Security Protection – Harry Waldron MVP Rotating Header Image

Apple – iOS 10 released to developers

Apple has improvements planned for it’s key operating system and Siri that are scheduled to be released during Fall 2016 timeframe

Apple released iOS 10 to developers today. A public beta will launch in July, and – like MacOS Sierra – it will arrive for everyone in the fall, likely around the same time new iPhones are released.

Apple iOS 10Now, when you pick up your iOS 10 device, it will wake up and show a preview of any notifications on the lock screen without you having to press any buttons. On new iPhones, 3D Touch will also be more useful, allowing you to press for more information about calendar reminders, text messages, and other notifications directly from that lock screen.

Of note is the fact that Apple is loosening its grip on Siri. With SiriKit, developers can connect their apps to Apple’s digital assistant for things like messaging, phone calls, photo search, ride booking, personal payments, and workouts (“Siri, book me an Uber). It can also be used for CarPlay apps to handle things like temperature or radio settings.

iOS 10 MemoriesMaps is also open to developers, so you can make a restaurant reservation via OpenTable or reserve a Lyft right from Apple Maps. Apple also previewed a new Maps redesign and suggested routes based on your usual schedule. “Once a route is planned, Maps can search along the route for gas stations, restaurants, coffee shops and more and provides an estimate of how the stop impacts the length of your trip,” according to Apple

Data Storage Technology – Glossary of key terms and acronyms

While IT professionals are familiar with many of these special terms and acronyms associated with data storage, this glossary provides a comprehensive list of about two dozen key items

In the last couple of years, the IT industry has created more acronyms than the US government. I won’t even get started on all the “as-a-Service” terms! Storage isn’t immune to acronym overload. Of course, most of the acronyms hide valid technical advances and there have been a lot of those in the storage industry of late.  Today, the storage industry is changing faster than it ever has in the past, so expect there to be even more terminology to keep track of in the near future.  Let’s first look at the types of storage drives available today.

Hard-disk drive: HDDs are the traditional spinning drives that we’ve had for decades. They come in two main sizes, 3.5” diameter media and 2.5” diameter media, with the latter much thinner as well as smaller in area.

Solid-state drive: SSDs are rapidly replacing hard HDDs in the primary storage tier. Unlike HDDs, these drives have no moving parts and store data on flash memory chips. SSDs also are much faster than HDDs, between 100x and 1000x times faster

Leadership – Team work and success require more than one person

John Maxwell’s excellent leadership blog shares the need for leaders to mentor and groom successors for their position or their accomplishments will not be long lasting

John, we have a problem” … As a leader, you get used to hearing those words. Challenges are a daily part of leadership. However, when this time when I heard them, I felt my stomach drop. I was young and had just left the church in Hillham, my first position as a leader. I had moved to a new opportunity, in part because I believed that Hillham was in great shape to continue its growth and work. “We’ve fallen off,” my friend said. “Attendance is down, and so is morale. John, what’s gone wrong?”

It was devastating to learn that the three years Margaret and I invested in Hillham had withered so quickly. For as much as I was able to accomplish as a one-man show in Hillham, the truth is my failure to multiply myself as a leader hurt the church. Because I didn’t develop others, the church fell back into a state similar to what it had been before my arrival.  So where did I go wrong?

After a lot of wrestling, I realized that I’d failed to see the limits of a one-man show:

1. The Limit of Vision — But while I partnered with the people in the work, I never transferred the vision to them. It was my vision, not our vision. And that’s not an uncommon problem for leaders to have. As leaders, we get so caught up in what we can see, what we think should be, that we sometimes fail to bring others into the process. When leaders don’t invite others to share the vision and make it their own, that vision is automatically tethered to the leader.

2. The Limit of Influence — Much like vision, your influence as a leader is tethered to you unless you share it. Had I selected even one person to mentor or develop during my time at Hillham, their influence would’ve remained when I left.  Where I really missed the boat was in not developing at least one other leader who would go on to develop other leaders! Talk about limiting yourself! I like to say, if one is good, four is better—and that’s true with leaders. Why add one or two when you can multiply by three or four? Influence is at its best when it is multiplied.

3. The Limit of Momentum –I want to touch on one more area where the limits of a one-man show really make a difference—momentum. The lessons helped me develop one of my core beliefs about leadership: leaders must develop other leaders…who develop other leaders. That principle of multiplication drives me every day to continue growing myself and growing leaders around me, because I want my legacy to be one of leadership development. I want to develop strong leaders who carry the vision, the influence and the momentum. And I’m especially excited about our newest initiative to transform leaders who transform nations that transform our world.

Samsung SSD – New PM971-NVMe model is tiny in physical size

Samsung’s latest solid-state drive (SSD) is smaller than a postage stamp and offers 3X speed of standard SATA hard drives.

Samsung’s latest solid-state drive (SSD) is smaller than a US postage stamp, and weighs about the same. The new SSD, which goes by the catchy PM971-NVMe moniker, is “the industry’s first NVMe PCIe solid state drive in a single ball grid array package,” Samsung says. Its tiny size (20mm by 16mm by 1.5mm and 1 gram) means it will fit nicely in next-generation PCs and ultra-slim notebook PCs. Samsung PM971-NVMe SSDThe PM971-NVMe is 18 chips in one: it packs 16 Samsung 48-layer 256-gigabit (Gb) V-NAND flash chips, one 20-nanometer 4Gb LPDDR4 mobile DRAM chip, and a high-performance Samsung controller.

The device “triples the performance of a typical SATA [Serial AT Attachment] SSD,” Jung-bae Lee, senior vice president of Samsung’s Memory Product Planning and Application Engineering team, said in a statement. “The introduction of this small-scale SSD will help global PC companies to make timely launches of slimmer, more stylish computing devices, while offering consumers a more satisfactory computing environment.”

Mobile phones – Techniques for phones that fall into water

This article shares tips for Mobile phone users in case as accident with water might happen. The key take away is that users should allow the phone to dry out for a few days before even attempting to power on.

It’s that time of year again. The sun is shining. You’re barbecuing by the pool or at the beach.  Everyone jumps in the water to cool off. You do too. But wait! Your brand-new iPhone is still in your pocket. And now that the days of a new-subsidized-phone-every-two-years are over, making silly mistakes like soaking your phone in the pool is a lot more costly. You are in luck. The gadget trade-in site Gazelle has put together a handy-dandy list of tips for what to do when your iPhone or Android device goes for a swim. If you follow these tips, maybe, just maybe, your phone will survive.

1. Remove it from water as soon as you can — The longer your phone stays underwater, the less likely it is to come back to life.

2. Power down immediately — Turning the device off may prevent it from short-circuiting. This is a really important step, so make sure you do this as soon as you can.

3. Drain it — Remove the battery (if possible), headphones, SIM card and memory card and let the water come out. You could also try dabbing with a dry cloth or paper towel to remove excess water.

4. Open it up — The best way to dry out your phone is to open it up.

5. Dry it — Now that your phone is open, you’ll need to dry it to reduce the damage done to the components.

Make sure you give your phone a few days to dry out. Then you can turn it back on and see what happens. It may boot up right away. If it doesn’t, you could try charging it and swapping the battery. If that doesn’t work, try syncing it. Gazelle said that in its tests, iPhones that appeared dead could still be synced and that data could still be retrieved. Also, keep your SIM and SD cards. These contain contact lists and other personal data that can be uploaded to a new device. If all else fails, you can always trade it in, even if it’s water damaged and not working.

Microsoft Security – Common weak passwords no longer permitted online

Microsoft online services like Outlook, XBOX live, and Azure cloud are being enhanced to no longer support the most common passwords found in a “hacking dictionary”

Microsoft wants you to stop using “password” as your account password, and the company knows just how to do that — ban it outright.  The company wrote in a technical blog, noticed by online news site Mashable, that it will ban users from setting up some of the most commonly used passwords.  Microsoft hopes the practice will increase security for user accounts, as those with passwords such as “football” and “12345” are some of the most susceptible to hackers.

If users try to set up an account with many of the passwords found on the annual Worst Passwords List put together by SplashData, Microsoft will show a red warning that says, “Choose a password that’s harder for people to guess.”  The feature is live across commonly used Microsoft accounts such as Outlook and Xbox Live, and will soon apply to the Azure Active DirectoryCybercriminals use commonly used passwords to force their way into accounts, Microsoft director of program management Alex Simons wrote in the blog.

Web Security – 360 million MY SPACE user accounts potentially compromised

In addition to Tumbler being hit by a data breach possibly in 2013, 360 million MY SPACE user accounts were potentially compromised around possibly the same timeframe.  Long term users are requested to select a new password for their accounts and to change other accounts if they used the same password on other sites.

Over 360 million Myspace credentials are being sold to the highest bidder on the dark web as Time Inc. confirmed the once-popular social network was the victim of a massive “hacking incident.”  Time Inc., which acquired the Myspace brand through its purchase of data-marketing company Viant in February, said in a statement Tuesday that its security team was informed shortly before the Memorial Day weekend that stolen Myspace-user login data was being made available in an online hacker forum.

While most of the affected accounts likely haven’t been accessed for quite a long time, their owners will still be at risk if they have reused the same email/password combination for accessing other online services like email, banking and shopping.  It remains unclear when the breach took place, with Time Inc. simply saying the compromised data is limited to “a portion of Myspace usernames, passwords and email addresses” from prior to June 11, 2013. Myspace was the world’s biggest social network in the years from 2003 to 2008, with a valuation of $12 billion, but it was eventually eclipsed by Facebook and Twitter.

Apple – iPhone 7 prototypes target improved memory and battery life

Some of the early leaked details note that the iPhone 7 may not have revolutionary new features, but will improve in some currently needed areas such as memory and battery life

Should you be excited about the iPhone 7? Widespread leaks argue new iPhone will be boring yet controversial. Headline features like Apple Pay and 3D Touch are what Apple finds most exciting.  For users the most important changes are typically far more practical such as better battery life and more storage.

The news comes from Kevin Wang, director of market research at respected analytics giant IHS Technology. Wang took to Weibo to announce IHS supply chain investigations have found the iPhone 7 (and presumably the iPhone 7 Plus/Pro) will come with 2GB RAM and 32GB of entry level storage. Apple may try and counter this by making 128GB and 256GB the new mid and top level storage options, but I can still see 32GB proving to be ‘enough’ for many mainstream users. Similarly the knock-on effect of a 128GB midranger would likely make the top end 256GB edition wholly unnecessary for most people.

As such the move to 32GB would be a risk. But does Apple have a choice?  Personally I’d argue it is no longer credible in 2016 to sell a smartphone with 16GB of storage for $650 and after Apple’s sales hit with the iPhone 6S it may be forced to move with the times.

Web Security – 65 million Tumblr user accounts potentially compromised from 2013 attacks

From a data breach during early 2013, 65 million Tumblr user accounts were potentially compromised and long term users are requested to select a new password for their accounts

Hunt recently came across a database being sold on the computer underground containing 65,469,298 unique emails and hashed passwords.  As Motherboard reports, the database is being sold by a hacker going by the name of “Peace”, for the lowly sum of $150. “Peace” also claims that Tumblr used the SHA1 algorithm to store the passwords, making them extremely hard to crack – and probably explaining the cheap price.

But even if your Tumblr password isn’t at much risk of being cracked, you should still probably change it. Just make sure it’s changed to something unique, hard to crack and hard to guess. I would also advise enabling two-step verification on your Tumblr account as well. And don’t think that dealing with the password breach means that you can relax. Your email address is now “out there”, and criminals know how to contact you and 65 million other Tumblr users.

We recently learned that a third party had obtained access to a set of Tumblr user email addresses with salted and hashed passwords from early 2013, prior to the acquisition of Tumblr by Yahoo. As soon as we became aware of this, our security team thoroughly investigated the matter. Our analysis gives us no reason to believe that this information was used to access Tumblr accounts. As a precaution, however, we will be requiring affected Tumblr users to set a new password.  or additional information on keeping your accounts secure, please visit our Account Security page.

Social Networks – New EU laws require prompt removal of objectionable web content

Social Networks – New EU laws require prompt removal of objectional web content

The European Union has instituted new laws requiring objectionable web content be removed within a 24 hour period. While most social networks promptly take care of abusive conduct, improved legal standards plus major technology company support will further improve quality of site content.

BRUSSELSFacebook, Twitter, Google’s YouTube, and Microsoft on Tuesday agreed to an EU code of conduct to tackle online hate speech within 24 hours in Europe. EU governments have been trying in recent months to get social platforms to crack down on rising online racism following the refugee crisis and terror attacks, with some even threatening action against the companies.  As part of the pledge agreed with the European Commission, the web giants will review the majority of valid requests for removal of illegal hate speech in less than 24 hours and remove or disable access to the content if necessary.

Featuring WPMU Bloglist Widget by YD WordPress Developer