DCTech News and Views


Vodafone Reveals Massive Global Surveillance Program

vodafone-logoVodafone, the world’s second largest mobile phone company, has announced that numerous government agencies have direct and open access to the conversations of its 381 million customers across the globe.

According to a report published by The Guardian; Vodafone, which has operations in 29 countries, is set to release a document describing “secret wires” that allow governments to monitor and record phone calls, text messages, and Internet data use.

Vodafone said the wires had been connected directly to its network and those of other telecoms groups, allowing agencies to listen to or record live conversations and, in certain cases, track the whereabouts of a customer. Privacy campaigners have labeled the revelations a “nightmare scenario” confirming their worst fears on the extent of snooping. <source>

Microsoft Stock Hits High Note – Nadella on right track?

feature -microsoft-logoMicrosoft’s stock recently hit a 52-week high at $41.66.

Satya Nadella took over at Microsoft only four months ago and it appears his ‘fresh’ approach has already made an impact on the stock market. Focusing on a “cloud first, mobile first” strategy, Mr. Nadella’s new long term vision for Microsoft is slowly coming into focus and, apparently, Wall Street approves.

We all know that the stock market can be a contrary beast and daily movements in share price often defy conventional logic. However, broader trends generally tend to reflect the level of confidence flowing through the market for a particular organization. Is Mr. Nadella the right man for the job? It would appear that Wall Street certainly believes so.


Shock, Horror – Apple uses Windows to Build Mac Pros

apple-logoDuring a recent visit to the Austin, Texas manufacturing facility where the Mac Pro is put together, Apple CEO Tim Cook Tweeted a photo of himself observing the work in progress. Only problem was, the photo clearly shows Windows running on PCs right down the production line.

It wasn’t totally clear whether the PCs were running Windows XP or Windows 7, although most commenters are leaning toward Windows XP. It also wasn’t clear what application was running, although, it seems likely that Windows was being used to run some kind of electronic design automation (EDA) software.

What is clear, however, is that this was an “oops” moment for Apple.

Amazon to Launch Streaming Music Service

amazonE-commerce giant Amazon is planning a streaming music service of its own in order to join the ranks of virtually every other tech company in existence. According to the New York Times, the new feature will give subscribers to Amazon’s Prime service access to thousands of free songs without interruptions from advertising but will omit most new releases, and will not include the catalog of the Universal Music Group, the world’s largest music company.

Amazon, already one of the biggest retailers of music downloads, is adding the streaming feature as a sweetener for its Prime customers, whose annual subscription fee was recently raised to $99 from $79. Prime subscribers get free shipping on orders and other perks like free access to some movies and television shows. The new music feature will offer a wide but limited selection of titles, and for the most part will not include current hits. <source>


Malwarebytes Launches New “Anti-Exploit” Software

MalwarebytesWell known security software company Malwarebytes has just released a new software incorporating exploit-blocking technology which it acquired last year after purchasing ZeroVulnerabilityLabs.

In line with its popular Anti-Malware software, Malwarebytes Anti-Exploit is available in both free and premium editions. The free version of Anti-Exploit will protect against exploits in browsers and their add-ons, plus Java, while the $24.95 premium version will also work in Microsoft Office, PDF readers, media players, plus user designated software.

Good news for diehard XP users; this new security software supports XP 32 and 64-bit.

 

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About the Author

Jim Hillier

Jim is the resident freeware aficionado at DCT. A computer veteran with 30+ years experience who first started writing about computers and tech back in the days when freeware was actually free. His first computer was a TRS-80 in the 1980s, he progressed through the Commodore series of computers before moving to PCs in the 1990s. Now retired (aka an old geezer), Jim retains his passion for all things tech and still enjoys building and repairing computers for a select clientele... as well as writing for DCT, of course.