Tech news

Apple Has Nearly $256 Billion in the Bank

Apple Headquarters in Cupertino

Episode 1381

With most of its money stashed in Irish banks, Apple's $246 Billion is tucked safely away from the US Tax Code. So much so, that they've created a separate Irish subsidiary which then licenses Apple's own intellectual property back to Cupertino. It's all the same corporation, mind you, but it enables them to avoid taxes in the US. And it's completely legal. They have more money in the bank than the GDP in Sri Lanka, and the 13th largest country in the world, if it were a country.

T-Mobile a Big Winner in Spectrum Auction

T-Mobile

Episode 1380

T-Mobile may be #4 in the cellular game, but they walked away a big winner in the recent FCC Spectrum 600MHz auction, paying nearly 8 billion dollars for the nationwide rights to that band. Although phones don't operate in the spectrum yet, they will be rolled out by year's end. Then T-Mobile will offer 4G LTE services in that market. Comcast also bought some, signaling they are planning to get into the mobile business. The rest were split between AT&T and US Cellular.

Turkish Crime Family Claims It Has Hacked Apple's iCloud

Apple iCloud

Episode 1374

The Turkish Crime Family is threatening to release hundreds of millions of iCloud account names and passwords if Apple doesn't pay them a ransom of millions of dollars. To prove it, they gave ZDNet 54 samples to confirm it. Apple, however, says they have never been hacked. But Leo says it's important for iCloud users to change their passwords just in case. While you're at it, if you haven't turned on two factor authentication, it would be a good idea to do that as well.

FedEx Will Pay You $5 to Turn On Flash

Adobe Flash Logo

Episode 1374

With the entire computing industry moving away from Flash, Fedex is jonesin' to get users to continue to use it. The problem is, Apple, Chrome, Firefox and Microsoft Edge don't support it anymore. You can still install and activate it, but by default, it either doesn't come with the browser or it's turned off.

Fedex's problem is that their website really doesn't work without it. So Fedex is offering to pay you $5 to turn it on. Leo says that Flash is a huge source of security issues, malware, and phishing scams. So he advises not to take the bait and leave it off.

Police Department Gets Search Warrant for Entire Community's Google Searches

Google logo

Episode 1372

The police department in Edina, MN has secured the right to look at people's Google Search history to look for information about a fraud case they were investigating. The legal brief is to cover anyone who searched for the name of the suspect and case, and it could be the entire community.

Leo says it's crazy and that Google should fight this tooth and nail. It's classic government overreach. Leo says he doesn't mind Google's algorithm putting custom ads on his search results, but for a government to ask who searched for something and to get a list is frightening.

Do We Really Need Daylight Saving Time?

Clock

Episode 1371

24% more heart attacks, increased traffic accidents, and a wholesale lack of productivity is the byproduct of continuing to use Daylight Saving Time. Leo says it's an outdated concept whose liabilities outweigh the benefits, and we should simply get rid of it. It's important to know what is more high tech and what isn't. Your phone will automatically reflect the change, but your alarm clock will not. Change.org even has a petition to rid the world of Daylight Saving Time.

Vault 7 Showing How CIA Hacks for Spying

CIA

Episode 1370

Wikileaks has announced Vault 7, a massive collection of documents that show how the CIA uses malware and other hacking techniques to spy online. Some of the techniques includes using smartTVs as a spying device since they use cameras and microphones built into the TVs. Samsung warned of this in their terms of service for their TVs last year. But Leo says that the CIA doesn't really have a switch to turn on all TVs, and if they did, the data they'd receive would be so massive and 99.9% of it would be useless. It could be used for targeted eavesdropping, though.