O'Grady's PowerPage » security

Hacker group may have hidden within the NSA for 14 years, successfully compromised OS X, iOS devices among other efforts

Posted by:
Date: Tuesday, February 17th, 2015, 06:40
Category: iOS, News, security, Software

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This goes into the category of “man, it’s long, but you’ve got to read it”.

An article on Ars Technica discusses the Equation Group, a group of hackers that had an incredible amount of success, were able to use revolutionary methods in their work and may have been embedded within the National Security Agency.

In addition to the findings, researchers within the Kaspersky Group found “redirects that sent iPhone users to unique exploit Web pages. In addition, infected machines reporting to Equation Group command servers identified themselves as Macs, an indication that the group successfully compromised both iOS and OS X devices.”

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Apple expands two-step verification to iMessage, FaceTime services

Posted by:
Date: Friday, February 13th, 2015, 04:31
Category: News, security, Software

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This might come in handy where security is concerned.

Apple has now expanded the number of services protected by its two-step verification service, security-conscious users now able to count iMessage and FaceTime among those features protected by the service.

Beginning today, those who have opted in to the two-step verification program will be asked to provide a one-time security code the next time they configure iMessage or FaceTime on a device.

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Rumor: Apple to adopt jewelry store protocols, increase security for gold Apple Watch sales

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Date: Monday, February 2nd, 2015, 08:27
Category: Hardware, retail, Rumor, Wearables

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With the Apple Watch shipping in April, Apple may be changing some of its retail methods to match the product.

According to sources, Apple is planning several new features for its retail stores to support the Gold Watch Edition of the device. As reported several months ago, Apple is planning on allowing customers to actually try on the watches and test out different band styles inside of stores. With the high-expected price tag of the gold watch models, Apple will also step up its security features for stores.

Over on 9to5Mac, there’s the following:

Apple will outfit its official retail stores with safes to house the more expensive, gold “Edition” variants of the upcoming Apple Watch. The safes will likely be used to carry both to-be-sold inventory as well as to store demo units from the show floor overnight. The custom-designed safes will be outfitted with Apple Watch MagSafe chargers in order to keep the demo units charged up and ready to go for the next day of business. Apple has already begun installing the safes in some stores ahead of the Apple Watch’s expected release in April…

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YouTube begins transition from Flash to HTML5, shows signs of the times

Posted by:
Date: Thursday, January 29th, 2015, 08:57
Category: News, Software

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It’s been a long time coming, but it looks like Flash is finally on its way out.

Or at least YouTube will be helping it on its way out as it converts over to HTML5.

Per Macworld, five years after Google introduced HTML5 video as an option on YouTube, Google’s popular video site now defaults to HMTL5 on the web instead of Flash.

The change has been a long time coming, with YouTube working steadily to default to HTML5 across the major browsers, including Chrome, beta versions of Firefox, Internet Explorer 11, and Safari 8.

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Apple releases OS X 10.10.2 update

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Date: Tuesday, January 27th, 2015, 17:55
Category: News, security, Software, Yosemite

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You’ve been hankering for it.

And it’s here.

On Tuesday, Apple released its long-awaited OS X 10.10.2 update. The update, a 400+ megabyte download, adds the following fixes and changes:

- Resolves an issue that may cause Wi-Fi to disconnect.

- Resolves an issue that may cause web pages to load slowly.

- Fixes an issue that caused Spotlight to load remote email content when the preference was disabled in Mail.
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Analysts highlight extremely strong iPhone sales in China over last quarter

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Date: Monday, January 26th, 2015, 17:04
Category: Finance, iPhone, News

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The Chinese marketplace apparently loves the iPhone 6.

Per MacRumors and Financial Times, according to analysts from financial firm UBS, China accounted for 36 percent of iPhone shipments in the most recent quarter, compared to 24 percent for the U.S. The analysts also compared the numbers to 2013, noting that a year before China accounted for only 22 percent of shipments with the U.S. at 29 percent.

Creative Strategies analyst Ben Bajarin concurs with the UBS report, believing around 2 million more iPhones were sold in China than in the U.S. during the quarter. With the upcoming launch of the Apple Watch, he also believes it’s just the beginning of the country’s fiscal dominance over Apple sales.

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Latest OS X 10.10.2 build features Google Project Zero discoveries/fixes

Posted by:
Date: Friday, January 23rd, 2015, 10:23
Category: News, security, Software

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If Yosemite is driving you a bit crazy, the good news is that the upcoming version won’t feature any bugs that have been pinned down by Google.

Per iMore and Ars Technica, Google’s Project Zero research program has disclosed and released proof-of-concept code for a series of 0day — previously unknown — vulnerabilities found in Apple’s OS X operating system for the Mac. It should be noted, however, that the first vulnerability was marked as fixed and closed by Google two weeks ago, and the others are fixed in OS X Yosemite 10.10.2, now in beta.

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Edward Snowden refuses to use an iPhone, cites backdoors, security reasons

Posted by:
Date: Wednesday, January 21st, 2015, 12:20
Category: Uncategorized

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Edward Snowden doesn’t trust the iPhone.

Whether you trust yours is another matter altogether.

Per AppleInsider and Sputnik, infamous former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden, responsible for leaking thousands of pages of classified intelligence documents from the secretive spy organization, reportedly believes that the iPhone contains “special software” that can be remotely activated by authorities for intelligence gathering purposes.

“Edward never uses an iPhone, he’s got a simple phone,” Snowden’s lawyer said in a recent interview. “The iPhone has special software that can activate itself without the owner, having to press a button and gather information about him, that’s why on security grounds he refused to have this phone.”

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Google releases Chrome Remote Desktop app for iOS, Android

Posted by:
Date: Wednesday, January 14th, 2015, 18:17
Category: iOS, News, Software

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This could come in handy.

On Wednesday, Google released its Chrome Remote Desktop app for iOS and Android.

The app, which connects mobile devices to Mac, Windows & Linux-based computers for desktop access, requires the Chrome web browser and application to install and run as well as a user-configured 6-digit PIN.

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Apple releases Network Time Protocol security patch

Posted by:
Date: Tuesday, December 23rd, 2014, 08:43
Category: News, security, Software

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It’s not a huge patch, but it could make a difference.

Per Mac|Life, Apple released a small Network Time Protocol security patch on Friday. The patch, a 1.4 megabyte download, addresses what the company terms as a new “critical security issue”.

Fascinatingly enough, the vulnerability itself was discovered by the Google Security Team back on December 19, and the U.S. Government alerted users of it only a couple of days later. The dangers of the vulnerability are a little complex and the government’s ICS-CERT site is a little vague about what it is and what it does:

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