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Science/Tech / betanews

Zoom enables meeting passwords and virtual waiting rooms by default as it attempts to beef up security

Zoom's skyrocketing popularity in recent weeks has been both a blessing and a curse for the company. Clearly it welcomes the additional users and, presumably, the income generated, but the company has also found itself under the spotlight resulting in startling revelations about security and privacy. Having already apologized for a series of issues, Zoom is not taking steps to improve security. In an email sent out to users, the company explains how the virtual waiting room feature will be enabl

4 Apr 2020 3:44 pm
Apple pays bug bounty to researcher who discovered vulnerabilities in iOS and macOS that allowed for webcam hacking

After discovering a no fewer than seven security vulnerabilities in Safari for iOS and macOS, a researcher has received a $75,000 bug bounty pay out from Apple. Ryan Pickren, a former Amazon Web Services (AWS) security engineer, found a series of security flaws in Apple's web browser, some of which could be exploited to hijack the camera of a Mac or iPhone to spy on users. The webcam hacking technique combined a total of three zero-day bugs. See also: Apple accidentally leaks details of its unre

4 Apr 2020 2:39 pm
Legacy VPNs facing unprecedented modern security threats

Remote work is the future. Remote work is our new reality. Even though Gartner predicted that by 2020, half of the US workforce will be working remotely, no one could have anticipated it to become ubiquitous given the COVID-19 outbreak. The once-familiar 9-to-5 office environment as we know it has changed dramatically, and now, nearly everyone has been forced to work from home for the foreseeable future. This change is also expected to become permanent for many companies given the various benefi

4 Apr 2020 1:51 am
Enterprise AI, ground truth, and the 'corona effect'

Nothing in our lifetimes has prepared us for what's happening in our world today. We've certainly had our share of major catastrophes in the past 100 years -- both natural and man made -- but nothing matches the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. We are living in a time when fundamental assumptions about how our societies function are being thrown out and re-written with blinding speed. The degree of global disruption is unprecedented in scope and scale, and we're still in the early phases. Given

4 Apr 2020 12:20 am
Microservices, identity, and privacy by design

Part 2: The advent of Microservices has dramatically opened up the ability to rapidly develop and update applications and services. This is done by breaking them into very small pieces, where each piece can be managed by a single team or one team can manage several pieces. Each of these pieces then comes together with hundreds or thousands other pieces to create a larger framework or workflow. They are at the heart of the DevOps methodology, and an expectation today with the idea of a continues

3 Apr 2020 11:14 pm
How real-time AI can help make decisions throughout the customer journey

When it comes to making quick, real-time business decisions, Artificial Intelligence (AI) has proven to be a vital component of any effective business strategy. This is reflected in statistics showing how AI implementation jumped from 48 percent in 2018 to 72 percent in 2019. As technology continues to improve, no doubt this number will continue to increase with AI becoming an even larger asset to improve your operational capacity. If utilized correctly, real-time AI has the ability to vastly im

3 Apr 2020 11:03 pm
Ubuntu Linux 20.04 LTS 'Focal Fossa' Beta now available for download

Today is Friday, meaning later this afternoon, we will officially be starting the weekend! Woo-hoo! Unfortunately, due to COVID-19, many of us will be spending our weekend downtime indoors once again. Sigh. The weekend is far less exciting when you've been self-quarantining for weeks due to a pandemic. Thankfully, we can all still have plenty of fun while indoors thanks to the internet. Not only can we stream video and music, but we can play online video games too. If you are a computer nerd, ho

3 Apr 2020 10:17 pm
Hands-on with Facebook's relaunched Messenger for Windows and Mac

As the world goes into lockdown over the coronavirus pandemic, staying in touch with loved ones both near and far has never been more important. The explosion in popularity for video chatting makes it entirely appropriate that Facebook should relaunch Messenger on the desktop platform with support for video group calling. In addition, brand new versions of Facebook Messenger for Windows and Facebook Messenger for Mac finally bring all Messenger features to the platform along with some major new

3 Apr 2020 10:08 pm
IBM Open Source Community Grant goes to internship and mentoring program Outreachy

Last October, IBM began awarding quarterly grants to encourage diversity and inclusion among the open source community. The company has today announced the winner of its second grant as Outreachy, an organization that provides internships in Free and Open Source Software (FOSS) for people from under served communities. Outreachy sets up three-month paid internships in a variety of fields for those who ordinarily might not have the opportunity. It encourages people from diverse backgrounds to app

3 Apr 2020 6:48 pm
Apple accidentally leaks details of its unreleased AirTags tracking tags

Heads are likely to be rolling at Apple after details emerged online about its unreleased AirTags. A video that references the tracking tags appeared on Apple's official Support account on YouTube but it was removed after the company seemingly realized its mistake. The revelation came in a video tutorial about how to erase data from an iPhone. In the footage, a screen can be seen which makes reference to AirTags under an Enable Offline Finding heading. See also: Until Apple patches this security

3 Apr 2020 6:42 pm
How to lock down Zoom to improve your privacy and security

Zoom has received a lot of attention because of the increased number of people working from home, some good, some bad. There have been various security and privacy issues with the video conferencing app, but there are steps you can take to lock things down a little. Following numerous controversies, Zoom has not only issued an apology but also put a stop on the development of new features while it gets itself in order. In the meantime, there are a various things you can do to increase your priva

3 Apr 2020 4:18 pm
Best Windows 10 apps this week

Three-hundred-and-eighty in a series. Welcome to this week's overview of the best apps, games and extensions released for Windows 10 on the Microsoft Store in the past seven days. Microsoft released an out-of-band patch for Windows 10 version 1903 and 1909 to address a connectivity issue. As always, if I've missed an app or game that has been released this week that you believe is particularly good, let me know in the comments below or notify me via email. Discounts this week The following list

3 Apr 2020 4:13 pm
Get 'Virtual Teams for Dummies' ($17.99 value) FREE for a limited time

In the global marketplace, people can work practically anywhere and anytime, and thats something were seeing a lot of right now thanks to COVID-19. Virtual teams cut across the boundaries of time, space, culture, and sometimes even organizations. Packed with solid advice, interviews and case studies from well-known companies who are already using virtual teams in their business model and their lessons learned,Virtual Teams for Dummies provides rock-solid guidance on the essentials for building,

3 Apr 2020 2:45 pm
Is coronavirus going to break the internet?

With the current pandemic leading to many more people working from home, we could be looking at a permanent shift in working patterns over the longer term. But the question many people are asking is can the internet cope? Tech education site Computer Science Zone has created an infographic looking at the effect of more remote working on the internet. Increased use is mainly being driven by things like video calling and VPN, but entertainment is clearly a factor too, with AT&T reporting an al

3 Apr 2020 2:25 pm
If you used Firefox to access Twitter, your non-public info may have been exposed

Mozilla Firefox is damn good web browser that is largely open source and focuses on privacy and security. That is why I choose it as my default browser on both Windows 10 and Linux-based operating systems such as Ubuntu and Fedora. Many people wisely choose Firefox for the same reasons. Sadly, today, we discover that if you have been using Mozilla Firefox to access Twitter, you may have had non-public information data saved locally to cache. Twitter makes it clear that other major browsers, such

3 Apr 2020 5:05 am
Grand National goes virtual to give fans their racing fix

The Grand National is a highlight of the British sporting calendar. An event that prompts people who never normally bet on a horse race to venture a few pounds at the bookies or take part in a workplace sweepstake. With this year's race canceled due to the coronavirus it looked like they might miss out, but virtual reality is coming to the rescue. A Virtual Grand National using CGI technology and specially written algorithms will take place on Saturday April 4th at 5pm -- the same time as the re

2 Apr 2020 7:46 pm
Events tracking tool helps track and guard against phishing and spam campaigns

It's not unusual for phishing attacks to focus their efforts on major events. The end of the tax year is always popular as are major sporting occasions. The latest lure of course is the current COVID-19 pandemic. The problem for IT admins is how to protect against a sudden deluge of threats and spam messages while ensuring that important legitimate communications aren't accidentally blocked. To help with this email defense specialist Vade Secure has released a new Current Events feature for Vade

2 Apr 2020 6:34 pm
Poor audio quality on calls can lead to lost productivity

On average end-users are losing almost half an hour of productivity each week due to poor sound quality on voice calls, time spent double checking information via follow-up emails or calls. Research from Danish audio brand EPOS shows 87 percent of end-users surveyed have experienced at least one pain point due to poor sound quality on calls, whether in the office or working from home. These issues include background noise (42 percent), having to repeat yourself (34 percent) and asking for inform

2 Apr 2020 4:01 pm
Cloudflare announces free VPN tool WARP for Windows and macOS, with Linux to follow

If you're in the market for a free VPN for your desktop PC or laptop, Cloudflare will soon have a new offering. Following on from the success of its free VPN for mobile devices, the company that's also behind the DNS resolver is now bringing WARP to Windows and macOS -- and there is a Linux version in the works. Cloudflare's WARP is currently available in beta, but not everyone will be able to get access to it straight away. See also: Microsoft releases out-of-band update to fix VPN bug

2 Apr 2020 1:57 pm