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Apple Watch has great opportunity to kick start wearables movement

The wearables market has received a lot of attention from casual consumers and business workers, but it has been the Apple Watch that has garnered the most hype. The uber pricey smartwatch won't be released until next month, but has already increased interest in the wearables market.


Here is what Apple CEO Tim Cook said after unveiling the Apple Watch: "We love to make technology more personal," and hopes the Apple Watch "works seamlessly with the iPhone," while working as a "comprehensive health and fitness device."

It turns out 40 percent of current iPhone owners are interested in the Apple Watch, according to a Reuters/Ipsos poll. However, the same survey found that 69 percent of American consumers overall don't appear to be in a big rush to make a purchase.

"But I believe Apple's smartwatch will provide the necessary momentum to get people using wearables, in spite of all the naysayers," said Daniel Burrus, tech futurist, in an editorial published on CNN Money.

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NCSA celebrates national Data Privacy Day by releasing privacy survey

Happy Data Privacy Day! In case you missed it, January 28 is Data Privacy Day, and the National Cyber Security Alliance (NCSA) launched its "Perceptions of Privacy Online and in the Digitally Connected World" survey.


The survey found that 87 percent of people are somewhat or very concerned that their personal information is shared with a third-party without their consent or knowledge. In addition, two-thirds of Americans would be willing to give up discounts and less personalized content if they are able to keep their personal information private.

"In short, what this study shows is that Americans care deeply about their privacy," said Michael Kaiser, executive director of the NCSA, in a statement."While a great knowledge gap exists about how information is collected and how technologies interact, businesses can build consumer trust by being clear about data collection and use. As we become more and more reliant on technology, it is crucial to effectively educate everyone about how to be safer and more secure online."

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BBB outlines the top 10 scams of 2014, and how to avoid them

The Better Business Bureau (BBB) listed the top 10 scams of 2014, as reported by business owners and consumers in the United States. Scams are evolving as we continue to transition to new forms of Internet usage, embracing smartphones and tablets - and we increasingly use apps.


Even though tech savvy consumers are more aware of these scams, there are still plenty of potential victims that receive an alarmingly high number of email, text message, and voice scam attempts.

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4 basic tips to stay one step ahead of cyber thieves, ABA says

In honor of Data Privacy Day on Jan. 28, the American Bankers Association (ABA) offered Internet users four basic tips to help keep ahead of cyber thieves.


The four steps: create complicated passwords, keep tabs on your user accounts, stay alert online, and mobilize your defenses.

"Banks' first priority is protecting their customers' information," said Frank Keating, president and CEO of ABA, in a statement. "While banks provide strong data protections, customers are the first line of defense. A partnership between banks and customers is the most effective way to protect financial data."

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Malicious and accidental insider threats pose cybersecurity challenge

Insider threats could pose major cybersecurity risks for companies in 2015, with even more phishing attempts and major data breaches by non-hackers, according to the Personam insider threat protection firm.


In addition, there will be an increase in additional insider threat-themed security budgets, as companies take a closer look at beefing up their cyber defenses. Expect to see commercial markets drive insider threat capabilities in innovation, because government agencies face bureaucratic road blocks.

"Insider threat is traditionally thought to be malicious employees with access to critical data and systems as part of their work, but a major shift is occurring as a result of huge data breaches like the one Target suffered, where compromised credentials of a supplier were used as the attack vector," said Chris Kauffman, CEO of Personam, in a press statement.

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Triathlete Tim Don finishes full Ironman during CES 2015

Tim Don, Olympian and world champion triathlete, rocked the Polar V800 Sports Watch during the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) last week - and managed to finish a full Ironman-distance event in the hustle and bustle of Sin City.


Don finished the grueling event (2.4-mile swim, 112-mile bike, 26.2-mile run) in a time of 9:40:21 - starting in the Venetian Casino Resort's outdoor lap pool. Swimming a full Ironman distance in a pool consisted of 120 laps - and he jumped on his bike and rode to the Polar booth in the Sands Expo, riding the rest of his bike leg on a CompuTrainer trainer.

The Polar V800 tracked his statistics during the event: "Over the course of the race, Don reached a maximum heart rate of 182 BPM, sustained an average heart rate of 132 BPM and burned a total of 6,716 calories. During his 49 minute swim, Don averaged 154 BPM and burned 728 calories. While on the bike, his average speed was 41.1 [km/h], burned 3,492 calories and averaged a heart rate of 135 BPM. His three hour marathon run resulted in an average pace of 5:05 min/km, an average cadence rpm of 84, a stride length of 111 cm and 2,496 burned calories."

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Companies must invest in cyber readiness as attacks increase

Cyber readiness is a major initiative for business leaders in 2015, as high-profile data breaches continue to capture headlines in the United States. Companies tend to be reactive instead of proactive when it comes to cybersecurity, which leaves them vulnerable to attacks.


As part of its "Top Fraud and Corruption trends for 2015" report, EY Fraud Investigation & Dispute Services (FIDS) listed "Cyber readiness is challenging the C-Suite and Boards" as the top concern.

Trying to defend against cyberattacks is proving difficult, with cyberespionage from foreign nation states and increasingly sophisticated hacktivists launching attacks.

"Business leaders are faced with significant challenges when it comes to cyber readiness," noted Richard Stiennon, Chief Research Analyst of IT-Harvest, in a statement to TweakTown. "At the lowest level they struggle to even build awareness that preparing for and defending against cyberattacks is of paramount importance. High-profile breaches, especially that of Sony Pictures Entertainment are going a long way to providing that education."

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Security expert: Beef up security and avoid retaliatory cyberattacks

Companies feel angry, vulnerable and humiliated following a cyberattack leading to data breach, but they should avoid trying to launch retaliatory attacks.


JPMorgan Chase allegedly endorsed a revenge cyberattack during a closed meeting in February 2013, before suffering a significant data breach in late 2014. The FBI is now reportedly investigating a revenge attack that was sanctioned by US financial institutions, leading to a server in Iran being taken offline.

"First, I believe it is illegal and therefore risky for a company to engage in retaliatory cyberattacks," said Richard Stiennon, Chief Research Analyst of IT-Harvest, in a statement to TweakTown. "The very best way to react against an attack is to beef up security and vow to never be a victim again."

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Report: 90% of world's democracies have leaders embracing Twitter

Ninety percent of world's democracies have leaders active on Twitter, with 82 percent of leaders on the No. 2 social networking site, according to a Digital Policy Council (DPC) report.


Not surprisingly, President Obama's Twitter account is followed by 51 million users, while India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi is No. 2 with 9 million followers. No. 3 on the list is Turkish President Recep Erdogan, despite his country's efforts to "wipe out" Twitter so it cannot be used by Turkish residents.

The rest of the list: No. 4 is Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev; No. 5 is Queen Rania, the Queen Consort of the King of Jordan; No. 6 is His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President of the United Arab Emirates and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai; No. 7 President Juan Manuel Santos of Colombia, No. 8 is President Cristina Fernandez De Kirchner from Argentina, No. 9 is Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto; and No. 10 is Brazilian President Dilma Rouseff.

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Cybersecurity experts offer tips to keep children safer online

The Internet is an amazing tool that can be used for communication, entertainment, gaming, research, and so many other purposes. However, trying to keep children safe and secure while using the Internet is something that becomes even more difficult with mobile technologies and additional connectivity.


I recently overheard a conversation between two mothers in Starbucks regarding allowing their young children access to Apple iPhone smartphones. It seemed that one kid was going to hate her mother for being overbearing and untrustworthy, while the other child would end up being able to get away with bloody murder.

From a cybersecurity perspective, talking with children and becoming more proactive can be the best first step to ensuring they are safer on the Internet. It's possible to check their cyber environment without being overly intrusive and strictly monitoring what they are doing, with experts also recommending setting house rules and teaching them proper privacy guidelines.

"It is our responsibility as adults, parents, and grandparents to safeguard our children," said Raj Goel, cyber civil rights advocate, in a press statement. "Ensuring their online safety is just one way we can do that, so think carefully about what details you post this holiday season and beyond."

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Please Note: This blog is not edited by TweakTown staff, and may not represent the thoughts or opinions of TweakTown or its editors.