GoDaddy is having more trouble with their DNS. After a major outage took down a large portion of the internet, they are again facing issues. This time, DNS records of websites hosted on GoDaddy are being modified. The modification adds subdomains that point to infected websites under the control of malicious users.
Once a computer is redirected to the malicious IP, the server attempts to exploit the system using the Cool Exploit kit. Because of the record being modified at the DNS level, the URL and site look to be legitimate. If a user becomes infected, the computer is locked down via ransomware and the user is made to pay to unlock it.
It's the typical ransomware setup--it uses local currency and information to make it look as if local law enforcement are the ones who locked it down. Affected webmasters should check their DNS records to make sure that they don't have these rogue subdomains and users who have been affected should contact a virus removal expert.
Facebook has a lot of data about you. They know what you like, you who know, and what you post and they use all of that information to allow advertisers to target you while you're surfing Facebook. But what if that information could be used to target you when you're running around the rest of the web?
Well, it looks as though we'll soon find out. Facebook is reportedly looking to start up an external advertising agency. This means that Facebook would allow advertisers to use Facebook information about you to target ads at you as you surf around the net. The whole reason Facebook would want to do this is because it would bring it lots of revenue.
One estimate says that they could double their current revenue by doing this. Increasing revenue is an important thing for Facebook as they are now a publicly traded company. The model would be similar to Google's AdSense, something that has proven popular and effective. Facebook, if they do this right, could possibly compete with Google's advertising, something that has previously been unobtainable by anyone.
Chris Dixon: "An external ad network is inevitable. Google proved this model with Adsense. With an already huge base of advertisers bidding on CPCs, it is impossible for most other ad networks to compete on publisher payouts. But Facebook's traffic is so great now that an external ad network might increase their revenues by 2x or so."
Facebook's Chief Privacy Officer has even said that this is allowed in an in
Instagram, that hit photo sharing app and website, saw records smashed on Thursday with the influx of people posting pictures of their Thanksgiving, most of which were of the food they were about to eat. Thursday was the busiest day ever on record for Instagram as users sought to share their Thanksgiving dinner with everyone.
Instagram saw a total of 10 million photos posted on Thursday that mentioned Thanksgiving in the comments. At points throughout the day, the photo sharing site was seeing 200+ photos being uploaded every second. This peaked at roguhly 12:40p.m. at which time the social network recorded a massive 220 photos per second.
"Overall, the day broke all Instagram records as we saw the number of shared photos more than double from the day before, making it our busiest day so far. We're thrilled to see people use Instagram to share their holidays. Whether celebrating with friends and family or sharing photos with them halfway across the globe, we're excited to see the intimacy and immediacy of the Instagram experience bring us all closer together over this holiday season."
Google Maps, how could we live without you (unless you're on iOS 6 - snicker)? Well, now the Android app has been joined by the desktop, which now has the ability of looking at indoor maps of shopping malls, just in time for the sales!
The feature sports around 10,000 floor plans for select locations in Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Japan, Switzerland, Sweden, the UK, and the US.
If you want to bring up a floor plan, just zoom into a building on Google Maps and as long as the data has been uploaded, you'll be able to see a birds eye view of the stores within a shopping mall, sections within a department store, or supermarket, the gate layout of an airport, or better yet - the poker tables within a casino, and more.
MegaUpload may be gone, but it is coming back and it'll be coming back better than ever. Call of Duty pro-gamer and all-round cool guy, Kim Dotcom, has stated on his Twitter page that "Operation Mega Debut" is coming.
Operation Mega Debut will happen on the 20th of January, 2013 at 6:48am NZ time - on this precise moment, Mega will launch. A few hours later, the Dotcom Mansion press conference will take place, at noon.
I do enjoy the flavor that Dotcom injects into the world, he has something about him that makes me like him. 6:48am NZ time is a very specific moment, and I'm looking forward to seeing what Mega will do to the world of file sharing and court room battles. Hopefully there's no raid on the mansion this time.
Google is an unstoppable force. The company's search market share has practically continued to increase month-over-month and it saw its highest ever market share this past October. Coming in at 66.9 percent, it beat out its previous record of 66.8 percent, which it achieved in both June and July of this year.
Looking year-over-year, Google's search dominance has increased 1.5 percent. Bing, too, is increasing in market share, though it has a long road in front of it if they hope to reach anywhere near what Google has. Sitting at a mere 16 percent this October, they have grown only 1.2 percent year-over-year.
Yahoo managed to get 12.2 percent of search traffic, down from 15.2 percent year-over-year. Ask pulled in a mere 3.2 percent and AOL managed to get 1.8 percent, both absolutely tiny in comparison to Google's results. These numbers come from comScore, who measures desktop searches. This means searches executed by mobile devices aren't included.
Facebook has sent out an e-mail to all 1 billion users informing them of the proposal to modify governance of the site. The proposed changes look to take away the users' right to force a vote by getting more than 7,000 comments on the proposed changes. Instead, Facebook would like to make sure they get high-quality feedback on proposed changes.
To prevent Facebook from taking away this right, users will need to comment on the proposal and then vote, if the proposal comments number in excess of 7,000 after the 7 day period is up. In all likelihood, this change will probably go up for a vote and then not get enough votes to go anywhere.
Facebook requires a 30 percent vote, either yes or no, to make it binding. So even if vocal users get the 7,000 comments, the likeliness of 300 million users voting to block the changes is a pretty slim chance. Instead of voting, Facebook is offering up a way to ask the Chief Privacy Officer questions and they would also have the CPO hold livestreamed webcasts, during which questions would be asked and answered.
I'm all about Google. I love most of what they do, especially the little things such as this new Google page dedicated to helping you out with Thanksgiving. The new page that Google bills as a "one-stop-Google-shop" helps you by showing you how to search for recipes, see football highlights, and other cool things to help you save time this holiday season.
It walks you through some of the cool features offered by Google's search engine, such as it's ability to search recipes. The displayed recipes can then be adjust based upon calories, ingredients, and cook time to suit your specific needs. They also highlight some videos YouTube has available to help you with your cooking skills.
Google also highlights the shopping aspect of its search, and offers a new feature called shortlists. Google also has your back if you can't watch the football game live. A quick search will return live scores of almost any game you can think of. Finally, Google offers up Hangouts if you can't all meet up in the same house.
Check it out and make your Thanksgiving just a little bit easier.
Earlier today we posted news that the Unity 4.0 engine had been released, but now there's a short CG animated film from Passion Pictures called "The Butterfly Effect", based on the engine.
The CG short is incredible, with the engine pushing out some seriously slick animation. The story is of a guy who drags himself out of bed to go to the corner store in San Francisco to buy some milk and from there, it gets incredibly destructive. A great video.
The engine looks incredibly powerful, and I would love to see a AAA game based on the title. Imagine a next-gen game powered by this engine, PC-exclusive. It would be incredible. What did you think of The Butterfly Effect? Leave a comment!
Facebook is pushing out a new update to all members today that will allow users to filter their News Feed so that only updates from Pages that the user follows are shown. The new feature is available on the left-hand side menu and called "Pages feed." A simple click on that will filter your News Feed.
"This new feature surfaces updates just from Pages you are connected to," a Facebook representative told VentureBeat. "It's a 'Pages only' view of your News Feed, making it even easier for people to keep up with the Pages they care about most."
The issue at hand is they way that the News Feed works. As most of you have probably realized, you don't see every post from every person. The stories chosen to be shown are determined by an algorithm. Some page owners have been especially vocal about this, saying that it forces Page owners to promote their posts so they are seen by more people.
If you want to see more posts by pages, this new feature by Facebook will make that easier.
Adobe has suffered a breach on its user forums resulting in the resetting of approximately 150,000 member passwords. The site in question, connectusers.com, was breached by a hacker claiming to be from Egypt. The hacker released 644 records from the site. he says he targeted Adobe because of their slow response to fixing security problems.
Adobe has confirmed that its Connect web conferencing service, among other websites ran by Adobe, were not affected by this breach. We first caught wind of the breach on Tuesday, after the hacker posted on the internet claiming that he stole the log-in combos for 150,000 Adobe customers and partners.
It's not clear what all data has been compromised. The hacker has said that he will also release data stolen from Yahoo, though Yahoo did not comment upon this.
Google Fiber is an idea Google has been kicking around for the past couple of years as it aims to become an Internet Service Provider that will offer customers in the U.S. the speeds they deserve at a reasonable price. Earlier this year, they announced Kansas City would be one of the first to receive Google Fiber promising 1 gigabit download and upload speeds for only $70. Today, Google has announced its Google Fiber installation has officially kicked off in Kansas City.
If you live in Kansas City, specifically in Hanover Heights, and see a new box on the side of your home and a sticky note on your door indicating your home is ready for Google Fiber, Google will be contacting you by phone or email within the next couple of days to schedule an appointment with you.
The holidays are nearly here, and I can almost smell the warm Christmas day and chilling out to some music and drinking beer - well, here in Australia at least with our Christmas in Summer. But, Google are preparing for the holidays, by updating their web-based Shopping search tool.
This update includes a bunch of tweaks, including reviews from friends and discount tracking. Only a few retailers have stepped up so far with 360-degree interactive images, and uploaded some content, with most of the products consisting of toys at the moment, but it's still a pretty damn cool feature.
Google have also included Shortlists, which is a great way to create Pinterest-like collections of products, jot down notes on them, and if you want to, share said list with friends or family for a collaborate shopping experience, the joy! The video above will give you a better idea of what is capable with the latest Google Shopping update.
Facebook, like Google, is in a constant battle to tweak the UI and other underlying systems to make Facebook perform better and allow use to be more seamless. We reported on how Facebook is trialling a new feature to allow comments to be commented upon, but today, Facebook is trying out a new comment feature.
The new feature would promote the more popular comments, such as those with numerous likes or comments, to the top of the comment heap. This would make finding those comments that others feel as thought provoking or good easier to do and should increase engagement on the site and on user's statuses.
"This is just a small test at this stage," a Facebook spokesperson told CNET. It's definitely a nice thought, almost like how Google sorts its search results. It brings valuable content to the top making it easier to sort through the trolls, uninformed, and generally uninterested commentors.
You can see the new version of the commenting system in the picture above (click to enlarge).
Kim Dotcom is quite the public figure after the police raid of his mansion in January, and the subsequent legal battle. He refuses to keep a low profile, and instead has done nearly everything he can to stay in the public's eye. This includes starting up a new MegaUpload successor, originally planned to be at Me.ga.
The Gabonese government, owners of the .ga web extension, seized control of that domain name citing concerns that it might be sponsoring piracy. Never fear, though, as Kim Dotcom has a backup plan, or several. Instead of Me.ga, the new file locker service will have to use Mega.co.nz, a name that isn't quite as catchy.
Still, it's not going to stop the new MegaUpload from being a smashing success. And this new version of MegaUpload should be much more impervious to legal attacks--and physical attacks--due to the way Kim Dotcom is designing the system. All files will be encrypted by the user upon upload, so Dotcom can rest safely in the Safe Harbor provision of the DMCA.
Put your hand up if you're one of these people - throws hand in the air - yes, I admit it, I have the least patience when it comes to buffering a video. Well, a professor has now analyzed data from 6.7 million unique visitors, and has bashed his fingers on that calculator.
According to a paper published by professor Ramesh K. Sitarman of the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, viewers begin to leave a video after a two second delay, with 6% leaving per second thereafter. The professor took into consideration videos under 30 minutes as "short", where I would consider a short video 1 minute, so your results may vary applies here.
But, his data does add up, with twice as many viewers leaving a "short" video, compared to long ones after a ten second startup delay. The report also finds, most obviously, that users' impatience with Internet speeds looks like an unwinnable battle. Viewers with higher-speed Internet connections had a much weaker tolerance for delays when compared to those with slower, or mobile data connections.
Sean Ludwig, with VentureBeat, noticed a new feature that Facebook is testing because his profile is part of the small test group. The new "feature" is that Facebook plays a sound whenever you get a new notification. I know what you're thinking: they already do this--that's only on the mobile app version.
This trial run pings you whenever you receive a message or notification. Ludwig notes that it is a bit of a gamble leaving your Facebook open and your speakers on: "Will I hear a lot of pings for that new picture I posted, or will I hear nothing?" These sounds certainly have their place and some users may even like them.
Myself, since I receive a fair amount of notifications, none of which are life-threatening, would not like these constant pings. Luckily, they're simple to turn off. The same way you change around e-mail notifications and the like, you can turn off the sound that plays when you receive notifications:
Facebook is testing a new feature for comments on statuses. The new feature would allow users to thread off and reply to a comment instead of having to reply to the main status. It's similar in function to some of the bulletin boards and comments systems that you've seen around the web, except it will only allow you to go one level deeper.
In other words, a comment upon a status can be both liked and commented upon, but those subsequent comments cannot be commented upon. Facebook has said that at this stage, it is just a small test, so you likely won't see the option. But if you do, be sure to check it out and let us know what you think of the feature.
"We are testing a new way to add comments to a post on Facebook. With this test you will be able to reply to another comment as well as the original post," a Facebook spokesperson said. "This is just a small test at this stage."
Twitter may have withstood the election wave of tweets successfully, but their security is apparently still pretty lax. Today, Twitter sent out an e-mail to a large number of users urging them to change their respective passwords. The root cause for this is that several (number undetermined) accounts had been compromised through a third-party site.
The hacked accounts were then used to send out spam, the one problem every website with user contributed content faces. Twitter acknowledged that the accounts had been compromised, changed the passwords on them so as to make them inaccessible, and sent out the following e-mail, which explains some background and provides instructions for getting your account back:
Twitter had an incredible day yesterday. While most of the country was out and about voting and watching the results come in, they were also tweeting about it--heavily. Twitter has come out today with a bunch of different stats for Election Day 2012, and some of them are extremely impressive.
Most impressive of the stats is that Twitter recorded a maximum of 327,452 tweets per minute (TPM). The number of tweets is incredible, and Twitter handled it all without a hitch. "These numbers reflect the largest election-related Twitter conversation during our 6 years of existence," VP of Infrastructure Mazen Rawashdeh wrote, "though they don't capture the total volume of all Tweets yesterday."
Even more impressive is that Twitter handled these loads for long periods. Previously, Twitter has had to deal with a high number of tweets per second, but only for a few seconds. An example of this is midnight on New Year's Eve or at the end of a sporting event, such as the Superbowl. For the election, Twitter averaged just under 10,000 tweets per second from 8:11 to 9:11 p.m. PT.
"Seeing a sustained peak over the course of an entire event is a change from the way people have previously turned to Twitter during live events," Rawashdeh wrote. "Last night's numbers demonstrate that as Twitter usage patterns change, Twitter the service can remain resilient. Over time, we have been working to build an infrastructure that can withstand an ever-increasing load."
Google is constantly tweaking the look and feel, as well as the back-end, of the products and services that we have come to love. Just yesterday, Google once again updated the search results page to make the results appear simpler and cleaner. The new design puts a larger emphasis on their knew Knowledge Graph, as you can see below:
The search tools that are needed every now and again have been consolidated into a menu above the results, which still allows access to them if they are needed. The new search design will be hitting US users first, with Google hoping to roll it out to other regions and languages as quickly as they possibly can.
What are your thoughts on the new design?