The Unique World Of 2016 Cyber Security Predications

2016 is here and I still want my hoverboard, by this, I mean an authentic Back to the Future machine and not the cheap plastic device that is currently being marketed. Anyway, this year promises to be compelling for a number of reasons including Cyber Security and the nature of locking data away from the many threats that now lurk within the Cyber walls. Various individuals have had their predictions concerning the coming year’s potential cyber security issues and I thought it would be interesting to convey a selection of the many theories below.

A Cyber Attack will look to exploit the 2016 US presidential election
This may be classed as an outside possibility, even though it would be technically possible whether it will happen is a different matter, this prediction arrives courtesy of Ryan Olson, director of threat intelligence for Palo Alto Network who states that hackers could look to obtain private information from candidates via emails or social network accounts.  Any sensitive information that might be released could, in theory, sway an election, unless you’re Mr Trump who says what he thinks anyway.

Virtual Boarders that control access to the Internet
This theory is far from new, but could be a reality if certain powerful figures are able to exert major control over the internet.  According to Kaspersky Lab, we could see a development of Internet borders that divide access to information along country lines.

Hacked data could become a huge commodity
2015 became the year of the hack and included everything from Dating websites to the leaking of huge databases containing sensitive government details, according to Dmitri Alperovitch, CTO and co-founder of Crowdstrike, who states that hackers are aiming to build up huge stocks of information that contain multiple strands of data. This could lead to blackmailageddon, or something equally terrifying, whereby extortion attacks on individuals and companies are widespread.

Chinese VS Russian Hackers
This one sounds like an opening scene from Rush Hour, but no, according to experts with IID predict, as China’s economy stops growing, many cyber hackers might turn from Cyber espionage to cybercrime. This could then lead to criminal activity that is far bigger than that of Easton Europe.  Is it possible?  You never know considering the technical expertise many hackers possess in china.

Cyber attacks will destroy a major brand or product.  
This prediction from Mark Painter who is a security evangelist for Hewlett-Packard Enterprises is quite feasible considering the many holes which exist within certain tech products.  This individual states that “We are increasingly close to finding out in 2016 if a major product will shut down due to security issues”. Adobe Flash springs to mind considering we all know companies would quite happily cut their losses if a product becomes more trouble than it’s worth.

Will any of these come true?  Only time will tell, especially if Ronald McDonald becomes president.

Image courtesy of PCWorld

Four New Bugs Have Been Found in Internet Explorer

I know most of you don’t even use Internet Explorer and we all know how it was humiliated throughout the years. However, since the new Microsoft Edge might be using some IE code, it’s worth pointing this out anyway.

It looks like security experts have encountered and disclosed four new vulnerabilities in Microsoft’s browser. The researchers have noted the issues through Hewlett-Packard’s Zero Day Initiative, a program which creates detection signatures and also reports them to their respective vendors.

Microsoft has already been notified, however, ZDI gives 120 days to the vendor to fix them. So, since Microsoft is more focused on Windows 10, the issues were not resolved and limited information about them have been released to the public. By limited information, it means that the actual code affected has not been released for the wise guys to figure out an actual working exploit.

However, one of the four exploits seems to have been disclosed in more detail. This is because at one of ZDI’s contest back in November, a hacker used the exploit and provided ZDI with the necessary information on how to take advantage of the vulnerability. If you’re curious, the exploit can be found here.

The remaining vulnerabilities are just theoretical at this point, but Microsoft should look into patching them as soon as possible before someone else manages to find a way to exploit them further.

Thank you PCWorld for providing us with this information

Here Are the First Signs That Microsoft Is Getting Ready for the Windows 10 Launch

As the release date for Microsoft’s latest Windows build draws near, we see the company taking the first steps in prepping for their most anticipated date, July 29th. If you are a Windows Insider, you might already be familiar with the company’s recent move.

As of Monday, Microsoft suspended all new preview builds for Windows 10, stating that the next build will be rolled out on the production channels. However, Microsoft still needs a lot of testing before the launch date, so they are most likely focusing on wrapping up the clean install and upgrade process so that Windows Insiders can test and flag any major problems that could arise during the installation or upgrade process. There were a lot of problems with the Windows 8.1 update, especially with the Update 1, where users were even forced to clean install the OS after encountering serious problems during the upgrade process.

To be noted is that even pre-release activation keys will not work on earlier versions of Windows 10 preview builds. There is no word if Microsoft will release a fresh batch of keys for users who still didn’t get a chance to test Windows 10, but they will most likely be forced to upgrade from earlier Windows versions, since Microsoft is expecting a lot of people to migrate to the latest build after it launches.

The move to suspend preview builds also hints at the release of the first RTM build, which was expected last week. This means that the build will be shipped soon enough to OEMs such as Dell, Acer, Hewlett-Packard and Lenovo to install and start shipping Windows 10-powered PCs on July 29th.

Thank you PCWorld for providing us with this information

Hewlett-Packard to Release ‘Revolutionary’ New Computer and Operating System in 2015

Troubled IT company Hewlett-Packard has announced plans for a hardware and software combination it thinks will revolutionise computer technology as we know it.

The HP research division is calling the device ‘The Machine’. Current computer memory architecture has operated on the same ROM and RAM principle since the 1940s. HP hopes it has developed a better alternative. Or, as Kirk Bresniker, chief architect for The Machine, puts it, “A model from the beginning of computing has been reflected in everything since, and it is holding us back.”

HP aims for their computer to more energy-efficient and powerful than standard models by integrating a new kind of computer memory that stores both temporary and long-term data.

According to Bresner, a prototype of The Machine, with the operating system Linux++, is expected in 2016. Though, HP hopes to replace Linux++ with its own custom operating system called Carbon, designed to fully utilise its unique new system.

Source: MIT Technology Review

HP Recalls over 6 Million AC Power Cords

Hewlett-Packard is recalling about 6 million notebook and laptop AC power because of possible overheating, which again can pose a burn and fire risk. HP has received 29 reports of power cords overheating and melting or charring, resulting in two claims of minor burns and 13 claims of minor property damage.

The Hewlett-Packard LS-15 AC power cords were distributed with HP and Compaq notebook and mini notebook computers as well as AC adapter-powered accessories including docking stations. The power cords are black and have an “LS-15” molded on the AC adapter end of the cord and were manufactured in China.

The notebook and mini-notebook computers and accessories were sold with the AC power cords at computer and electronics stores, authorized dealers and online at www.hp.com from September 2010 to June 2012. Consumers are advised to immediately stop using and unplug the recalled power cords and contact Hewlett-Packard to order a free replacement. There is no risk in continuing to use any other parts.

Hewlett-Packard can be reached by phone during business hours or online at www.hp.com and then click “Recalls” at the bottom of the page.

Thank you laptopmag for providing us with this information.

Image courtesy of HP.

HP’s ‘Fanless’ Chromebox Uses a Fan to Keep Itself Cool

Earlier in the year, HP announced the imminent arrival of their ChromeBox, the desktop answer to the popular Chromebook line of systems that a number of manufacturers are offering. As a part of their product design and advertising, HP have stated (as can see in a shot of their website below) that users will get “The silent operation of the fanless design prevents dust from being funneled through computer case.” Well it appears that HP never got the memo to say that in order to qualify as a ‘fanless’ product, you can’t put a fan inside the chassis. To me this sounds like a simple concept to grasp but apparently I’d be wrong about that.

Following a video review on the system, YouTuber Lon Seidman discovered that HP have been sneaky placed a fan inside the chassis to keep things cool under the collar. This would therefore indicate to us that HP may have had a couple of problems during development to keep their Chromebox cool. The fact that there is a grill on the back of the chassis to ventilate heat through is also a bit of a give-away that there is some forced cooling going on. Placing the fan inside the chassis not only means that the Chromebox doesn’t qualify for the fanless tag, but their claim that dust is not being sucked into the case is also false – this is actually false advertising and can lead HP into a lot of trouble on the legal side of things.

As for the end-user, what does is mean to them? Well it simply means that the $10 premium that you would be paying to have a ‘silent and fanless’ unit over that of Asus’ offering is actually not worth the paper that it is written on. Simply put, save your money and get the cheaper unit that is (bar aesthetic design) identical. For such a big and well know vendor such as HP, this is to be perfectly honest a bit of a shameful discovery and we look forward to hearing their response on the subject.

 

 

Source: Geek.com

Image courtesy: CartridgeLink

27-inch All-in-One Touch Workstation Announced By HP

HP today unveiled the second generation of the world’s first and only all-in-one workstation with a 27-inch diagonal display, the HP Z1, now available with Windows 8 Touch and Intel Thunderbolt 2 capabilities making it HP’s most powerful, innovative and fully featured all-in-one workstation.

Ideal for knowledge workers and specialists in CAD, graphic arts and university education, the HP Z1G2 offers fast data transfer speeds for compute-intensive workloads and new technologies like Thunderbolt offer the flexibility for high-performance external expandability. Whether it’s being used by an engineer creating 3-D components, an architect designing buildings or a videographer editing event footage, the HP Z1G2 gives creative professionals the power they need to bring ideas to life faster.

The HP Z1 G2 is joined by three new all-in-one PCs ideal for use in small and midsize business (SMB) and enterprise environments, including the HP Slate21 Pro All in One, HP’s first commercial Android all-in-one PC. The HP Slate21 Pro offers seamless integration with Android-based phones and tablets, along with access to efficient manageability tools, security enhancements and apps available through the Google Play app store.

“Since its launch in 2012, the highly acclaimed HP Z1 has opened the eyes and ears of customers hoping to solve business problems no longer being met by current vendors,” said Jim Zafarana, vice president and general manager, Commercial Solutions Business Unit, HP. “Today’s professionals demand high-performance products that are serviceable and easy-to-use, all wrapped in a sleek and elegant design.”

HP is the only workstation vendor to offer Thunderbolt as an option across both desktop and mobile workstations. Thunderbolt enables cutting-edge creative work, and the addition of this technology to the HP Z1 G2 expands HP’s leadership in innovation and demonstrates its commitment to the professional market.

The HP Z1 features Intel integrated HD Graphics, 4th Generation Intel Xeon and Core processors, ECC memory, and RAID storage options, providing users with more reliability and performance. Additionally, the HP Z1 features the latest NVIDIA Mobile Quadro GPUs for professional use and the best graphics performance for demanding applications. All HP Z Workstations are tested and certified for professional applications.

Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture Planning and Preservation is regarded as one of the most important, innovative and prestigious architecture schools in the world. As one of the first architecture schools to provide individual workstations for every student, it always has been a leading program in uses of design technology, including the use of more than 100 HP Z1 Workstations.

“Our architectural students, from approximately 50 countries, have an endless thirst for experimentation,” said John Ramahlo Jr., executive director, Technology, School of Architecture, Columbia University. “To quench that thirst, we must provide our students expertise in the state of the art in architecture and computer technology so that they can decisively assert themselves around the world by producing remarkable buildings, plans and policies — the HP Z1 gives our students that edge.”

A powerful workstation
The HP Z1 enables designers to streamline the workflow with key features such as:

  • The power of Thunderbolt. Connect in a flash with up to four times USB 3.0 bandwidth using optional high-performance Thunderbolt 2.0 ports located on the side of the HP Z1G2.
  • Professional display. Let ideas shine on the HP Z1 G2’s brilliant next-generation, 27-inch diagonal IPS display. Choose from 10-point touch with stunning edge-to-edge glass or non-touch with antiglare capability.
  • Tool-less chassis. Change most parts or make upgrades without tools or a service technician. Simply snap open the chassis and customize as needed.
  • Bold and bright. A wide range of 3-D professional graphics options, including NVIDIA Mobile Quadro GPUs, gives users the power they need to bring their creations to life.
  • Astounding sound. Premium audio features on the HP Z1 G2 Workstation include dual-tone, front-facing speakers and DTS Studio Sound Audio.

Pricing and availability
The new HP Z1G2 Workstation is expected to be available in late January. U.S. pricing starts at $1,999.

Thank you TechPowerUp for providing us with this information
Image courtesy of TechPowerUp

HP Reportedly May Launch New Smartphones Next Year

Hewlett-Packard is reportedly planning to introduce a few phablets with screen sizes of six and seven-inches. The news comes from The Information (via T3).

According to the report, the devices will be aimed at developing markets and cost between £125 to £150 without a contract. The company pulled out of the smartphone market in 2011, following its failed attempt to turn Palm’s assets into a viable business. HP subsequently dumped its plans to use WebOS as an alternative to Windows on a number of devices. It is unknown if the rumoured smartphones will be powered by WebOS, Android or possibly even Windows Phone 8.

Rumours that HP was considering returning to the smartphone market originally surfaced in 2012 when CEO Meg Whitman told Fox Business Network that the company was considering returning to the smartphone market.

That was followed up earlier this year by more reports claiming that HP would soon re-enter the fray. However, at the time the company was only said to be considering a return. No handsets were said to be being planned; rather, the company was looking at a timetable to return to the market.

Thank you T3 for providing us with this information

Aurora Branded 3D Printer Set To Launch Next Month

Aurora Group will release its first 3D printer next month, in collaboration with automation equipment maker Contrel Technology Co.

The Aurora Group is a distributor for Sharp Corp and Hewlett-Packard Co. in Taiwan and are mainly focused on selling Stratasys Ltd 3D Printers in China, along with office furniture, appliances and supplies.

The printer will be called the “F1” 3D printer, featuring a user-friendly interface a year-long customer service. It is targeting small and medium-sized companies, having a price tag of $3,400. Senior manager Tony Tsai stated that “It’s all about price-performance ration” when it comes to the steep price tag of the F1 3D printer at the press conference in Taipei.

“The 3D printer market is a brand-new market, and we are confident we will hold a notable market share in the long run,”said Aurora executive director Alice Lin.

Aurora’s next move is to get involved in China’s 3D printing market and from there to the rest of the world. To spice things up, Aurora is also considering introducing its own “Aurora Office Cloud” in Q3 2014, allowing customers to upload and download files to be printed.

Thank you Taipei Times for providing us with this information
Image courtesy of Taipei Times

Asustek and Toshiba To Enter the Chromebook Market with Intel Chips

While Chromebooks are on a roll with Acer and Hewlett-Packard already releasing their models on the market, it’s time for Asustek Computer and Toshiba to take a bite out of the pie and introduce their own Chromebooks with Intel’s Haswell processors next year.

Acer will hurry things up a little and wants to release a 11.6-inch Chromebook C720P this December at a price range of $299 / €220 / £183, while Asustek will launch Chromebooks in 2014 with models composed of 11.6-inch and 13.3-inch screen displays. Asustek’s Chromebook prices are estimated at around $199 / € 146 /£121 and up to $329 / €242 / £200. Toshiba is also expected to release its Chromebooks soon, but it looks like the Japan-based vendor is outsourcing production to Inventec.

The Chromebook shipments are not at all bad, this including the Chromebook Pixel launched by Google, having accounted for less than 5% of total global notebook shipments up to this point. Whether users will see them more useful than a common netbook, it remains to be seen.

Thank you Digi Times for providing us with this information