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Microsoft warns of fake virus alert hitting Windows users

Aug 21, 2014 - 8:13 PM - by Reverend
Microsoft has uncovered a fresh wave of malware campaigns that block web users from surfing the internet using bogus threat alert messages.

Antivirus researcher at Microsoft Daniel Chipiristeanu discovered the campaigns while investigating rogue antivirus infection rates.

"Lately we're seeing a dropping trend in the telemetry for some of the once most-prevalent rogue [antivirus] families, such as Win32/Winwebsec, Win32/OneScan, Win32/FakeXPA, Win32/FakePAV," he said in a blog post.

"However, since the big malware ‘players' are having more trouble in taking advantage of users paying for fake security products, and are moving away from this kind of social engineering, we are seeing other players willing to fill the gap."

Chipiristeanu highlighted one of the campaigns as particularly malicious, as it uses fake antivirus malware to hamper its victims' ability to browse the internet.

"In the past we've regularly seen rogues use the hosts file [sic] to block access to a legitimate security product's websites to deny users protection against the threat," read the post.

"Rogue:Win32/Defru has a different and simpler approach on how to trick the user and monetise on it. Basically, it prevents the user from using the internet by showing a fake scan when using different websites."

He added that the bogus threat page includes a scam alert masquerading as a message from an antivirus vendor requesting the victim pay to have their system cleaned.

"An unsuspecting user, after receiving this warning more than a few times when browsing, might be inclined to click ‘Pay Now'. This will lead them to a payment portal called ‘Payeer' (payeer.com) that will display payment information," read the post. "But of course, even if the user pays, the system will not be cleaned."

... [Read More]
  0 Replies | 79 Views


Apache OpenOffice 4.1.1 for Windows/Linux/Mac

Aug 21, 2014 - 8:10 PM - by Reverend
Apache OpenOffice is the leading open-source office software suite for word processing, spreadsheets, presentations, graphics, databases and more. It is available in many languages and works on all common computers. It stores all your data in an international open standard format and can also read and write files from other common office software packages. It can be downloaded and used completely free of charge for any purpose.

Windows | Linux | Mac

Apache OpenOffice homepage
  0 Replies | 77 Views


Microsoft may let you play Xbox One games for free for 24 hours

Aug 21, 2014 - 8:08 PM - by Reverend
Want to take your favorite Xbox One game for a spin without having to pay for it? An upcoming new Microsoft program appears to be paving the way.

The software giant is testing a new feature called "Free Play Day with Gold" that would unlock select Xbox One titles for you to download and play for a certain period of time, presumably 24 hours, Eurogamer.net reported on Thursday. The program was apparently first mentioned in a Reddit Xbox One discussion thread by someone who said that the game "Max: The Curse of Brotherhood" had already been unlocked as a free download.

Microsoft currently provides some freebies through its Games with Gold program, which offers two Xbox One games for free each month with a $60-per-year Xbox Live Gold subscription. Exposing Xbox One users to even more games via yet another program isn't a bad idea.

Sales of the Xbox One console themselves haven't been as hot as expected, especially when compared with those of Sony's PlayStation 4. Earlier this month, Sony said its PlayStation 4 has sold more than 10 million units worldwide since its November 2013 launch. In April, Microsoft announced it had shipped 5 million Xbox One units to retailers but has remained silent on sales figures. Microsoft needs all the help it can get to drum up interest in the console and its still limited but growing array of titles.

c|net
  0 Replies | 68 Views


Acer releases its own Chromebox, bringing the Google OS to desktops

Aug 21, 2014 - 8:07 PM - by Reverend
Taiwanese PC maker Acer is bringing Google's Chrome operating system to desktops with a new unit that will arrive in the U.S. next month.

Acer's Chromebox CXI, announced on Thursday, puts the Chrome OS into a small enclosure measuring 0.6 liters in volume. It runs an Intel Celeron 2957U dual-core 1.4GHz processor, has a 16GB solid-state drive, and promises a boot-up time of just 8 seconds.

The device can include up to 4GB in RAM, has four USB 3.0 ports, an SD card reader, LAN port for wired network connection, and HDMI and DisplayPort outputs. It's priced from US$179.99, including a keyboard and mouse.

Acer's Chromebox is just the latest attempt to package the OS in desktop form. Rival Asus has a similar product called the Chromebox, that also retails for $179, and in 2012 Samsung released its own device.

Products running Google's Chrome OS have generally been priced low, retailing for around $200 and $300. In the U.S., so-called "Chromebooks" or notebooks loaded with the OS have found a market, and accounted for 35 percent of all U.S. commercial laptop shipments from January to May, according to research firm NPD.

As PC shipments continue to fall, vendors including Acer have increasingly turned toward Chromebooks to drive sales. On Thursday, the Taiwanese company also announced its new Chromebook 11, which will start shipping later this quarter.

The notebook runs an Intel Celeron N2830 dual-core 2.16 GHz processor, and has up to 8.5 hours in battery life. It has an 11.6-inch display, with a 1366 by 768 pixel resolution, and a 16GB or 32GB solid-state drive memory configuration.

... [Read More]
  0 Replies | 68 Views


Windows 9 unveiling set for September 30, report says

Aug 21, 2014 - 8:04 PM - by Reverend
Microsoft's Windows 9, the successor to the widely panned Windows 8, could be shown off at the end of next month, according to a new report.

Microsoft is planning to hold a special press event on September 30 to show off Windows 9, The Verge is reporting, citing people who claim to have knowledge of the company's plans. The date is currently "tentative," according to the report.

It's not yet clear whether Windows 9 will actually be known as Windows 9. The operating system is currently code-named Windows Threshold, though it's highly likely that Microsoft will keep its numbering scheme with the next platform.

Last week, CNET sister site ZDNet reported that Microsoft is planning to launch a "technology preview" of Threshold at the end of September or early October. The report from Mary Jo Foley indicated that users would be able to try out the operating system, but would need to have software updates automatically downloaded to the platform each month.

Whenever Threshold makes an appearance, it's expected to come with a wide range of improvements, including a "mini" Smart Menu, separate windows for Metro-style applications running on the desktop, and support for virtual desktops.

According to The Verge's sources, Microsoft will be showcasing some of those improvements and new features at the event on September 30. The operating system should launch as a beta preview soon thereafter.

c|net




In a statement to CNET, Microsoft was succinct in its response to the news, saying only that it has "nothing to share" at this point.
  0 Replies | 61 Views


Speedfan 4.50

Aug 19, 2014 - 5:42 PM - by Reverend
SpeedFan is a freeware program that monitors fan speeds, temperatures and voltages in computers with hardware monitoring chips. SpeedFan can even access S.M.A.R.T. info for those hard disks that support this feature and show hard disk temperatures too, if supported.SpeedFan supports EIDE, SATA and SCSI drives.

Changelog

Speedfan 4.50

Speedfan homepage
  0 Replies | 142 Views


Microsoft OneNote comes to Android tablets for free

Aug 19, 2014 - 5:40 PM - by Reverend
Microsoft has introduced a version of its OneNote note-taking application optimized to work on Android tablets -- with support for digital inking.

The new application is available for download for free from the Google Play store Tuesday. It requires Google's Android 4.1 operating system or higher. Microsoft has been beta testing the Android tablet version of OneNote for the past several months.

The new OneNote for Android release includes handwriting support and "touch-friendly navigation," according to Microsoft officials.

Microsoft execs had told testers to expect the Android tablet version of OneNote to support digital inking. The feature lets users take handwritten notes or draw with a stylus or finger; add text formatting options, including font types, font sizes, alignments, and tags; and allow users to move between notebooks, sections, and pages with a swipe.

Microsoft also is rolling out a couple of other OneNote updates today.

Its "OneNote for Windows Store" (aka, Metro-Style OneNote for Windows 8.x) is being updated with ink- highlighter functionality, support for printing, and the ability to insert files and PDFs.

There's also an update for Livescribe+ which adds auto-sending so users can set up any Livescribe notebook using their Livescribe 3 smartpens to automatically send handwritten notes to a specific notebook in OneNote.

c|net
There's also an update for Livescribe+ which adds auto-sending so users can set up any Livescribe notebook using their Livescribe 3 smartpens to automatically send handwritten notes to a specific notebook in OneNote.
  0 Replies | 147 Views


Google may offer accounts for kids, controls for parents

Aug 19, 2014 - 5:37 PM - by Reverend
Children who want to use Google services may no longer have to lie about their age, as the company reportedly plans special accounts for users under the age of 13.

Currently, Google doesn’t allow users to sign up unless they say they’re at least 13 years old. That’s because the Federal Trade Commission has strict privacy rules in place for children, requiring parents to provide “verifiable consent” in the form of a credit card transaction, a phone call to a trained specialist, a printed consent form, or a scanned image of the parent’s government ID. But it’s not exactly a secret that kids will pretend to be older in order to use online services like Google.

According to both The Information and The Wall Street Journal, Google is figuring out how to best jump through FTC’s hoops. (As The Verge points out, Yahoo already offers Family Accounts, authorized through a 50-cent credit card charge.)

In addition to letting parents sign their children up, Google may provide an online dashboard so parents can keep track of their children’s activity. Google has also reportedly considered a child-friendly version of YouTube.

The news is already making privacy advocates wary. The Wall Street Journal cites Jeff Chester, executive director of the Center for Digital Democracy, as saying the move will “threaten the privacy of millions of children” if Google doesn’t handle it properly.

The flip side is that proper children’s accounts are an opportunity to improve privacy, as the accounts would have to comply with the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act. For instance, the law states that services providers can only collect information that is “reasonably necessary to participate in that activity.” That means providers can’t lure children with a game or quiz, and require them to... [Read More]
  0 Replies | 161 Views


» News Archive

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