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Kaspersky defends its role in NSA breach

Kaspersky defends its role in NSA breach The Russian-headquartered anti-virus company Kaspersky Lab has hit back at reports it deliberately extracted sensitive files from a US National Security Agency worker’s computer. The allegations stem from a Wall Street Journal report in early October. Russian hackers had used Kaspersky software to identify classified files on the NSA contractor’s home computer, which they then stole, it said. It later emerged Kaspersky had also copied files off the PC itself. But the company has now said this was not deliberate and any classified…

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Far-right accounts lose Twitter verified tick

Far-right accounts lose Twitter verified tick Twitter has stripped several far-right accounts of their “verified” badge, after changing its policy. Among them are Jason Kessler who helped organise a far-right march in Charlottesville, and white supremacist Richard Spencer. English Defence League founder Tommy Robinson also had his badge removed. Twitter said the badge was being interpreted as an “endorsement or an indicator of importance” and said it would change the scheme. ‘Promotes hate’ The blue badge was first introduced to indicate the authenticity of prominent profiles on the social network….

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Star Wars Battlefront II game faces further backlash

Star Wars Battlefront II game faces further backlash Games publisher EA has faced further criticism over its latest Star Wars game, Battlefront II. Many players were unhappy about the credits that unlock key Star Wars characters. The number required has now been reduced but so has the number that can be earned through gameplay. The alternative is to purchase them. Others have complained about the use of “loot crates” – which some say are essentially a gambling tool. The crates are virtual boxes that are purchased within the game and…

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Star Wars game in U-turn after player anger

Star Wars game in U-turn after player anger Games publisher EA has changed a rule in its Star Wars Battlefront II video game after a huge backlash. During the game, players have to obtain credits – either by buying them or through long hours of game play – to unlock popular characters including Luke Skywalker and Darth Vader. Many players said it was unfair as the gaming required worked out at around 40 hours per character, unless they paid. EA says the number of credits required will now be reduced…

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Connected toys have ‘worrying’ security issues

Connected toys have ‘worrying’ security issues Consumer watchdog Which? has called on retailers to stop selling some popular toys it says have “proven” security issues. Those toys include Furby Connect, the i-Que robot, Cloudpets and Toy-fi Teddy. Which? found that there was no authentication required between the toys and the devices they could link with via Bluetooth. Two of the manufacturers said they took security very seriously. Sloppy security The lack of authentication meant that, in theory, any device within physical range could link to the toy and take control…

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Huddle's 'highly secure' work tool exposed KPMG and BBC files

Huddle's 'highly secure' work tool exposed KPMG and BBC files The BBC has discovered a security flaw in the office collaboration tool Huddle that led to private documents being exposed to unauthorised parties. A BBC journalist was inadvertently signed in to a KPMG account, with full access to private financial documents. Huddle is an online tool that lets work colleagues share content and describes itself as “the global leader in secure content collaboration”. The company said it had fixed the flaw. Its software is used by the Home Office, Cabinet…

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Apple fixes iPhone letter 'i' bug

Apple fixes iPhone letter 'i' bug Apple has addressed a glitch that caused some iPhones to unexpectedly start auto-correcting the letter “i” to a capital “A” and a question mark. The issue emerged when people updated their phones to version 11.1 of the iOS operating system. In a tweet, Apple said people could “fix it by installing the latest software update”. The update also addresses an issue with Siri. The company has not explained what caused the problem. The problem was highlighted last week when people trying to tweet messages…

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Can a chatbot help you find love?

Can a chatbot help you find love? I’ve been nervously chatting to Lara on the dating platform Match.com for two minutes. She’s flattered me about my age (“so young!”) and she says she’s going to take care of me. I like her already – but Lara is not real. She – or rather, it – is a chatbot, an artificially intelligent computer program developed to communicate with people online. The bot was launched in France in 2016 and then rolled out in the UK in April 2017, to help potential…

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