Shaun Nichols

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Trump blocks use of Venezuelan Petro cryptocoins in the US

The US has formally banned the trade of Venezuela's new state-backed cryptocurrency. The announcement came after an executive order by the Trump administration that lists the cryptocoins among the items prohibited by a new set of sanctions on the South American country. "All transactions related to, provision of financing for …
Shaun Nichols, 19 Mar 2018
oracle cloud logo

What's going great for Oracle? Cloud. What's not great? Just about everything else

Oracle is shaking off falling revenues in hardware and services by pointing to soaring cloud numbers. House Larry says that its Q3 FY2018 figures show its focus on cloud and SaaS paying off: Revenues of $9.8bn were earned in the last three months, up 6 per cent from the year-ago quarter. Net loss was $4bn, as Oracle wrote …
Shaun Nichols, 19 Mar 2018
Uber safety marketing

Uber breaks self-driving car record: First robo-ride to kill a pedestrian

A woman has died after she was hit by one of Uber's autonomous cars in the US. The taxi app maker said it is cooperating with the cops in the wake of the death. According to police, Uber's vehicle was driving itself, although it had a human pilot behind the wheel, when it hit a woman crossing the street in Tempe, Arizona. …
Shaun Nichols, 19 Mar 2018

Nip/Tug: Plastic surgeon accused of mid-surgery 'hardcore' smut binge

A Los Angeles plastic surgeon has been accused of watching porn videos on a screen while performing surgery. This is according to one of his former patients, who hopes to collect damages from the famous Beverly Hills doctor for what she claims was a botched cosmetic procedure. Speaking to KTLA telly news this week, Tess …
Shaun Nichols, 17 Mar 2018
Bitcoin ban

Crypt-NO-coins: US city bans mining funbux on its electrical power grid

A city in upstate New York has become the first in America to effectively ban any new commercial-grade cryptocurrency miners from powering up. Mayor Colin Read and the city council of Plattsburgh this month signed off on a measure to place an 18-month moratorium on any new industrial-scale crypto-coin crafting operations …
Shaun Nichols, 16 Mar 2018
Monopoly photo via Shutterstock

Konichiw-aaaaargh! Amazon's Japanese HQ raided in antitrust probe

Amazon has had its Japanese headquarters raided by police as the web giant finds itself the focus of an antitrust probe. According to multiple media reports out of the country, Japan's fair trade commission carried out the raid earlier this week to gather evidence in its ongoing probe of the internet retail giant. "We are …
Shaun Nichols, 16 Mar 2018
Woman uses headphones with her iPhone. Photo by Shutterstock

FYI: There's a cop tool called GrayKey that force unlocks iPhones. Let's hope it doesn't fall into the wrong hands!

A secretive unlocking tool offered to cops and government agents has some computer security bods worried over its privacy implications. Known as GrayKey, the box is reportedly being marketed as a way to unlock iPhones without needing the key code. The hardware is reportedly offered in two forms: an internet-connected model …
Shaun Nichols, 16 Mar 2018

ProtonMail posts workaround for Turkish government block

Encrypted email provider ProtonMail says its service has been blocked in Turkey, but can still be accessed via a VPN, DNS, or Tor. The secure messaging provider said Thursday that it believes the government is behind the block that has left its services partially or fully unreachable in Turkey. "After investigating the issue …
Shaun Nichols, 15 Mar 2018

Take that, com-raid: US Treasury slaps financial sanctions on Russians for cyber-shenanigans, 2016 election meddling

The US Treasury is freezing the assets of 19 people and five groups from Russia who launched cyber-attacks and interfered with America's elections. The department said Thursday it was imposing the sanctions as retaliation for a number of shenanigans, from causing last year's NotPetya malware outbreak to meddling in the 2016 …
Shaun Nichols, 15 Mar 2018

Ex-Samsung man to serve 6+ years in prison for embezzlement

A former Samsung exec is headed to prison after losing his appeal on charges of wire and tax fraud. John Lee had pled guilty to the charges in 2008, admitting that while he served as a director for Samsung America's Korean export department between 2002 and 2007, he embezzled between $1m and $2.5m from the electronics giant …
Shaun Nichols, 15 Mar 2018

Super Cali neutral traffic bill makes web throttling bogus

California is doubling down on its efforts to mandate net neutrality, this time with a bill making its way through the state senate. The bill, SB 822 [PDF], would mandate the state only work with ISPs that adhere to policies against blocking and throttling lawful traffic. It has been submitted to the Senate rules committee in …
Shaun Nichols, 14 Mar 2018

ACL-Sue: Rights group takes on TSA over device searches

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) is suing to force the TSA to produce documents detailing searches of electronic devices. The rights group said its FOIA complaint [PDF] seeks documents that detail how agents have searched electronic devices owned by passengers on domestic flights. While the government has long been …
Shaun Nichols, 14 Mar 2018

Dolby sues Adobe for dodging license fees

Updated Audio specialist Dolby Labs is suing Adobe for copyright violation as the two companies sit at odds over licensing payments. A complaint [PDF] filed with the Northern California District Court accuses Adobe of violating its copyright on nine different media encoders and software routines. The complaint also alleges breach of …
Shaun Nichols, 14 Mar 2018
Man reading newspaper with glasses on his head

It's March 2018, and your Windows PC can be pwned by a web article (well, none of OURS)

Patch Tuesday Microsoft delivered another hefty bundle of patches with its scheduled monthly update. Redmond bulks up for Vancouver The March edition of Patch Tuesday lands just hours before researchers are expected to flaunt their latest and greatest exploits at the CanSecWest Pwn2Own hacking competition in Vancouver. Hopefully nobody was …
Shaun Nichols, 13 Mar 2018
rage meme

Stanford brainiacs say they can predict Reddit raids

A group from Stanford University says conflicts on Reddit forums follow a reliable enough pattern to be predicted before they happen. A study [PDF] based on observations from 36,000 subreddit communities has found that online dust-ups can be predicted, and the people most likely to cause them can be identified. "We discovered …
Shaun Nichols, 13 Mar 2018

Broadcom's buyout of Qualcomm bogs down as DC blocks merger

The White House crushed Broadcom's bid for Qualcomm, declaring the deal cannot go due to national security concerns. An executive order, handed down by the Trump administration on Monday, says that at the urging of the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States, the President has decided to prohibit the deal and to …
Shaun Nichols, 12 Mar 2018

Yahoo! Can't! Toss! Hacking! Lawsuit!

The remains of Yahoo! will be forced to defend the class action complaint filed by customers whose data was exposed in the 2014 megahack. ON Friday Judge Lucy Koh denied in part a motion by parent company Verizon to have the complaint thrown out of court. The scope of the suit, however, was narrowed as parts were dismissed. …
Shaun Nichols, 12 Mar 2018

Tutanota blames Comcast block for March 1 outage

The creator and co-founder of Tutanota is blaming Comcast after his encrypted mail service was briefly taken offline earlier this month. Mathias Pfau claims his secure email service was mysteriously unavailable to Comcast customers for around 18 hours over a period spanning from the evening of March 1 until late in the the …
Shaun Nichols, 12 Mar 2018

Stock trader gets two years in prison for pumping up with Fitbit

A US stock trader has been sentenced to two years in prison for running a pump and dump operation involving wearables vendor Fitbit, albeit one that earned him only a few thousand dollars. Robert Walter Murray was given the federal prison term after pleading guilty to one count of securities fraud. He had faced a maximum of 20 …
Shaun Nichols, 12 Mar 2018
Macbook 2015 keyboard. Pic: Apple

Good news: Apple designs a notebook keyboard that doesn't suck

An Apple patent application has surfaced that should give hope to frustrated MacBook owners everywhere. The Cupertino-based speaker vendor appears as the applicant on a US patent application published this week for a new keyboard design that is said to be resistant to liquids, dust, and crumbs. Titled "Ingress Prevention for …
Shaun Nichols, 10 Mar 2018
Ransomware, photo via Shutterstock

Less than half of paying ransomware targets get their files back

Paying off a ransomware demand is a great way to end up losing both your money and your files. This according a study from security company CyberEdge, which found that for those hit by a ransomware infection the best bet is probably to just restore from a backup. The survey, based on a poll of information security …
Shaun Nichols, 9 Mar 2018

Pharma bro Martin Shkreli to miss 2024 Paris Olympics

Former finance and pharmaceutical exec Martin Shkreli has been ordered to spend the next seven years in prison. The notorious businessman and troll known as "pharma bro" was given the sentence on Friday by Judge Kiyo Matsumoto in the New York Eastern District Court. He faced up to 15 years for multiple counts of wire and …
Shaun Nichols, 9 Mar 2018
CMU president Farnam Jahanian

Carnegie Mellon makes network security guru Jahanian president

Carnegie Mellon University has named computer science professor and Arbor Networks founder Farnam Jahanian as its new president. The researcher-turned-entrepreneur-turned-administrator takes over the permanent position after an eight-month temporary turn as president. Previously, he had led the university's academic department …
Shaun Nichols, 8 Mar 2018

Ex-stream action: YouTube slays Zombie horde in AdSense battle

Google has had a class-action lawsuit in the US over last year's changes to its AdSense advertising system thrown out of court. Judge Edward Chen of the California Northern District Court dismissed (PDF) with prejudice (meaning the case may not be re-filed) the complaint brought by Zombie Go Boom, a YouTube broadcaster that …
Shaun Nichols, 8 Mar 2018

Got some broken tech? Super Cali's trinket fix-it law brought into focus

Lawmakers in the US state of California are mulling proposed rules that would force electronics makers to allow people to repair devices themselves. The draft Right to Repair Act, introduced by Assembly member Susan Talamantes Eggman (D-Stockton), would require manufacturers to publish repair guides and diagnostics and offer …
Shaun Nichols, 8 Mar 2018

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