StoreDot created a mobile charger that can charge your smartphone in 30 seconds. A main issue in today’s mobile phones (smart phones) is that battery discharges really fast and it takes time to charge it. Some of my friends charge their smart phones every day and if they are lucky they do it at night. Some times they run out of battery during the day with no access to charger. This new charger will make their life easier. I don’t speak for myself because I prefer do avoid using it all the time and I disable any useless (for me) options like 3G and GPS. With this I charge it every 3-4 days and I am fine with this. No matter how you use your phone, it is good news that you will be able to charge it under a minute. Currently this charger is a prototype and only for Samsung Galaxy 4 but they plan to support any smartphone when they release it. Also, they estimate the price to be around $30 which is in my opinion a fair price.
We have many posts about iOS lockscreen vulnerabilities and the new iOS couldn’t resist of having (at least) one too. If someone steal your iPhone then be sure he will be able to access it and find all your sensitive information. According to Apple they already fixed about 80 vulnerabilities, they could avoid them with the experience they have or by delaying it for few months and have security researches finding those before they release it to the market. Of course timing and profit are everything for Apple and security is second. The security hole is for the normal PIN code or password lock of the screen.
Apple invented a new technology that will be able to switch off camera and wi-fi from iPhone remotely. This is to be used for when people enter a “sensitive area”. It basically broadcasts a signal and when iPhone receives it, it will shut down features or entirely. For some of us this is not an issue since I never bought and I will never buy Apple device if they keep overcharge everything. And they of course continue do it since there are many people paying. To our subject, those are not rumors, there is a patent filled by Apple titled “Apparatus and methods for enforcement of policies upon a wireless device”.
We all learned about NSA’s Prism and that user data is available to US government like any other public document. Tor is in general terms an anonymity tool for user internet activity. Since Snowden revealed the information about Prism Tor gained more than 600.000 new users and it now has about 1.2 million users. Tor is also used by hackers and web criminals to hide their activity. This is not Tor’s fault, almost any tool can be used for good and bad things. Some countries ban Tor network in order to be able to monitor their citizens easier. Some times I can’t believe why countries move backwards technology and progress.
Most of you know Lenovo, the biggest Chinese computer maker. It has recently been banned and it can’t supply equipment for several intelligence and security agencies. Mostly for government agencies in US, UK, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. This is because there are concerns that it contains serious hardware and firmware backdoor vulnerabilities. Even though a hardware backdoor is very hard to detect, it is very critical for agencies like NSA. Huawei should feel very lucky since it will most probably fill the gap with its equipment. Lenovo is the company that acquired the personal computer business from IBM when they decided to leave the PC business back in 2005.
Microsoft is giving the highest bounty to hackers and security experts if they find vulnerabilities and exploits in its new Windows 8.1, a major update to Microsoft’s latest operating system. Valid submissions of serious vulnerabilities that come also with ideas to defend Windows will be able to get the BlueHat bonus which is $50.000 but they very hard to find. It is clear that Microsoft is very serious about security, they also give up to $11.000 for Internet Explorer 11 preview in Windows 8.1 preview. Preview means that it is beta version and it is not yet finalized to be released. Microsoft is the first company to give bounty for hacking software in beta version and it is doing it to ensure that their stable release will be as secure as possible.
There are several ways for hackers to gain access to your computer but they need to somehow install a malware on your computer. Some times people make it easier for them, they install software with vulnerabilities and hackers can gain access to their computers by exploiting those vulnerabilities. In this way they skip the first part, to find a way to install their malware to your system. Many internet users have Google Chrome as their default web browser. Are you one of them? Guess what? you are vulnerable and hackers can access your web camera.
Microsoft is moving on many fronts, after the announcement of Office Mobile to iPhone Microsoft announced a new partnership with Best Buy to put Windows Stores to their locations. The total numbers of Windows Stores is 600, 500 in U.S and 100 in Canada. It is basically Microsoft stores where users will be able to see and try several devices and services. Microsoft will try to show that using its products make the life of the user easier and more productive. Among the products there will be Windows based PCs, tablets, Windows phones, Xbox and Microsoft Office. I am very curious to see how all this will affect the sales of Windows 8 and Windows Phones.
Microsoft and Apple are competitors but from time to time Microsoft ports its solutions to Apple’s operating systems. The most popular product is Microsoft office and they announced Office Mobile for iPhone. The application is going to be free for the users that have Office 365 subscription. This will allow iPhone users to open, edit and share their documents through the app. It is a good deal for both companies and their users. It is nice watch companies from time to time working together. It is worth to mention that Microsoft has Apple shares since the beginning, when Bill Gates and Steve Jobs started those big tech giants. Microsoft created several ads saying that Google Docs are not for professionals and they mess with the formatting.
If you are reading this post it means that you are one of us that updated the flash and it stopped working on Firefox. It happened to me several times on different computers and uninstalling, reinstalling both Firefox and Flash player didn’t work, it was still not working. Everything is fine and suddenly, because you updated something now nothing is working, you can’t watch videos online, you can’t play flash games and you can’t visit a flash website. Firefox was, is and will be the web browser of my choice and Flash crashes will not change that.