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Apple devices at a California repair center keep calling 911

Feb 23, 2018 - 11:15 PM - by Reverend
Apple devices at a refurbishment facility in Elk Grove, California have been calling 911 multiple times a day for the past few months, CBS Sacramento reports. Since last October, the Elk Grove Police station has received around 20 accidental emergency calls per day, adding up to some 1,600 calls in the last four months. The Sacramento County Sheriff's Department Communication Center has also received 47 accidental calls from the facility since the beginning of this year.

When the calls are answered, either no one is on the line or dispatchers can hear people in the background discussing Apple devices and repairs. "The times when it's greatly impacting us is when we have other emergencies happening and we may have a dispatcher on another 911 call that may have to put that call on hold to triage the incoming call," police dispatcher Jamie Hudson told CBS Sacramento.

While it's unclear exactly what is going on, the influx of accidental 911 calls could be due to the Emergency SOS feature on iPhones and Apple Watches. Holding down the Apple Watch's side button for a few seconds or either clicking the iPhone's power button five times in a row or holding it down along with a volume button can trigger an emergency call. It could be that while Apple's phones or smartwatches are under repair, that feature is being unintentionally triggered.

Apple told CBS Sacramento that it was aware of the issue and was working with the police stations to rectify it.

  0 Replies | 39 Views

Mobile Push Notification services are ending for Windows Phone 7.5 and Windows Phone

Feb 20, 2018 - 10:06 AM - by Reverend
On February 20, 2018, Mobile Push Notification services will be turned off for Windows Phone 7.5 and Windows Phone 8.0. Once this happens:

  • Your phone will no longer receive notifications.
  • Your phone will not receive additional live tile updates.
  • The “Find my phone” feature will no longer locate your phone.

Windows Phone 7.5 and Windows Phone 8.0 have reached their end of support dates, and thus services for these versions of Windows will be discontinued over time.

Note: Notification services will continue to function for Windows Phone 8.1 at this time, and newer phones running Windows 10 Mobile are still fully supported.

Microsoft Community
  0 Replies | 270 Views

Google Publishes Unpatched Flaw In Microsoft Edge Browser

Feb 19, 2018 - 4:47 PM - by Reverend
Google has gone public with details of an unpatched flaw in Microsoft’s Edge web browser that could allow hackers to execute malicious Javascript code on Windows computers.

The information was published by Google’s Project Zero, which tracks down flaws in other companies’ products, giving them a 90-day window to publish fixes.

In this case, Microsoft told Google it wouldn’t be able to release a fix in time for its regularly scheduled February patch day, which fell on Tuesday of last week. Instead, it’s planning a patch for next month’s patch date, which falls on 13 March.

But even that date may slip, Microsoft has now acknowledged.

“Because of the complexity of the fix, they do not yet have a fixed date set as of yet,” said Google researcher Ivan Fratric in a Monday update to the Project Zero advisory.

The controversial Project Zero programme has now automatically published detailed technical information on the flaw, leaving it exposed to exploitation by hackers.

The bug allows an attacker to bypass an Edge security feature called Arbitrary Code Guard (ACG), introduced in April of last year with the Windows 10 Creators Update.

The feature aims to prevent attackers from running JavaScript in Edge to load malicious code into a computer’s memory. It works along with another feature called Code Integrity Guard (CIG), introduced at the same time, which requires code signing for drivers run by Edge.

Fratric said he notified Microsoft of the issue in mid-November. Microsoft informed him shortly before the end of the 90-day publication window last week that it wouldn’t be able to meet the deadline.

Google ranked the bug as “medium” severity.

Javascript is routinely used in malicious attachments to download attack code from remote servers. In January of last year Google said it would begin blocking the code from use in Gmail... [Read More]
  0 Replies | 286 Views

Anger at Google image search 'peace deal'

Feb 16, 2018 - 10:55 PM - by Reverend
Google has made it more difficult for people to save pictures from its image search product, as part of a "peace deal" with photo library Getty Images.

In 2017, Getty Images complained to the European Commission, accusing Google of anti-competitive practices.

Google said it had removed some features from image search, including the "view image" button.

Getty Images said it was a "significant milestone" but critics said the move was "a step backwards".

Getty Images is a photo library that sells the work of photographers and illustrators to businesses, newspapers and broadcasters.

It complained that Google's image search made it easy for people to find Getty Images pictures and take them, without the appropriate permission or licence.

Google's image search feature had a button labelled "view image" that would open an individual picture in the web browser, making it easy to download.

People could find and take images - albeit not in high quality and usually watermarked - without visiting the Getty Images website.

As part of its agreement with Getty Images, the "view image" button has been removed.

While it is still easy for people to download an image, people are now encouraged to trawl through the website it appears on to find it.

Google said the change would "help connect users and useful websites".

It also removed the "search by image" button, which was an easy way of finding larger copies of photographs.

Getty Images said Google had also agreed to display image copyright information more prominently next to results.

"For those asking, yes, these changes came about in part due to our settlement with Getty Images this week," Google said. "They are designed to strike a balance... [Read More]
  0 Replies | 397 Views

Samsung stops Galaxy S8 Android 8.0 release, new version being developed

Feb 14, 2018 - 10:48 PM - by Reverend
Samsung started rolling out the much-awaited Android 8.0 Oreo update for the Galaxy S8 and the Galaxy S8+ last week. As promised, the update was first released to members of the beta program before it was rolled out to non-beta devices earlier this week. The update had only been sent out in a handful of markets but in a rather unexpected turn of events, Samsung has stopped the Galaxy S8 Android 8.0 Oreo update release.

Samsung started the Galaxy S8 Android 8.0 Oreo release a couple of days ago for non-beta devices in markets like Turkey, Norway, the UAE, India, Belgium, Germany, France, Poland and others. The company had said that it would roll out the update in the Netherlands next week.

However, it came to our attention earlier today that Samsung had halted the rollout. We have conducted our own research can now independently confirm that Samsung has pulled Oreo for the Galaxy S8 and the Galaxy S8+.

The G950/G955-FXXU1CRAP Android 8.0 firmware files for these handsets are no longer available for download on Samsung’s servers. We have subsequently removed the Oreo firmware files from our database as well.

There’s going to be little impact for those who have already updated their devices to Android 8.0 Oreo. They can continue to use Oreo on their handsets normally as this doesn’t affect them.

We have received word from a source that Samsung is working on a new firmware version for the Galaxy S8 Android 8.0 release so it should be out soon, hopefully.

The reason behind halting the rollout is unclear at this point in time.

  0 Replies | 414 Views

Apple to delay major software updates over bug fears

Feb 14, 2018 - 12:05 PM - by Reverend
Apple is slamming the brakes on some major iPhone features amid fears that the quality of its products are suffering from short deadlines.

Several features of its operating system redesign were put on hold after Apple grew concerned that time pressures on its developers put its products at risk from “bugs” or potential security holes.

A redesigned home screen for the iPhone, iPad and CarPlay along with a revamp of the Photos app have been put on the back burner after Apple's Software chief Craig Federighi feared that workers were making mistakes while rushing to finish projects, a source told Bloomberg.

Apple fans will be pleased to lean that anticipated features including new Animojis for the iPhone X and improved usage monitors to track time spent staring at the screen will be ready for the annual iOS update, however.

The technology giant, which has for years been regarded as a producer of the highest quality phone software with its iOS operating system, had been suffering from “bugs” in recent years, which is understood to be due to the fast turnaround for its iPhones.

The pressure is on to launch a new selection of phones and products in Autumn every year, and software developers have strict timescales that appear to be leaving room for errors. Apple’s product cycle has not changed in ten years, despite technological advances making products more complicated to design, produce and secure.

Meanwhile, Apple customers are reporting increased technical issues with their phones ranging from text messages appearing out of order, strange auto-corrections, app crashes and problems answering calls.

The incidents made headlines despite their limited impact on customers, but were newsworthy because they were deemed out of character for the typically fortress-like technology giant.

Rival operating system Android, which is owned by Google, is not... [Read More]
  0 Replies | 423 Views

Google demonstrates emails capable of automatically updating

Feb 14, 2018 - 11:53 AM - by Reverend
Google has unveiled plans to enable emails that are capable of updating their content automatically.

The company claims to be developing a programming system that can generate emails that continuously update and provide new information when it arrives.

While this technology is still in the early stages, Google claimed that it could change the way people send and read emails. For example, if you book a holiday in the coming future, you could be sent a booking confirmation email that automatically updates travel and accommodation information.

These plans are part of the the Google accelerated mobile pages (AMP) project. Headed up by Aakash Sahney, it is intended to speed-up web page response times, although it has been claimed that it is also a self-serving initiative that will only further cement the company's dominance of the internet.

"Today, we're bringing the power of AMP to email through the Gmail Developer Preview of AMP for Email — a new way for developers to make emails more interactive and engaging," said Sahney.

He said the software will make Gmail more user friendly: "With AMP for Email, it's easy for information in email messages to be dynamic, up-to-date and actionable."

Up until now, AMP has been presented as a concept project. However, the technology will make its way to Gmail soon, although Google has not released a roll-out date yet.

At the moment, the AMP email software has been designed specifically for companies that use email marketing to reach out to customers, but the capabilities are expected to be expanded in the coming months.

The company explained that other email platforms will be able to integrate the technology. It confirmed that Pinterest and Booking.com are among the first companies to test AMP for Email.

... [Read More]
  0 Replies | 440 Views

Chrome 68 to condemn all unencrypted sites by summer

Feb 14, 2018 - 11:50 AM - by Reverend
Google has put a July deadline on a 2016 promise that its Chrome browser would tag all websites that don't encrypt their traffic.

"Beginning in July 2018 with the release of Chrome 68, Chrome will mark all HTTP sites as 'not secure,'" wrote Emily Schechter, a Chrome security product manager, in a Feb. 8 post to a company blog.

Google has scheduled Chrome 68 to release in Stable form - analogous to production-level quality - during the week of July 22-28.

Starting then, Chrome will insert a "Not secure" label into the address bar of every website that uses HTTP connections between its servers and users. Sites that instead rely on HTTPS to encrypt the back-and-forth traffic will display their URLs normally in the address bar.

Google's campaign to call out HTTP websites as unsafe began in 2014, with the search giant ramping up the effort in September 2016, when it told users Chrome 56 would shame pages that didn't encrypt password or credit card form fields. Chrome 56 debuted in late January 2017, and immediately started to apply the "Not secure" label to pertinent pages.

The push for always-HTTPS - backed by Google and others, including Mozilla, maker of Firefox - has worked, Schechter argued. Eighty-one of the web's top 100 sites, she asserted, now used HTTPS by default, while 68% of Chrome traffic on Windows and Android (by pages) and 78% on both macOS and Chrome OS was encrypted. That was up significantly from September 2016, when Schechter said half of all Chrome desktop page loads were being served via HTTPS.

Eventually, Chrome's "Not secure" label will be accompanied by a red-for-danger icon.

At some point, Chrome will not only tell users that a HTTP page is "Not Secure," but will add a red-for-danger icon to... [Read More]
  0 Replies | 412 Views

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