPS such a great name for a conference?
Roundup Hi, here's a few interesting bits and pieces from the world of AI. A public tax form from OpenAI reveals the crazy salaries of top AI researchers. There are more competitions pushing for improved image recognition models on mobiles, as well as training systems as fast and cheap as possible.
Time to ditch the front door key? Nest's new wireless smart lock is surprisingly convenient
Review It's something we all do when we get home: rummage around in your pockets or bag, find your keys, identify the one you want and then stick it in your front door to gain access.
Facebook privacy audit by auditors finds everything is awesome!
The US Federal Trade Commission has released an audit of Facebook's privacy practices and it turns out there's nothing to worry about, at least as far as accounting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) is concerned.
Oh, baby! Newborn-care website leaves database of medics wide open
A US healthcare company seemingly exposed on the public internet contact information for roughly 10,000 medical professionals.
Kaspersky Lab loses the privilege of giving Twitter ad money
Twitter says it will no longer run ads from beleaguered security vendor Kaspersky Lab.
No way, RSA! Security conference's mobile app embarrassingly insecure
RSA has copped to a security vulnerability in the backend systems powering the smartphone app for its annual security conference, held this week in San Francisco, USA.
Amazon, LG Electronics turned my vape into an exploding bomb, says burned bloke in lawsuit
Amazon, LG Electronics and KMG-Imports are being sued by a man in the US State of Rhode Island for selling a vaping box and batteries that allegedly burst into flames and set him on fire.
British Crackas With Attitude chief gets two years in the cooler for CIA spymaster hack
The British teenager who was sufficiently talented and stupid to hack the webmail of the head of the CIA was today sent down for two years.
Apple's magical quality engineering strikes again: You may want to hold off that macOS High Sierra update...
An increasing number of Mac loyalists are complaining that the latest desktop operating system update from Apple is killing their computers.
Twenty years ago today: Windows 98 crashed live on stage with Bill Gates. Let's watch it again...
Video Let us pause for a moment and reflect on the fact that 20 years have passed since Windows 98 memorably fell over during Bill Gates' presentation at Comdex.
Drama brews on high seas as Playmobil ship running out of steam
A Playmobil pirate ships's journey to the Caribbean sea risks being scuppered as its supplies run low.
Planned European death ray may not need Brit boffinry brain-picking
The EU is planning to build a laser cannon with double the power of Britain's under-construction Dragonfire zapper, according to reports – but the general state of the tech doesn't automatically mean Europe will be trying to snaffle Brit raygun smarts.
Samsung-backed gizmo may soon juice up your smartphone over the air
Wireless charging is becoming an ever more popular way to juice up consumer gadgets, but an international team of scientists may have figured out how to scrap the mat too.
It's a Pivotal moment: Dell's cloudy soft limb hits the stock market
Pivotal has set its initial public offering share price at $15, with hopes of raising $555m and an anticipated $14-$16 price band. The shares are expected to trade on the New York Stock Exchange from today.
Creaky NHS digital infrastructure risks holding back gene boffinry, say MPs
The state of the NHS's digital infrastructure and a lack of clear budgets risk holding back the UK’s efforts in genomic medicine and research, MPs have said.
Two's company, Three's unbowed: You Brits will pay more for MMS snaps
Mobile operator Three UK is celebrating the approach of British summer by, er, hiking its charges for some of its services.
And so it begins: Veritas lays off UK workers, R&D bods hit hardest
Troubled private-equity-owned Veritas started making layoffs in the UK yesterday as its parent continues to implement cost-cutting measures.
Government demands for people's personal info from Microsoft reach all-time low
Government requests for people's data from Microsoft fell to the all-time low of 23,000 in the last half of 2017, as Redmond's rate of rejecting the requests rose to a high of 17 per cent.
EU under pressure to slap non-compliance notice on Google over pay-to-play 'remedy'
Calls are mounting for the European Commission to issue a non-compliance notice against Google over attempts to address complaints about its market dominance.
LESTER gets ready to trundle: The Register's beer-bot has a name
Buoyed by the usual high quality feedback from readers, the office automated beer delivery service has taken a step towards reality with a suitable moniker.
BOFH: We know where the bodies are buried
Episode 6 We're having a company-wide operational audit. The Boss, bless him, thinks it's a routine process aimed at solidifying the company's position in the marketplace (blah, blah, blah), however the PFY and I know better having accidentally been bcc-ed in on a private email exchange discussing a possible company merger with a rival firm.
Tech bribes: What's the WORST one you've ever been offered?
Some tickets to a Bros reunion gig in return for a favourable article? £1,500 to do a straight rewrite of a press release? Or some "free" man perfume from Kaspersky called Eau d'Eugene. Just what would you accept as a gift bribe to do someone's corporate bidding?
There is no perceived IT generation gap: Young people really are thick
Something for the Weekend, Sir? Blank faces abound. No, not all are blank: some are horrified, revolted even. What did I say?
Apple unleashes FoundationDB as an open source project
Apple has open-sourced FoundationDB, a distributed ACID-compliant NoSQL datastore, three years after acquiring the company that developed the technology.
CEO insisted his email was on server that had been offline for years
On-Call Welcome again to On-Call, The Register’s Friday column in which readers share tales of tricky tech support tasks.
ZTE to USA: Sure, ban us, but you cannot afford such victories
ZTE has hit back at the United States’ newly-imposed ban on American companies selling to the Chinese networking vendor.
Here's another headline where NASA is dragged through the mud for cheap Mars wise cracks
Pic Water that once flowed across the surface of Mars caused the formation of mud cracks that were spotted by NASA's Curiosity rover, scientists have confirmed.
Oracle pledges annual Solaris updates for you to install each summer
Oracle will deliver “update releases” of Solaris every northern Summer, under a new plan it revealed this week along with news of the Solaris 11.4 beta and a hurry-along for users of old Sun hardware.
Will Dell eat VMware? Or will Carl Icahn snack on Dell? And where does Uber fit in? Yes, Uber!
The “what will Dell do to/with/for/about VMware” rumour mill has started spinning again.
Qual-gone: 1,200+ axed from Snapdragon, Centriq giant Qualcomm
Qualcomm says it is planning to eliminate more than 1,200 positions in an attempt to cut overhead costs.
Oracle whips out the swatter, squishes 254 security bugs in its gear
Oracle this week emitted its April security update, addressing a total of 254 security vulnerabilities across dozens of products.
Google kills off domain fronting – and so secure comms just got tougher
Google has made technical changes to its cloud infrastructure that have caused collateral damage to an anti-censorship technique called domain fronting.
Nominet drains mug of tea, leans back, calmly explains how to make Whois GDPR-compliant
The operator of the .uk domain-name registry has outlined the changes it plans to make to its Whois domain registration system to bring it in line with incoming European privacy legislation.
Bloke fruit flies enjoy ejaculating, turn to booze when starved of sexy times
A new study reveals that male fruit flies enjoy the sensation of ejaculation, and are more likely to turn to alcohol when sexually frustrated. Sound familiar?
Facebook puts 1.5bn users on a boat from Ireland to California
Facebook is quietly changing its terms of service to shift 1.5 billion users away from Europe to the US while continuing to claim it wants to offer greater privacy protections.
Yahoo! webmail! hacker! faces! nearly! eight! years! in! the! cooler!
The Canadian hacker who helped Russian agents by breaking into more than 11,000 Yahoo email accounts could spend the next eight years behind bars, if American prosecutors get their way.
Eight months after Equifax megahack, some Brits are only just being notified
Some of the 15 million Britons affected by the Equifax mega-hack are only now receiving letters notifying them that they were affected by the breach, eight months after the event.
Beware! Medical AI systems are easy targets for fraud and error
Medical AI systems are particularly vulnerable to attacks and have been overlooked in security research, a new study suggests.
BBC extends Capita Audience Services contract to 25 years
Capita's fortunes of late may be in general decline but the UK's much loved IT outsourcing biz can always rely on the British Broadcasting Corporation – propped up by license fee payers – to dish out cheques.
Millions of scraped public social net profiles left in open AWS S3 box
US social network data aggregator LocalBlox has been caught leaving its AWS bucket of 48 million records – harvested in part from public Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter profiles – available to be viewed by anyone who stopped by.
Musk: I want to retrieve rockets with big Falcon party balloons
While waiting for TESS to get off the launchpad on Monday, chief exec Elon Musk joked on Twitter about how SpaceX might set about recovering the second stage of the booster.
Mad Leo tried to sack me over Autonomy, says top HP Inc beancounter
Hewlett Packard's chief beancounter, Catherine Lesjak, was at "war" with former CEO Leo Apotheker, who tried to fire her immediately before he himself was defenestrated, a US court has heard.
BT pushes ahead with plans to switch off telephone network
BT is forging ahead with plans to shut its traditional telephone network in Britain, with the intention of shifting all customers over to IP telephony services by 2025.
Evolving elephants: Hortonworks trumpets its '3.0 vision' of global data management
Hortonworks – once known simply as a Hadoop-flinger – is these days pushing itself as a modern data architecture company.
SpaceX finally Falcon flings NASA's TESS into orbit
NASA’s TESS spacecraft is in orbit following a successful launch from Cape Canaveral’s Space Launch Complex 40.
Pyro-brainiacs set new record with waste-heat-into-electricity study
Californian scientists have come up with a way of converting waste heat from electronics back into electricity with improved efficiency, according to a study in Nature Materials.
How 'parasitic' Google's 'We're journalists!' court defence was stamped into oblivion
Comment Google's efforts to claim that it should be exempt from EU data protection laws because its search engine is "journalistic" really did not impress the judge in the Right To Be Forgotten trial.
Motorola Z2 Force: This one's for the butterfingered Android lovers
Released last autumn, and with this year’s range hoving into view, Motorola’s Z2 Force isn’t the newest kid on the block. But it still remains the only “shatterproof” phone on the market, and it has proved to be a great base from which to evaluate the latest Motorola Mods, which you’ll see in our forthcoming Mods roundup.
Cutting custody snaps too costly for cash-strapped cops – UK.gov
The UK government has admitted it can only delete custody images from its massive database through a complex manual process, and that it would cost too much to weed out all the images of innocent people by hand.
Cisco snuffs Spark, renames it 'WebEx Teams'
Roundup Cisco leads the networking roundup this week, with news that there's one fewer way to avoid its WebEx brand: as part of a product reorganisation, what was Cisco Spark is to become WebEx Teams.
Machines learned to assemble IKEA’s semi-disposable furniture
Singaporean scientists have asked the question: “Can robots assemble an IKEA chair?” and come back with enough of a “Yes” that The Register feels it time to call for robots to take this job away from humans. Pleeeease, robots. Take this job away from us!
Facebook job ad hints at homebrew silicon plans
Poll Facebook’s hinted it will join the ranks of hyperscalers that roll their own silicon, with a job ad for an “ASIC & FPGA Design Engineer”.
PCI Council releases vastly expanded cards-in-clouds guidance
The Payment Card Industry Security Standards Council (PCI SSC) has issued a big update to its guidance on using payment cards with cloud computing services.
Soyuz later! Russia may exit satellite launch biz
Russia has dropped a broad hint that it might leave the space launch business to private operators.
Jeff Bezos purple prose reveals Amazon Prime's passed 100m customers
Amazon has announced the yield from its money mine for the full year 2017: on full-year sales of US$178 billion, it generated an operating income of $4 billion and net income of $3 billion.
Facebook's login-to-other-sites service lets scum slurp your stuff
Updated It's possible for miscreants to secretly extract people's personal information via Facebook's Login service – the tool that lets you sign into websites using just a Facebook ID.
Australia’s .au admins told to reform or get rooted
The administrator of Australia’s top level .au domain, auDA, has been told to reform or be forcibly stripped of its role.
Flash! Ah-ahhh! WebEx pwned for all of us!
Cisco has patched a serious vulnerability in its WebEx software that lets an attacker remotely execute code on target machines via poisoned Adobe Flash files.
Super Cali health inspectors: Tesla blood awoke us
Updated California's workplace safety monitor is investigating Tesla over the conditions at its main assembly plant.
OK, this time it's for real: The last available IPv4 address block has gone
You may have heard this one before, but we have now really run out of public IPv4 address blocks.
Non-shingled and ready to mingle: WDC catches up with 14TB disk rivals
Western Digital has caught up with rival Toshiba to introduce its own non-shingled 14TB disk drive.
Facebook previews GDPR privacy tools and, yep, it's the same old BS
Comment Facebook has previewed its new privacy settings, developed to meet new European privacy legislation that comes into force next month.
How's your Wednesday? Things going well? OK, your iPhone, iPad can be pwned via Wi-Fi sync
RSA 2018 The iTunes Wi-Fi sync feature in Apple's iOS can be potentially abused by cops, snoops, and hackers to remotely extract information from, and control, iPhones and iPads.
Running on-premises Dynamics 365? Think you're immune to cloud outages? Think again
Hidden dependencies in Microsoft's on-premises Dynamics 365 can leave users open to cloudy outages.
OMG! OIG to audit SLS: NASA probed over big rocket project's big budgets, big delays
The management of NASA’s Space Launch System (SLS) is to be audited by the agency's watchdog.
Not a shaggy dog story: Software-defined storage inside $300m Softbank pet project
The era of software-defined storage market is truly upon us. Forget city-sized enterprises looking to squeeze costs out of their data centre estate, Nexenta has scored big with Wag!, a US-based dog walking 'sharing economy' app for those that can't be arsed to exercise their pooch.
Surprise! Wireless brain implants are not secure, and can be hijacked to kill you or steal thoughts
Scientists in Belgium have tested the security of a wireless brain implant called a neurostimulator – and found that its unprotected signals can be hacked with off-the-shelf equipment.
Elon Musk's latest Tesla Model 3 delivery promise: 6,000... a week
Electric car maker Tesla is to boost production to 6,000 cars per week in June, company chief Elon Musk has announced – four months after his last production boost deadline sailed past unfulfilled.
Now IBM turns redundo gun on its Digital Business Group
IBM is preparing a redundancy chute for the good folk working in its Digital Business Group (DBG), The Register can reveal.
Hello DARKNESS, my old friend. I've come to talk with you again... about a 10,000-pixel alien-hunting camera
Astronomers are building the world’s largest and most advanced superconducting camera – with the goal of snapping clearer shots of exoplanets for scientists hunting alien life.
What Israel's crack majority-women Unit 8200 hackers can teach tech about diversity
RSA 2018 Former members of an Israeli intelligence unit say their operation could serve as a model for the tech companies looking to bring more women into their ranks.
Cray snuggles up with AMD: Clustered super CS500 lets in Epyc chip
Cray is adding an AMD processor option to its CS500 line of clustered supercomputers.
Facebook faces foe formation in facial fingering fight
A US federal judge on Monday ruled that a lawsuit filed over Facebook's use of facial recognition technology can proceed as a class action, raising the possibility the social network could face billions in damages.
ID theft in UK hits record high as crooks shift to more vulnerable targets
Identity fraud in Blighty hit a record high of 174,523 incidents last year – and the vast majority of it happened online.
BT rearranges deck chairs, launches good ship Enterprise
Brit mega-comms firm BT has given its flagging b2b divisions a corporate facelift, merging the wholesale, public sector and business units into BT Enterprise.
Size does matter, chaps: Oversized todgers an evolutionary handicap
A study published by Nature this month suggests less is more when it comes to male genitals and species survival.
Scality swallows $60m to tame the multi-cloud data management beast
Analysis Software-defined object storage biz Scality has scored an extra $60m in funding to help along development of its cloudy storage tools.
Guess who's still most moaned about UK ISP... Rhymes with BorkBork
Despite efforts to return to its roots as a broadband-only biz, TalkTalk remains the most moaned about ISP in the UK, according to data from regulator Ofcom.
Kubernetes? Just automate it….
Whether you’re limbering up for Agile, going serverless or getting into containers, we’ve got a cracking lineup of workshops at Continuous Lifecycle London this year.
Hortonworks unfurls tool to cut grunt work, let firms spend more time rolling in juicy data
Data management biz Hortonworks has lifted the covers off a service that aims to make it easier for enterprises to identify, secure and connect data stored both on-premises and in the cloud.
Scissors cut paper. Paper wraps rock. Lab-made enzyme eats plastic
A new enzyme developed at the University of Portsmouth will enable the recycling of plastic used for disposable drinks containers.
Build a serverless framework at home: Go on, bit of open sourcey hijinx won't hurt
Seduced by serverless functions? Lured by Amazon's Lambda? If so, why not build a serverless framework at home? Project riff, an open source serverless platform from EMC/VMware spinoff Pivotal Software, aims to let you do just that.
NHS given a lashing for lack of action plan one year since WannaCry
Nearly a year has passed since the unprecedented WannaCry cyber attack and the UK's NHS has yet to agree an action plan, according to a report by MPs.
Chrome 66: Get into the bin, auto-playing vids and Symantec certs!
Chrome the 66th is upon us and has added some features that Google previewed in months past.
Cisco, Microsoft and 32 big vendor pals join ‘Accord’ to improve security by doing … security stuff
Analysis Thirty-four technology companies inked a "Cybersecurity Tech Accord" on Tuesday which they said represents "a public commitment … to protect and empower civilians online and to improve the security, stability and resilience of cyberspace".
Europe wants cloud giants to cough up data from anywhere in 6hrs
The European Commission has outlined its desire for a new legal instrument that would require carriers, clouds, email service providers, and operators of messaging apps, to produce someone's data within six hours to assist investigations of “criminals or terrorists”.
Cambridge Analytica's ex-CEO decides not to front UK Parliamentary Committee again
The recently-sidelined former CEO of Cambridge Analytica has declined the opportunity to make a second appearance in front of the UK Parliament's Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee.
Huawei CEO sings 'Bye, bye, mister American Pai', trims US C-suite
Huawei has acknowledged the US market may be a lost cause, at least for now.
Hop to it, bunnies: TaskRabbit breach means new passwords
IKEA's TaskRabbit app and Website, which links buyers with people skilled with Allen key experts and other errand-runners, remain offline a day after the company announced a data breach.
You're a govt official. You accidentally slap personal info on the web. Quick, blame a kid!
Comment There's a curious legal situation developing in Nova Scotia, Canada, right now.
Cisco casts an eye over IoT protocol landscape: Everything the light touches is ours
Cisco has pitched its intent-based networking capabilities as a way to get control over the Internet of Things.
Hey, govt hacker bod. Made some really nasty malware? Don't be upset if it returns to bite you
RSA 2018 "You don't launch a cyber weapon, you share it."
Gang way! Compsci geeks coming through! AI engine can finger fakes on social networks
A group of computer scientists have developed a machine-learning algorithm that can sniff out fake profiles lurking on social networks.
One of IBM's latest financial figures was off by four cents today – so down go its shares
Revenues for IBM have risen for its second successive financial quarter – after more than five years of declining sales – but only on a constant currency basis. Profit, however, dropped and Wall Street hammered Big Blue's stock price in after-hours trading.
US government weighs in on GDPR-Whois debacle, orders ICANN to go probe GoDaddy
The US government has waded into the omni-shambles that is the internet infrastructure industry's failed effort to comply with European privacy laws.
Signal app guru Moxie: Facebook is like Exxon. Everyone needs it, everyone despises it
RSA 2018 Speaking at the 2018 RSA conference, a board of some of the most respected names in security spoke on Tuesday and were scathing about Facebook – and the industry's response to the Spectre processor bug.
Supreme Court punts on Microsoft email seizure decision after Cloud Act passes US Congress
The US Supreme Court has dodged a critical legal question about the reach of America's courts in the internet era, deciding to drop a test case between Microsoft and the Department of Justice.
It's US Tax Day, so of course the IRS's servers have taken a swan dive
Updated US tax returns for 2017 must be filed by midnight tonight – but the nation's Internal Revenue Service is making that difficult.
Autonomy pulled wool over Brit finance panel's eyes, US court told
Software outfit Autonomy lied to a British financial regulatory panel, an American court has been told by the panel's former chairman.
Honey, I shrunk the mainframe: Fujitsu freshens up GS21 kit
Mainframes never die, though their architecture has been eclipsed for years.
Slick HCI trick: VMware smooths off vSAN's rough edges
Alongside its update of vSphere, VMware has smoothed off a few of the rough edges from its HCI heavy, vSAN.
We 'could' send troubled Watchkeeper drones to war, insists UK minister
Comment The British Army's troubled Watchkeeper drones "could still be deployed on operations", a defence minister has insisted.
More than 87m Facebook profiles farmed, says second ex-Cambridge Analytica witness
The number of Facebook users whose data was compromised via quizzes "is much greater than 87 million", Cambridge Analytica's former director of program development has told MPs.
Docker enterprise kit gets cozy with Kubernetes
Container popularizer Docker plans to roll out an update to its enterprise product on Tuesday that has more to do with box juggling than canned code.
Huawei promises to launch a 5G smartmobe in second half of 2019
Huawei has said its first 5G-capable phone will appear in a little over a year. The Chinese giant made the pledge at its annual global analyst summit in Shenzhen, southeastern China.
Forking hell! VMware now has TWO current versions of vSphere
VMware has given vAdmins a new version of vSphere, numbered 6.7. As predicted and detected by The Register's virtualization desk, it's not a huge release. But it is both a slightly confusing and rather significant one.
Pentagon sticks to its guns: Yep, we're going with a single cloud services provider
The US Department of Defense (DoD) still intends to choose just one vendor for its multibillion-dollar cloud contract – amid complaints from Oracle's co-CEO that such a plan "makes no sense".
Windows 10 Spring Creators Update team explains the hold-up: You little BSOD!
Windows 10 Springwatch – as it shall henceforth be known – has entered its second week and Microsoft has dropped the first clue as to what caused the delay: bugs.
NASA's TESS mission in distress, Mars Express restart is a success
A Guidance and Navigation Control (GNC) issue scuppered last night's Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS) launch atop a SpaceX Falcon 9. Conversely, the European Space Agency (ESA) celebrated a successful restart of the Mars Express orbiter following a software update.
Build up your security credentials at SANS London June 2018
Promo Even as IT systems grow and become more complex, so new and ingenious methods for stealing vital data or holding organisations to ransom proliferate at an increasingly rapid pace.
Three storage hardware devices, a cash raise and Oracle gets blocked
It has been a hardware frenzy this week, with a pair of microSD cards for surveillance cams, flash drives for video takers and makers, and good old filers from a NAS baker.
Europe turns nose up at new smartphones: Beancounters predict 7% sales drop
Sales of smartphones in Western Europe are expected to fall 7 per cent to 141 million this year, as consumers shun expensive upgrades on devices offering little more than an incremental updates.
Productivity knocks: I've got 99 Slacks, but my work's not done
If I had a dollar for every time someone said Slack was the answer to a business's problems, I'd have retired to a beach in Australia long ago. I'm currently in seven different Slack teams, and I've still got problems.
Don’t fight automation software for control, just turn it off. FAST
On September 8th, 2015, a pilot left Point Cook Airfield in the Australian State of Victoria for a solo navigational training flight.
SAP okays Java EE being Eclipsed, six months after Oracle's announcement
SAP has revealed its attitude to Oracle’s decision to let go of Java EE and have it tended by the Eclipse Foundation.
France building encrypted messaging app for politicians
France's government has built an encrypted messaging app for government use.
Facebook admits it does track non-users, for their own good
Facebook's apology-and-explanation machine grinds on, with The Social Network™ posting detail on one of its most controversial activities – how it tracks people who don't use Facebook.
Google, AWS IPs blocked by Russia in Telegram crackdown
Russia's telecoms regulator Roskomnadzor has started blocking IP addresses linked to secure messaging service Telegram.
Internet Engineering Task Force leaves home, gets own bank account
If all goes according to plan, the venerable Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) will this week tackle a fiendishly difficult problem: standing on its own administrative feet.
If you guessed China’s heavy lifter failed due to a liquid hydrogen turbo engine fault, well done!
China’s National Space Administration has figured out why its Long March Y2 launch went awry in July 2017.
Intel's security light bulb moment: Chips to recruit GPUs to scan memory for software nasties
Updated Having weathered revelations in January that its chips can be attacked through a novel class of side-channel vulnerabilities – mostly addressed through microcode fixes – Intel is adding broader silicon-level security improvements to its processors.
US army boffins use AI to spot faces in the dark
US army researchers have developed a convolutional neural network and a range of algorithms to recognise faces in the dark.