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Apple Now Letting Developers Automatically Charge for Some Subscription Price Increases

Slashdot - Tue, 17/05/2022 - 23:50
Apple today informed developers that it is implementing a new subscription feature that will allow customers to be charged automatically when an app's subscription price goes up, which is not the way that subscriptions work at the current time. MacRumors reports: Right now, customers must explicitly agree to a pricing change when the cost of a subscription increases through an "Agree to New Price" interface. If a customer does not tap on agree when the warning comes up, their subscription is automatically canceled, but that's changing. Going forward, developers will be able to increase the price of a subscription and have it auto renew, with customers simply being informed rather than needing to outright agree. Apple says that "under specific conditions and with advance user notice" developers can offer an auto-renewable subscription price increase without the user needing to take action and without their subscription being impacted. There are specific limits that Apple is placing on developers to make sure this functionality is not abused. A pricing increase cannot occur more than once per year, and it cannot exceed $5 and 50 percent of the subscription price, or $50 and 50 percent for an annual subscription price. Apple says that it will always notify users of the pricing increase in advance, via email, push notification, and a message within the app. Apple will also provide instructions on how to view, manage, and cancel subscriptions. [...] In situations where prices increase more often than once a year or exceed Apple's thresholds, subscribers will need to opt in as usual before the pricing increase is applied. Apple says that this will also happen in territories where the law requires it.

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Categories: Technology

China Chipmaker SMIC Says Phone, PC Demand Has Dropped 'Like a Rock'

Slashdot - Tue, 17/05/2022 - 23:50
Top Chinese chipmaker Semiconductor Manufacturing International Co. says demand for mobile phones, personal computers and home appliances has dropped "like a rock" and shows no signs of recovering. From a report: Speaking to investors on Friday, CEO Zhao Haijun said the Russia-Ukraine war and China's COVID lockdowns have massively dented demand for consumer electronics and home appliances, which in turn has led to a "serious" adjustment in chip orders for those segments. "Many smartphone, PC and home appliance companies had exposure in Russia and Ukraine, and their revenues [from those markets] are now gone. Sales in their home market [of China] have also fallen due to the COVID situation domestically," Zhao said. "We cannot yet see an end to the downtrends in these segments," Zhao added. "There are at least 200 million units of smartphones that will disappear suddenly this year and the majority of them are from our domestic Chinese phone makers." Demand for consumer electronics "dropped like a rock, very seriously," the executive said. "Some of our customers are holding more than five months of that type of inventory." However, Zhao said SMIC's factories are still running at 100% capacity, as the company has been allocating resources to products that are still in great shortage, such as power management chips and microcontrollers used in green energy, electric vehicles and industrial applications.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Technology

Elon Musk says Twitter buy 'cannot move forward' until spam stats spat settled

The Register - Tue, 17/05/2022 - 23:11
A stunning surprise to no one in this Solar System

Elon Musk said his bid to acquire and privatize Twitter "cannot move forward" until the social network proves its claim that fake bot accounts make up less than five per cent of all users.…

Categories: Technology

Angry IT Admin Wipes Employer's Databases, Gets 7 Years In Prison

Slashdot - Tue, 17/05/2022 - 23:10
Han Bing, a former database administrator for Lianjia, a Chinese real-estate brokerage giant, has been sentenced to 7 years in prison for logging into corporate systems and deleting the company's data. BleepingComputer reports: Bing allegedly performed the act in June 2018, when he used his administrative privileges and "root" account to access the company's financial system and delete all stored data from two database servers and two application servers. This has resulted in the immediate crippling of large portions of Lianjia's operations, leaving tens of thousands of its employees without salaries for an extended period and forcing a data restoration effort that cost roughly $30,000. The indirect damages from the disruption of the firm's business, though, were far more damaging, as Lianjia operates thousands of offices, employs over 120,000 brokers, owns 51 subsidiaries, and its market value is estimated to be $6 billion.

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Categories: Technology

Russia Says It's Not Planning To Block YouTube or Cut Itself Off From Internet

Slashdot - Tue, 17/05/2022 - 22:30
Russia is not planning to block Alphabet's YouTube, the minister for digital development said on Tuesday, acknowledging that such a move would likely see Russian users suffer and should therefore be avoided. From a report: Russia has blocked other foreign social media platforms, but despite months of fines and threats against YouTube for failing to delete content Moscow deems illegal and for restricting access to some Russian media, it has stopped short of delivering a killer blow to the video-hosting service.

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Categories: Technology

Pentagon opens up about its database of 400 smudges that may or may not be UFOs

The Register - Tue, 17/05/2022 - 22:07
'We're open to all hypotheses, we're open to any conclusions' says official

A US House of Representatives subcommittee on Tuesday heard from Pentagon officials on reports of and investigations into unidentified aerial phenomena (UAP) – a category that encompasses unidentified flying objects (UFO) and saves room for optical illusions, lens flare, smudges in photos, and other possibilities like meteorological events.…

Categories: Technology

Software Freedom Conservancy Wins Big Step Forward For Open-Source Rights

Slashdot - Tue, 17/05/2022 - 21:50
An anonymous reader quotes a report from ZDNet: The Software Freedom Conservancy (SFC), a non-profit organization that promotes open-source software and defends the free software General Public License (GPL), recently sued major TV vendor Vizio for abusing the GPL with its Linux-based SmartCast OS. Vizio replied that the SFC had no right to ask for the source code. On May 13, however, the SFC succeeded in federal court with its motion to have its lawsuit against Vizio remanded back to Superior Court in Orange County, CA. Doesn't sound like that big a deal? Think again. The important part of the decision by U.S. District Court Judge Josephine L. Staton stated that SFC's claim "that the [GPLv2] enforcement of 'an additional contractual promise separate and distinct from any rights provided by the copyright laws' amounts to an 'extra element,' and therefore, SFC's claims are not preempted." Karen M. Sandler, SFC's executive director, explained, "The ruling is a watershed moment in the history of copyleft licensing. This ruling shows that the GPL agreements function both as copyright licenses and as a contractual agreement." Sandler added that even in the Free and Open Source Software (FOSS) legal community people argue incorrectly that the GPL and other copyleft licenses only function as copyright licenses. This decision clearly states that the GPL also acts as a contract. Further, this decision makes it the first case to show individual consumers have rights to the source code as third-party beneficiaries of the GPL.

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Categories: Technology

Ransomware Gang Threatens To Overthrow Costa Rica Government

Slashdot - Tue, 17/05/2022 - 21:11
A ransomware gang that infiltrated some Costa Rican government computer systems has upped its threat, saying its goal is now to overthrow the government. From a report: Perhaps seizing on the fact that President Rodrigo Chaves had only been in office for a week, the Russian-speaking Conti gang tried to increase the pressure to pay a ransom by raising its demand to $20 million. Chaves suggested Monday in a news conference that the attack was coming from inside as well as outside Costa Rica. "We are at war and that's not an exaggeration," Chaves said. He said officials were battling a national terrorist group that had collaborators inside Costa Rica. Chaves also said the impact was broader than previously known, with 27 government institutions, including municipalities and state-run utilities, affected. He blamed his predecessor Carlos Alvarado for not investing in cybersecurity and for not more aggressively dealing with the attacks in the waning days of his government. In a message Monday, Conti warned that it was working with people inside the government.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Technology

AMD claims its GPUs beat Nvidia on performance per dollar

The Register - Tue, 17/05/2022 - 20:36
* Terms, conditions, hardware specs and software may vary – a lot

As a slowdown in PC sales brings down prices for graphics cards, AMD is hoping to win over the market's remaining buyers with a bold, new claim that its latest Radeon cards provide better performance for the dollar than Nvidia's most recent GeForce cards.…

Categories: Technology

Microsoft Names Info-Stealers That Target Crypto Wallets 'Cryware'

Slashdot - Tue, 17/05/2022 - 20:28
Microsoft blog: The steep rise in cryptocurrency market capitalization, not surprisingly, mirrors a marked increase in threats and attacks that target or leverage cryptocurrencies. But Microsoft researchers are observing an even more interesting trend: the evolution of related malware and their techniques, and the emergence of a threat type we're referring to as cryware. Cryware are information stealers that collect and exfiltrate data directly from non-custodial cryptocurrency wallets, also known as hot wallets. Because hot wallets, unlike custodial wallets, are stored locally on a device and provide easier access to cryptographic keys needed to perform transactions, more and more threats are targeting them.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Technology

Fed Chair Says Interest Rates Should Have Gone Up Sooner

Slashdot - Tue, 17/05/2022 - 19:50
Federal Reserve Chair Jerome H. Powell acknowledged in an interview with Marketplace on Thursday that the central bank could have moved faster to raise interest rates and cut inflation, as the central bank comes under increasing scrutiny over whether it waited too long to act on prices. From a report: "If you had perfect hindsight you'd go back, and it probably would have been better for us to have raised rates a little sooner," Powell said in an interview released Thursday with Marketplace's Kai Ryssdal. "I'm not sure how much difference it would have made, but we have to make decisions in real time, based on what we know then, and we did the best we could." Powell's comments mark a sharper sentiment of regret than his past remarks when it comes to whether the Fed should have stepped in sooner. The Fed has faced criticism, primarily from Republicans and some prominent economists, such as Lawrence H. Summers, for delaying interest rate hikes and ending stimulus-era financial supports, which work together to cool off the economy and bring inflation down. Powell, who was confirmed by the Senate for a second term as Fed chair earlier Thursday, lost a handful of votes from lawmakers who said their constituents were suffering too much from high prices on his watch. For much of the last year, the Fed stuck to its message that rising inflation would be "transitory," or temporary, and more limited to pockets of the economy hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic and related shutdowns and supply chain disruptions. At WSJ conference on Tuesday, Powell emphasized his resolve to get inflation down, saying he won't hesitate to back interest rate increases until prices start falling back toward a healthy level. "We'll go to that point. There won't be any hesitation about that," he added.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Technology

Google opens the pod doors on Bay View campus

The Register - Tue, 17/05/2022 - 19:31
A futuristic design won't make people want to come back – just ask Apple

After nearly a decade of planning and five years of construction, Google is cutting the ribbon on its Bay View campus, the first that Google itself designed.…

Categories: Technology

US Officials Say Pentagon Committed To Understanding UFO Origins

Slashdot - Tue, 17/05/2022 - 19:15
Two senior U.S. defense intelligence officials said on Tuesday the Pentagon is committed to determining the origins of what it calls "unidentified aerial phenomena" -- commonly termed UFOs -- but acknowledged many remain beyond the government's ability to explain. From a report: The two officials, Ronald Moultrie and Scott Bray, appeared before a House of Representatives intelligence subcommittee for the first public U.S. congressional hearing on the subject in a half century. It came 11 months after a government report documented more than 140 cases of unidentified aerial phenomena, or UAPs, that U.S. military pilots had observed since 2004. Bray, deputy director of naval intelligence, said the number of UAPs officially cataloged by a newly formed Pentagon task force has grown to 400 cases. Both officials chose their words carefully in describing the task force's work, including the question of possible extraterrestrial origins, which Bray said defense and intelligence analysts had not ruled out. Bray did say that "we have no material, we have detected no emanations, within the UAP task force that would suggest it is anything non-terrestrial in origin."

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Categories: Technology

Photos show devastation after huge blaze at Grays property

This Is Total Essex - Tue, 17/05/2022 - 18:59
The fire has destroyed various buildings at the rear of the property
Categories: Local News

Google Will Start Distributing a Security-Vetted Collection of Open-Source Software Libraries

Slashdot - Tue, 17/05/2022 - 18:25
Google announced a new initiative Tuesday aimed at securing the open-source software supply chain by curating and distributing a security-vetted collection of open-source packages to Google Cloud customers. From a report: The new service, branded Assured Open Source Software, was introduced in a blog post from the company. In the post, Andy Chang, group product manager for security and privacy at Google Cloud, pointed to some of the challenges of securing open-source software and stressed Google's commitment to open source. "There has been an increasing awareness in the developer community, enterprises, and governments of software supply chain risks," Chang wrote, citing last year's major log4j vulnerability as an example. "Google continues to be one of the largest maintainers, contributors, and users of open source and is deeply involved in helping make the open source software ecosystem more secure." Per Google's announcement, the Assured Open Source Software service will extend the benefits of Google's own extensive software auditing experience to Cloud customers. All open-source packages made available through the service are also used internally by Google, the company said, and are regularly scanned and analyzed for vulnerabilities.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Technology

Apple Delays Plan To Have Staff in Office Three Days a Week

Slashdot - Tue, 17/05/2022 - 17:42
Apple delayed a plan to require workers to come back to the office three days a week, citing a resurgence in Covid-19 cases, marking the latest setback in its efforts to return to normal. From a report: The company informed employees Tuesday that it's delaying the requirement, which had been slated to go into effect on May 23, according to a memo seen by Bloomberg. However, the company is still expecting workers to come to the office two days per week. The company said the requirement is being delayed for "the time being" and didn't provide a new date. Apple was set to require employees to work from the office on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays beginning next week -- a policy that had been controversial among some staff. Already, employees have been coming in two days a week as part of a ramp-up effort that began in April. For now, that mandate isn't changing.

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Categories: Technology

Pentester pops open Tesla Model 3 using low-cost Bluetooth module

The Register - Tue, 17/05/2022 - 17:30
Anything that uses proximity-based BLE is vulnerable, claim researchers

Tesla Model 3 and Y owners, beware: the passive entry feature on your vehicle could potentially be fooled by a new form of relay attack.…

Categories: Technology

Essex woman killed in motorbike crash while on holiday in Vietnam

This Is Total Essex - Tue, 17/05/2022 - 17:10
The tragic incident took place yesterday on May 16
Categories: Local News

Telehealth Startup Cerebral Halts Controlled Substance Prescriptions

Slashdot - Tue, 17/05/2022 - 17:05
Mental health startup Cerebral will no longer prescribe most controlled substances, The Wall Street Journal reported. From a report: The embattled company is facing investigations from the US Department of Justice and the Drug Enforcement Administration over its prescribing practices, which, until this week, included offering prescriptions for stimulants like Adderall. Company co-founder Kyle Robertson wrote in an email reviewed by The Wall Street Journal that it would stop prescribing most controlled substances to new customers on Friday and transition existing patients off of the drug or out of its care by October. Cerebral will still offer drugs that treat opioid-use disorder, like Suboxone. Robertson said in the email that the company only started prescribing controlled substances to customers in 2020 because people weren't able to get in-person care. It's stopping that program, he said, because of "the ability for patients to return to an in-person or hybrid care model for this treatment."

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Technology

Google assuring open source code to secure software supply chains

The Register - Tue, 17/05/2022 - 17:00
Java and Python packages are the first on the list

Google has a plan — and a new product plus a partnership with developer-focused security shop Snyk — that attempts to make it easier for enterprises to secure their open source software dependencies.…

Categories: Technology

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