3/16/2006

Norton update kicks AOL users offline

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

An incorrect update to Symantec’s Norton security software on Wednesday blocked Internet access for some America Online users.

The issue affected AOL customers using recent editions of Norton AntiVirus and Norton Internet Security, Symantec said in a statement sent via e-mail on Thursday. The culprit was an update to intrusion prevention software that is part of the security software, the company said.

“This update incorrectly detected traffic patterns used as part of the AOL connection as a potential risk,” Symantec said in the statement. AOL has about 20 million Internet service subscribers.

As a result of the incorrect update, AOL dial-up customers lost their connection and AOL broadband users were unable to access AOL servers, Symantec said. The erroneous update was removed from Symantec’s servers about seven hours after it was released, and a corrected version was posted, the company said.

Source: News.com

Judge dismisses Google copyright case

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

A federal judge has dismissed a lawsuit alleging that Google Inc.’s Web search systems infringe on a publisher’s copyright, a minor victory for the company which faces numerous suits charging that its services trample on the rights of authors.

In a ruling issued last Friday and made known on Thursday, Judge R. Barclay Surrick of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania rejected eleven allegations contained in a civil complaint by plaintiff Gordon Roy Parker of Philadelphia.

Parker, 39, an online publisher of sexual seduction guides with titles like “Why Hotties Choose Losers,” is a former paralegal who was acting on his own behalf in suing Google. His site also offers racetrack betting and chess-playing tips.

The eleven claims against Google had included accusations of copyright and trademark infringement, invasion of privacy, negligence, racketeering, abuse of legal process and civil conspiracy, according to the court documents.

Judge Surrick’s ruling found that Google enjoys projection under an exemption to the Communications Decency Act for online service providers acting as an automatic redistributor of published material.

Source: Reuters

Sony unveils Blu-ray player, Vaio PC

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Sony released details on several products that will feature Blu-ray high-definition DVD drives–but like the PlayStation 3, you’re going to have to wait awhile to take them home.

The company unveiled on Thursday the BDP-S1 Blu-ray Disc Player, a Vaio RC desktop with a recordable Blu-ray drive, and an internal Blu-ray disc drive for PCs. Sony expects the player to be available in July, while the desktop and an undisclosed Vaio Blu-ray notebook PC should ship by “early summer,” the company said in a statement.

Source: News.com

Visa Debuts RFID-Enabled Payment Card

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Frame that dollar bill; if Visa and MasterCard have their way it’ll soon be an antique. The credit card giants say they are moving closer to gaining acceptance in the United States for radio-frequency-enabled “contactless” payment devices that can be waived near a sensor rather than swiped through a card reader. Visa last week even introduced a mini version of its device, about half the size of a conventional credit card.

Radio-frequency tags have been a hit with drivers for the past decade, using them at Mobil gas stations and at tollbooths, but U.S. businesses have been slower to invest in the infrastructure needed to implement the technology in retail settings. Visa is trying to change that mindset and in December launched a pilot program at Atlanta’s Philips arena, home of the NBA’s Hawks and the NHL’s Thrashers, to prove the efficiency of contactless payment when crowds gather at concession stands.

Visa’s contactless payment chip uses 128-bit and triple Data Encryption Standard, or DES, encryption technology to protect the data used during a transaction, which includes the user’s account number and a unique numeric code generated for each transaction.

Source: InformationWeek

Google testing GBuy - A PayPal Killer?

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Google began recruiting online retailers last year to test a GBuy payment service, The Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday, citing unidentified sources familiar with the matter. The report said GBuy operates independently from Google Base, a sort of classifieds service for individuals and businesses launched in November.

The Wall Street Journal report also said Google is increasing the number of Google Base sellers who can use its payment-processing service “in a move that could put pressure on eBay Inc.’s online auctions and PayPal payments services to cut or even eliminate some fees.” Google charges sellers 25 cents plus 2.5 percent of the value of the transaction while eBay’s PayPal generally charges 30 cents and fees ranging from 1.9 percent to 2.9 percent per transaction, the paper noted.

Source: News.com

French MPs vote to penalize illegal downloads

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Internet copyright pirates will face prison and large fines after French MPs defied left-wing opposition in pushing through a bill to prevent illegal downloading of music and films.

The controversial bill to stamp out illegal downloads in line with a 2001
European Union directive has highlighted deep divisions in the country over how to balance consumer rights and copyright in the Internet age.

Right-wing UMP party and moderate deputies backed the new law, which was considerably watered down following a stormy passage through parliament and amendments backed by the Socialist party and even some UMP deputies.

It allows a jail term of up to six months and a fine of 30,000 euros (37,000 dollars) for those who supply software enabling users to break copyright protection on DVDs or CDs, helping them to be made available on the Internet.

People possessing or using this software to remove copyright protection will face a fine of 750 euros while hackers caught working individually to break the copyright on discs will face a fine of 3,750 euros.

Source: AFP

Sony’s New LCD Offers Simultaneous PC and TV Viewing

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Sony Electronics today introduced a 20-inch PC/TV display that integrates computing and home entertainment applications, creating an all-in-one solution for viewing a variety of multimedia content — from a PC and a TV — on one high-definition widescreen display.

With a 16:9 aspect ratio and 1680 x 1050 screen resolution, the new MFM-HT205 model follows the prior release of the 17-inch MFM-HT75 and 19-inch MFM-HT95 PC/TV displays. All HT-series LCD PC/TV displays include built-in NTSC television tuners and feature the ability to watch TV or DVDs in full widescreen mode, picture-in-picture or picture-and-picture formats while multitasking with desktop PC applications.

The MFM-HT205 display also features Sony’s wall-mountable “Rising Design.” It is equipped with a variety of connectivity options, including S-video, component, composite, HD-15 and DVI-HDCP inputs.

“The HT Series embraces the shift toward converged TV and PC functionalities,” said Robert Stevens, product marketing manager for display solutions at Sony Electronics. “The new HT205 model is ideal for home offices, hotels, dorm rooms or professional settings that require both television and PC viewing.”

Philips Recalls Plasma Flat Panel Televisions

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Philips consumer electronics recalls about 11,800 plasma flat panel televisions with Ambilight Feature sold at consumer electronic stores nationwide from June 2005 through January 2006 for between $3,000 and $5,000..

Philips has received nine reports of arcing by the capacitors inside the left and right side of the back cabinets of these TVs, which can pose a safety risk. The results of such incidents were contained within the TVs due to the use of flame retardant materials resulting only in damage to the TV. There have been no injuries reported.

The recall involves only certain 42 and 50 inch, 2005 model Philips branded Plasma Flat Panel Televisions with Ambilight technology, which is an ambient lighting feature that projects a soft light onto the wall behind the TV to enhance the display.

For more information and to see if your model is affected check this page

Google sets up Base for retailers

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Google is planning to create an online market for traditional retailers via its recently unveiled Google Base service. The search engine giant is looking to create a “virtual supermarket” by developing the service, which is currently undergoing beta testing.

Google EMEA head Nikesh Arora told the Financial Times that the search engine giant was targeting firms in sectors such as real estate as well as the more obvious retail segment of the market with the service. Google’s “value add” is to index and package offers in an easy to use format. “Google Base is going to have a huge impact on retailers,” he said.

Source: Teh Register

Windows XP on Intel iMac: confirmed

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Over the past few days, Infinite Loop has been following developments which seemed to indicate that a workable solution for installing Windows XP on Apple’s Intel-based computers had been developed. Reactions were, at first, mixed. Most people, jaded by months of fakery on just about every hot Apple rumor imaginable, dismissed the solution out of hand, but those who had been following the progress of the author of this particular hack were fairly confident that he had sealed the deal.

The first hint that “narf” may have figured it out came in the form of a set of photos on Flickr that seemed to show Windows XP on an iMac of some sort. Next came the videos and an acknowledgement from the contest administrators that a solution had been submitted. And finally, this morning, onmac.net announced that a proposed solution had been found and had been tested successfully. The contest had been won, and it looks like “narf” is about to almost US$14,000 richer.

Source: arstechnica

Say Hi to the mouse click capturing Trojan

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Security researchers have discovered a keylogging Trojan that captures mouse clicks as well as key strokes. PWSteal-Bancos-Q targets customers of online banking and financial institutions primarily in Brazil. However Australian anti-virus firm PC Tools warns that variants could be created to affect additional online financial sites worldwide.

As well as capturing user keystrokes, PWSteal-Bancos-Q also takes snapshots of the users’ mouse clicks and then sends the captured information via file transfer protocol (FTP) to the Trojan’s author. The technique is designed to overcome the use of virtual keyboards by many online banking sites in an effort to avoid keylogger infections.

Source: The Register

AOL Starts Free Internet TV Service

Filed under: — Galit

Dulles-based America Online has launched a new online television network showing classic Warner Brothers TV shows.

The In2TV channel on AOL.com was announced in November and began yesterday with 30 series, including “Growing Pains” and “Eight is Enough.” The network will also offer games, polls and other interactive features.

The shows are free to anyone with high-speed Internet access. The network is supported through advertising.

Eventually the company plans to offer more than 100 series and at least 300 episodes per month to lure broadband users to the AOL Web site.

Source: AP

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