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Malware attack in form of email

29/10 (1858 IST): A malware attack disguised as a message about photos has been spammed out widely via email to Internet users.

According to a post on naked security.com, a Content Site by SophosLabs, in the attack, cyber criminals attempt to trick unsuspecting users into opening an attached file in their internet Browsers, redirecting them to a Webpage hosted on a Russian Website that takes advantage of the Blackhole exploit kit.

The notorious Blackhole exploit kit then attempts to infect visiting computers through a wide number of vulnerabilities.

More Internet outage today

27/10 (1910 IST): Its been a rough week for Internet users. After a slight outage earlier in the week when YouTube went down for a while, today saw another round of outage. Google's App Engine, which powers other Sites, along with Cloud-based storage App Dropbox & micro-blog Tumblr experienced outages. The outage lasted about 2 hours.

Google wrote on its Site that at approximately 7:30 am Pacific time this morning, it began experiencing slow performance & dropped connections from one of the components of App Engine. The symptoms that service users would experience include slow response & an inability to connect to services.
 
Tumblr also tweeted about the outage, putting it down to an issue with one of its uplink providers. 
 
Later in the day, Online reports seemed to suggest that Social Network Facebook users were also complaining of their accounts being down. There was no official statement from FB till the time of the writing of this report. 

Will Windows 8 give tough fight to Apple, Google?

 
25/10 (2200 IST): The newly launched Windows 8 is expected to compete against Apple's OS & Google's Android. It is designed to work across PCs, Tablets as well as Smartphones.

The new OS comes with a new Start screen. The old Start menu has been replaced by tiles which showcases users' Content that can be updated in real time.
 
Windows Surface TabletMicrosoft has partnered with 14 manufacturers, including Dell, Lenovo, HP, HCL, Acer, Asus, which together will put on sale 250 devices running on the latest Windows OS. Microsoft may still retain the majority share in the desktop segment but its share in personal devices segment has shrunk in the recent past mainly due to increased usage of devices like Smartphones & Tablets, where Google's Android & Apple have taken a lead.
 
Steven Sinofsky, head of Microsoft's Windows unit, opened the launch event in New York in front about 1,000 media & PC industry partners. He showed off Windows 8's new look, but stressed that the system was built upon the base of Windows 7. Updates will start at US $39.99.
 
Windows 8 will be available from Friday in 37 languages & in 140 worldwide markets.
 
Microsoft also launched its Surface Tablet today. 
 
Microsoft will be doing yet another launch, of a refashioned Windows Phone Smartphone software next Monday.
 
(Image Courtesy: Microsoft)

 

Windows 8 launched

25/10 (2120 hrs IST): Microsoft released a new version of its flagship Windows Operating System today.

Microsoft held the launch at an event in New York City. Steven Sinofsky, President of Windows & Windows Live, kicked off the event by explaining that Microsoft was celebrating the global availability of Windows 8 on Thursday.

Email security weakness solved

25/10 (1953 hrs IST): Google, Microsoft & Yahoo have tackled a "cryptographic weakness" in their email systems that could allow an attacker to create a spoofed message to pass it off as a mathematical security verification.

According to a report in Computerworld.com, the weakness affects DomainKeys Identified Mail, a security system used by major email senders. DKIM wraps a cryptographic signature around an email that verifies the domain name through which the message was sent, which helps more easily filter out spoofed messages from legitimate ones.

For those of you interested in knowing more, click here


GoDaddy's email service goes down, then recovers

21/10 (1946 hrs IST): Well-known domain registry service GoDaddy’s email service experienced an extended outage this morning, according to a report in TechCrunch. The downtime affected a portion of its customer base.

The outage took down the email systems beginning around 7:00 AM ET (estimated) this morning, and the problems were fixed by 10:30 AM ET, according to the company. Inc., the report added.


Yahoo! will exit South Korea by 2012-end

19/10 (2005 hrs IST): Yahoo Inc. will close its South Korean Web portal & Internet advertising business, according to a report by news agency Associated Press (AP).

The report said Yahoo! was cutting its losses in a market where it had struggled for over a decade.

Yahoo's South Korea unit said its Seoul office with over 200 employees will be shut by the end of 2012.


AOL launches limited preview of Cloud-based feature

17/10 (1803 hrs IST): AOL Inc., the company that originally brought email to the mass market, has released for limited preview, it's Cloud-based email product, Alto.

AOL Designed to be used with existing email accounts, including Gmail, Yahoo! Mail, AOL Mail, .Mac & .me accounts, this new, free email platform "re-imagines the email experience from the ground up with a focus on combating inbox fatigue."

According to a press release by AOL today, Alto blends organizational features & an elegant, clear user experience to provide users with visual relief from Inboxes overloaded with a constant flow of daily deals, newsletters, social notifications, etc. The aim is to put the user back in control of their email experience.

The basis for this new product is 'organization by design,' using a new tool called "stacks" that automatically pulls out & organize important pieces of a user's Inbox for easy access and quick viewing. Users can also drag & drop individual emails to create their own stacks based on sender, recipients, key words, & more.

Alto provides users with a visual story of their email Inboxes using a variety of innovative features designed to make it easy to sort through and find what is really important.

All photos that users send & receive through any of their email accounts will be automatically sorted into a dedicated photo stack. Users can look through long buried photos or instantly see new ones as they arrive. Photos can be sorted by sender, date, and inbox, or shared right from Alto to Facebook or Twitter.

Alto will also give users a real-time visual search experience, providing a faster & more contextual way to let users find exactly what they need.

The new feature is available in limited preview today, accepting new users on a first come, first serve basis. New users can sign up for a free account at www.altomail.com, the release stated.

Facebook gets even more secure to use

17/10 (0630 hrs IST): Social Network Facebook has got even more secure with the addition of 7 anti-virus companiies to its AV Marketplace

A Blog post by FB Security said starting now, Facebook users will be able to download software from - avast!, AVG, Avira, Kaspersky, Panda, Total Defense, and Webroot. This is in addition to previous partners - Microsoft, McAfee, Norton, TrendMicro & Sophos, who already offer similar anti-virus programs. 
 
As with the existing partners, these 7 companies will help protect Facebook’s community of over a billion users by improving the URL blacklist system. This system scans trillions of clicks per per day, & before each click, the system consults the databases of all the AV Marketplace partners to make sure the Website users are about to visit is safe. 

India leads the list of spam relaying nations

16/10 (1911 hrs IST): India has become the topmost spam relaying country in the world, shows a study. A report in Online news Site Naked Security says SophosLabs's most recent "dirty dozen" report, which details the world's top spam-relaying countries, finds that India has topped the charts for the 3rd quarter in a row.

 India, says the report, contributed 16.1% to the world's spam emails in the said period followed by Italy at 9.4% & USA at 6.5%.

The spam doesn't necessarily emanate from India's computers, says the article. Rather, the numbers suggest that many of the country's ill-protected machines have been turned into spam-spitting zombies in botnets. 

 

A tool for Pinterest analysis

16/10 (0607 hrs IST): 1st there was image-based bulletin board Social Site called Pinterest. Now, there's a Search cum analytical tool called Pinalytics

PinalyticsWhen you go to this Site (in closed Beta for the moment), you will be greeted with a Search task bar. You may then key in any search word in it to match it with the Pins, Boards or people on Pinterest. Once you have found a match, the real stuff kicks in. Along with each match, it shows up the Pinterest metrics like the number of times Pinterest users have "re-pined" the image or the Pin, the number of comments its attracted, & so on.  All the metrics on a Results Page can also be downloaded.
 
Pinalytics has been created by Forward 3D, part of the Forward Internet Group. It is  Digital Marketing Agency specializing in PPC, SEO & stuff like that. Right now, you would need a special code to register for Pinalytics. But even without registering, you can use the tool for 5 keywords at a time.   


Kickstarter program to launch in the UK

11/10 (0610 hrs IST): Crowdsourcing platform Kickstarter will kick off in the United Kingdom from October 31, 2012.

Beginning today, UK entrepreneurs can get started building their projects by clicking on the "Start a new project" button on the Start page & selecting the UK as their country. On October 31, Kickstarter will let them know when to hit the launch button.
 
If you are in UK & want to catch up with the details click here

Send out emails in almost all languages

10/10 (1153 hrs IST): From today, even if you do not know English, you can still use the email service, Gmail by Google. Gmail has expanded the number of languages it supports to over 100 languages. There is also the facility of a touch screen keyboard for typing in languages other than English, which are part of the collective 'Input Tools'.

For users from India who are unfamiliar with English, they can now send out their emails in Hindi, Marathi, Tamil & Gujarati.

All that users need to do is to go to Settings in Gmail, click the Language tab & put a tick mark on the box next to Enable Input Tools, to start using these virtual keyboards.
 
For more on this, you may read this Blog Post by C. Andrew Warren, Product Manager, Gmail.

New place for better Web resources

09/10 (1338 hrs IST): If you are a techie or coder, then this new Website is def for you. Called Web Platform, this is a place for developers with the stipulated aim of building a better Web.

A Blog Post explains further, "This Site (Web Platform) is really just the starting point for great things to come.  The goal of this site is to be the place to come for answers to your trickiest (and simplest) development and design questions about the Open Web Platform.

"For years, web developers have had to rely on multiple sites to help them learn web programming or design, each with one piece of the puzzle. Great sites appear, covering one or two subjects, but too often fail to keep up with the rapid pace of changes to the web platform. This may have been good enough when the web was just simple HTML, basic CSS, and maybe a little JavaScript, but that was a long time ago. Today’s web is more than just documents, it’s applications and multimedia, and it’s changing at a breakneck pace."

Already, the biggies like Apple, Adobe, Facebook, Google, HP, Microsoft, Mozilla, Nokia, & Opera have joined Web Platform. Anybody & everybody is welcome to contribute to it, though.

Firefox updates coming

09/10 (0714 hrs IST):Mozilla will update all Firefox Browser channels in the next few days, say Online reports. Firefox 15.0.1 will be updated later today to version 16.0, followed by updates for the Browser's Aurora.

To read more on this, go to this URL http://www.ghacks.net/2012/10/08/firefox-16-0-whats-new/

Careful when you search for images on Bing

08/10 (2110 hrs IST): Here's a new warning - be careful while searching for images on Search Engine Bing. According to a report in research agency nakedsecurity, Search Engine poisoning was being used to drive Web traffic to specific Sites. Read the entire report to find out how. 


Facebook has 1 billion active users, monthly 

04/10 (1739 hrs IST): So it did turn out as everybody expected. This morning, Mark Z. announced on his own network that Facebook had 1 billion active monthly users. Which is roughly about 1/6th of the world's total population, we estimate.

 
Click here to read Mark's post.
 
Also, click here to read up on some amazing statistics about Facebook posted by the CEO himself.

So, what will Mark Z. announce today?

04/10 (0843 hrs IST): The Online world is agog with reports of Social Network Facebook's CEO, Mark Zuckerberg's "mysterious" huge milestone announcement that he is likely to make later today. 

Mark Z., said these reports, is set to announce something that is being dubbed as a "historic milestone" during an interview with Matt Lauer on the TODAY show in the US. This interview will be the first television interview post Facebook IPO. Some reports suggested that Mark Z. will announce that FB has 1 billion users.
 
Here are some of those reports
 
http://thenextweb.com/facebook/2012/10/04/zuckerberg-to-announce-historic-milestone-tomorrow-does-facebook-really-have-1-billion-users/?utm_source=Twitter&awesm=tnw.to_g5ji&utm_medium=Spreadus&utm_campaign=social%20media
 
http://www.tweaktown.com/news/26055/mark_zuckerberg_to_announce_historic_milestone_for_facebook_tomorrow_one_billion_active_users/index.html

Linkedin launches publishing platform

03/10 (0621 hrs IST): Professional networking Service LinkedIn has launched a publishing platform designed to connect experts & thought leaders in business with a broader audience. The new tool is kinda an extension of LinkedIn Today, the Social News product that was launched in 2011. The effort obviously is to broaden the network's scope by launching the Blog platform.

The new feature will now allow Linkedin members to not only connect with each other but to also 'follow' influencers across a variety of industries, who can use the service to author long-form content & leverage their brands.

News reports say unlike micro-blog Twitter, which emphasizes short-form content, or Social Network Facebook, which does not have curation, LinkedIn's publishing service will place value on higher-quality content from a select number of influencers.