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TweakTown News Posts - Page 53

Europol cripples Ramnit botnet, helping free millions of hijacked PCs

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Hacking & Security | Posted: Feb 26, 2015 1:25 pm

Europol's European Cybercrime Center is actively dismantling the Ramnit botnet, which relies on up to 3 million malware-infected zombie PCs. Twenty-seven percent of Ramnit infections were identified in India, with Indonesia (18 percent), Vietnam, the United States, Bangladesh and the Philippines also impacted.

 

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Europol didn't say if any arrests were made at this stage of the investigation, but offered this public statement:

 

"This successful operation shows the importance of international law enforcement working together with private industry in the fight against the global threat of cybercrime," said Wil van Gemert, Deputy Director of Operations at Europol. "We will continue our efforts in taking down botnets and disrupting the core infrastructures used by criminals to conduct a variety of cybercrimes."

Continue reading 'Europol cripples Ramnit botnet, helping free millions of hijacked PCs' (full post)

IDC: Android, iOS capture 96.3% of smartphone OS market

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Operating Systems | Posted: Feb 26, 2015 12:21 pm

Google Android and Apple iOS accounted for 96.3 percent of all smartphone shipments in 2014, as both platforms work their way towards total domination. Android leads with 81.5 percent, greatly ahead of iOS (14.8 percent), Microsoft Windows Phone (2.7 percent), and BlackBerry (0.4 percent) - with Android continuing to dominate.

 

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"Many of the same drivers were in play for Android and iOS to tighten their grip on the market," said Ramon Llamas, Research Manager of the Mobile Phone team at IDC. "A combination of strong end-user demand, refreshed product portfolios, and the availability of low-cost devices - particularly for Android - drove volumes higher."

 

Android topped the one billion unit mark in 2014, with Samsung still dominating the market - but faces pressure from Lenovo, Huawei, Xiaomi, and LG Electronics.

Continue reading 'IDC: Android, iOS capture 96.3% of smartphone OS market' (full post)

Lizard Squad says it hacked Lenovo website, and emails were taken

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Hacking & Security | Posted: Feb 26, 2015 11:50 am

In retaliation for loading PCs with Superfish adware, the Lizard Squad hacker group reportedly hacked the Lenovo website on Wednesday. Website visitors saw a slideshow of people singing "Breaking Free" into their webcams, instead of the normal Lenovo website.

 

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"We regret any inconvenience that our users may have if they are not able to access parts of our site at this time," Lenovo said in a statement. "We are actively reviewing our network security and will take appropriate steps to bolster our site and to protect the integrity of our users' information."

 

It has been a terrible month for Lenovo, with the company confirming - and apologizing - for its use of Superfish, and then being hacked by the Lizard Squad. The hacker group reportedly used the Webnic.cc domain name registrar, a Malaysian company, to hijack the website's Domain Name System (DNS).

Continue reading 'Lizard Squad says it hacked Lenovo website, and emails were taken' (full post)

Lytro receives $50 million investment, will put it into VR and video

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Feb 26, 2015 10:34 am

Lytro is a name that is usually associated with premium cameras, but the company has just secured itself $50 million in funding from GSV Capital, that it will use to push into the worlds of VR and video.

 

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The company will lay off around 25 to 50 of its 130 employees, but it will be acquiring new talent with knowledge in VR and video. With Lytro concentrating, at least before this investment, on tubelike, selective-focus cameras, it would make sense for the company to make a splash in the world of virtual reality, and video.

 

VR video from a company with an eye for detail like Lytro feels like a match made in Heaven, where we could see the real-world captured in stunning 360-degree goodness. Lytro is still working on its third-generation camera for 2016, which the company teases "should be pretty intriguing".

Dying Light: My Apocalypse Version costs $386,000... includes a house

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Gaming | Posted: Feb 26, 2015 9:29 am

Techland, the developer behind Dying Light, has announced a special edition of the game that costs an insane $386,000. Yes, nearly half a million dollars for a video game.

 

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The My Apocalypse Collectors Edition costs $386,000 but includes a real-world zombie-proof shelter, a round trip package to visit the Techland studio in Poland, night vision goggles, parkour lessons, Razer Tiamat headphones, and much more. Techland will be offering up just a single version of the My Apocalypse Collectors Edition, which is available exclusively through UK retailer GAME.

 

At least for that $386,000 you're getting a real-world "zombie apocalypse-proofed house" that Tiger Log Cabins will build for you. The zombie-proof house will come with some bells and whistles, including live-in amenities, as well as a TV, Xbox One and a sound system.

YouTube isn't making money, even with those countless views on videos

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Feb 26, 2015 9:05 am

Google isn't seeing any profits out of YouTube, according to The Wall Street Journal. The video streaming giant that Google has pushing out billions of views of cat videos, DC Toy Collector unwrapping various toys and chocolates, and more pulled $4 billion of revenues in 2014. This is up from $3 billion in 2013.

 

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YouTube's revenues were up $1 billion last year most likely because of Google introducing premium ads in the form of "Google Preferred". Business Insider reports that YouTube's main problem is that "people generally only watch its videos when they're embedded in other sites", but I don't know if that claim is really what happens out in the real-world.

 

Google now wants people to begin visiting YouTube's homepage in the same fashion that they turn the TV on, expecting to view high-quality content across various channels, again, in the same way they would on TV. This is a big part of the reason it has been signing over big checks to original content creators, in the hopes it will pull over more viewers.

EA Access members get access to Battlefield Hardline five days early

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Gaming | Posted: Feb 26, 2015 7:45 am

Battlefield Hardline has a launch date of March 17, but it will release five days earlier for EA Access members, with those gamers able to play the cops-and-robbers first-person shooter from EA and Visceral Games on my birthday, March 12. EA Access is an exclusive to the Xbox One, which means no early play for PC or PlayStation gamers.

 

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The five-day trial will allow EA Access members to play the full version of Battlefield Hardline, but for only 10 hours in total. EA Access normally offers six hours of trial before the game goes live, so this is a nice four hour addition. The entire game will be accessible: all maps and modes in Battlefield Hardline's multiplayer component will be playable. As for the single player side of the game, only the first chapter of the story and the prologue will be made available.

 

Any and all progress will be carried over to the full game when it launches on March 17, which is a nice touch. EA Access customers can purchase Battlefield Hardline from the Xbox Games Store with a 10% discount, dropping its $59.99 price down to $53.99.

Rocksteady teases Batman: Arkham Knight 'Gotham is Mine' trailer

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Gaming | Posted: Feb 26, 2015 6:41 am

Rocksteady Games has unveiled the official Batman: Arkham Knight trailer, dubbed "Gotham is Mine". The trailer shows off what we can expect from the epic conclusion to the Rocksteady Batman: Arkham trilogy.

 

 

The developer says: "As Scarecrow unites the Rogues Gallery, including Two-Face, The Penguin, the Riddler, the Arkham Knight, Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy, they bring all-out war as they try to take down The Dark Knight, and claim Gotham City as their own". The trailer doesn't show off much actual gameplay, but it does provide a great tease of all the characters and environments we'll get to see, and explore.

 

Batman: Arkham Knight will be released on June 2, 2015.

Continue reading 'Rocksteady teases Batman: Arkham Knight 'Gotham is Mine' trailer' (full post)

PS4 exclusive 'Hunger' looks like nothing you've ever seen before

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Gaming | Posted: Feb 26, 2015 5:31 am

For fans of LittleBigPlanet on the PlayStation, you might be interested in taking a look at 'Hunger' from Tarsier. Tarsier was actually behind the PS Vita version of LittleBigPlanet, but their new game is shaping up to be something very special, exclusive to the PS4.

 

 

In Hunger you play a girl that is trapped in a beautiful labyrinth that is filled with monsters and all sorts of gorgeous environments with very realistic lighting, shadows and physics judging by the teaser video above. Tarsier is focusing on tactile controls, very unique camera perspectives, and characters with "soft, dark centers".

 

We should expect to see more of Hunger at GDC 2015, if not I'm sure we'll get more of a taste for the PS4 exclusive at E3 2015 in June.

Continue reading 'PS4 exclusive 'Hunger' looks like nothing you've ever seen before' (full post)

Oculus announces Mobile VR Jam 2015 with $1 million in prizes

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Trade Shows | Posted: Feb 26, 2015 4:39 am

Oculus has just announced the new Mobile VR Jam 2015 event, where the Facebook-owned VR giant wants to see the best new games, apps, and experiences for the Gear VR Innovator Edition.

 

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Strangely, you might have noticed this isn't for its own VR headset, the Rift. This is a mobile event, so the Oculus-powered Gear VR headset is at the center of this event. Oculus is putting up a huge $1 million prize pool that will be split in two: one for VR games, and the other for VR experiences and apps. Oculus says: "The Mobile VR Jam is an opportunity to build groundbreaking new experiences in collaboration with other passionate VR pioneers, and win cash prizes for innovative uses of VR-specific interactions and pushing the medium forward".

 

The Mobile VR Jam 2015 takes place between April 13 and May 11 with the winners announced on June 4. Interesting timing, as it is just ahead of E3 2015, where I expect we can see some very big things for the world of VR, that is, after GDC 2015 comes and goes which is going to be big for VR as it is.

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