Microsoft founder and former CEO Bill Gates is not a big fan of former NSA contractor Edward Snowden and his actions to leak so many documents related to organized NSA spying.
"I certainly wouldn't characterize him as a hero," Gates recently said in an interview with Rolling Stone. "If he wanted to raise the issues and stay in the country and engage in civil disobedience or something of that kind, or if he had been careful in terms of what he had released, then it would fit more of the model of 'Okay, I'm really trying to improve things.' You won't find much admiration from me."
U.S. politicians and lawmakers clearly don't think Snowden is a hero - while some citizens believe he should be applauded and others think Snowden is a traitor.
A data breach suffered by the Archdiocese of Seattle is now being investigated by the FBI and IRS, as personal information stolen has reportedly been used for false tax returns, so criminals can take the refunds.
Students from the Seattle Bishop Blanchet High School were released early on Friday, with school administrators hoping to give faculty and volunteers the ability to go home and check their IRS and credit reports. Students at the O'Dea High School had Friday off so administrators could try to further evaluate the data breach.
The Archdiocese of Seattle has created an online portal for those concerned following the data breach. Also, they recommend calling the IRS Identity Protection Specialized Unit: 1-800-908-4490, ext. 245 to learn if tax identity theft has occurred.
British supermarket Morrisons was recently hit by a successful data breach, with those responsible able to steal names, addresses, and bank account information of employees. Unlike recent data breaches in the United States, only employees were hit, with no customer information revealed.
The data breach affected employees throughout all levels of the organization, and initial investigation revealed the breach could have been an inside job.
In a message on the company's Facebook page and e-mailed to employees:
"We are extremely sorry to inform you that there has been a theft of colleagues' personal information, which was uploaded onto a website. As soon as we became aware of this last night we took immediate steps to ensure the data was removed from the website. It was closed down without hours of us being notified."
Members of the Syrian Electronic Army (SEA) hacker group reportedly compromised part of the United States Central Command network, launching the effort due to President Obama's "decision to attack Syria with electronic warfare."
The group said it successfully gained access to central repositories, including a screenshot of unauthorized access to the network.
In a recent Tweet, here is what the group had to say:
A new spam hoax imitating a message from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) organization told recipients they have cancer, and is sent with the following subject line: "Important blood analysis result.
The e-mail includes Zeus malware and has been sent to thousands of users, and anyone that downloads the attachment could lead to their PC being hijacked. After the attachment is unzipped and runs, an error screen appears and quickly disappears, with the downloader working to hijack the PC. Next, Microsoft Outlook passwords and other login credentials are stolen.
The e-mail reads:
"We have been sent a sample of your blood analysis for further research. During the complete blood count (CBC) we have revealed that white blood cells is very low, and unfortunately we have a suspicion of cancer."
Prison inmates doing life sentences might not be good enough in the future, with scientists from Oxford University exploring new controversial technologies that would see them extending human life, in a way.
Their research could see prison firms developing drugs that make time pass slowly, something that could make an inmate feel like they're living out consecutive life sentences - lasting up to 1000 years. Dr Rebecca Roache spoke with Aeon magazine, where she said: "Some crimes are so bad they require a really long period of punishment, and a lot of people seem to get out of that punishment by dying."
Dr Roache used the example of two parents murdering their own four-year-old son, saying that the 30-year sentence they received was "laughably inadequate." In her Practical Ethics blog, Dr Roache notes that the parents would receive a humane treatment, unlike their son. She wrote: "They will, for example, be fed and watered, housed in clean cells, allowed access to a toilet and washing facilities, allowed out of their cells for exercise and recreation."
The cyberwar between Russia and Ukraine is accelerating, and hackers recently brought down the Russian Kremlin and Central Back websites. Russian news sites also are being targeted, with RT saying the Anonymous Caucasus has taken credit for downing Russian Channel One.
"A powerful cyberattack is underway on the (Kremlin) site," a Russian government spokesperson said. "A serious DDoS attack is currently underway, not only on the Kremlin site, but also a number of other Web portals."
According to a Tweet from Anonymous Russia:
President Vladimir Putin's government has reportedly banned four websites operated by Kremlin opponents and critics. Opponent Alexei Navalny had his website blocked for Russian Internet users, along with online newspaper Grani, an opposition information website, and a radio station website (despite it being state-operated).
The Russian government defended its actions by saying the websites helped organize "illegal" protests, according to reports in the region. Navalny is serving a two-month house arrest punishment because he violated five-year probation for an embezzlement-related charge.
Over the past two years, Putin has continually put the squeeze on media outlets located in his country - most recently, the editor of Lenta.ru, a major Russian independent news site, resigned due to increased pressure from Moscow.
The European Union is pushing for a new voluntary adoption of a smartphone charging standard years ago, but is now much closer to that goal. The European Parliament has voted in favor of a draft law requiring that smartphones work with a common charger.
Now the EU needs the Council of Ministers approval, where European Union countries will have until 2016 to get it into their local laws, and smartphone makers have a year more to change their hardware. Most phone makers already support the concept, but there will be some companies who don't want to change, or need a little push to fall into line.
The Galaxy S5 isn't even here yet, and we're already hearing about different variants of Samsung's upcoming flagship smartphone. SamMobile is behind the latest scoop, where they've seen the specifications for the Galaxy S5 Zoom.
The new Galaxy S5 Zoom will reportedly feature a 19-megapixel rear-facing camera, upping the picture taking goodness from the 16-megapixel rear-facing snapper on the Galaxy S4 Zoom. Inside of the S5 Zoom we'll find a 4.8-inch 1280x720-pixel screen, hexa-core Exynos processor clocking in at 1.3GHz, 2GB of RAM, 16GB of flash storage and Android 4.4.2 KitKat.
We don't know when to expect the S5 Zoom, but it should be somewhere around May hopefully.