posted about 23 hours ago on ars technica
Intel Skylake die shot. (credit: Intel) Skylake processors that were discovered to be readily overclockable are having their speeds locked back down, with Intel shipping a new microcode update for the chips that closes a loophole introduced in Intel's latest generation of processors, according to PC World. Intel has a funny relationship with overclocking. On the one hand, the company doesn't like it. Historically, there have been support issues—unscrupulous companies selling systems with slower processors that are overclocked, risking premature failure, overheating, and just plain overcharging—and more fundamentally, if you want a faster processor, Intel would prefer that you spend more money to get it. On the other hand, the company knows that overclocking appeals greatly to a certain kind of enthusiast, one that will show some amount of brand loyalty and generally advocate for Intel's products. Among this crowd there's also a certain amount of street cred that comes from having the fastest chip around. To address this duality, Intel does a couple of things. Most of its processors have a fixed maximum clock multiplier, capping the top speed that they'll operate at. But for a small price premium, certain processors have "K" versions that remove this cap, allowing greater flexibility for PC owners to run their chips at above the rated maximum speed. This way, most processors can't be readily overclocked, but for those enthusiasts who really want to, an official option exists (although even with these chips, Intel recommends that people do not overclock). Read 6 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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(credit: Lydia Polimeni, National Institutes of Health) President Obama released his fiscal year 2017 budget proposal today, and it's not good news for the National Institutes of Health, the country's leading funder of biomedical research. The request for the NIH will see funding levels flat for next year—but only if Congress manages to find an extra $1.8 billion for medical research. Assuming that happens, $825 million will go to the president's three big biomedical initiatives, with the bulk—$680 million—going to the cancer "moonshot." The other $1 billion will get split between the 27 institutes and centers that make up the NIH, but that doesn't mean more money for their work. Rather, that money is necessary to fill the gaps left by an equal level of discretionary spending cuts. This is not great news for the (shrinking) cohort of biomedical researchers out there who depend on NIH funding. The bucket of money for research project grants (grants submitted by academics to the NIH for funding) is up a little in fiscal year 2017—$18.2 billion vs $17.8 billion in fiscal year 2016. But there will be fewer awards made (9,946 vs 10,753), and they're going to be smaller on average (larger projects will soak up more of the money). None of these numbers takes inflation into account, either. NIH Director Francis Collins is fond of pointing out that the NIH's spending power was 25 percent greater in 2003 than now because of inflation. Read 2 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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Martin Shkreli, former CEO of Turing, mocks his way through a congressional hearing last week on drug pricing and later called lawmakers imbeciles. (credit: CPSAN) Embattled former pharma CEO Martin Shkreli's legal troubles deepened Tuesday when the poster child for greed was sued for copyright infringement in connection to the $2 million Wu-Tang Clan hip-hop album he bought last year. Shkreli is the founder and former CEO of Turing Pharmaceuticals who became reviled for increasing the price of a life-saving drug by more than 5,000 percent last year. He also faces unrelated federal criminal charges that he allegedly defrauded investors, and he has invoked his Fifth Amendment right against compelled self-incrimination before congressional panels probing the price of pharmaceuticals. The latest brouhaha concerns his exclusive $2 million purchase of the "Once Upon a Time in Shaolin" album, the only copy Wu-Tang Clan produced. The 32 year old said he bought the album to "keep it from the people." Packaging for the album includes a 174-page book with all sorts of writings, pictures, and drawings. In that book are portraits of band members created by a New York artist named Jason Koza, who claims in a new federal lawsuit that he never authorized their reproduction. Read 6 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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The ice meets the sea. (credit: Matthias Braun, University of Erlangen-Nuremberg, Germany) Even with decades of melting, much of the world's water lies trapped in ice that sits on land. If Antarctic ice melted entirely, it's estimated that ocean levels would rise by roughly 60 meters—a nearly incomprehensible figure. But a lot of it wouldn't reach the ocean by melting. Instead, large areas of the Antarctic ice sheet sit on rock that's below sea level. Were the ocean to reach these sheets, the ice would break up and float off while melting, a process that could raise sea levels relatively suddenly. Now, researchers have performed a catalog of all of the ice that empties into the ocean in Antarctica, allowing us to identify those that pose the largest threat of rapid sea-level rise. You can view Antarctica as having four types of ice. Inland, there are large ice sheets, some of which sit at sea level, others below. Some of the ice in these sheets flows to the coast through the exit glaciers, which often pass through narrow valleys on their way to the coast. At the coast, you'll find the third type: permanent floating ice shelves, which can extend for miles into the ocean. Beyond those, you will find seasonal ice, which expands in the southern winter but contracts again when summer arrives. Read 8 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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Maybe we'll be hanging out on the USS Reliant for this series. (credit: Paramount) Ever since Paramount announced last year that it would be launching a new Star Trek TV series, rumors have swirled about what it might be like. Now we know that the show is in good hands, at least when it comes to the writing. Bryan Fuller, who also worked on Deep Space Nine and Voyager, will be taking the helm as showrunner. Despite his long association with the Star Wars franchise, Fuller is probably best known for creating his own original visions on television in beloved cult series like Pushing Daisies and Hannibal. He has a flair for the weird, and he's drawn to stories that are driven by characters as well as gripping plots. He's currently working on a miniseries of Neil Gaiman's classic novel American Gods for Starz. Obviously we can't get too excited until we know what Fuller has planned, but I think cautious optimism is in order. Fuller knows the Trek universe, and he's a smart writer who isn't afraid to strike out in interesting new directions. Read 6 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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With Windows as a Service, Microsoft has delivered a steady stream of monthly updates to Windows 10, along with a more substantial upgrade in November. The monthly updates and periodic upgrades bring with them a wide collection of security fixes, stability improvements, and new features. Until now, however, it has been hard to know exactly what each update and upgrade contains. While security fixes were enumerated—as they have been for Patch Tuesday for many years—information about the non-security portion of the updates was scant. Microsoft's public release notes for each update package were virtually non-existent—and this in spite of the company producing internal documentation to tell its OEM partners what was changing. After pushback from IT departments and end users alike, the company announced in October that it was going to change its policy and provide some documentation of what these monthly updates actually contain. The first set of these release notes has now been published. Windows 10 version 1511 is being updated to build 10586.104, and because of the new release notes, we know that this update includes some quality-of-life fixes and the obligatory security updates but no new features. The most notable non-security update is a fix to the Edge browser that prevents it from caching visited URLs when using InPrivate mode. Read 1 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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Enlarge (credit: vulnsec.com) Camtasia, uTorrent, and a large number of other Mac apps are susceptible to man-in-the-middle attacks that install malicious code, thanks to a vulnerability in Sparkle, the third-party software framework the apps use to receive updates. The vulnerability is the result of apps that use a vulnerable version of Sparkle along with an unencrypted HTTP channel to receive data from update servers. It involves the way Sparkle interacts with functions built into the WebKit rendering engine to allow JavaScript execution. As a result, attackers with the ability to manipulate the traffic passing between the end user and the server—say, an adversary on the same Wi-Fi network—can inject malicious code into the communication. A security engineer who goes by the name Radek said that the attack is viable on both the current El Capitan Mac platform and its predecessor Yosemite. Here's a video showing a proof-of-concept attack performed against a vulnerable version of the Sequel Pro app: Read 5 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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Last month when Oculus announced the surprising $599 price for its Rift virtual reality headset, the company also promised upcoming bundles that would include the Rift and a PC that has been certified as "Oculus Ready." Today, Oculus revealed details of the first branded PCs in that Oculus Ready line, which will be available for pre-order starting at $1,499 when bundled with a Rift headset. At the low end of the line, the ASUS G11CD, Alienware X51 R3, and Dell XPS 8900 SE all barely squeak by with Oculus' minimum required specs for the Rift. Those low-end Oculus Ready towers all sport an Nvidia GTX 970 graphics card, 8GB of RAM, and Intel i5 processors and sell for $1,499 to $1,599 when bundled with a Rift. At the high end of the line, the Oculus Ready Alienware Area 51 has an Nvidia GTX 980, 16GB of RAM, and an i7 processor for a whopping $2,549 MSRP (and that's before you purchase the Rift). Asus and Alienware also offer a few Oculus Ready options somewhere in the middle of the price/power continuum. Read 4 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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The F-35 program will be cut by 45 aircraft over the next 10 years as the Air Force struggles with its spending priorities, according to an Air Force document. A prematurely posted copy of the US Air Force's fiscal year 2017 budget request was pulled down from the service's website today but not before defense analysts and journalists were able to download the document and find a number of surprises. While it had been previously announced by the Department of Defense that five fewer F-35A fighters would be purchased in 2017, the plan outlined in the 2017 Air Force budget would cut even more F-35s from purchase plans over the next 10 years, deferring the purchase of 45 planes until later. In a statement introducing the budget plans, Air Force officials wrote, "The Air Force is facing a modernization bow wave in critical nuclear and space programs over the next ten years that, under current funding levels, we simply cannot afford." A recent assessment of the Air Force's nuclear forces reinforced calls for a major investment in modernization of systems, some of which have been in place with few modifications since the 1970s and 1980s. The F-35 program, one of the Air Force's most expensive procurements, has been cut back as a result as the Air Force instead proposes a budget that "restores some capacity in the short-term, funds readiness to executable levels, and makes additional investments in nuclear, space, cyber, command and control (C2), and intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) capabilities," according to the introductory statement. Read 2 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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The San Francisco 49ers take on the Denver Broncos in action from a 2010 game in London. (credit: Mark Botham) The National Football League, one of the largest funders of brain research in the country, has subtly worked to influence research efforts and downplay the link between brain disease and the beloved sport, a new report by ESPN's Outside the Lines alleges. On the surface, the league and its partners appear to altruistically support scientific studies on the effects of hard-hitting sports, such as football, donating more than $100 million to brain research efforts that may not otherwise have been supported. Behind the scenes, however, the organization has tried to funnel the money back to NFL-affiliated scientists and reneged on contributions when researchers came up with discomforting data, the investigation finds. In light of the funding environment, some brain researchers have compared the NFL’s actions to those of Big Tobacco in the days when the cigarette makers spent millions of dollars to buy off researchers and fund studies that denied links between smoking and serious health effects. Read 15 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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(credit: flickr user: Pieter Bas Elskamp) A paper in Monday's issue of PNAS reports that sleep-deprived people are up to 4.5 times more likely to sign a false confession. There’s an important weakness in the experiment, however, in that participants didn’t face any penalty for signing the confession. But the study does tie in with other evidence suggesting that specific interrogation practices can lead to false confessions, so it may be an important chunk of pixels in an emerging picture. As it stands, there's evidence that sleep deprivation interferes with people's ability to make rational decisions. There's also evidence that most false confessions are signed after interrogations that lasted more than 12 hours. Taken together, these findings suggest that sleep deprivation could play a role in how an interrogation turns out but doesn't tell us anything about whether this does happen. The PNAS paper suggests that sleepier people may be more likely to falsely confess but that people's individual characteristics also play a role: people who show a more impulsive decision-making approach are more likely to sign. Read 10 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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(credit: Orin Zebest / Flickr) A major game piracy group says it will cease releasing any its DRM- and copy protection-stripping cracks for the next year, ostensibly to examine whether or not its efforts have any material effect on game sales. But there's little reason to expect this "experiment" to yield any useful results. Torrentfreak reports that Chinese piracy collective 3DM has decided in an "internal meeting" not to crack any more single-player games as of the Chinese New Year, which was on February 8. Then, after a year spent away from the cracking scene, the group says it will "take a look at the situation... to see if genuine sales have grown." That's an interesting idea, but it's hard to imagine 3DM's unilateral action having that much effect on legitimate game sales. After all, there are plenty of other active groups in the cracking "scene" that will try to fight to increase their own exposure by filling the hole left by 3DM. And even if every major cracking group collectively decided to take a break, some bored kids with debuggers and too much free time would no doubt step up to fill in the overwhelming demand for cracked games. Read 4 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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North Korean image purported to be of the launch of the Kwangmyŏngsŏng-4 satellite (though it may actually be of an earlier launch). On Sunday, the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (North Korea) launched a rocket carrying a satellite into orbit despite protests from neighboring countries and the US that it is a violation of previous agreements on missile testing. The Kwangmyŏngsŏng-4 satellite, an "earth observation satellite" ostensibly for monitoring agricultural output, apparently reached orbit. But the satellite is apparently tumbling out of control, according to a US Department of Defense official. Meanwhile, in testimony before the Senate Armed Services Committee Tuesday morning, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper said that intelligence has confirmed that North Korea has resumed production of plutonium at a reactor in Yongbyon. The regime of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un had announced the return to production operations in September of 2015. Clapper said that "North Korea has been operating the reactor long enough so that it could begin to recover plutonium from the reactor's spent fuel in a matter of weeks to months." The launch, the renewed plutonium production, and the test last month of a "boosted" nuclear warhead (which North Korea claimed was a hydrogen bomb) have all been seen as evidence that North Korea is moving forward with development of nuclear ballistic missiles that could potentially reach the west coast of the United States. Timed both to coincide with lunar new year celebrations and the Super Bowl in the US, the Kwangmyŏngsŏng-4 satellite flew over the San Francisco Bay area just an hour after the end of Super Bowl 50. Read 4 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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(credit: AT&T) The Federal Communications Commission chairman dismissed concerns from AT&T and other pay-TV providers about new set-top box rules, saying that the companies shouldn't fear a little competition. FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler's proposal would force pay-TV providers to make video programming available to the makers of third-party devices and software, saying he wants customers to have more alternatives to set-top boxes rented from cable companies. A vote is scheduled for next week, and TV providers are furious. Wheeler doesn't mind, though. “The big kick I get is that AT&T and the cable companies have been putting out statements say, ‘This is going to thwart innovation,'” Wheeler said in an interview with Variety. “And I scratch my head and say, ‘My goodness, let’s see. When was the last time that competition thwarted innovation rather than spurring innovation?’ And you are telling me that a locked-down, closed system will have more impetus to be innovative than a competitive, open system? I think that history shows that it is exactly the opposite of what happens in reality.” Read 6 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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On the Adwords Google+ page, Google just announced a timeline for banishing Flash from its advertising network, announcing that "Google Display Network and DoubleClick Digital Marketing are now going 100% HTML5." Starting on June 30, 2016, Google will no longer accept new Flash display ads from advertisers. On January 2, 2017, even old Flash ads will be blocked from appearing, making Google's ad network mostly Flash-free. The one exception seems to be video ads, as Google notes that "video ads built in Flash will not be impacted at this time." Google has been trying to wean advertisers off of Flash for some time, providing tools and best practices for switching. Now it apparently feels good enough about the switch to force it on everyone. Read 1 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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Greetings, Arsians! Courtesy of our partners at TechBargains, we're here to share a number of great deals for you to consider as you shop for that special someone in your life. Now, you can get a 7-inch Amazon Fire tablet with 8GB of storage for just $40. This deal includes some special offers with the tablet, including Amazon Underground access, which is an online app store filled with apps and games that feature free extras, levels, packs, and more. Shop for a great Valentine's Day gift from the rest of the deals we have listed below. Featured Read 10 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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Enlarge (credit: MacRumors) When we reviewed the new Apple TV and tvOS, one of our biggest complaints with the core experience was text entry with the Siri Remote. The scrolling and swiping was inaccurate and time-consuming—it's a big pain during initial setup and text-driven searches, and it is at best a step sideways from the old Apple TV software keyboard. Apple released the third beta of tvOS 9.2 yesterday, and among its new features was a new text dictation feature that will let users spell out usernames and passwords letter by letter with their voices instead of the trackpad. The feature is driven by Siri, so it will only work in countries where Siri is available, but for those users it looks like a decent way to save time while typing things out. This is all still subject to change—Apple has been known to test out new features in beta builds before removing them in the final version. That's pretty rare, though, and complaints about text entry were loud enough that it's not surprising to see Apple working on a fix. We'll be giving the final version of tvOS 9.2 a closer look when it's released, possibly at or soon after Apple's rumored product event in March. The update will also add Bluetooth keyboard support, folders for apps, and an updated multitasking switcher. Read on Ars Technica | Comments

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Storage tanks near some Pennsylvania natural gas wells. (credit: Gerry Dincher) Fracking, enabled by the technology to drill oil and gas wells that turn horizontal to follow specific layers of rock, has driven a boom in US natural gas production. But how much of that natural gas (which is mainly the potent greenhouse gas methane) is leaking into the atmosphere before making it to a power plant or your furnace? It's not just an idle question. When natural gas displaces the use of coal, it results in significant reductions in CO2 and other pollutants. Leak enough, however, and that climate benefit might just disappear. The public debate has treated this leakage issue as specific to the process of fracking. But “conventional” natural gas wells—vertical wells drilled through porous rocks that give up natural gas without the need for new fractures—have always leaked. A study by a Carnegie Mellon University group led by Mark Omara measured leakage at both conventional and fracked wells in Pennsylvania and West Virginia. The results are a little complicated. The researchers visited 18 conventional natural gas sites and 17 fracked sites (including 88 fracked wells, which are commonly drilled down from a central pad before splaying out horizontally). Between 100 meters and a kilometer downwind, they made methane and ethane measurements. To control for the dilution of the leaked gas as it spread and swirled in the wind, they added a leak of their own. Right next to the gas wells, they set up tanks of nitrous oxide and acetylene and opened the valves to leak at a constant rate. By checking their measurements of those gases downwind, they could calculate the true natural gas leak rate. Read 8 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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You can never have too much Google Drive space, right? At least that's what Google thinks, and it's giving away 2GB today to anyone that wants it. This has become a yearly tradition for the company, with today's offer specifically honoring Safer Internet Day 2016. To get the extra Drive space, all you have to do is sign into your Google account and review your security settings, including factors like two-step verification, authorized devices, account verification settings, and a couple more. The process takes just a few minutes, and once you complete the check-up, you'll be awarded the extra 2GB of permanent Drive space for free. Those who took advantage of the same Google promotion last year can rejoice, as they are welcome to snatch up this year's promotion as well. There's no word on when this 2GB offer will expire, but you have at least one week to complete the security check-up. Read on Ars Technica | Comments

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Enlarge Amazon just announced a new contender in the game engine market: Amazon Lumberyard. Currently in beta, this free, cross-platform 3D engine (with visuals based on CryEngine) features the usual contingent of promises: the ability to build beautiful worlds, make realistic characters, and create “stunning real-time effects.” But there’s also something else. Lumberyard, it seems, is all about connectivity. According to Amazon, developers will be able to connect their games to “the vast compute and storage of AWS Cloud,” add cloud-connected features in “minutes” with the help of the drag-and-drop graphical user interface, and engage fans on Twitch. The last bit is obviously the most interesting. There’s a "Twitch Chatplay" feature that lets the game interact with viewers in real-time, meaning spectators might be able to vote on outcomes or gift power-ups to the broadcasters. Rather like Twitch Plays Pokemon, one might imagine. Amazon Lumberyard also includes a Twitch JoinIn feature that will allow for multiplayer games where Twitch broadcasters can instantly invite viewers to join them side-by-side in a session. Read 4 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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posted 2 days ago on ars technica
Utah state representative David Lifferth has written a bill that, if passed, would make it punishable by law to post his name, likeness, and love for yeti selfies on the Internet. (credit: David Lifferth) A bill proposed in the Utah State House of Representatives on Monday would update and amend passages in the state's criminal code regarding "offenses committed by means of electronic or computer functions." However, in attempting to address the issue of "doxing"—meaning, publishing personally identifying information on the Internet as a way to harass or attack someone—the bill's language may consequently target free online speech. Utah HB 255, titled "Cybercrime Amendments," counts State Representative David E. Lifferth as its lead sponsor, and it includes amendments that would penalize denial-of-service attacks and false emergency reports at specific locations (i.e. swatting). Utah state criminal code already punishes certain kinds of electronic communications "with intent to annoy, alarm, intimidate, offend, abuse, threaten, harass, frighten, or disrupt the electronic communications of another," and HB 255 would append that specific passage to count the act of "distributing personal identifying information" as actionable, should that be done with any of the aforementioned intent. "This bill as drafted is clearly unconstitutional," Electronic Frontier Foundation Staff Attorney Nate Cardozo said to Ars Technica in a phone interview. "There may be anti-doxing legislation out there which does make sense, but this bill creates a crime if you, with the intent to annoy, publish someone else's name. If I want to say [online], 'Sam is a poo-poo head,' that's a crime under this draft." Read 7 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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A federal judge has dismissed a proposed class-action lawsuit against Google that alleges fraud because the media giant sometimes requires people wanting a free Gmail account to spend seconds filling out a two-word CAPTCHA—the second word of which is not for security purposes and instead provides an economic gain to Google unbeknownst to the user. As we all know, CAPTCHA stands for "Completely Automated Public Turing test to tell Computers and Humans Apart." They're everywhere online, and are designed to do what they say. They usually ask online surfers to type in a word that appears on the screen to enable deeper access into a website and hopefully keep out bots. Read 7 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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The JSocket website: open for business on the open Web (at least right now). (credit: Sean Gallagher) A family of Java-based malware that has given attackers a backdoor into Windows, Linux, Mac OS X, and Android devices since 2013 has risen from the dead once again as a "commercial" backdoor-as-a-service. It was recently detected in an attack on a Singapore bank employee. Previously known as AlienSpy or Adawind, the malware was all but shut down in 2015 after the domains associated with its command and control network were suspended by GoDaddy. But according to Vitaly Kamluk, the director of Kaspersky Lab's Asia/Pacific research and analysis team, the malware has been modified, rebranded, and is open for service again to customers ranging from Nigerian scam operators to possible nation-state actors. Ars has confirmed that the service is offered openly through a website on the public Internet. AlienSpy was found last spring on the Android phone of Alberto Nisman, the Argentinian prosecutor who died under suspicious circumstances just as he was apparently about to deliver a report implicating the Argentine government in the bombing of a Buenos Aires Jewish community center in 1994. Now resurrected under the names JSocket and jRat, according to a presentation by Kamluk at the Kaspersky Security Analyst Summit 2016 in Tenerife, the malware is available through an open website to subscribers at prices ranging from $30 for one month to $200 for an unlimited license. Kamluk believes the service's author is a native Spanish speaker, possibly based out of Mexico. JSocket includes a number of typical "RAT" (remote access tool) capabilities, including video capture from webcams, audio capture from microphones, the ability to detect antivirus software on a system, a keylogger to record key strokes, and a virtual private network key-stealing feature that could be used to gain access to any of the VPNs used by the victim. Kaspersky has tracked more than 150 attack campaigns against more than 60,000 targets with the latest iterations of the malware, with Nigerian e-mail-based scam operations (particularly those targeting banks) being the biggest adopters of the tool. The lion's share of the remaining subscribers to the malware appeared to come from the US, Canada, Russia, and Turkey. Read on Ars Technica | Comments

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Microsoft's hardware—Surface, HoloLens, and Xbox—is "absolutely essential" to its future, according to former CEO Steve Ballmer in a new interview with Business Insider. That's because of the interrelationship between devices and the cloud: so many devices are supported by and dependent on cloud software, Ballmer feels that the company needs to participate both on the cloud side and on the device side. Consistent with this idea, Ballmer continues to believe that mobile is an essential part of this hardware lineup. He says he "put the company on a path" toward having its own mobile devices and platform but that current Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella has "certainly changed that" by firing most Nokia staff and greatly scaling back Microsoft's phone-building ambitions. In the ex-Microsoft man's view—one shared by industry watchers, including this author—the new CEO "needs to have a clear path forward." Ballmer is "sure he'll get there," but he's not there yet. The lack of mobile vision becomes particularly acute with Nadella's "mobile first, cloud first" slogan, which Ballmer describes as an "important perception point" that Nadella has done a "brilliant job on." He says that he meets with Nadella "four or five times a year," both to "brainstorm" and in his role as a shareholder. His position as a large shareholder affords a certain level of access to the company, but he says he's now an outsider. No longer working at Microsoft, he isn't privy to any confidential data. Read 2 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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(credit: Scott Schiller) Verizon, which acquired AOL last year, is now reportedly interested in taking on Yahoo as well. According to Bloomberg, the wireless telecom giant has tasked AOL CEO Tim Armstrong with figuring out how to make it happen. As Ars reported late last year, Yahoo announced that it would reverse course and not sell its Alibaba investment. Rather, the board of directors said Yahoo would now work to spin off its core businesses, keeping the original company as a holding entity for the Alibaba shares. The company explained that the tax climate for spinning off Alibaba holdings was simply unfavorable for investors. CEO Marissa Mayer also noted that the move would give more "transparency" to the operations of Yahoo’s core businesses, and analysts believed that implied Yahoo would be selling itself off bit by bit. Read 3 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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