Matt Hamblen

About the Author Matt Hamblen


‘Perfect storm’ of ransomware and network worm hits unprotected computers globally

The cruel reality of a global ransomware attack that crippled computer systems in 150 countries on Friday is this: Attackers took advantage of under-prepared computer users and their organizations.

 

Enterprises — including manufacturers, car makers, hospitals and government agencies — were running older versions of Windows or hadn’t patched even the newest Windows versions with a patch that Microsoft released in March.

 

And, truth be told, some unsuspecting users evidently clicked on email links or, more likely, a suspected compressed Zip file attachment that launched the ransomware known as WannaCry, also known as WannaCrypt or WannaCrypto.

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FAQ: Can BlackBerry/TCL get back its smartphone mojo?

In the mid-2000s, the BlackBerry dominated handheld computing. That was before the iPhone was introduced in 2007.

Then began an era when slick touchscreen smartphones with fast browsers and gobs of apps commanded the market, led by Apple and Samsung.

In the past three years, BlackBerry has struggled. Despite a devoted global base of 275 million enterprise users who want bullet-proof security on their BlackBerry Bolds and other models with hardware keyboards, BlackBerry slipped almost to obscurity.

keyone keyboardBlackBerry

The KEYone has 52 hardware keys that can double as shortcuts to functions. For instance, the pressing the letter “F” could open to Facebook.

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BlackBerry KEYone sales delayed a month to meet demand, TCL CEO says

Enterprise customers eager to get their hands on the new BlackBerry KEYone, with its old-fashioned hardware keyboard, will have to wait another month until its May 31 release.

The delay isn’t expected to hurt sales much, analysts said, partly because there are 275 million BlackBerry customers worldwide — many of whom may want a newer phone with physical keys. Hardware keyboards have been a hit for years in countries like India and Indonesia, which are mainstays of the BlackBerry and BlackBerry Messenger.

The May 31 launch date for KEYone sales in the U.S. and Canada was announced Wednesday by TCL Communication. TCL is licensed by BlackBerry to make the Android device.

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BlackBerry KEYone sales delayed a month to meet demand

Enterprise customers eager to get their hands on the new BlackBerry KEYone, with its old-fashioned hardware keyboard, will have to wait another month until its May 31 release.

The delay isn’t expected to hurt sales much, analysts said, partly because there are 275 million BlackBerry customers worldwide — many of whom may want a newer phone with physical keys. Hardware keyboards have been a hit for years in countries like India and Indonesia, which are mainstays of the BlackBerry and BlackBerry Messenger.

The May 31 launch date for KEYone sales in the U.S. and Canada was announced Wednesday by TCL Communication. TCL is licensed by BlackBerry to make the Android device.

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After early hype, smartwatches slowly emerge with enterprise uses

A market for enterprise-use smartwatches is slowly emerging, being led by the Apple Watch, according to market research firm IDC.

“Apple Watch in particular, and to some extent other smartwatches, do have relevance in the enterprise, although to date the usage has been quite low as the market is still nascent,” IDC analyst Jitesh Ubrani said in an email.

The first Apple Watch was released with much fanfare just over two years ago this week — on April 24, 2015.

 

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How your company needs to train workers in cybersecurity

With workplace cyberattacks on the rise, industry experts are pressing businesses to train their workers to be more vigilant than ever to protect passwords and sensitive data and to recognize threats.

“It is imperative for organizations of all sizes to instill among employees the critical role they play in keeping their workplace safe and secure,” said Michael Kaiser, executive director of the National Cyber Security Alliance, a group that promotes education on the safe and secure use of the internet. The group’s members include such major technology companies as Cisco, Facebook, Google, Intel and Microsoft.

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Samsung’s Bixby voice assistant won’t ship with Galaxy S8 on April 21

Samsung’s highly promoted Bixby voice assistant won’t be shipping with the Galaxy S8 smartphone on April 21, as previously announced.

The company released a statement Tuesday night that said Bixby will be available in the U.S. on the Galaxy S8 “later in the spring.” Samsung didn’t explain the delay.

The Bixby will join a pack of artificial intelligence assistants that includes Amazon’s Alexa, Apple’s Siri and the Google Assistant that are changing the way people interact with their devices. 

Some U.S.-based reviewers and analysts had noticed that the Bixby feature wasn’t fully demonstrated when the S8 was announced March 29.

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As March Madness wraps up tonight, security tech is ready

At this weekend’s Final Four college basketball tournament, sophisticated technology is in place to help public safety officials monitor crowds, vehicles, social networks and unauthorized drones from a command center at an undisclosed location in downtown Phoenix.

An array of thousands of cameras and other sensors are already in place across public venues and roadways in the Phoenix area. The games will take take place Saturday night and Monday night at the University of Phoenix Stadium in suburban Glendale, Ariz., nine miles from downtown.

In the stadium alone, more than 700 video cameras are likely to be used to monitor vendors and crowds. Thousands more video cameras and motions sensors are ready to watch vehicles on highways and crowds at 20 Final Four special events, at the four hotels where college teams are lodging and in parking areas.

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Tech to help protect Final Four crowds

At this weekend’s Final Four college basketball tournament, sophisticated technology is in place to help public safety officials monitor crowds, vehicles, social networks and unauthorized drones from a command center at an undisclosed location in downtown Phoenix.

An array of thousands of cameras and other sensors are already in place across public venues and roadways in the Phoenix area. The games will take take place Saturday night and Monday night at the University of Phoenix Stadium in suburban Glendale, Ariz., nine miles from downtown.

In the stadium alone, more than 700 video cameras are likely to be used to monitor vendors and crowds. Thousands more video cameras and motions sensors are ready to watch vehicles on highways and crowds at 20 Final Four special events, at the four hotels where college teams are lodging and in parking areas.

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