Category: News

AMD Processors Flaws: Firmware Patches Coming Soon, Won’t Affect Performance

123Movies Shutdown

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Last week, the Isreal-based security company CTS labs was
trending in the news for disclosing 13 critical vulnerabilities
in AMD’s Ryzen and Epyc processors–only to be slammed by Linus Torvalds
and many other people.

Now, the AMD has come up with a response on the matter.
According to a blog post published on
Tuesday, the security issues identified by CTS Labs are not
related to AMD’s Zen architecture or the exploits
disclosed by Google.

“These issues are associated with the firmware managing the
embedded security control processor in some of our products
(AMD Secure Processor) and the chipset used in some socket AM4
and socket TR4 desktop platforms supporting AMD processors,”
the blog post states.

AMD Processor Flaws Firmware Patch

However, AMD also notes that the vulnerabilities can be
leveraged only if the attackers have administrative access
(or root access) to the system — an opportunity that allows
them to do anything from deleting, creating, or modifying files
or folders, as well as changing the settings.

But, modern operating systems have built-in security measures
to prevent unauthorized administrative access. For instance,
Microsoft Windows Credential Guard.

AMD will be releasing firmware patches through BIOS updates in
the coming weeks to fix the disclosed vulnerabilities
classified as RYZENFALL, FALLOUT, and CHIMERA. The company said
there wouldn’t be any effect on the performance.

Also Read: Zuckerberg Facing Heat After
Multiple Investigations Into Facebook Data Breach

World’s Biggest Pirate Movie Site ‘123Movies’ Is Officially Shutting Down

123Movies Shutdown

The popular movie streaming website 123Movies, which also
operated as GoMovies has officially announced its plan to shut

A message posted on the website reads that it will go offline
after three days. The operators of the pirate site are now
encouraging users to respect filmmakers by paying for
movies and TV shows. 123Movies Shutdown

This announcement comes only a few days after being branded as
the “most illegal site in the world” by the Motion Picture
Association of America.

MPAA’s Executive Vice President & Chief of Global Content
Protection, Jan van Voorn said, “Right now, the most popular
illegal site in the world, (at this point), is
operated from Vietnam, and has 98 million visitors a month”.

It was not the first time when the pirate site had been called
out for its illegal activities. The Vietnamese Government had
previously received official requests from the US Ambassador to
criminally prosecute the team behind it.

123Movies was also in the black book of the office of the
US Trade Representative where it was listed as a Notorious

This website had emerged less than three years ago and gained
massive popularity at a rapid pace.

According to some reports, it is the legal pressure which
forced the operators to shut down their operations. However, no
official comment has been received from the team yet.

But the latest announcement has left an enormous gap to
fill – with millions of estranged pirates hunting for a
new free streaming site.

Also Read: Your Visit To Pirate Sites
Exposes You To More Malware: CMU Research

Play Android Games In Play Store Without Downloading Them, Here Is How

Google has redesigned Google Play Games app, and its latest addition is
the Google Play Instant feature that allows users to play trial
games without downloading them.

The Google Play Instant is now available in
the Play Store, but it only has a handful of Android games
offering trials at the moment such as Clash Royale, Crosswords,
Mighty Battles, etc.

You can take trials of the game just by tapping at the “Play”
button which lets you experience the game’s full, native
experience quickly without any major delay given that you have
a good internet connection.

While you try out the games, the app prompts you to download
the game if you liked it and with a single tap, the game would
be installed on your Android device.

There is a new “Arcade” tab where you can check out some cool
video game trailers or YouTube videos to get an overview of the

Google Play Instant

Moreover, you can discover new games by using tags like
“New” or “Action” to find your preferred type of games.

According to Google, the number of Android users who have
installed a game has more than doubled during the last year.

With the increased animation and video previews, gamers can
easily explore different categories of games to play.
Hopefully, by the end of the year, more games will be available
at the Google Play Instant app for you to try out.

Also Read: 10 Best AR Apps And Games For
iOS 11 You Need To Play In 2018

LG Releases ‘Open Source Edition’ Of webOS Operating System

You might have heard about the webOS that finds a home in LG
smart TVs nowadays. The Linux-based operating system was
originally developed by Palm. Later, the company was
acquired by HP and it released webOS on
their TouchPad tablets.

webOS later landed in the hand of the South Korean
electronics giant LG and made its way into smart TVs and
smart refrigerators produced by the company. It was
proprietary, but now, LG has decided to complete the long-due
task of open sourcing webOS which was first proposed by

As per the latest announcement, LG
has released an open source edition of the webOS. The latest
development is part of the company’s effort to expand webOS’
global footprint and moving towards its commercialization. LG
has signed an MOU with the Korean federal agency NIPA to pitch
webOS as an open and connectivity-rich platform for more device

The webOS open source edition can be downloaded, along with
other components from the newly created website (source code on
GitHub). There, users can also find
other details including setup instructions. To try and
test apps, webOS OSE 1.0 can be installed on a Raspberry Pi 3
having an 8GB (or higher capacity) microSD.

Also Read: Microsoft Extends Support To Ghana
Teacher Who Taught Computers On Blackboard

Microsoft Extends Support To Ghana Teacher Who Taught Computers On Blackboard

zorin os 12.3 Files-Folders

Educating children on how to use a computer is already a
challenging task in itself but try imagining the plight of a
person doing it without a computer!

A 33-year old teacher from Ghana, Richard Appiah Akoto
went viral on social media last month when he uploaded pictures
of himself teaching Microsoft Word on a blackboard due to a
lack of computers.

He undertook the task of sketching out the entire Microsoft
Word screen on a blackboard in colored chalk so his pupils
could learn the software functions without devices.

Microsoft recognized the efforts of the ICT teacher at Betenase
M/A Junior High School in the southern Ghana town of
Sekyedumase. Soon donations from people and organization
starting pouring in the form of desktop computers and laptops
to his school.

Betenase Junior High School Get Laptops

Impressed by Akoto’s dedication, Microsoft made arrangements to
have him flown to Singapore where he attended the annual
Microsoft Educators Exchange.

This event had over 400 educators and school leaders
participating from 91 countries to discuss the role of
technology in education on a common platform.

The Vice President of Worldwide Education at
Microsoft, Anthony Salcito, applauded Akoto for setting
an example for teachers across the globe who face
several challenges in educating their students.

“At Microsoft, we believe that educators are heroes and are
pushing the boundaries of what is possible to transform
learning and making a direct impact on the experiences and
lifelong skills of their students.”

Akoto is now a part of Microsoft Certified Educator Program
(MCE) where educators exchange their experiences and learn
from one another to develop better ways of teaching and
engaging with students.

On 29th Birthday of World Wide Web, Tim Berners-Lee Voices The Need For Internet Regulation

On the 29th anniversary of the World Wide Web, its
inventor Sir Tim Berners-Lee voiced the need for
stricter regulations of the few companies that control the web.

In an open letter published on the World
Wide Web Foundation website, he discussed the major challenges
we need to overcome in order to restore the web to the ideal
version he envisioned.

The large gap between the section of people who can access the
internet and those who cannot is deepening the existing
inequalities of the world.

Lee said, “you’re more likely to be offline if you are female,
poor, live in a rural area or a low-income country, or some
combination of the above.”

To remain offline in the present day means losing out on
opportunities to learn, earn and participate in democratic
debates which is why he encouraged everyone to close this gap
for the betterment of society.

“What was once a rich selection of blogs and websites has
been compressed under the powerful weight of a few dominant

He talked about the concentration of power among few major
tech corporations such as Google and Facebook which makes
it “possible to weaponize the web at scale.”

The Web founder is concerned about the creation of online
gatekeepers who allow only “a handful of platforms to
control which ideas and opinions are seen and shared.”

The recent times have seen a tremendous rise in the conspiracy
theories that trend on social media websites, the creation
of fake Facebook and Twitter accounts to rile up social
tensions, manipulation of elections through external factors
and criminal activity such as stealing of personal data.

Even though the tech companies are well aware of these issues
and have also developed systems that can tackle these problems
but he argues that they have been created to “maximise
profit more than to maximise social good”. 

He, therefore, called out the need to formulate “a legal or
regulatory framework that accounts for social
 that can help in solving these issues.

Talking further about the dominant platforms, he shared his
concerns on how creativity is decreasing gradually and will
degrade further in the next 20 years as these companies
continue to increase their power.

They acquire upcoming competitors, buy new innovations and hire
topmost talent of the industry which makes it difficult
for budding innovators to compete.

So Lee invited “the brightest minds from business, technology,
government, civil society, the arts and academia” to join hands
together to address the threats to the web’s future.

Also Read: Facts About The Internet You
Really Need To Know

Android Defeats iOS In Mobile OS Loyalty, Survey Finds

Now listen to Fossbytes stories!

According to the recent survey findings of the Consumer
Intelligence Research Partners, Android operating system has a
more loyal customer base in comparison to iOS.

The data shared by CIRP exhibits a loyalty
rate of 91 percent for Android over 86 percent for iOS in the
year 2017. Last year in January 2016, this figure ranged from
89 to 91 percent for Android; for iOS, it hovered between 85 to
88 percent.

The research organization measured the operating system loyalty
in the percentage of customers that remained loyal to their OS
while switching to a new phone over a span of twelve months
which ended in December 2017.

Mike Levin, Partner and Co-Founder of CIRP said: “Loyalty for
both Android and iOS increased in 2015 and into 2016 when it
leveled off for both operating systems.”

He further explained that with the presence of only two mobile
OS, most of the users have selected their brand of choice and
prefer sticking to it.

So Google and Apple need to focus more on selling better
products and services in order to retain their loyal customer

This is precisely why both the companies aim at gaining more
significant revenues from their respective user base.

When it comes to the Android operating system, users have
broader access to an extensive array of smartphones that
support Android. It also provides flexibility to users while
trying out new devices without sacrificing their investments in
purchased apps.

Furthermore, the fact that Android devices are usually more
affordable in comparison to iOS devices has further contributed
to the figures.

It is also worth noting that the rate of switching
operating system is different from the total number of people

“We know Android has a larger base of users than iOS, and
because of that larger base, the absolute number of users that
switch to iOS from Android is as large or larger than the
absolute number of users that switch to Android from iOS.
Looking at the absolute number of users in this way tends to
support claims that iOS gains more former Android users, than
Android does former iOS users,” explains Mike Levin, partner
and co-founder of CIRP.

Although these loyalty rates cannot be regarded the
equivalent of switcher rates and this is where iOS really

Also Read: How To Use Google Lens On Any
Android Phone?

Play Elon Musk’s Video Game That He Coded When He Was 12 Years Old

You might have heard about the world’s first PC game called
Donkey.bas developed by
Microsoft’s daddy Bill Gates in 1981. Our current tech
sensation Elon Musk also created his first video game at the
age of 12 while living in South Africa.

It was years before he started to think about electric cars and
cheap ways to develop Martian community. Maybe, the
initial idea might have clicked when he was young because
the game is based on spaceships.

Musk’s game called “Blaster” was never
released. It made a brief appearance in the form of a
screenshot in Ashlee Vace’s book ‘Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and
the Quest for Fantastic Future,’ published in 2015.

A former Google engineer named Tomas Lloret who currently works
at SpaceX has given a new life to Blaster by creating its HTML5
version that works in any modern browser. He used the source
code of the arcade game published by the magazine PC and Office
Technology in 1984. Back then, the publication paid $500 to
Elon Musk.

The gameplay is simple, and you might have played similar
games. You get five spaceships to destroy the enemy by firing
shots at them. They can return the favor by throwing something
called ‘status beam.’

Blaster might fall behind when compared to other arcade games,
but it’s a lot from a 12-year-old boy living in the early age
of computers. He gained the required skills to build the video
game in just five days by finishing a “how to program” guide
that was designed to be finished in six months.

It was “a trivial game…but better than Flappy Bird”, Musk was
quoted saying.

Feeling excited, you can Blaster by visiting this link (via BI).

Also Read: Jeff Bezos Crowned “World’s
Richest Person” In Forbes 2018’s Billionaires List

Microsoft Stopped ‘Massive’ Cryptojacking Malware Attack That Targeted 500,000 Computers

Windows Defender Stopped Dofoil malware attack 2

In a blog post published
on Wednesday, Microsoft said their Windows Defender antivirus
software helped in the prevention of a massive cryptocurrency
malware attack from spreading across the globe.

Just before the noon of March 6, it did so by blocking
around 80,000 instances of “several sophisticated trojans that
exhibited advanced cross-process infection techniques,
persistence mechanisms, and evasion methods.”

The Trojans were new variants of Dofoil (aka Smoke
Loader) and carried a coin miner payload. Within the next
12-hour period, more than 400,000 instances were recorded by
their systems. The attack mostly targeted computers in Russia
(73%), Turkey (18%), and Ukraine (4%).

Microsoft said the advanced machine learning models that power
their cloud protection service triggered the blocking of
malware within milliseconds after it was detected by Windows


Windows Defender Stopped Dofoil malware attack 2

“People affected by these infection attempts early in the
campaign would have seen blocks under machine learning names
like Fuery, Fuerboos, Cloxer, or Azden. Later blocks show as
the proper family names, Dofoil or Coinminer.”

With the rise in the value and popularity of cryptocurrencies
like Bitcoin, the attackers are motivated than ever to
integrate coin miners in their attacks. In fact, crypto miners
have posed themselves as an alternative to ransomware.

In total, the malware campaign targeted close to 500,000
computers in different regions. Various Microsoft operating
systems including Windows 7, Windows 8.1, and Windows 10
running Windows Defender or Microsoft Security Essentials are
now safe from the threat.

Also Read: Microsoft To Make Your PC
Smarter With New “Windows ML” AI Platform

Facebook’s Creepy “Onavo Protect” VPN Tracks You Even When You Turn It Off

ovano vpn

Recently Facebook has been pushing its VPN app “Onavo Protect” on iOS
devices for protecting the personal information of users who
use internet through public networks. This app was acquired by
the social media company in the year 2013 and is supposedly
being used to track user activity and collect data.

These startling revelations have been made by Will Strafach,
CEO of the Sudo Security Group. He published his detailed
findings regarding the types of data collected by the app on
5th March, 2018.

Apparently, Onava Protect application utilizes a Packet
Tunnel Provider app extension which is mainly responsible for
sending the collected data to Facebook.

ovano vpn

This extension remains active for as long as the VPN is
connected and gathers the following information even when
the VPN is turned off:

  • Duration
    for which the device screen is turned on and off
  • Amount of
    daily Wi-Fi data used
  • Amount of
    daily cellular data used
  • Duration of
    VPN connection used

The latest version of the Facebook app contains a “Protect”
button which redirects users to download Onavo Protect. This
app is available for free in the App Store and Google Play, and
has been created to keep the data safe while browsing or
sharing information on the web.

Even though the application helps in protecting devices
from visiting potentially malicious or harmful websites by
giving a warning, it secretly sends device-related information
to Facebook on a periodic basis.

Strafach also said that it is unclear what Facebook intends to
do with the collected data as of now. No comments have been
received yet from the social media giant regarding this matter.

As for now, we can only hope that Facebook will clear up things
by explaining the purpose of collecting data and remain
respectful of user privacy.

Also Read: How To Turn Off Facebook Face
Recognition System On App And PC?