Electroville News and Blog

Domain Names & GDPR

A recent ruling by a German court about GDPR also applies to personal information held in the worldwide whois service, and could mean that domain name admin and tech contact details may no longer be needed because of the GDPR ‘data minimisation principle’. Up Until...

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Fruit Robots

Tests are being completed of ‘robot’ fruit-picking machines that can pick strawberries as carefully and quickly as humans, and can help growers solve the labour shortage challenge next growing season. Belgian Prototype Very Promising European strawberry growers in...

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Smart Solar Power Savings From Google

Google, in partnership with energy supplier Eon, with help from German software firm Tetraeder, has released an online tool called ‘Project Sunroof’ that uses Google's Earth and Maps apps to estimate how much money homeowners could by switching to solar power. How?...

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1 – 0 In England Vs World Cup Hackers

It has been reported that the England football team will be briefed before flying out to their World Cup base in St Petersburg about how they and UK fans can avoid falling victim to Russian hackers. NCSC Advice The briefing is being delivered by The National Cyber...

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Two More Security Holes In Voice Assistants

Researchers from Indiana University, the Chinese Academy of Science, and the University of Virginia have discovered 2 new security vulnerabilities in voice-powered assistants, like Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant, that could lead to the theft of personal information....

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Fined For Using a Smart Watch At Traffic Lights

In a recent court case in Canada, an Apple smartwatch was classified as being the same kind of distraction as a mobile phone as a student was handed a fine for being observed looking at her Apple watch while waiting at traffic lights. Distraction Law in Ontario...

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Facebook Losing the Battle For Teenage Attention

A study by Pew in the US has found that Facebook is now lagging behind YouTube, Instagram and Snapchat, as a platform where teenagers spend their time. Down To 4th Place The study, which involved 750 teens in one month earlier this year, found that Facebook has...

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834% Rise in TSB Customer Attacks

Following the IT ‘meltdown’ at TSB last month which led to chaos for customers who were locked out of their own accounts, research has found that the number of phishing attacks targeting TSB customers leapt by 843% in May compared with April. Fraudsters Taking...

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Visa Crash In Europe Causes ‘Cash Only’ Chaos

On Friday 1st from 2.30pm, a Europe-wide system failure at Visa that left shoppers embarrassed as their card payments were declined and stores switched to ‘cash only’. Not Just Visa Customers To make matters worse, because a range of different banks and other...

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7-Fold Rise in Mobile Fraud

It seems that as we spend more time using mobile devices, the fraudsters are following us as a new RSA Security report shows a massive rise in mobile fraud over the last 3 years. Up Nearly 700%! The latest quarterly report by fraud and risk intelligence experts at RSA...

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Instant GDPR Complaints For Web Giants

In an almost inevitable turn of events, the social media and tech giants Facebook, Google, Instagram and WhatsApp faced a barrage of accusations that they were not compliant within hours of GDPR being introduced on May 25th. What’s Wrong? The complaints, spearheaded...

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Alexa Records and Sends Private Conversation

A US woman has complained of feeling “invaded” after a private home conversation was recorded by her Amazon's voice assistant, and then sent it to a random phone contact ... who happened to be her husband's employee. What?!! As first reported by US news...

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92 Carphone Warehouse Branch Closures

Dixons Carphone, owners of Carphone Warehouse stores has highlighted people not renewing their handsets as frequently and a declining market for long-term mobile contracts as 2 main reasons for the planned closure of 92 stores. Profits Hit - Shares Down The decision...

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Tech Tip – One Handed Keyboard On An iPhone

If you’ve struggled to use the keyboard on an iPhone and found it a little unwieldy, or had difficulty reaching across the entirety of the keyboard when you have only one hand free, here’s how to adjust the size and position of the keyboard in iOS 11 so you can use it...

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Facial Recognition In The Classroom

A school in Hangzhou, capital of the eastern province of Zhejiang, is reportedly using facial recognition software to monitor pupils and teachers. Intelligent Classroom Behaviour Management System The facial recognition software is part of what has been dubbed The...

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Data Breach Fine For UK University

The Information Commissioner (ICO) has imposed a fine of £120,000 on the University of Greenwich for a data breach that left the personal details of thousands of students exposed online. What Happened? The breach was discovered back in February 2016, but actually...

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TalkTalk Super Router Security Fears Persist

An advisory notice from software and VR Company IndigoFuzz has highlighted the continued potential security risk posed by a vulnerability in the WPS feature in TalkTalk's Super Router. What Vulnerability? According to IndigoFuzz, the WPS connection is insecure...

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BYODs Linked To Security Incidents

A study by SME card payment services firm Paymentsense has shown a positive correlation between bring your own device (BYOD) schemes and increased cyber -security risk in SMEs. BYOD Bring your own device (BYOD) schemes / policies have now become commonplace in many...

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Slack ‘Actions’

Chat App ‘Slack’ has announced the introduction of a new ‘Actions’ feature that makes it easier for users to create and finish tasks without leaving by having access to more 3rd party tools. What Is Slack? Slack, launched way back in 2013, is a Silicon...

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AI Drones: Smaller and Smarter

Researchers from ETH Zurich, Switzerland and the University of Bologna have built the smallest completely autonomous quadrotor nano-drone that uses AI to fly itself, and doesn’t need human guidance. Neural Network The technology at the heart of the Crazyflie 2.0 Nano...

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Police Face Recognition Software Flawed

Following an investigation by campaign group Big Brother Watch, the UK’s information Information Commissioner, Elizabeth Denham, has said that the Police could face legal action if concerns over accuracy and privacy with facial recognition systems are not addressed....

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Efail – Encryption Flaw

A German newspaper has released details of a security vulnerability, discovered by researchers at Munster University of Applied Sciences, in PGP (Pretty Good Privacy) data encryption. What Is PGP? PGP (Pretty Good Privacy) is an encryption program that is used for...

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Less Shop Visits Due To Digital. But More Spending

British Retail Consortium (BRC) figures show that footfall in retail stores fell by 3.3% in April 2018 compared to last year, marking a further shift in consumer behaviour towards digital adoption. Two Consecutive Months The drop in footfall numbers for April was the...

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Handy Location Tracker

A peanut-shaped, hand-held, smart, long-range tracking device called LynQ has been launched that can tell you how far and in what direction your friends are, all without the need for a data connection, and without monthly fees. Why? As well as being used for outdoor...

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Tech Tip – Play Almost Any File Format

If you sometimes have trouble opening and playing certain file formats e.g. for videos, free and open-sourced VLC software makes it easy to play almost any file format you throw at it. To download the app, which works with Mac, PC, Linux, Android, and iOS, and states...

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Twitter Says Change Your Password

Twitter has advised all users to change their passwords after a bug caused the passwords to be stored in easily readable, plain text on an internal computer log. The Bug - Passwords Visible Before ‘Hashing’ Twitter reported on their own blog that the bug that stored...

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8 More Security Flaws Found In Processors

Following on from the revelation in January that 2 major security flaws are present in nearly all modern processors, security researchers have now found 8 more potentially serious flaws. Eight? According to reports by German tech news magazine c't, the 8 new...

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Facebook Loyalty Intact Says Survey

Even after all the publicity surrounding Facebook’s selling of the personal data of 87 million users to Cambridge Analytica, a Reuters/Ipsos survey has found that most users are still loyal to the social media giant. Just A Public Relations Problem The survey...

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Google Driverless Car Involved In Smash

A self-driving vehicle owned by Google's Waymo has been involved in a smash in Arizona when it was hit by a car that swerved across multiple lanes. Driverless Mode - But With Person On Board The Google car was in autonomous / driverless mode at the time of the...

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Tech Tip – Get More Value From Your Gmail Account

If, like many people, you have a Gmail account that you regularly use and you want to improve the value you get from your Gmail setup, try features such as ‘Canned Responses’ and ‘Gmail Offline’ (ahead of Google’s planned updates). If you frequently have to send out...

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Fake Online Reviews Investigation

A recent investigation as part of a BBC 5 Live programme has led to the underground trade in fake online reviews coming under the spotlight. What Reviews and Why Does It Matter? The kinds of reviews of products and services that can allegedly be purchased and...

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Online Dating Via Facebook

Facebook CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, has announced that Facebook, the world’s largest online social network, will soon be providing an online dating service, thereby putting it in competition with the likes of Match Group Inc. On The Cards Bearing in mind Facebook’s origin...

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Google Chrome Leads Digital Certificate Clean Up

The Google Chrome Browser is being equipped with transparency logs that are designed to prevent potentially costly digital certificate errors by Certificate Authorities (CAs) and to guard against cyber-criminals issuing their own certificates. Stopping Misuse The move...

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GDPR: Don’t Get Caught Out By Your Logfiles

With all the focus on the more visible elements of GDPR compliance ahead of the Regulation’s introduction of May 25th, one EU Working group is warning businesses not to forget what’s stored in the logfiles of their Internet-facing servers. What Are Logfiles and Why...

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Martin Lewis Fights Facebook In Court

MoneySavingExpert’s (MSE) founder and TV consumer champion Martin Lewis (OBE) has commenced UK High Court proceedings against Facebook to sue the tech giant for defamation over a series of fake adverts bearing his name. What Happened? Mr Lewis alleges that 50 fake ads...

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WhatsApp Raises Age To 16 For GDPR

Facebook’s WhatsApp messaging service is raising its minimum age in Europe to 16 to comply with GDPR which comes into force on May 25th. Was 13 Up until now, the minimum age has been 13, and that minimum age will remain for the rest of the world, in line with its...

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Half of UK Manufacturers Hit By Cyber Attacks

A new report published by manufacturers’ organisation EEF in partnership with insurance firm AIG and the Royal United Services Institute (RUSI) shows that 48% of UK manufacturers have been subject to a cyber-security incident at some time. Loss and Disruption Half of...

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Russia Suspected of Hacking Campaign

The UK's National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC), the FBI and the US Department of Homeland Security have warned that Russia may be behind a broad hacking offensive targeting millions of machines that direct data around the net. Networking Equipment Targeted US and...

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UK Launched Major Cyber Attack Against ISIS

GCHQ’s new director has revealed that last year, the UK has conducted a large-scale cyber-attack against ISIS that was designed to suppress online terrorist propaganda and hinder ISIS's ability to coordinate attacks. Growing For A Decade Confirmation that the...

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Phishing Attack Simulator : Microsoft Goodies

Microsoft has announced a set of business security tools, including a phishing attack simulator, that make it easier and more affordable for businesses to identify and fix vulnerabilities before they become an issue. Attack Simulator One of the key tools announced to...

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Facebook … Face Recognition Woes

Facebook is in the news yet again, this time for having to face a class action lawsuit for allegedly gathering biometric information without users' explicit consent, via facial recognition technology. What Facial Recognition Technology? A facial recognition...

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Tech Tip – Emails : ‘Undo Send’ … !

If you use a Gmail account, and if you’ve ever sent an email and then experienced the terror of immediately wishing that you hadn’t, you could find the ‘Undo Send’ feature very useful. The Undo feature allows you to set a buffer / cancellation time period between the...

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Facebook Notifies People Affected By Scandal

Facebook has begun notifying any of those users whose data is known to have been harvested and shared with data mining firm Cambridge Analytica. On Your News Feed If you are one of the 87 million people whose data has been shared, 1 million of whom are in the UK, when...

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Digital Number Plates

Dubai is once again in the news for being an adopter of new technologies after an announcement that it will be hosting a trial of digital vehicle number plates next month. Smart Plates The ‘smart plates’ will have digital screens, GPS and transmitters, and according...

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1 In 10 Fooled By Social Engineering Attacks

A new report by security firm Positive Technologies shows that 1 in 10 employees would fall for a social engineering attack. What Is A Social Engineering Attack? Social engineering cyber-attacks rely upon the element of human error e.g. convincing / fooling a person...

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Killer Bot Boycott

Reports that the state-run university-based ‘Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology’ (KAIST) has been working on military robot research with defence company Hanwa have resulted in threats of a boycott by more than 50 AI researchers from 30 countries....

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Wearable Tech Could Help Solve Murder

Police in Australia are reported to be using data recorded by a murder victim's Apple smartwatch to help catch her killer. Murder The victim and owner of the smartwatch was Grandmother Myrna Nilsson, who was found dead in the laundry of her Valley View home in...

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Half Of Households Have Broadband Problems

A survey by consumer watchdog ‘Which?’ has revealed that more than half of UK customers across 12 providers, are having problems with their broadband service or price. Which Providers? The survey looked at the experiences of 1,900 customers of providers that...

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UK Universities Are Cryptojacking Targets

The latest attacker behaviour industry report by automated threat management firm Vectra shows that UK higher education institutions are now prime targets for illicit cryptocurrency mining, also known as ‘cryptojacking’. Cryptocurrency Mining ‘Cryptocurrency mining’...

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Tech Tip – Track Changes To Your Word Documents

If, as so many businesses do, you use Microsoft Word, and you have shared documents that others can make changes to, you may find the ‘Track Changes’ feature very useful. By turning on ‘Track Changes’ you can see who has made changes to your document, you can choose...

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‘See In The Dark’ Phone Camera

Chinese electronics company Huawei is heading to the European market with a smartphone that uses a long exposure and AI to take photos in near-dark conditions without a flash. How? The revolutionary phone camera is able to gather enough light to take a photo in near...

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Contactless ‘Pay to Pray’

The Church of England has announced that it will be able to accept contactless card payment for donations at 16,000 churches, cathedrals and religious sites. Why? The Church of England raises a whopping £580m every year in donations, but in today’s society,...

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£870 Million Super-Cyber-Crook Captured

The suspected leader of the criminal gang behind the Cobalt and Carbanak malware campaigns that targeted banks and netted £870 Million has been arrested in Spain. The Carbanak & Cobalt Malware Attacks Cobalt and Carbanak are names of the different generations of...

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Facebook Revamps Privacy Settings

In a move that Facebook says was due to happen before the recent personal data harvesting scandal, the social media giant has updated its privacy tools to make users more informed and in control. 50 Million Profiles Harvested The high-profile outcry that followed...

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Your Computer Data Stored … On DNA?

British scientists believe they have developed a technique that will enable them to store computer files in DNA code. Why? Data storage takes up a huge amount of space. It is estimated that there is now 3 zettabytes (3000 billion billion bytes) of digital data, with...

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Tech Tip – Google Keep

If you need to jot down ideas and to-dos and share them with team members, you may find ‘Google Keep’ a useful tool. With Google Keep can: - Record voice memos within Google Keep on your Android or iOS device. - Transcribe text from pictures, so you don’t have to...

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Camelot Hack – ‘It Could be You’

Lottery operator Camelot has announced that 150 customer accounts have been affected by a hack that took place prior to Friday’s £14-million draw at 8.30pm. Low Level The company has described the hack as ‘low level’ and has stressed that no money was stolen, and that...

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Huge UK Increase In Demand For AI Professionals

A study by job website 'Indeed' based on job postings on its site since 2015 has found that demand for skills in AI and machine learning has almost tripled in 3 years. Demand - AI Boom With the Artificial Intelligence (AI) sector booming in the UK, and with...

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First Direct Customers Can Pay By Siri

First Direct customers can now make voice-activated payments to existing payees or mobile contacts via the Siri tool on their Apple iPhones, without logging into online banking or using their password. Following Barclays First Direct’s move to voice-activated payments...

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Fighting Exploitation Via Blockchain and Coke

Coca-Cola, the US State Department, and 2 other companies are working on a project to used blockchain to fight forced labour worldwide. What Is Blockchain? Blockchain is an incorruptible peer-to-peer network (a kind of ledger) that allows multiple parties to transfer...

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Tech Tip(s) – Browser Security

Your Internet browser is one of your most-used applications, so it makes sense that you should make yours as secure as possible. Here are a few tips to help you do just that : Use browsers that have built-in protection features such as Chrome, Firefox, Apple and...

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Voice Recognition ‘Sexist’

Delip Rao, CEO and co-founder of start-up R7 Speech Sciences has brought the issue back into the spotlight that voice recognition systems struggle more with female voices. Not New The issue has been known about for some time and has been brought into sharper focus...

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Accountants To Use AI For The ‘Boring’ Stuff

A study by Sage that identified how 83% of clients would like their accountants to extend their services has seen 50% of accountants looking to solutions like AI to allow them to free up the necessary time to do so. Off-Load Repetitive Tasks To AI With accountancy...

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Eight New Cyber Threats Every Second

The latest McAfee Labs threat report shows that in the last quarter of 2017, organisations faced 8 new cyber threats a second as there was an 18% increase in the number of reported security incidents across Europe. 478 New Cyber Threats Every Minute The report makes...

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New Threat From Fileless Powershell Exploits

Businesses now face the growing threat of fileless hacking and fileless malware attacks facilitated by the PowerShell scripting language that is already built-in to Windows. Surge Reported The latest McAfee Labs threat report shows what an emerging and dangerous...

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Facebook Ads That Target Your Beliefs

In a new trial involving a small number of users in the UK, Facebook has said that it will be testing the targeting of adverts based on users’ specific political and religious beliefs. Why? According to Facebook, the trial will help the social media platform to...

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Location Based Marketing … Creepy?

MoviePass CEO, Mitch Lowe, has caused controversy by telling the Hollywood audience at the Entertainment Finance Forum that his MoviePass app can track and gather information about users before and after their trip to the movies. What Is MoviePass? MoviePass, based in...

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One Hour To Take Down Illegal Content

New measures by the EU will mean that technology companies will have as little as just one hour to take down illegal and terror content, or face penalties under new legislation. Why Only One Hour? The new measure, which has reportedly been met with dismay by the big...

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Dropbox Integrates With Google Cloud and G-Suite

Dropbox has announced that it is now one step closer to delivering a unified home for work by forming a new partnership with Google Cloud that will integrate G-Suite in its cloud storage. What Was The Problem? Dropbox had been looking for ways to respond to the need...

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Blockchain Used To Reduce Child Labour

Blockchain Used To Reduce Child Labour Blockchain, the same technology that powers the Bitcoin cryptocurrency, is being tested in a pilot project between car-maker BMW and start-up Circulor with a view to eliminating battery minerals produced using child labour. What...

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Facebook Shooting Game Gaffe

Facebook has faced criticism this week after news that it promoted a virtual reality shooting game set in a public train station, on its stand at a US conservatives’ event. Bad Timing Clearly, in the light of the latest mass school shooting incident in Florida where a...

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Fight For DPOs With Introduction of GDPR

Technology and employment commentators are predicting that with the already high demand for skilled and talented Data Protection Officers (DPOs), the introduction of GDPR may see businesses having to compete to recruit the right one. What’s A Data Protection Officer?...

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Tech Tip – Find Files By Date

If you have produced and stored many files on your computer over time, in multiple folders, it can sometimes be difficult to find the file you need. One way to narrow the search in Windows 10 is to search by date. Here’s how: Choose the folder, drive, or library you...

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A Quarter Of Councils Have Been Hacked

A freedom of information request by privacy campaign group Big Brother Watch has revealed the shocking statistic that a quarter of all UK councils have had their IT systems breached in the past five years. 37 Attempted Cyber Attacks Every Minute The ‘Cyber Attacks In...

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GDPR Extortion Prediction

A report by Security Company Trend Micro has predicted that, as cyber-criminals are now focusing more on maximising financial return, the introduction of GDPR this year could give them potentially lucrative extortion opportunities. How? The point that this report is...

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Belgium Says No To Facebook Tracking Code

A court in Belgium has told Facebook to stop using tracking code to follow and record internet use by people surfing in Belgium, until it complies with the country’s own privacy laws. What’s The Problem? According to Belgium’s privacy watchdog, the Belgian Commission...

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Postcards To Combat Election Interference

Following disclosures of how Facebook was used by advertisers who may have been seeking to influence the US election result, Facebook has suggested that in future in the US, those backing candidates with advertising campaigns will receive a ‘snail mail’ postcard sent...

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