See How Many Popular Apps Failed to Protect Your Password

When using an app developed by a big company, you might think that it is trustworthy and ensures your security and privacy. Well, a recent test proved how easy and vulnerable a lot of popular iOS and Android apps are to crack and have your passwords nabbed.

According to security firm AppBugs, a huge number of popular apps are allowing users to make a large number of login attempts without any type of restrictions. Why is this so important? Well, hackers may as well try to guess your passwords this way. There are a lot of methods involving apps that can randomly generate and test passwords, and since we are talking about mobile devices, I don’t think people will use something they can barely remember, yet alone type, as their passwords.

AppBugs found that out of 100 apps, 53 were found vulnerable. Apps such as Songza, Pocket, Wunderlist, iHeartRadio, WatchESPN, Expedia, Dictionary, CNN, Domino’s Pizza USA, Zillow, AutoCAD 360, Slack, SoundCloud, Kobo and Walmart are just a few of the one found. The security firm gave the developers 30 days to fix the issues, but only a couple of the latter mentioned apps were actually patched. The full list of vulnerable apps will be revealed on the 30th of July, according to AppBugs.

If you wish to protect your data further, users are encouraged to start considering using apps that manage all your stored passwords if you forget them, or even activate 2-factor authentication in apps, if it’s available.

Thank you 9to5mac for providing us with this information

Google Accused of Suppressing Search Results and Stealing Content

Google has been accused of manipulating its search results to promote its own services, to the detriment of other businesses, leading to “real harm to consumers”, and illegally taking content from Yelp, TripAdvisor, and Amazon, a previously unpublished Federal Trade Commission (FTC) report has revealed.

The FTC ended its investigation into Google back in 2012 after the internet giant agreed to concessions, but the investigation’s documents were accidentally handed to The Wall Street Journal, which the newspaper subsequently published. The report claims that Google’s “conduct has resulted – and will result – in real harm to consumers and to innovation in the online search and advertising markets”.

Yelp, Microsoft’s Bing, and travel websites TripAdvisor and Expedia all complained to the FTC that Google had damaged its business by suppressing its search results, and the FTC found that Google had been scraping data from Yelp, TripAdvisor, and Amazon and used it to rank products while recycling reviews and ratings.

Kent Walker, Google’s General Counsel, responded by reminding that the FTC decided that no action should be taken against Google over its findings, saying,  “Speculation about potential consumer harm turned out to be entirely wrong. Since the investigation closed two years ago, the ways people access information online have only increased, giving consumers more choice than ever before.”

But David Wood, legal counsel to ICOMP, a coalition of online firms campaigning against Google, argues that business has trumped the rule of law, saying, “These revelations demonstrate that this is not about national interests but about competition problems. It is a fascinating insight into Google’s practices. It’s made public things they didn’t want made public and highlighted discrepancies between what they said in public and what they actually did in the US.”

Source: The Guardian

Expedia Accepts Bitcoins, as Some Retailers Remain Unsure

Popular travel site Expedia recently confirmed it will begin accepting bitcoins, giving customers the opportunity to book their next hotel visit with the digital currency.

Expedia customers booking accommodations will see bitcoin as a new payment option, and will be ushered to a unique payment site.  Transactions authorized directly from each customer’s bitcoin wallet, and Expedia will provide confirmation.

There is growing interest from companies willing to test bitcoins as long-term payment options, and are opening up communication to learn more from one another.

A growing number of restaurants and pubs also are dabbling with bitcoin, so it’s worth taking a look at your favourite eateries.  Popular online restaurant ordering service Takeaway.com now accepts bitcoins from customers, if you are hungry and want to place orders over the Internet. U.S. satellite TV company Dish Network said it would accept bitcoin payment from subscribers, indicating a major change.

However Ink Factory, which first embraced bitcoins in November 2013, recently noted that bitcoin might not be the payment method of the future – but confirmed that the cryptocurrency is still only in its infancy.  The company isn’t throwing in the towel on bitcoin, and is giving away 1/10th of a bitcoin, currently valued around £41, so its customers can become more familiar with bitcoin and how to use it.

The D Las Vegas Casino Hotel accepts bitcoins at the front desk, restaurants, gift shop, and on the casino floor.  A bitcoin ATM machine was also rolled out, so casino visitors will be able to access their online wallets.

Retailers and other companies might accept bitcoin, but expect the turbulent cryptocurrency to also endure a long infancy from consumers.  If you’re a bitcoin supporter, then it’s willing to send an email, tweet, or message to your favourite retailers to learn more about any bitcoin plans they might have in the future.