Ramnit Botnet Busted; Lenovo Hacked; Beijing Drops Apple; Vivec Wadhwa

Posted February 26th, 2015 at 2:48 pm (UTC-4)
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Today’s Tech Sightings:

‘State of Connectivity’ Says  Most World Population Not Online

A new report from Facebook Newsroom said Internet adoption is slowing down, with only 6.6 percent of the population getting connected in 2014, compared to the 2010 record of 14.7 percent. The report estimated that up to 3 billion people will go online early in 2015, although that means that only 40% of the world’s population is connected.

Facebook Reveals New Feature That Could Help Prevent Suicides

The new feature allows people who see early signs of depression that often go unnoticed to report the post to Facebook. Young people, in particular, often write about their depression symptoms on social media.

Europol Busts Behemoth Botnet, 3.2 Million Strong

One of the world’s biggest and baddest active botnets was brought down this week, thanks to a Europol taskforce aided by Symantec, Microsoft, and Anubis Networks. The 3.2 million-strong botnet was responsible for the notorious Ramnit malware, which included spam campaigns, DDoS attacks and virus distribution.

China Drops Apple From Approved Tech List

First it was Cisco Systems, the U.S. network equipment maker. Now it’s Apple’s turn. After instructing its state governments not to buy Cisco equipment, Beijing has now added Apple to the prohibited purchases list. Conversely, it approved thousands of local brands for government purchasing. Cisco, which had up to 60 products on the list, now has none, while other Western brands, including Intel, Citrix and McAfee have also been dropped.

Attackers Protesting Superfish Debacle Hijack Lenovo E-mail, Spoof Website

Recent revelations that Lenovo preinstalled malicious adware on some of its laptops did not sit well with a lot of people, some of whom took control of the company’s domain name and its email system, and directed visitors to another website criticizing Lenovo for injecting software in its devices that effectively makes them vulnerable to hackers. The Lizard Squad Collective claimed responsibility for the attack.

Interview With Silicon Valley Diversity Advocate Vivec Wadhwa

Female detractors call him, “Dadhwa;” and some even want him to stop advocating for women in the tech industry. The Verge, which recently interviewed Stanford University’s Vivec Wadhwa, dubs him this month’s most controversial man in tech.

Your Say: Windows 10 Build 9926 Icons Look like a Bad Joke

Windows 10 is still in development and it’s already running into trouble. Several people testing the new operating system are very unhappy with Microsoft’s new icons. In fact, Softpedia reports that the majority of users want the icons changed before the final version is released.

Aida Akl
Aida Akl is a journalist working on VOA's English Webdesk. She has written on a wide range of topics, although her more recent contributions have focused on technology. She has covered both domestic and international events since the mid-1980s as a VOA reporter and international broadcaster.

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