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The Cable companies are a steamin’ cause everyone’s a streaming ūüėú

If you haven’t already, it’s time to ditch Cable contracts and enter the new era of Live TV channels and streaming movies and shows.

Here are some of the major live TV streaming services currently available.

Don’t care about live TV? Here’s more cord-cutting options

Netflix: One of the first streaming TV services and one of the best. Plans start at $13 a month, and it covers thousands of TV shows and movies, including originals like The Umbrella Academy and Orange is the New Black.

Netflix-Originals-logo

Amazon Prime Video: The “other” major streaming service, which is included as part of a $99 annual Prime Membership or $9 a month. The interface isn’t as user-friendly as Netflix, but the service often offers shows not on Netflix, including originals like The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel. Amazon Prime also has the ability to add channels (HBO, Starz and more), making it a potential one-stop shop.

More FREE TV

There are also free, ad-supported services such as:

Pluto TV

Pluto TV, Roku Channel, IMDB Freedive, TuBi TV, and Sony Crackle, which offer a wealth of content. I won’t mention the “K” word in this article but that is also another great source of content.


Happy Streaming!

 
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Cancer-fighting nanorobots – the future is now

In an article released today in Nature Biotechnology, brings great hope for cancer therapy.  In a major advancement in nanomedicine, Arizona State University (ASU) scientists, in collaboration with researchers from the National Center for Nanoscience and Technology (NCNST), of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, have successfully programmed nanorobots to shrink tumors by cutting off their blood supply.

“Using DNA origami we constructed an autonomous DNA robot programmed to transport payloads and present them specifically in tumors.” The article explains.

Each nanorobot is made from a flat, rectangular DNA origami sheet, 90 nanometers by 60 nanometers in size. A key blood-clotting enzyme, called thrombin, is attached to the surface.

 

Thrombin can block tumor blood flow by clotting the blood within the vessels that feed tumor growth, causing a sort of tumor mini-heart attack, and leading to tumor tissue death.

The treatment blocked tumor blood supply and generated tumor tissue damage within 24 hours while having no effect on healthy tissues. After attacking tumors, most of the nanorobots were cleared and degraded from the body after 24 hours.

Nanomedicine is a new branch of medicine that seeks to combine the promise of nanotechnology to open up entirely new avenues for treatments, such as making minuscule, molecule-sized nanoparticles to diagnose and treat difficult diseases, especially cancer. The current methods of either using chemotherapy to destroy every cell just to get at the cancer cell are barbaric in comparison. Using targeted drugs is also not as exact as simply cutting off blood supply and killing the cancer on the spot. Should this new technique gain approval for use on humans in the near future it could have impressive affects on those afflicted with the disease.

nanobot

 

Ref:  Suping Li, Qiao Jiang, Shaoli Liu, Yinlong Zhang, Yanhua Tian, Chen Song, Jing Wang, Yiguo Zou, Gregory J Anderson, Jing-Yan Han, Yung Chang, Yan Liu, Chen Zhang, Liang Chen, Guangbiao Zhou, Guangjun Nie, Hao Yan, Baoquan Ding, Yuliang Zhao. A DNA nanorobot functions as a cancer therapeutic in response to a molecular trigger in vivo. Nature Biotechnology, 2018; DOI: 10.1038/nbt.4071

 

 
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IoT technology – Do you you know where your data is?

Internet of Things (IoT) technology

The Internet of Things has revolutionized many industry’s, however Cyber security is a very different challenge, one that many manufacturers have failed to address. And yes, you should be concerned about what data is being captured and where¬†and¬†how it is stored.

PERSONAL ASSISTANTS –¬†Your technology is listening

With Alexa, Siri, Cortana and Google’s Home assistant in many homes these days, and knowing that some of the technology is listening and recording, who might be able to exploit that?   Those who choose to use this technology can’t and shouldn’t expect 100% privacy. If not for the ability of Amazon Echo and Google Home to listen, these things would become nothing more than door-stoppers and paperweights.

Amazon Echo

The Amazon Echo answers to the name of Alexa and will play music and answer simple questions on voice command. It also records what you say and sends that recording to a server.

  • Not currently using your Echo? Mute it¬†The mute/unmute button is right on top of the device. The ‚Äúalways listening‚ÄĚ microphone will shut off until you‚Äôre ready to turn it back on.
  • Switch the Phrase – You can switch up the activation phrase.
  • Erase old recordings¬†If you use an Echo, then surely you have an Amazon account. If you go on Amazon‚Äôs website and look under ‚ÄúManage my device‚ÄĚ there‚Äôs a handy dashboard where you can delete individual queries or clear the entire search history.
  • Set up a PIN to protect unwanted purchases ordered by your kids or anyone else who wants to try and order something from your Amazon account. Go to¬†Voice Purchasing¬†from the Settings menu in the Alexa app and you can set up a PIN or disable voice purchasing altogether. Any PIN you configure has to be spoken out to confirm a purchase through the Echo.

Google Home 

  • Mute it¬† as with the Echo, there‚Äôs a physical mute switch on the front of the device which can keep TV ads and toddlers from accidentally triggering a search.
  • Disable ‚Äúpersonal results‚ÄĚ from inside the Google Home app: tap the Devices icon, then the menu for your Google Home, then¬†Settings. Tap¬†More¬†then scroll down to find the option‚ÄĒonce turned off, no one else can tap into your calendar, throw your photos over to a Chromecast, make payments through your Google account, and so on.
  • Review¬†Voice search history¬†For Google Assistant, go to¬†myactivity.google.com. That‚Äôs also where you can delete your voice requests, if you don‚Äôt want them lurking on corporate servers somewhere. Click on the three-dot line in the upper-right corner, then¬†Delete activity by. From there, you can set a date range‚ÄĒtoday, yesterday, last 7 days, last 30 days, all time, or custom‚ÄĒand the service whose interactions you want to nuke. Click on¬†All products, then¬†Voice & Audio, then hit¬†Delete. You’ll get a pop-up that asks if you’re absolutely positively sure you want to go through with it. Click¬†OK, because you do. Then do the same for¬†Assistant¬†while you’re in there, just to be thorough. (There are 19 additional categories, ranging from¬†Ads¬†all the way down to¬†YouTube, if you want to linger and take stock of just how much time you’ve spent with Google lately.)
    Google Home’s new voice recognition should be enough to keep your private stuff private and protect against any unwanted accidents, and it’s likely only a matter of time before the Echo gets the feature too.

TOYS –¬†Hackers can spy on your kids

My Friend Cayla 

The¬†My Friend Cayla¬†doll, which is manufactured by the US company¬†Genesis Toys¬†and distributed in¬†Europe¬†by the England-based¬†Vivid Toy¬†Group, allows children to access the internet via speech recognition software, and to control the toy via an app. Germany‚Äôs telecommunications watchdog has ordered parents to destroy or disable a ‚Äúsmart doll‚ÄĚ because the toy can be used to spy on children.

CloudPets

The vulnerability in the CloudPets toy was exposed in February 2017 by Paul Stone, a security researcher. More than 800,000 customer records and 2 million audio recordings were left on a database that was neither password-protected nor behind a firewall, allowing malicious parties to repeatedly access the data and ransoming the company.

Toy-Fi Teddy

The Toy-Fi Teddy and CloudPets toys had the same vulnerabilities as My Friend Cayla,¬† Able to play voice messages through the toys and listen to children‚Äôs responses. The Bluetooth connection has not been secured, meaning¬†you don’t need a password, PIN code or any other authentication to get access. In addition, very little¬†technical know-how was needed to gain access to the¬†toys¬†to start sharing messages with a child.

Furby Connect

Another Bluetooth Protocol hack can provide custom audio selections that can be transferred into the Furby’s memory using a program, designed by Jeija,¬†called fluffd. It enables the toy to quote from any source:¬†Star Wars, Donald Trump, Martin Luther King Jr.‚ÄĒyou name it, Furby Connect can say it.

 

OTHER IoT DEVICES

The list of IoT devices keeps growing daily and there are hundreds of different devices on the market, so do your due diligence and research your next device¬†to make sure you have an understanding and awareness of the product to know what privacy your allowing it to have.¬† If you‚Äôre dealing with sensitive data or you‚Äôre concerned about privacy, then make sure you have a long hard look at the IoT devices you‚Äôre considering. What security protocols do they support?¬† How easy are they to patch?¬† If it doesn’t need to have Internet access to function just leave it off your network.
Below is a list of some of the home automation IoT devices.

1. Amazon Dash Buttons

2. Amazon Echo

3. August Doorbell Cam

4. Awair

5. Belkin WeMo

6. Canary

7. Chamberlain MyQ

8. Cinder

9. Elgato Eve

10. Eversense

11. GE Connected Appliances

12. Honeywell Smart House Products

13. iSmartAlarm

14. June Intelligent Oven

15. Keen Home Smart Vent

16. LG SmartThinQ

17. Nespresso Prodigio

18. Netatmo Welcome

19. Nest

20. Neurio

21. OSRAM Lightify

22. Philips Hue

23. Piper

24. Roost

25. Schlage

26. Samsung SmartThings

27. Singlecue

28. Sonos

29. Whirlpool Smart Appliances

30. Wink

31. Awarepoint

32. Aptomar

33. ATrack trackers

34. Bosch

35. CargoSense

36. DorsaVi ViSafe

37. Filament

38. GridConnect

39. Impinj

40. Meshify NOW

41. Rethink Robotics

42. RoboCV

43. Samsara Sensors

44. Tachyus Sensors

45. Wzzard Wireless Sensors

46. Xerafy

Looking to control all your devices from one app, check out some of these Apps.

1.  ImperiHome

2. myHome Plus App

3. Do by IFTTT

4. Alarm.com

 


IoT

The Internet of things is the network of physical devices, vehicles, home appliances, and other items embedded with electronics, software, sensors, actuators, and network connectivity which enable these objects to connect and exchange data. Wikipedia

 

 
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Happy KRACKtober! ~ Boo!

What Is KRACK? Kracktober

A new Wi-Fi vulnerability has been dubbed ‚ÄúKRACK‚ÄĚ, which is a shortened mashup of Key Reinstallation Attacks.

If you use Wi-Fi then you are at risk. But don’t worry too much, as this issue can be resolved through a straightforward software update or a firmware patch.

The WPA encryption algorithm itself has not been compromised, but the key exchange part has.

Using this flaw, attackers can perform a man-in-the-middle attack and insert themselves between the wireless access point and the wireless client‚ÄĒwhether that is a laptop, smartphone, tablet, gaming console, or IoT device.

This is a client-side vulnerability, so there is nothing to fix on the wireless router or access point. There are some wireless equipment makers issuing updates, though, so check with your vendor to see if there is a patch available.¬†¬†Attackers cannot obtain your actual WPA2 password using KRACK‚ÄĒor even view encrypted traffic in many cases. The flaw simply allows a successful attacker to view unencrypted traffic traversing your wireless network on Windows, MacOS, and iOS devices.¬†¬†For Android (version 6 and up) and Linux, on the other hand, KRACK is a much bigger threat. Because of the way these platforms handle encryption keys for WPA2, the system defaults to an all-zero encryption key, which enables the attacker to decrypt encrypted traffic as well and that’s a huge bummer.¬† See the video below for a real live demonstration of this attack.

What about Windows PCs ?

They’re safe if you stayed updated. Microsoft released a Windows patch to protect against KRACK on October 10, before the vulnerability was made public.

Android ?

Fixed at patch level “November 6, 2017.” Rolls out soon to Pixel + Nexus. Other models make take a bit longer to receive the patch.

How about iPhone and Mac ?

Safer than Android, but still not entirely safe. Apple said in a statement that all current iOS, macOS, watchOS, and tvOS betas include a fix for KRACK.  It will be rolling out to all devices within a few weeks. by November 6, 2017.

Linux ?

Good news: An upstream Linux patch is already available, as are KRACK-blocking updates for Ubuntu, Gentoo, Arch, and Debian distributions.
A patch is also available for OpenBSD.

The Rest ?

Check this list for more products.   If you have Kickstarter products check with those vendors, but more than likely you will have to buy new ones.

Protecting yourself Against KRACK

  1.  Simply plug in a wired Ethernet cable connection, or stick to your cellular connection on a phone. Stay off Wi-Fi until you patch your router and your devices.  Monitor vendor sites for patch availability and patch immediately once an update is available
  2.  Only use websites that use HTTPS encryption. Secure websites are still secure even with Wi-Fi security broken.
  3. Use a virtual private network (VPN) to hide all of your network traffic. Example: VyprVPN or if your inclined to setup your own try this LifeHacker link.

 



 

 
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Ransomware Gone Wild~

What is ransomware?

Ransomware is a subclass of malware that is characterized by holding device control‚ÄĒand therefore locally stored data‚ÄĒfor a ransom, which is typically paid using virtual currencies such as Bitcoin.
WannaCry, perhaps the most well-known single ransomware attack, uses a flaw in Microsoft’s SMB protocol, leaving any unpatched, internet-connected computer vulnerable to attack.

Ransomware is constantly evolving¬†with new variants. Here’s one of the Petya ransomware family. (unfortunate person’s screen below, Doah!).

petya-ransom-note

 

How do I defend against attackers and avoid ransom demands?

95% of ransomware attacks use phishing emails as the attack vector so diligent system patching and daily cyber security practices are very important to protect yourself at home, work or even when mobile.

Steps of defense

Ryan Sommers, manager of threat intelligence and incident response at LogRhythm Labs, recommended the following five steps of defense against ransomware:

1. Preparation: Patch aggressively so vulnerabilities are eliminated and access routes are contained. Protect endpoints with tools that can automatically detect and respond to infections.

2. Detection: Use threat intelligence sources to block or at least alert you to the presence of anomalies in your network traffic. Screen emails for malicious links.

3. Containment: If infected, ensure you have an endpoint protection system that can detect the execution and kill the process. Block and isolate the local host from the network to prevent additional files from being encrypted.

4. Eradication: Replace machines affected by ransomware. You can also clean network locations such as mailboxes or file shares, removing the malicious message. If you chose to clean rather than replace, continue to monitor to prevent the same attack from reemerging.

5. Recovery: Restore from a backup if you have one. Investigate what specific infection vector was used against the system, and how to protect it next time.


 
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VR ~ AR and Hardy Har Har

 

Virtual reality and Augmented reality both are amazing but ? perception is where they differ.


VR -Virtual reality

It transports you out of the current space and puts your presence elsewhere.

Here are a few examples: (click the graphic to see more types).

Google CardboardCardboard

Samsung Gear VR powered by Oculus Р(Compatibility- Samsung Galaxy S8, S8+, S7, S7 edge,Note5, S6 edge+, S6, S6 edge).

Gear VR

Gear VR
Oculus Rift, With over 700 VR apps the space is growing daily the Oculus mobile platform transforms your smartphone into a portable VR device that lets you experience anything, anywhere.  Oculus radically redefines digital entertainment. Immerse yourself in games or go inside your favorite movies. Time travel, space travel, or hang out with friends in VR.

AR- Augmented reality
It “augments” our current state of presence.

Augmented reality takes our current reality and adds something to it. Apps like¬†Pokemon Go and SnapChat are examples of AR. ¬†In it’s infancy now but rapidly increasing with the pace of technology.
Check out the video below of Monitorless AR glasses, which would connect to smartphones or PCs via WIFI and replace the screen on those devices to view content and can be used for both Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality functionality thanks to the electro chromic glass featured on the glasses.

 

 

In ¬†2014 Pepsi Max surprise commuters with an ‘unbelievable’ augmented reality experience at a bus shelter on New Oxford Street in London. ¬†A great effect that will¬†only improve over time.

However great an effect it is, it will not make me run out and purchase a Pepsi or a Pepsi Max.

Hardy Har Har
 Hanna-Barbera cartoon characters


 

 
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