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A Case for Windows Defender: Triad of Perfect Scores in AV-Test

Here's a strange thing: a case for a free, bundled software solution being better (in the metrics concerned and evaluated) than paid, third-party counterparts. We're writing of none other than Microsoft's own Windows Defender suite, which is bundled with Windows and offers a security solution integrated into your OS. While the "paid is always better" philosophy has been proven wrong time and again and isn't that much of a powerhouse behind users' thought process anymore, the fact is that Windows Defender has somewhat been taken for granted as an "undesirability" in users' computers. However, a comparison made by AV-Test, which pits many of the available cybersecurity solutions available on the market, has found Microsoft's Windows Defender to be worthy of a triad of perfect scores.

The results for Windows Defender include perfect (6.0) scores in the "Protection", "Performance" and Usability" categories. The testing period refers to May through June of this year, and only F-Secure SAFE 17, Kaspersky Internet Security 19 and Norton Security 22.17 managed to get the same perfect scores as Windows Defender Version 4.18. Check out the link for the score of your cybersecurity solution of choice. But it's clear that least where this period is concerned, Windows Defender walked circles around some paid solutions.

NETGEAR Delivers Advanced Network Protection With New Nighthawk Cybersecurity WiFi Router

NETGEAR , Inc. (NASDAQ:NTGR), the leading provider of networking devices that connect smart homes and small businesses to the world, today announced the availability of a new router designed to keep your network secure from online threats, the Nighthawk Cybersecurity AC2300 WiFi Router (RS400). With three years of NETGEAR Armor powered by Bitdefender included, the RS400 is well-matched to provide the best-in-class anti-virus, anti-malware, and data protection for an unlimited number of devices on your network including PCs, laptops, mobile devices, IoT and Smart Home.

Unlike software applications that are installed on laptops or smartphones, the Nighthawk Cybersecurity WiFi Router is designed to provide protection for all the connected devices on your network including vulnerable IoT smart home products. Given that the router directs all incoming and outgoing internet traffic on the network, the router becomes the first line of defense for the connected home. In addition to scanning incoming traffic for security risks, the RS400 also monitors for and can intercept rogue traffic generated from a device, in the event that a device has been hijacked.

Microsoft's Edge Browser Confirmed Dead; Long Live Microsoft Edge

So, it goes like this: Microsoft has confirmed they will be killing of their own-developed Edge browser in favor of a Chromium-based alternative. However... The new browser will retain Microsoft's Edge nomenclature, instead of parting ways with the (likely damaged) branding. Microsoft is committing to the open-based Chromium backbone, and will be building upon its database to contribute towards a more open Internet.

The idea is to deliver more frequent updates - and of course, reducing the engineering and coding efforts to keep an in-house browser up to date and secure from all manner of Internet threats. And this will likely be achieved; whether Microsoft's efforts will bring it a higher market share than the current 4%, though, is anyone's guess. It seems to be a usual Microsoft dilemma in that the first search on its browsers is for another web browser... And it might remain especially so without a branding change. Living in Chrome just sounds better than living on Edge.

Wi-Fi Alliance Introduces Wi-Fi CERTIFIED WPA3 Security

Wi-Fi Alliance introduces Wi-Fi CERTIFIED WPA3 , the next generation of Wi-Fi security, bringing new capabilities to enhance Wi-Fi protections in personal and enterprise networks. Building on the widespread adoption of WPA2 over more than a decade, WPA3 adds new features to simplify Wi-Fi security, enable more robust authentication, and deliver increased cryptographic strength for highly sensitive data markets. As the Wi-Fi industry transitions to WPA3 security, WPA2 devices will continue to interoperate and provide recognized security.

WPA3 security continues to support the market through two distinct modes of operation: WPA3-Personal and WPA3-Enterprise. All WPA3 networks use the latest security methods, disallow outdated legacy protocols, and require use of Protected Management Frames (PMF) to maintain resiliency of mission critical networks. Key capabilities of WPA3 include:
  • WPA3-Personal: more resilient, password-based authentication even when users choose passwords that fall short of typical complexity recommendations. WPA3 leverages Simultaneous Authentication of Equals (SAE), a secure key establishment protocol between devices, to provide stronger protections for users against password guessing attempts by third parties.
  • WPA3-Enterprise: offers the equivalent of 192-bit cryptographic strength, providing additional protections for networks transmitting sensitive data, such as government or finance. The 192-bit security suite ensures a consistent combination of cryptographic tools are deployed across WPA3 networks.

Magewell to Debut the Ultra Stream HDMI Standalone Streaming Encoder

Expanding beyond its highly-acclaimed strengths in video capture and playout, Magewell will take the wraps off the company's first standalone, hardware-based streaming encoder in booth SU6324 at the 2018 NAB Show. Making live streaming production remarkably simple even for non-professional users, the new Ultra Stream HDMI enables customers to record or stream high-quality video from a variety of sources with one click using on-device buttons or an intuitive, accompanying smartphone app.

Magewell's capture products are renowned for outstanding ease of use, and the Ultra Stream HDMI continues this tradition. Designed for users who want to stream but may have very little technical knowledge, the encoder is ideal for everyone from church volunteers, teachers and gamers to corporate marketers and live event organizers.

Western Digital Ships "Someone's Backdoor" With My Cloud Drives

Western Digital has seemingly been shipping their My Cloud personal network attached storage solutions with an integrated backdoor. It's not really that complicated a backdoor either - a malicious user should always be able to use it. That stems from the fact that it's a hard coded backdoor with unchangeable credentials - logging in to someone's My Cloud is as simple as inputing "mydlinkBRionyg" as the Administrator username and "abc12345cba" as the respective password. Once logged in, shell access is unlocked, which allows for easy injection of commands.

The backdoor has been published by James Bercegay, with GulfTech Research and Development, and was disclosed to Western Digital on June 12th 2017. However, since more than 6 months have passed with no patch or solution having been deployed, the researchers disclosed and published the vulnerability, which should (should) finally prompt WD to action on fixing the issue. Making things even worse, no user action is required to enable attackers to take advantage of the exploit - simply visiting malicious websites can leave the drives wide open for exploit - and the outing of a Metasploit module for this very vulnerability means that the code is now out there, and Western Digital has a race in its hands. The thing is, it needn't have.

Eric Schmidt Steps Down as Alphabet's Exec Chairman

Eric Schmidt late Thursday surprised the tech industry with an announcement to step down as executive chairman of Alphabet, the all-encompassing conglomerate that owns Google's various divisions, including Google Inc., which handles Google's search, web, and online advertising businesses, led by Sundar Pichai. Schmidt did not name a successor.

Eric Schmidt, who served the Internet giant from 2001, is credited with overseeing its 2015 reorganization from the monolithic Google with its various brands, divisions, and subsidiaries, to Alphabet, a conglomerate that owns its various businesses transcending Internet-based services. We are awaiting more details on Schmidt's future plans, and what his exit means for Alphabet.

High-Speed Broadband Internet to Become a Legal Right for UK Citizens by 2020

The Government has confirmed that universal high speed broadband will be delivered by a regulatory Universal Service Obligation (USO), giving everyone in the UK access to speeds of at least 10 Mbps by 2020. This is the speed that Ofcom, the independent regulator, says is needed to meet the requirements of an average family. After careful consideration the government has decided that regulation is the best way of making sure everyone in the UK can get a decent broadband connection of at least 10 Mbps as soon as possible.

Following the creation of new powers when the Government passed the Digital Economy Act 2017, we launched our consultation on the design of the regulatory USO in the summer. The Government will now set out the design for a legal right to high speed broadband in secondary legislation early next year, alongside our detailed response to the consultation.

Cryptojacking: Over 2,500 Websites Out There to Steal Your CPU Time

Cryptojacking is a new phenomenon, which was popularized by ThePirateBay embedding its website with a Javascript-based crypto-currency miner. It quickly sprung up the debate on whether crypto-currency miners hidden into web-pages could become the revenue model of the future, replacing online advertising or paid subscriptions. Some commentators argue that it's fine as long as users are made sufficiently aware that a website is embedding a miner, and is presented with a choice between ads and the miner. Others were steadfast against the idea as heavy Internet browsing (across multiple tabs), could bring down computers to a crawl, and have a more than tangible impact on electricity bills.

According to an ArsTechnica report, there could be at least 2,500 websites out there, with embedded crypto-currency miners that are hidden from the users. Willem de Groot, an independent cybersecurity researcher told the publication that he estimates JS miners may have proliferated to 2,496 websites, and its adoption is on the rise. Some dishonest websites embed miners as a revenue source in addition to ads and sponsored content. At the heart of the controversy is Coinhive. This company sells easy-to-integrate crypto-currency miners that can be embedded into websites as a revenue source. The company is on a marketing overdrive, writing to siteops and bloggers to spread their miners.

Politifact Sees Unsactioned Introduction of Web Miner, Vows to Investigate

This here is an issue that this editor has been fearing for a while, and that we here at TPU have called our users' attention to in the past. It's bad enough when websites willingly implement web mining scripts absent of users' consent or simple knowledge. Opt-in mining as a contribution to a website's revenue would be the best way to go around the issue; however, absent that, a simple opt-out capability wouldn't be much worse. But if stealth usage of a site viewers' computing resources is bad, what then can be said when the site managers themselves are unaware of the implementation of a web miner?

This is what happened with Politifact, the US politics fact-checking website, which is but one of hundreds of the world's top traffic websites that have seen the stealth introduction of these web mining scripts - against the will of the site managers. In the meantime, Politifact has brought down the offending code and has vowed to investigate, but this opens up Pandora's box, really. Generally speaking, these JavaScript apps are running code hosted on another server that the end user - and sometimes even the site hosts - can't inspect or don't expect to have to inspect. And this is easier to do than one would imagine; there's a lack of protection against JavaScript routines like this one. And where there's potential for profit, there's abuse; and that's what we're seeing. It also doesn't help that injecting the necessary JavaScript into the front page of a website is much easier than a full blown hack into a website's databases; and once the code has been shoehorned into a website's code, it runs itself, hijacking users' CPU cycles and putting the resulting Monero coins into a designated wallet.

Invading Subscriber Privacy - Senate Says ISPs Can Now Sell Your Data

The US Senate on Thursday passed a joint resolution to eliminate broadband privacy rules that would have required ISPs to get consumers' explicit consent before selling or sharing Web browsing data and other private information with advertisers and other companies. This win was pulled by a hair - 48 Nay against 50 Yea - and went entirely through party lines, with Republicans voting Yea, and the Democrats voting Nay. The effects won't be immediate, mind you - the measure will have to pass the House and then be signed by President Donald Trump before it can become law.

Steam and Linux on the PS4 - AMD's "Bonaire" GPU Register Reference Found

While trying to hack the PS4 in order to make it run Linux (in a bid to get Steam and possibly other programs running on the PS4's hardware), hackers hit a snag: they couldn't get the PS4's GPU to display any kind of output or process any kind of graphics. Like any good researcher would, when hit with a snag, the hackers turned to scouring the Internet in hopes of finding any kind of documentation that could help them harness the PS4's Pitcairn-based GPU.

TrendNet Launches TEW-817DTR AC750 Router for Road Warriors

TRENDnet, a best-in-class wired and wireless networking hardware brand, announces the availability of the AC750 Wireless Travel Router, model TEW-817DTR-built for today's connected road warrior. "More and more travelers need to connect mixed WiFi AC and WiFi N device to the internet," stated Zak Wood, marketing director for TRENDnet. "Our TEW-817DTR keeps all devices connected by broadcasting concurrent WiFi AC and WiFi N networks. As well, three interchangeable North American, UK, and Euro electrical plugs reduce the need for electrical power plug adapters when traveling abroad."

Microsoft to Rebrand Internet Explorer

Despite some genuine increases in performance and reliability, Microsoft Internet Explorer (MSIE) is turning into a relic. Once an unbeatable web-browser that attracted anti-competition lawsuits the world over, its market-share (usage) has dropped below 10 percent, according to W3Schools. With Windows 10, Microsoft plans to completely rebrand the bundled web-browser.

Codenamed "Project Spartan," the browser will feature a new UI, and a different branding from MSIE. It will also shed useless code, and will have a smaller memory footprint, much in the same way Firefox was a toned, peppy rebrand of Mozilla/Netscape Navigator. You could even expect a new icon. Microsoft could undertake a massive marketing campaign for the new browser, of a scale similar to Google's, for its Chrome browser. Microsoft could even delink the browser from Windows Update, to facilitate faster security and bug fixes. The browser could debut with beta releases of Windows 10, and its first stable version could come out with Windows 10 RTM.

Intel, Samsung, Others Team Up to Drive Seamless Device-to-Device Connectivity

Technology industry leaders Atmel Corporation, Broadcom Corporation, Dell, Intel Corporation, Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd., and Wind River, are joining forces to establish a new industry consortium focused on improving interoperability and defining the connectivity requirements for the billions of devices that will make up the Internet of Things (IoT).

The Open Interconnect Consortium (OIC) is focused on defining a common communications framework based on industry standard technologies to wirelessly connect and intelligently manage the flow of information among personal computing and emerging IoT devices, regardless of form factor, operating system or service provider.

Sony WG-C20, 9mm Thick Portable Wireless Server To Hit Retail In November

Measuring just 14.4x7cm and 9mm thin, the pocket-sized server is evolved from the WG-C10, now adding even more possibilities to manage all your content while you're on the move or at home. Styled to match the latest Xperia smartphone, it's also a great companion for other phone and tablet users. Slip in an SD memory card and use the WG-C20 to view and share all those photos, videos and MP3 music? even office documents and other PC files. For even more storage capacity, hook up USB devices like a flash memory, digital camera or portable hard drive1.

It's the first Portable Wireless Server from Sony that supports NFC for fuss-free wireless connection. Just touch your Xperia or other NFC-equipped mobile device briefly against the WG-C20: the app wakes up and automatically makes a direct Wi-Fi connection with no fiddly set-up codes. Then enjoy wireless streaming of photos and movie clips from the server onto your smartphone. With support for DLNA, the WG-C20 is just like a mini home media server. Stream stored video, photos and music to your TV, hi-fi, PCs, tablets and other networked DLNA client devices around the house - with no cables needed. You can also hook up an external hard drive via USB cable and share the contents.

Belkin Announces WeMo SMART, a Platform to Bring Internet to Everyday Devices

Belkin, creator of people-inspired technology products, today announced WeMo SMART, a program designed to bring its simple, Wi-Fi based WeMo home automation platform to new brands and a wider variety of household devices. Jarden Consumer Solutions ("JCS"), a leading provider of global consumer products brands, will be the first company to partner with WeMo SMART for its Sunbeam, Crock-Pot, Mr. Coffee and Oster brands.

"As smart devices become more prolific in the home, we wanted to give companies an easy way to reinvigorate traditional product categories with internet connectivity and the ability to integrate with other household devices and cloud-based services," said Jamie Elgie, senior director of product management at Belkin. "JCS is the perfect initial partner because its brands make the exact kind of products our fans have been asking us to integrate with WeMo."

TP-Link Debuts 450Mbps Wireless N Dual Band PCI Express Adapter

TP-Link, a global provider of networking products, has released its 450Mbps Wireless N Dual Band PCI Express Adapter (TL-WDN4800), which allows users to connect a desktop computer to a wireless network to access a high-speed wireless network connection.

The adapter complies with IEEE 802.11a/b/g/n and can access the 2.4GHz or 5GHz channels to provide wireless speeds of up to 450Mbps. The speed is ideal for users seeking a highly robust, bandwidth intensive wireless networking experience for HD video streaming and online gaming.

NETGEAR Announces Wi-Fi Booster

NETGEAR, Inc., a global networking company that delivers innovative products to consumers, businesses and service providers, today announced the WiFi Booster for Mobile (WN1000RP). The compact, WiFi Booster for Mobile amplifies WiFi coverage for mobile devices in the home by extending and strengthening an existing WiFi signal, giving consumers the ability to enjoy an improved wireless experience on tablets, smartphones and e-readers.

Consumers are leveraging WiFi connectivity at home more than ever before to browse the web, stream movies and play online games on their devices. The NETGEAR WiFi Booster for Mobile improves an existing WiFi signal throughout the home and even outside on the deck or patio, enabling users to move freely around the house while streaming content on everything from tablets and e-readers to smartphones.

MSI CX61, CR61 Multimedia Laptops Launched

MSI's new CX61 and CR61 15.6-inch multimedia laptops pack Intel's new generation Core i processor for the ultimate in computing power. What's more, to meet the needs of increasing high resolution of today's HD multimedia, the CX61 and CR70 come equipped with cinema-level SRS PC Sound and faster transfer ports, including USB 3.0, which is ten times faster than USB 2.0, HDMI 1.4, which can handle the latest HD resolution, and the new generation Bluetooth 4.0, which connects more quickly and covers a wider area.

Eric Kuo, associate vice president for global sales, MSI Notebook, notes that the CX61 and CR61 feature a cutting-edge processing platform that employs the most advanced nano production technology, enhancing great processing performance over the previous generation. They are also ready for the Windows 8 upgrade when it comes out. For details, please visit MSI's website. Furthermore, to handle HD multimedia with increasingly higher resolution, the CX61 and CR61 pack powerful features like SRS PC Sound, USB3.0, HDMI 1.4, and Bluetooth 4.0. In addition, the CX61 sports the most advanced performance-level discrete graphics card-the Nvidia GeForce GT640M discrete graphics card, giving you the absolutely fastest, smoothest multimedia performance available bar none, making it "Your multimedia companion!"

Belkin Announces Availability of WeMo

Belkin today launched WeMo, a line of modular, Wi-Fi-based products that turn an iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch into a remote control for household devices. Consisting of two initial products, the WeMo Switch and the WeMo Motion, WeMo works with the free WeMo app to create a scalable, customizable home control system designed to provide added safety, convenience, and peace of mind.

"WeMo uses familiar technology to create a plug-and-play solution for controlling gadgets and appliances remotely," said Jamie Elgie, senior director of product management for Belkin. "Designed to address simple automation needs without the hassle or expense of whole home automation, WeMo is an easy and fun way to put your home at your fingertips."

WD Enters Wireless Home Networking Market

Western Digital, the world's leader in external storage solutions and maker of the popular WD TV media player family, today unveils its first line of wireless home networking products, designed specifically to accelerate movies, video and gaming, delivering a premium high-definition entertainment experience. With the My Net family of powerful and easy-to-use home networking products, WD debuts its exclusive FasTrack technology that instantly detects entertainment traffic on the network and fast-forwards it to gaming consoles, media players, smart TVs, tablets, smartphones, computers and other Wi-Fi connected devices.

Lenovo Connects ThinkPad Users with No-Contract Mobile Broadband Service

Lenovo today introduced Lenovo Mobile Access, a flexible, no-contract mobile broadband service that gives consumers and business users greater choice and flexibility when connecting to valued online services. Lenovo Mobile Access provides pre-connected, always-on, customizable connectivity to the Internet and corporate networks, making it an ideal solution for users who need access to online content, applications and services away from their home, office or public Wi-Fi hotspots. Powered by a scalable cloud-based platform from Macheen Inc., the service is now embedded across select models of the ThinkPad product line and available immediately in the United States and nine European countries.

"We live in world where it's not only undesirable to be without online access, it's often disruptive to businesses. For that reason we wanted to create a flexible mobile broadband solution that would be unparalleled in its ability to help business users stay connected and working," said Dilip Bhatia, vice president and general manager, ThinkPad Business Unit, Lenovo. "Fundamentally, Lenovo Mobile Access gives individual and corporate customers options to determine how, when and where they want to connect with online applications and services, all at a price that fits their budget."

Intel Previews 1 Gbps DOCSIS 3.0 Gateway Capability at The Cable Show

Intel Corporation today previewed its first DOCSIS 3.0 cable gateway solution that is capable of 1 gigabit per second (Gbps). The Intel Puma 6 technology solution will help enable service providers to meet consumer demand and offer new services while extending their extensive network investments. A test program by South Korea's SKbroadband is targeting production deployment of 1 Gbps in 2013.

As the number of Internet-connected devices in the home grows, service providers are challenged to provide higher broadband speeds to more customers utilizing an existing cable network. A service provider's ability to scale up to this high level of bandwidth will help enable new high-bandwidth experiences for what the industry calls "TV Everywhere," an immersive blend of Internet, television, gaming and applications across multiple screens throughout the home.

Wolfenstein 3D Celebrates 20th Anniversary with a Browser Edition

This month is the 20th Anniversary of Wolfenstein 3D. To celebrate id Software and Bethesda have given us all a free browser-based version of its seminal shooter. John Carmack has also given a director's commentary, full of the usual fascinating Carmackchat. You can play the snazzy HTML 5 version of Wolf 3D if you're browsing in Firefox 10, Chrome 16, Internet Explorer 9, Safari 5, or newer. Fingers crossed that your work computer is updated vaguely frequently. id Software got distracted by Doom and Quake after the release of a Wolf 3D prequel, but the series returned in 2001 with Return to Castle Wolfenstein from Grey Matter and Nerve Software. Splash Damage followed this with the superb free multiplayer spin-off Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory, then the last entry in the series was Raven's Wolfenstein in 2009. The iOS version is also going temporarily free in the App Store some time later today. Here is the Link
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