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LulzSec hacks again, claims responsibility for leaking 10,000 Twitter accounts on Pastebin

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Hacking & Security | Posted: Jun 12, 2012 7:33 pm

LulzSec, a hacking group responsible for many hacks last year, has been fairly quiet this year after their leader allegedly worked with law enforcement to bring charges against its members. Now, however, LulzSec Reborn has taken over and started hacking, mainly compromising user accounts and leaking the details.




LulzSec Reborn has had two major hacks this year and otherwise has been quiet. The first was a leaking of 170,000 MilitarySingles accounts on Pastebin and now they are taking responsibility for the leaking of 10,000 Twitter accounts on Pastebin. The latter, today's leak, features much more information than a traditional password hack.


The leak comes in the form of an SQL dump which features usernames, passwords, real names, bios, locations, avatars, security tokens used by the service for authentication with Twitter and the user's most recent Tweet. The hack comes from compromising a third-party site that required the login information to work.


LulzSec Reborn compromised TweetGif, a site which allows users to post animated GIFs to their feed. TweetGif isn't a very large service and only has around 75,000 global visitors. The company's Twitter only has around 700 followers. Often compromises such as this come from third-party services which require a username/password combo to work.


It's not known if LulzSec Reborn features any of the members in the original hacking collective.

Sprint Touch Wallet slides show carrier is serious about NFC wallet app

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Apps | Posted: Jun 12, 2012 6:28 pm

It looks as though Sprint could be working on their own NFC wallet app. Last week, news leaked out that Sprint was developing their own NFC wallet app, and thanks to some slides passed along today, we now know that those rumors were true. The details are slim, but we certainly know more now than we did.




The thing looks pretty darn similar to Google Wallet. Sprint has been the only official partner carrier for that app, so they may have decided it would be better to make their own. The biggest questions remain unanswered. Questions like what bank partners Sprint will have or when it will be unveiled have yet to receive an answer.


Functionally, it appears to be near identical to Google Wallet. After the app is unlocked using a passcode, you receive a screen of options. If the phone is tapped to a reader, a listing of sorts will be presented to select a card to use. When you are done, the entire thing locks back up.


Users in the US need a singular app to get behind before these NFC wallets will take off. Is this the one for us, or is it just another novelty?

EU watchdog issues warning over smart meter privacy risk

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Jun 12, 2012 5:28 pm

The world is becoming more and more connected and more and more devices are joining the internet. This fundamental idea is the driving force behind the need to change to IPv6. Now even smart meters are connected to some sort of network through which they transmit usage data back to the power company.




An EU watchdog is concerned about the privacy of the data that is being reported back. Due to the massive amounts of data being reported, it's easy to see when people are home or not by watching the power usage. Not only that, but the meter can even report back what medical devices are in use in the house.


It's of the utmost concern to Privacy International, a group claiming that proposed safeguards do not go far enough. The major fear appears to be regarding the ability to deduce if someone is home or not, but there are plenty more complaints about the sheer amount of data being collected.


Third-party companies could theoretically learn about consumers' sleeping patterns, when they watch TV, use certain tools or devices, or even what medical device they may use. "Information about energy usage can have high commercial value," according to the EDPS report. The US has similar devices, and as far as I know, without any of the safeguards in place in the EU.

MacBook Pro with 15" screen ships in '2-3 weeks'

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Laptops | Posted: Jun 12, 2012 4:34 pm

At yesterday's WWDC press conference, Phil Schiller, Apple's senior vice president of worldwide marketing, claimed that the new MacBook Pro 15 with Retina display would ship immediately. It appears that that is now not the case and that could be due to a few reasons and it's not clear which reason it is.




The first reason that they could not be shipping today is some sort of miscommunication or hiccup in the shipping. Although Apple is usually good at avoiding things like this, they aren't immune singularly immune from it. Or, Apple could have sold out the first batch and are now having to make more. This is a bit more likely.


Or, since Apple is all about marketing, this could be a marketing ploy. Apple could be making it look like they sold out to help drive sales. After all, the new PC starts at a hefty $2,199 which makes it unaffordable for quite a large part of the market. But then again, Apple has never been known to make affordable products. All we know is that the website is now quoting 2-3 weeks for shipping time.

Verizon shared data debuts June 28, allows extra device, family member for a fee

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Jun 12, 2012 3:29 pm

Verizon had previously announced that shared data would be coming to the network. At that time, they had not announced exactly when or how the new system would work. Today, some new details have surfaced about the cost and when the actual system will go live. Depending on your data usage, this new system could be a good or a bad thing.




The pricing, seen above, seems reasonable. It's not bad until you start tacking on additional devices. For a smartphone, you have to pay an additional $40. A regular phone sees you shelling out $30 for data. A hotspot? $20. A tablet, which is what I really see this shared data as being used for, is $10 extra a month.


The new plans become available on June 28 and Verizon is hoping they tempt you away from your current unlimited plan. My advice? Don't give up your unlimited plan if you use more than 1-2GB of data. The new plans are interesting, but a bit overpriced. I think if the prices came down, then they would be a better value and see more adopters.

Poll Results - What new products do you most want to see at Computex 2012?

By: Cameron Wilmot | More News: Trade Shows | Posted: Jun 12, 2012 3:24 pm

Our latest poll had almost 900 people who answered, What new products do you most want to see at Computex 2012?




This probably wasn't a shock at the end of the day, 24% of the votes went to booth babes for the number one spot.


In second place was video cards with 18% of the votes followed by CPU, APU and chipsets in third place with 11% of the votes. Nevertheless, we hope you enjoyed our Computex Taipei 2012 coverage.


For the actual numbers, go here. In our latest poll, we ask you... Let's settle this! AMD GPU vs. NVIDIA GPU Let us know! Go here to vote!

VIA APC up for pre-order, starts shipping in July

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Computer Systems | Posted: Jun 12, 2012 2:02 pm

Small embedded systems are becoming more and more popular after being spurred on by Raspberry Pi. The new VIA system is cheap, but not quite as cheap as the Raspberry Pi system. The APC, VIA's new system, will set you back only $49 before shipping. But, after shipping to Europe, USA, or Canada, it will be a total of $87.




The VIA APC sports a VIA WonderMedia 875 800 MHz ARM11 processor, 512MB of memory, and 2GB of storage. And unlike the Raspberry Pi system, this new APC features quite a few more connectivity options. The list below details it's I/O offerings:


  • 4 USB 2.0 ports
  • HDMI
  • VGA
  • mic input
  • audio output
  • 10/100 Etherent
  • microSD card slot


There are other competitors in the small form-factor computing market, but none seem to offer quite the connectivity of the new APC. It ships with Google's Android version 2.3 and should be capable of running Linux and other operating systems. Just be sure to not try and put Windows 7 on this. And no, it won't run Crysis.

Intel changes its mind: Intel 520 Series SSD does not have AES 256-bit Encryption

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Storage | Posted: Jun 11, 2012 10:43 pm

Intel has decided that AES encryption feature of the 520 Series SSD (Cherryville) does not actually feature 256-bit encryption. It turns out that the SSD actually only supports 128-bit encryption, which should be plenty for most users. These details have come to light after Intel published an updated specification document for the series.




Intel is doing the right thing and offering a refund for users who feel 128-bit isn't enough:


Intel stands behind its products and is committed to product quality, and is working to bring AES 256-bit encryption to future products. If, however, our customers are not satisfied with the 128-bit encryption in an Intel 520 Series SSD purchased before July 1, 2012, they can contact Intel customer support prior to October 1, 2012 to return their product and Intel is offering to provide a full refund of the purchase price. For further information or questions about this specification change, consumers should contact Intel Customer Support.


Intel asserts that 128-bit is enough for most consumers, and I have to agree. The bit number refers to the length of the key and 128-bit keys are pretty hard to crack. The longer the key, the longer it takes to crack due to a larger keyspace. 256-bit is only really needed for military and super secret applications. But then again, if you aren't careful with the password, a huge key doesn't matter.

AMD beta drivers show 16 new device IDs, 3 new codenames, could it be the 8000 series?

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Video Cards | Posted: Jun 11, 2012 9:11 pm

A surprise from AMDs beta drivers has arrived today. No, not some incredible performance jump that causes it to smash the 680...or is it? The new beta drivers make reference to 16 previously unseen device IDs and their codenames. These new device IDs could (read: likely) belong to the upcoming HD 8000 series GPUs.




The codenames, 4x "Venus", 3x "Oland" and finally 9x "Mars", should flesh out the HD 8000 series nicely. The Venus will most likely be the top end card due to the LE, Pro, XT and XTX suffixes. Oland will probably end up being the 8800 series and Mars will most likely flesh out the lower end and mainstream market.


The cards will likely launch near the end of 2012 or very early 2013, if previous AMD launches are anything to go by. There have been zero rumors about performance, although with this new finding, I'm sure they will start flowing. In case you're curious, the device IDs are listed below:

Continue reading 'AMD beta drivers show 16 new device IDs, 3 new codenames, could it be the 8000 series?' (full post)

iOS 6 officially announced

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Jun 11, 2012 6:47 pm

iOS brings with it a new version of Siri. She has been studying for the past 8 months and can now do so much more like understand sports. There are also new features for finding restaurants and making reservations.




Siri also understands movies better as she has integrated with Rotten Tomatoes. Siri can search for movies featuring specific actors or directors.



Continue reading 'iOS 6 officially announced' (full post)

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