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9
May

Russia and China promise not to hack each other


RUSSIA-CHINA-DIPLOMACY

Russia and China have further solidified their growing friendship this week by making a cybersecurity pact. According to The Wall Street Journal, the two countries have sworn not to launch cyberattacks against each other. They’ve also agreed to an exchange not only of technologies, but also of information (such as data about cyber threats) between their law enforcement agencies. In addition, the two heads of states promised to have each other’s backs and thwart any technology that might “destabilize the internal political and socio-economic atmosphere,” “disturb public order” or “interfere with the internal affairs of the state” together.

The two countries have been friends since the end of the cold war. But Russia has been turning to the East more and more after its military actions in the Ukraine affected its relationship with the US and the rest of Europe. The WSJ says this new agreement “is the latest sign that Beijing and Moscow favor changes to global Internet governance that would reduce the traditional role of the US.” Both nations believe the government should have tighter control over the internet and their people’s digital information. It’s also in line with Russian Minister of Communications Nikolai Nikiforov’s confirmation last year that the country’s conjuring up a plan of action to take in case their “esteemed partners [US and Europe] suddenly decide to shut [them] off from the Internet.”

As for China, well, everybody knows the country’s frenemies with the US, even though things have been awkward since the DOJ charged five Chinese military men for espionage in 2014. Sure, it made this pact with Russia, but it also recently started working with Homeland Security to fight cyber criminals.

[Image credit: AFP/Getty Images]

Filed under: Misc

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Via: The Hill

Source: The Wall Street Journal

9
May

Fox officially plans ‘Minority Report’ TV show for this fall


It’s official: Fox will bring back Minority Report later this year. Steven Spielberg directed the 2002 movie, and his company Amblin TV is behind the new TV series, set 10 years after the end of “pre-crime” in Washington D.C. The plot details available tell us it will pair up a now-released pre-cog (Stark Sands) trying to figure out his future before teaming up with a detective (Meagan Good) who helps him find a purpose for his ability to see the future. Of course, Minority Report was notable for technological visions of the future that went well beyond just pre-cognition, and we’ll have to see how much of that sticks around on a TV budget — Almost Human’s armor-clad Ford Fusions didn’t quite scream “future” to us and Fox is famous for its quick trigger finger on cancelling sci-fi shows, so there’s always some risk.

Filed under: Home Entertainment, HD

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Source: Minority Report (Twitter)

9
May

Google executives talk Snowden and NSA backdoors during AMA


NSA Surveillance

Senior members of Google’s public policy team took to Reddit today to discuss the company’s stance on government surveillance reform and the pending expiration of Section 215 of the Patriot Act that allows for the bulk collection of phone records. Google’s director for law enforcement and information security, Richard Salgado and David Lieber, its senior privacy policy counsel took part in the discussion. Judging by the responses, the AMA didn’t start as smoothly as they probably hoped. The very first answer about Google being hacked by individuals in China in 2009 seemed extremely canned and prompted the reply, “that is a non-answer. Did the PR team type it up for you?” After that, the answers got a bit more genuine.

They called the federal appeals court ruling that Section 215 doesn’t give the NSA authorization to collect phone records in bulk “great news” and reiterated that Google does not build backdoors into its services and does not have a surveillance portal. When asked about Edward Snowden and his actions — which include leaking data the inferred that Google does have a surveillance portal — Lieber wrote: “too much of the debate around Snowden has focused on whether he’s a hero or traitor. It’s fair to say that we would not be having this debate without Snowden’s disclosures.”

Lieber also noted that some government officials have “expressed concerns” about Google’s deployment and use of end-to-end encryption. But that the company is doing so to safeguard its customers against identify theft.

[Image credit: Associated Press]

Filed under: Misc, Internet, Google

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Source: Reddit

9
May

Sega will be removing several games from mobile app stores over the coming weeks


humble_sega_mobile_bundle_games_addedIn a blog post today, Sega has announced that they will be pulling several of their older titles from mobile app stores over the next few weeks. According to the company, some older games don’t quite meet their standards of quality anymore, and so they’ll be removed from Google’s Play Store, Amazon’s App Store, and Samsung’s Galaxy Apps, plus the iOS App Store.

This is a pretty odd move, especially for a company that was probably still pulling in some cash from its older games, but I guess it’s better for consumers so they don’t buying up games from Sega’s back catalog only to find out that they aren’t working properly on their 2015 device.

Unfortunately, Sega didn’t list any of the games that it was planning on pulling. You’d think that’d be helpful information, but nope. If you’ve downloaded the game previously, you’ll still have access to it, but new customers won’t be able to see the games once they’re pulled. Maybe it’s just a marketing ploy to get everyone to go drop some change on old Sega games. Who knows.

source: Sega

Come comment on this article: Sega will be removing several games from mobile app stores over the coming weeks

9
May

The dark side of competitive archery hits ‘TowerFall’ in May


TowerFall Ascension is a glorious little game. It shines as a local, competitive platformer, with players bounding around levels, shooting explosive arrows at each other, dodging and grabbing power-ups such as wings and shields. The first major expansion for TowerFall is called Dark World and it’s due to hit PlayStation 4, Vita, PC, Mac and Linux on May 12 for $10, developer Matt Thorson announced today. This is a hefty expansion, adding four new level sets for versus mode, four-player co-op with four original boss fights and a new Legendary difficulty setting, 10 new playable archers, and two new arrow power-ups, Trigger Arrows and Prism Arrows. The fourth and final new level set is procedurally generated, meaning it will be different every time you play. “I have to thank TowerFall players for your patience and support while developing this expansion,” Thorson writes. “It took a bit longer than we were expecting but we’re thrilled with the result, and we can’t wait to hear your feedback.”

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Source: Matt Thorson

9
May

Samsung’s round smartwatch to be debuted alongside Galaxy Note 5




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After we found out that Samsung is enticing developers to adopt their SDK and develop apps for a round smartwatch, we started to wonder when Samsung’s round smartwatch would eventually be announced. If today’s latest rumour is anything to go by, this round smartwatch is going to be debuted alongside the Samsung Galaxy Note 5, expected to be announced at IFA 2015, because that’s when it’s announced every year. This makes a lot of sense given that a smartwatch has been announced there the last few years with a Note device, so this rumour is logical at the very least.

However, as with all rumours, this one should be taken with a grain of salt. The device is expected to be called the Samsung Gear A, though it’s possible the naming might change between now and when it’s released. Samsung has been remarkably quiet following the release of the Apple Watch, as no doubt they consider the Apple device to be their biggest competition in the wearable space. We just hope Samsung makes their devices a little more open this time so that Android users without Samsung devices can use them too.


What do you think about Samsung’s round smartwatch so far? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

Source: SamMobile via Phone Arena

The post Samsung’s round smartwatch to be debuted alongside Galaxy Note 5 appeared first on AndroidSPIN.

9
May

Android Lollipop for the Samsung Galaxy Note 2 might be coming after all, to select markets






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We’ve been getting a few mixed messages about whether or not Android Lollipop for the Samsung Galaxy Note 2 is going to become a reality, but we might have a slightly more solid answer today. Thanks to the Twitter account of Samsung Danmark (not a typo, “Danmark” is Danish for “Denmark”), we know that the Lollipop update for the Note 2 is said to be coming to devices in that region, and confirmed that the roll-out would vary region to region. This makes sense given that Samsung Gulf said the Note 2 update to Lollipop wouldn’t be happening – they must have meant it is not happening there.


For everyone else hoping that their Note 2 will get the update, this will be a nervous time wondering if your device is going to get the goods. Our advice: hit up your respective Samsung branch and see if you can’t get some information out of them. And feel free to drop us a line if you find anything out.

What do you think about Android Lollipop for the Samsung Galaxy Note 2? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

Source: Twitter via SamMobile

 

The post Android Lollipop for the Samsung Galaxy Note 2 might be coming after all, to select markets appeared first on AndroidSPIN.

9
May

Alibaba reportedly in talks to buy $1.2 billion stake in Micromax


Alibaba-logo

According to a recent report from Re/code, Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba is in talks to purchase around a 20 percent stake in Micromax, India’s second-largest smartphone manufacturer. Citing unnamed sources, the report states that upon completion, the deal would allow Alibaba to invest as much as $1.2 billion in the smartphone maker.

Micromax and Alibaba have been in talks for some time, but the discussions, let by Japanese telecoms firm SoftBank, were ultimately stalled “over differences in valuations”. Re/code’s sources claim that Alibaba wants to invest in Micromax to have more access to Internet users in India. Alibaba could perhaps use this investment to roll out its own services to Micromax devices, such as Alipay, the company’s online payment platform. Additionally, the stake sale could help Micromax raise money as it expands into new business segments around the globe.

It’s no wonder why Alibaba is interested in Micromax – the smartphone maker currently holds about 18 percent marketshare in India and is growing rapidly every month. And with Alibaba’s combination of its own mobile operating system and significant e-commerce marketplace, there’s no doubt that Alibaba will be able to gain a significant foothold in India if this deal goes through.

We’ll be sure to give you more details on the situation as they arise.



9
May

Recode: Apple to offer free music with its upcoming streaming service


It’s no secret that Apple plans on revealing a new streaming music service — thanks to its Beats Music acquisition — some time this year, supposedly at its annual developer conference in June. What has so far been a secret, however, is whether or not that service will be free or paid. While it’s been widely reported that Apple plans on charging $8 a month for a subscription, it now appears that the folks in Cupertino could be planning on integrating a free option or two as well. According to ReCode‘s industry sources, those options include a free trial period of one to three months, a SoundCloud-type service where artists could upload free tunes for non-subscribers, and a new version of iTunes Radio that would feature human-curated playlists similar to, of course, Beats Music.

Yet, ReCode also reports that Apple doesn’t plan on going up against other unlimited free streaming services such as Spotify and Pandora. Apparently the company thinks that ad-supported free streaming won’t make enough money, plus it’ll prevent users from ponying up for the paid version. At the same time, Apple has been under investigation by the FTC for supposedly striking up exclusive streaming deals with artists and labels — this, the FTC posits, could be seen as an unfair advantage due to Apple’s dominance in music downloads thanks to iTunes. Tidal, on the other hand, can get away with exclusives due to its relatively small size. So it still remains to be seen what exactly Apple plans to offer with its streaming service, be it free or paid. Fortunately we only have a month or so to find out.

Filed under: Apple

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Source: Re/Code

9
May

‘Photofucket’ devs arrested for selling their pic-stealing app


Photobucket image hosting website

Years before stolen pictures of celebs hit the internet in a massive bundle, news that Reddit posters were searching for private photos popped up under the term “fusking.” As detailed by Buzzfeed in August of 2012, Reddit channels were dedicated to using a security flaw in Photobucket.com to search for pictures posted in private folders. If anyone on the internet knew (or could guess) a private photo’s direct URL it was visible, and guessing the default filename of digital photos isn’t very difficult. Today the US Department of Justice is announcing the arrest of two men for selling “Photofucket” software that it says stole guest passwords for protected albums and sought out those private pictures.

Brandon Bourret of Colorado and Athanasios Andrianakis of Californias are facing charges of “computer fraud and abuse, access device fraud, identification document fraud and wire fraud.” Access device fraud carries the longest potential penalty, with up to ten years in federal prison and a $250k fine per count. According to the indictment (PDF), evidence against Bourret and Andrianakis includes emails they sent discussing exploits, customer service messages to Photofucket buyers, and Paypal transfers to fund the operation.

https://www.youtube-nocookie.com/embed/QfNOAYwwUN0?rel=0

Back in 2012, many users of the picture sharing site — who may have uploaded photos years earlier for sharing on early social networks like Myspace or Friendster — had no idea that marking a folder private only hid the folder. At the time Photobucket announced that all new accounts would have their links scrambled by default, as well as an option to scramble links for existing users. It’s unclear if that helped stem the tide of the hackers for those who even knew about it, and the originally revealed Reddit channels are marked private now. Investigation of the breach and the accounts that were accessed is ongoing, but if you have any old albums gathering dust it’s probably well past time to up their protection or delete them entirely.

[Image credit: NetPhotos / Alamy]

Filed under: Internet

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Source: US Department of Justice

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