This Week in Tech News

A Strong Message Needs to be Sent to Lenovo Over Superfish Malware

Episode 1164

With news that Lenovo has been caught using man in the middle attacks to insert adware into user browsers, Leo says that we must send a strong message to them that this is unacceptable. Lenovo claims the Superfish "add-on" was only added to consumer products to provide targeted ads in browsers, but Leo says it's malware and it deliberately violates the trust between consumers and manufacturers.

The WinBook TW700 Tablet is a Full PC Under $60

Episode 1164

WinBook TW700 Tablet

A legit $59 Windows tablet? Leo says yes! It's the WinBook TW700, a tablet that runs Windows 8.1 with 16GB of storage, an SD card slot for more storage, and 1GB of RAM. It has a 1280x800 display. Leo is pretty impressed with it.

The negatives are the terrible cameras, but it's good enough for Skype. Dell's tablet gives you a keyboard for $20 more. A great first computer. And it comes with a year's subscription to Microsoft Office 365 and cloud storage!

Lenovo Gets Caught Putting Malware on Its Laptops

Episode 1163

After getting caught putting a piece of malware called Superfish on all their laptops, Lenovo has offered apologies and released a removal tool with which to remove it. Leo says that Lenovo had been putting malware on its machines that makes it possible for a 'man in the middle attack' to reroute customer's personal traffic to Lenovo so that it can insert ads. Leo says that's inexcusable and nobody should ever buy a Lenovo brand computer again.

Hackers Steal Millions from Banks

Episode 1162

Back in 2013, in what has been the largest hacking theft in history, hackers used malware to break into the computer networks of several major banks and stole over $300 million worldwide, and could actually be three times as large, the largest theft in history. No bank has come forward claiming they were victims and security firm Kaspersky has been retained to investigate. Leo says these attacks happen all the time and that Banks cover it up to prevent clients losing faith in the institution. How did it happen? It appears to be the old phishing scam with bank employees as the target.

FAA Releases Proposed New Drone Rules

Episode 1162

With the recent loss of a quadcopter on White House grounds, the need for more specific FAA rules on drone use has become more important. And yesterday, the FAA released proposed new rules for doing just that. The rules include that drones must be under 55 lbs, fly under 500 feet and go no faster than 100 mph. There would be an age limit of 17 and you must pass a aereonautics exam and be vetted by the FAA. But you wouldn't need a license. The rules have a public comment of 60 days.

Hackers Take Millions of Dollars From US and Global Banks

Episode 1162

A sophisticated malware attack has robbed hundreds of banks in 30 nations, including the US, Russia, Japan, and Europe. According to a report from Kaspersky Labs provided to the New York Times, upwards of $300 million dollars was stolen, which could make this one of the largest bank heists ever.

Pinterest Bans All Affiliate Links

Episode 1161

Pinterest has banned all affiliate links from its site. Affiliate links allow online retailers to track who referred them to their site, and would pay a small amount to the referrer as a result. Pinterest claims this was done because it was "causing a poor user experience," according to a spokesman. Read the full article at Recode.net.

Public Key Cryptography Keeps Everything You Do Private

Episode 1160

The internet is a public place, and whatever you post to it is out of your control. The one exception to this is encrypting your data, however. This will ensure that only you and the recipient will be able to read the data. Here are a few open source tools for public key encryption:

Hackers Steal 80,000,000 Customer Records From Anthem Health Insurance

Episode 1160

Hackers broke into the Anthem Health database to obtain names, birthdays, addresses, and Social Security numbers of customers. An estimated 80,000,000 records have been lost. After the hack, there have been phishing scams circulating and phone fraudsters calling people to obtain financial information. If you do get an email from Anthem, do not click the links, go directly to the Anthem website. If you get a call from someone claiming to be from Anthem, hang up and call them back using their posted phone number.