Britain's GCHQ spy agency, which was revealed to be working in partnership with America's NSA to monitor the online communications of pretty much everyone ever, has been scanning the internet connections of entire countries in order to find weaknesses its agents can exploit.
According to documents obtained by Heise Online, a GCHQ programme called Hacienda examines every single internet address in a country to find out what kinds of connections are being used and any software running in tandem with those addresses. Weaknesses are reported back to agents - allowing them to gain access to steal user data, or alternatively, to put phishing websites in place of legitimate ones. Hacienda looks at protocols like SSH and SNMP, as well as HTTP and http://FTP.
The documents state there's another system, called Olympia, which is capable of scanning all the information in just minutes and automatically. Five countries are reported to have had all of this data, although it's not yet public which countries these are.
An Apple shareholder is suing the estate of deceased founder and CEO Steve Jobs, claiming that his actions compromised the company's value and put stock holders at risk.
In particular, R Andre Klein's complaint lies with Steve Jobs' hiring agreements with other Silicon Valley companies, which essentially amounted to a no-poaching agreement. Critics say that in effect, this secret deal could have stagnated wages and prevented workers from getting what they were due. Klein, who is filing on behalf of all Apple shareholders, says that this behavior violates the US Securities and Exchange act.
"Jobs's conduct is a reminder that even widely respected businessmen can knowingly commit unlawful acts in the zealous pursuit of profits," it was stated in court papers. "In this case, Jobs and the other individual defendants knowingly caused Apple to enter into agreements that violated California law and US antitrust laws." The present CEO of Apple, Tim Cook, is also a defendant. Klein is seeking a payment from Apple for damages to shareholders, Sky reports.
Twitter is experimenting with something that has some users of the service upset. The experiment is making tweets that users favorite display on their timeline, making the favorite tweets act as if they were retweets. Presumably, the change is an effort on Twitter's part to get people more involved with the content.
Many users were complaining that their timelines were cluttered and useless. Twitter hasn't commented directly on the complaints yet, but did point out a blog post where it notes that it has the right to experiment. This change may not be seen by everyone who uses Twitter.
The blog post reads, "A common thread across recent releases has been experimentation. We've tested various features with small groups of our 200 million users before determining what we'll release. These tests are essential to delivering the best possible user experience."
The Premier League has announced it will be targeting users of the Vine social network who are uploading unauthorized video clips of goals onto the internet.
As the soccer season begins, the Premier League has warned that any footage from it belongs to the organisation - and that uploading even brief sections of it, such as goal videos, onto the internet is in breach of copyright. The Premier League's Dan Johnson said it was "ultimately against the law", adding that the League will be introducing automated bots to sniff out unauthorized usage online, as well as for gifs. He said that the League will actively be cooperating with Twitter.
Vine allows users to post and share very brief videos. Many fans sharing material will naturally be doing it for the love of the game. But TV networks, which are paying record sums in the billions for broadcasting rights, will want to discourage behavior they view as ways to watch for free.
IBM in partnership with London's Science Museum is celebrating the world's first ever "smartphone" - the IBM Simon, which is now 20 years old.
Although it obviously doesn't hold a candle to the devices that are now available, the Simon was ahead of its time in many ways. For a product released in 1994. it was a piece of mobile technology that could take notes and even send emails, combined with a mobile phone. There was accompanying software and it could also operate with a fax machine. However, it weighed in at a chunky 1.1lb - a far cry from the portable kit around today.
At nearly 1,000 USD the Simon wasn't a market hit - and no mobile internet meant it wasn't particularly well connected. IBM's device had a battery life of just one hour, and it was taken off the shelves two years later. But museum curator Charlotte Connelly said that, nonetheless, it and the Information Age exhibition Simon will be shown at serve as a reminder of a more disconnected lifestyle. "It does remind us of that time," she told the BBC. "I definitely enjoy getting away from things and deliberately disconnecting myself. There's something quite nice about that."
In the last hour, reporters from the UK are sending word that Wikileaks founder Julian Assange may be preparing to leave the Ecuadorian embassy, where he has been holed up for the last two years under the protection of the country.
If Assange leaves the safe house, he will be immediately arrested by London police and likely extradited to Sweden to answer allegations of sexual assault. Assange fears that he may be further extradited to the United States with a long outstanding warrant issued regarding his Wikileaks activities.
Assange is said to be suffering worsening health, which has formed his decision to leave the embassy.
Whether or not Assange is walking out today, he certainly managed to get media attention... pic.twitter.com/lQEXJkHSTl- NickdMiller (@NickdMiller) August 18, 2014
More as it breaks.
Did you think Star Citizen was all about taking up to the stars and epic space battles? Well, there's a first-person shooter side to it too, did you think that $50 million was just spent battling other people in the dark beyond? Nope.
Roberts Space Industries has just teased two more modules for Star Citizen, the first-person shooter module, and the upcoming planet-based competitive racing side of things. You can see those parts in the video above, and the ones below.
Thanks to our friends at Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment, we have copies of this week's Blu-ray release of 'Captain America: The Winter Soldier' up for grabs for three lucky readers!
After the cataclysmic events in New York with The Avengers, Marvel's 'Captain America: The Winter Soldier' finds Steve Rogers, aka Captain America, living quietly in Washington, D.C. and trying to adjust to the modern world. But when a SHIELD colleague comes under attack, Rogers becomes embroiled in a web of intrigue that threatens to put the world at risk. Joining forces with the Black Widow, Captain America struggles to expose the ever-widening conspiracy while fighting off professional assassins sent to silence him at every turn. When the full scope of the villainous plot is revealed, Captain America and the Black Widow enlist the help of a new ally, the Falcon. However, they soon find themselves up against an unexpected and formidable enemy - the Winter Soldier.
To go into the running to take one Blu-ray copy home, simply correctly answer the following question:
Name the two comic book artists who created the character Captain America
To enter, simply 'like' this post and share via Facebook or Twitter and send your answers, along with your postal address to ben at TweakTown.com before the competition closes on August 22nd.
'Captain America: The Winter Soldier' is available on 3D and 2D Blu-ray and HD Digital Copy combo pack Blu-ray, 2D Blu-ray and HD Digital Copy combo pack Blu-ray, DVD and Digital Copy combo pack and Digital from Australian retailers on August 13th.
For those of you who remember King's Quest, you may begin to get excited that Sierra has a small team working on a 'contemporary reboot' of the super-classic point-and-click adventure game from way back when. Activision's MacLean Marshall talked with Game Informer about Sierra coming back from the grave, and King's Quest - our first details on the game.
Activision unveiled the revival of the Sierra brand at Gamescom last week, where the company has some big plans for Sierra's titles - old, and even new creations. Marshall talked with Game Informer about the new project, and how the company is bringing back Sierra. Marshall said: "There's one piece of the puzzle, which is that Sierra was a brand that we acquired with Vivendi. It's been dormant and there wasn't a place for it, and we didn't know what we were going to do with it. Then, over the however many years, everyone's been watching this indie movement. There was that angle, where we had this really nostalgic brand that most gamers to varying degrees by age know. We wanted to find a way to expand our digital portfolio".
Game Informer also talked with Marshall about the new King's Quest, which is being developed by The Odd Gentlemen. Marshall said: "They are doing a contemporary reboot of King's Quest. It's not just an HD port. But that's not also to say that, maybe King's Quest is or isn't the right one, that's not on the table, too. It could be HD remakes of original Sierra content. It could be contemporary reimaginings of the old Sierra IPs. It could be stuff that's new, kick-***, awesome IP that has nothing to do with the old Sierra brand, but will be a Sierra thing when it launches". The gameplay for the new King's Quest will be a big departure from what you remember, with Marshall teasing: "There's not much I can say about King's Quest. All I can say is that I've seen it, and it's not a point-and-click game. But it looks *** awesome".
SEGA has settled its class-action lawsuit that was taken against it for allegedly false advertising its first-person shooter from last year, Aliens: Colonial Marines, for a cool $1.25 million.
From the $1.25 million, plaintiffs Damion Perrine and John Locke would see $2,500 each, while their attorney fees would chew up a massive $312,500. Administration fees tick up to $200,000 leaving $735,000 to be split up among everyone in the class-action lawsuit, a number that will not exceed $59.99 per person.
How many people clustered into the class-action lawsuit? According to Game Informer, a huge 135,000 people signed up, which should see around $5.44 per person from the $735,000 remaining. While this isn't a huge amount of money, let's hope that it deters publishers and game developers from lying to gamers in the videos and various teasers of their games, and then bait and switching when it hits gamers' HDDs.