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TweakTown News Posts - Page 62

NPD: Connected TVs in U.S. growing in popularity as prices fall

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Connectivity & Communications | Posted: Jul 22, 2014 12:15 am

There will be double the amount of connected TV devices in the United States when compared to U.S. Internet households by 2017, according to the NPD Group. There will be an estimated 204 million connected TVs using the Internet over the next three years, double the figure of estimated Internet growth.

 

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The adoption of connected TVs and streaming media players, along with lowering costs, have provided consumers with a wide selection of product choices. More consumers are using their connected living room technologies to stream Netflix, Pandora, YouTube, Hulu, and other popular entertainment services.

 

"The evolution of hardware and digital content distribution is constantly changing the TV viewing experience," said John Buffone, NPD Connected Intelligence executive director, in a press statement. "Over the coming years, the consumers' preferred device for apps on TV will be shaped by the next generation of video game consoles, Smart TVs, and a new wave of streaming media players."

Continue reading 'NPD: Connected TVs in U.S. growing in popularity as prices fall' (full post)

Researchers creating smart helmet technology to relay concussion data

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Science, Space & Robotics | Posted: Jul 21, 2014 11:40 pm

A new technology being developed at Western Michigan University hopes to give coaches and medical staff a better glimpse when a player suffers a concussion on the field. A new pressure sensor designed for helmets uses printed electronics that sends information to a smartphone, providing immediate data on hit severity.

 

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All data can be stored so coaches and staff can monitor each player's complete history following a concussion-related incident.

 

"Basically, this device or system would eliminate the possibility of inaccuracies from field judgments made by coaches, who rely on the self-assessment or self-reporting of players," said Massood Atashbar, WMU electrical and computer science professor, in a statement to local media. "The coach would receive real-time, actionable information when one of the players receives a potentially dangerous and serious impact to the head."

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AskMen website hacked twice in the past month, sending malicious code

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Hacking & Security | Posted: Jul 21, 2014 11:26 pm

For the second time in the past month, AskMen.com was compromised, with malicious code injected on the company's server sending out attacks. AskMen is reportedly looking into the security issue after being contacted by security software company Malwarebytes.

 

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In the previous attack, visitors were being targeted by malicious code courtesy of the Nuclear Pack exploit kit, Websense researchers discovered. The attack started by redirecting users to another website, and then a Java exploit (CVE-2013-2465) and Adobe PDF exploit would be installed.

 

The second attack discovered by Malwarebytes runs using the same idea - a JavaScript iframe is created to redirect users to a malicious website. The new website serves as a landing page for the same Nuclear Pack exploit kit, with the payload dropped and executed on unsuspecting users. The Malwarebytes Anti-Malware software flags the software as "Trojan.Kelihos," the company said.

Google now promotes legal links if you search for TV torrents

By: Tamlin Magee | More News: Internet & Websites | Posted: Jul 21, 2014 11:03 pm

Users who now enter piracy related keywords into Google will see legal content promoted above anything that's against the law.

 

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If users type in keywords like torrent, Putlocker or DVDrip, they will be shown what they are looking for - but Google will prioritize results like Netflix and Hulu above the search results. And Google Play, its own content selling service, is one of these that it promotes. It's an interesting premise that operates on the good faith assumption of people looking for these terms will be interested in their legal alternatives. For some Googlers this will be the case, but we strongly suspect it won't be for all or even most of them. However, this does not seem to have reached the UK just yet, so it's possible Google is running a trial in selected markets.

 

This rollout appears to have been done on the quiet but is rather all-encompassing - high-risk pirate search terms like a TV title followed by 'watch' will lead to a similar set of results, as well as keywords like 'view' or 'download'. "These ads will appear after various searches that include specific movie, TV, and music titles," a spokesperson for Google told TorrentFreak.

Criminals using Malaysia Airlines MH17 to compromise users with spam

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Hacking & Security | Posted: Jul 21, 2014 10:18 pm

Cybercriminals are capitalizing on media attention of the Malaysia Airlines MH17, with a constant barrage of tweets, Facebook status updates, and emails promising additional information about the crash. Most recently, a reported "video" of the Malaysia Airlines crash posted on Facebook actually links to a pornographic website - and other similar spam efforts are likely on the way.

 

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"When a disaster like this happens it's a great opportunity for all sorts of scammers," said Ken Gamble, Australian chapter chairman of the International Association of Cybercrime Prevention, in a statement to the media. "It's a great opportunity to prey on people's vulnerabilities and emotion is the greatest one."

 

Cybercriminals typically launch spam attacks following major international incidents - and it's becoming easier - as news is so frequently shared via email and social media. As emotions run high, criminals want to compromise users as they try to learn more about the incident and share details with friends online.

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Criminals expanding use of card skimmers to steal data from customers

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Hacking & Security | Posted: Jul 21, 2014 9:32 pm

The battle continues against the use of card skimmers to steal debit and credit card information from customers, with data being stolen at ATMs, gas stations, and other similar locations. Data skimmed often is sold online or used to clone the credit card for use locally, with customers, banks, and law enforcement typically one step behind.

 

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Criminals are using handheld skimmers and small devices that can be installed to compromise point-of-sale (POS) systems. The newer generation electronic skimmers can be installed and remotely controlled inside of ATMs or other POS machines - and often times can be very difficult to detect. Banks and security experts recommend customers always pay attention to their bank statements and credit card bills, in case mysterious charges begin to appear.

 

"[The skimmer is] hidden, the person using it will never see it, it's simple to add, it's simple to modify it," said Dan DeFelippi, a former credit card hacker. "It only takes seconds to open it up and put it in there. They're ubiquitous. There are gas pumps everywhere. You can easily find a gas station to do it at and go back and gather."

FXX to air EVERY Simpsons EVER back-to-back in best TV marathon ever

By: Tamlin Magee | More News: Celebrities & Entertainment | Posted: Jul 21, 2014 8:13 pm

TV network FXX just bought all the rights to the Simpsons, and to celebrate before the next series airs, is planning to show the entirety of the long running cartoon sitcom, back to back, in what must be the longest and best TV marathon ever.

 

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FXX recently bought the rights to all episodes for just shy of 1 billion USD - at 750 million dollars. But it sounds like it will be putting the much loved show to good use, as every single one of the 552 episodes will be on the channel 24/7 - as well as the movie - for an entire week and a half.

 

FXX will also launch a digital hub later this year that will allow fans to access any episode, any time online at SimpsonsWorld.com - mirroring a similar effort that was recently canned by South Park. The fun begins at 10am on August 21 and broadcasts constantly until 12am, September 1.

IT would improve security infrastructure if money, opportunity arose

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Hacking & Security | Posted: Jul 21, 2014 7:30 pm

Almost thirty percent of security experts would conduct an overhaul of current enterprise security if they had the necessary resources and opportunity to make changes, according to a survey conducted by Websense. There is a lack of communication between IT security and company decision makers, as many current security systems are outdated and unable to defend against some attacks.

 

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"This Ponemon Institute security survey highlights that a lack of communication, education and inadequate security systems is making it possible for cybercriminals to attack organizations across the globe," said John McCormack, Websense CEO, in a press statement. "It's not surprising that many security professionals are disappointed with the level of protection their current solutions provide, as many still use legacy solutions that cannot disrupt the kill chain to prevent data theft."

 

Advanced persistent threats (APTs) remain a top concern among organization security experts, with APTs typically serving as well-coordinated attacks aimed at single corporations. The stealth attack is continuous and many users are unaware they've been compromised - stealing confidential data that can be sold or used for ransom.

Lego pieces still washing up on English coast after 90s shipwreck

By: Tamlin Magee | More News: Current Affairs | Posted: Jul 21, 2014 7:00 pm

The tides on a British coast keep washing in the remnants of a 1997 shipwreck that was carrying a cargo load of Lego.

 

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Lego pieces keep emerging on the shores of Cornwall, England, and there have been hundreds spotted since the ship, the Tokio Express, was pulled under a freak wave, losing just under 5 million pieces of Lego in the process. Some of the Lego pieces include, ironically, plastic spear guns and scuba gear.

 

Tracey Williams, who runs the Lego Lost at Sea page, which is dedicated to the strange phenomena, was interviewed by the Bristol Post newspaper. "I've collected between 500 and 600 pieces over the years," she said. "Collectively we've found thousands and thousands between us - but there's still so many more to find." An oceanographer, Curtis Ebbesmeyer, told the paper that the mystery is in where most of the pieces have ended up, as they have only been reported definitively just off the coast of Cornwall. "The most profound lesson I've learned from the Lego story is that things that go to the bottom of the sea don't always stay there," Ebbesmeyer added.

Smartwatch makers aiming for children and those monitoring health

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Wearable Computing | Posted: Jul 21, 2014 6:30 pm

Smartwatches piqued the interest of technology enthusiasts, but has largely fallen flat to appeal to casual consumers. To create new marketing hype, LG Electronics, Filip Technologies and VTech Holdings are catering devices to children, which could be an easier sale than to adults.

 

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Basic smartwatches from children, like the VTech Kidizoom smartwatch, is simple and affordable: $60 with no Wi-Fi or 3G/4G support. Keeping kids mobile with technology could be used for both education and entertainment, supporters say. Meanwhile, smartwatches from Samsung, Apple and other companies rely heavily on technology, including mobile connectivity, to constantly monitor blood sugar levels and other medical data.

 

"Children as well as the elderly are ideal customers for wearable technologies," Jong-seok Park, head of LG Mobile Communications, in a recent statement. "Wearables allow us to stay connected without the worry of losing a device or the inconvenience of having to carry a large item in a pocket."

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