Some hackers broke into the Twitter accounts of the New York Post and the United Press International, where they said that World War III had been declared by the Pope and that the United States and China were engaged in a serious military battle.
This was obviously a hoax, with both the UPI and New York Post stating their respective Twitter feeds had been hacked by 1PM on Friday, just as US President Barack Obama and UK Prime Minister David Cameron addressed the media about the concerns of cyber security, and the fact they need to increase their online defenses.
The news organizations' Twitter feeds were throwing out some really huge statements, saying that China condemning President Obama's "pivot to Asia" before firing on, and damaging the USS George Washington, which is an American aircraft carrier based in the Pacific. The hacked feeds were also spouting that the US were engaged in "active combat" against China in the South China Sea. One of the tweets read: "US Joint Chief of staff: USS George Washington damaged, US navy now engaged in active combat against Chinese vessels in South China sea". Another tweet said "JUST IN: Xi Jinping: Obama 'condemned' for Asia pivot, 'has forced China to protect its interests through military means".
On its flight from Indonesia to Singapore, an Air Asia flight has gone missing according to the National Agency Search and Rescue Republic of Indonesia. Air Asia has confirmed that flight QZ8501 is indeed missing, with 162 people on board. The airline lost contact with the plane at 6:17pm local time near Indonesia.
Air Asia has since released a statement saying "AirAsia Indonesia regrets to confirm that flight QZ8501 from Surabaya to Singapore has lost contact with air traffic control at 07:24hrs this morning. At this time, search and rescue operations are in progress and AirAsia is cooperating fully and assisting the rescue service. AirAsia has established an Emergency Call Centre that is available for family or friends of those who may have been on board the aircraft. The number is +622129850801. AirAsia will release further information as soon as it becomes available. Updated information will also be posted on the AirAsia website, http://www.airasia.com."
It feels like we've written 50+ stories on Sony in the last couple of weeks, but the stories just continue. News has broke that the hacked company has hired Judy Smith, who is a crisis specialist, so much so that there's even a TV show based on her career - ABC's Scandal.
TMZ was the first to report that Sony Pictures had hired Smith, reporting that she has already started "quietly advising Sony Pictures chief Amy Pascal." We've seen President Obama chime in, saying that Sony's decision to pull The Interview was "a mistake" but Sony Entertainment CEO Michael Lynton replied, saying "We have not caved. We have not given in. We have persevered, and we have not backed down. We have always had every desire to have the American public see this movie."
North Korea has since offered a joint investigation with the United States to find the real culprit, after the Obama administration and the FBI pegged the blame on Pyongyang.
It looks like the US government could respond to North Korea hacking Sony Pictures, with White House spokesman Josh Earnest telling reporters that the attack was an example of "destructive activity with malicious intent that was initiated by a sophisticated actor."
Earnest continued, saying that US national security leaders "would be mindful of the fact that we need a proportional response. They were also aware that people carrying out such attacks are "often seeking to provoke a response." He added that "They may believe that a response from us in one fashion or another would be advantageous to them" by helping their image on the world stage. The White House spokesman added that the US viewed North Korea hacking Sony as "a serious national security matter."
Sony has since cancelled the release of 'The Interview' from US theaters, after North Korea threatened an attack under the guise of the 'Guardians of Peace' or GOP.
The 'iRobot Roomba' was released in 2002, changing the way that many consumers cleaned their household floors. This product enabled you to sit back and relax while a 'robot vacuum' did the work for you, cleaning your floors in specified zones fenced off with electronic signals.
We've just received a press release from Think Cleaner, claiming that their new Wi-Fi add-on for the robot vacuum cleaner will allow consumers to control their Roomba vacuum by "simply swapping out Roomba's face-plate for ours [Think Cleaner's]", this is said to enable you to control your Roomba anywhere in the world through their free application or web interface.
Other features include; giving your vacuum the ability to send you alerts via push notifications, start its cleaning cycles when you leave the house and even tell you when the cleaning is finished. You'll also be able to seamlessly link to existing home automation systems and technology, this includes devices such as the Apple HomeKit - allowing for more control options.
We've recently reported that Keurig wanted to starve off third-party coffee pod manufacturers, only allowing officially released pods to be utilized through its system.
Set to the Darth Vader theme music, a tricky hacker has posted a video of this machine supporting any coffee pod you see fit by simply strategically placing a bit of tape and mustering "not much aim". He then puts his "One Love" Marley coffee pod into the machine and produces some delicious hot drink straight into the awaiting "Life's Good" mug below.
This hack comes courtesy of Keurighack.com which claims that this 'evil' system can be bested by snipping a small section from the lid of a company-branded Keurig "K-cup" and taping it over the lid of the 'rebel' pod. This strip is all you need to electronically fool the Keurig machine into thinking the pod is legit.
A five-year-old boy has become the youngest person in the world to pass Microsoft's Certified Professional exam. Ayan Qureshi is still in his first year as a student at Clifford Bridge Primary School, in the UK, but in his spare time he is now considered an IT expert with his new certificate proving it.
Qureshi said he found the exam difficult, but he enjoyed it, adding: "There were multiple choice questions, drag and drop questions, hotspot questions, and scenario based questions". His father said that the hardest thing was explaining the language in a test, in a way that a five-year-old could understand. The young boy has an excellent memory, a trait that led to him excelling in the test.
His father introduced him to computers when he was just three years old, and from there he has obviously learned quite a bit in two years. His father added: "I found whatever I was telling him, the next day he'd remember everything I said, so I started to feed him more information". When Ayan turned up to sit for the exam, supervisors were concerned he was too young, but his father said it would be fine, which he most obviously was.
Police have confirmed that multiple suspicious packages have turned up on the doorstep of the New Zealand Herald office in Auckland, as well as the New Zealand Parliament.
The first package arrived at the NZ Herald with a note that it contained the deadly Ebola virus, while another bottle turned up at Parliament House in Wellington. Both bottles included a letter attached, warning that the bottles had Ebola inside. Police said in a statement: "Wellington Police have secured a package delivered to the Parliament mailroom today with the assistance of the Army's Explosive Ordnance Disposal team". The authorities continued: "An initial examination of the package has shown it may be similar to a package received in Auckland this morning which referenced Ebola. It contained a document and a small plastic bottle with a small amount of liquid in it".
New Zealand Police talked with Mashable, saying: "A small amount of liquid in a plastic bottle sent to the Herald has been secured by Auckland City Police after it arrived in a suspicious package this morning, Herald management implemented the appropriate processes around suspicious packages and called police to attend the mail room at about 9.30am". The bottle, and its contents, are now secured and have been sent to The Institute of Environmental Science and Research, where they'll be swabbed for DNA and fingerprints.
Michael Schumacher, the Formula 1 legend that is known throughout the world, had a terrible accident earlier in the year which left him with "horrific brain injuries". The accident happened while he was skiing with his family, but he is now "waking up very slowly". Schumacher's 15-year-old son, Mick, has been telling various media that his father is finally waking up.
Jean-Louis Moncent, a French F1 commentator, talked with Europe 1 radio station where he said: "I saw his son and he told me that Schumi is waking up very slowly; very slowly. Although things are going at a slow pace, he has a lot of time, I would say he has his whole life in front of him to get back on track". Moncet also said just how Schumacher was injured, as he hit a rock during his fall. Moncet added: "The problem for Michael was not the hit, but the mounting of the Go-Pro camera that he had on his helmet that injured his brain".
With all of the conflicts the US has been involved with since 9/11, and the decades prior, one would think they would be masters of conflict, battle knowledge, strategy, and so much more. But, it looks like Washington think tank is asking for help, in a very weird place: by hiring the maker of Call of Duty, to envision the future of war for the US.
The Atlantic Council think tank says that even with all of its money, power and capabilities, the United States isn't thinking creatively when it comes to threats in the 21st century. The creator behind the Call of Duty franchise, Dave Anthony, will be among other authors, screenwriters and entertainment figures for an initiative called 'The Art of Future War Project', something that will launch next week.
The idea of this project came about when former Pentagon official Steven Grundman walked in on his son playing Call of Duty: Black Ops II, in which a cold war between China and the United States takes place, in 2025. In the game, the two superpowers are fighting against each other for rare earth elements in section missions. Anthony said: "He was struck how realistic our portrayal in 'Call of Duty: Black Ops II' was of a future conflict.