Editorial

By June 25, 2014 Read More →

Internet Security Isn’t Just For PCs Anymore

shutterstock_165303932By the end of 2014, Internet Stats Live predicts that there will be upwards of three billion internet users worldwide who will move a trillion dollars throughout the year. With that kind of money on the line, it’s no wonder Internet security is such a valuable business, both for the safety officers and the criminals. Internet security is not simply a function of the equipment used. How and where you log on can put your data at risk.

Take Your Head Out Of The Cloud

About two-thirds of adults in the United States use some form of cloud storage system to back up and share important documents. Cloud sharing is inexpensive and convenient, but can also put your data at risk. Once you put your files on the cloud, the system could be hacked and your information can be stolen or lost; no matter how secure, there is never a guarantee. The New York Times, Facebook and even the U.S. Federal Reserve have all fallen victim to cyber-attacks that were actually successful to some degree. Don’t let the big names fool you! Check your data often, maintain local backups of the really important stuff and keep an internet paper trail in case you ever need to prove ownership of information.

BYOD And BYOS

Personal computing device sales surpassed PCs in 2013. The two major operating platforms, iOS and Android, have significant security concerns but companies are implementing Bring Your Own Device policies to save on overhead. Sure, saving money is great, but BYOD methods introduce huge security risks to the organization and to the individual. The recommended key to fixing this problem is training. Security risks can be mitigated by understanding the rules of consumer protection. Research of college students entering the workforce shows that they do not understand the dangers or the steps associated with reducing risks. The best way to avoid data theft is to be in the know.

A Little Theft With Your Latte

Coffee and free WiFi are one of the joys of the modern world. Unfortunately every time you log onto the network, you’re putting yourself at risk. To a savvy hacker, every person on that network is openly sharing information. A good rule of thumb is to never make purchases from a shared network environment. Even if the site is secure, the information can be intercepted long before it gets to the destination. For example, over the past year India has started finding itself in an epidemic of cyber-attacks and thefts because of its shared Internet networks.

Too-Smart Devices

You can do almost anything with a smartphone or tablet. Most people do not understand the power and risks that come with using smart devices for business purposes. These devices can get malware just as a PC might. Make sure that your tablet and phone have protective software. Both Google and Apple have a wide range of recommendation to keep the hackers out of your phone.

Posted in: Editorial
By June 17, 2014 Read More →

Top tips for great travel gadgets and software

P1010247The summer is upon us and it’s time to start planning those family adventures, solo expeditions to find one’s self or a party in the tropics. Many hope to get away from it all and that includes the gadgets and gizmos they feel control their lives. Whatever your itinerary tech is also there to help, facilitate and entertain you on your journey.

The load out: 

We all must suffer the burden of not being able to take it all with us so we need our carry on to keep as much to hand as possible. These days mobile phones are packing an awful lot of neat features to reduce clutter.

Many will rely on their iPhone, Samsung Galaxy S5 or HTC One (M8) to take the burden of many tasks and rightfully so. We are now entering a time when the inbuilt features rival many of the products we have come to rely on in the past. 

A Camera – The LG G3, HTC One (m8) and iPhone 5S all pack superior shooters for most environments. Our pal and site editor Matt recently relied exclusively on the HTC One to document a trip to Disneyland. However, we are gadget lovers at heart and something like the Sony AX100X 4K Camcorder with 1.0 Type Exmor R CMOS Sensor would really pop when capturing those moments of your kids bungee jumping or some totty on the beach.

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A Computer – Internet cafes are a thing of the past, shoddy hotel wifi is now all the rage. Your phone will likely be dead after a full day and you are going to want something to send evidence of your escapades back for your Gran to see. For a little editing of photos and videos the Lenovo X1 Carbon is a stunning lightweight and versatile laptop with some top end specs at a modest price. For the lower end price the Acer Chromebook C720 will do everything you need in the cloud and still allow space for a bottle of tequila from duty free in your backpack on the way home.

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A Map – You must know where you are are, have been and are going. Again your phone, combined with Google Maps or mapping software of choice is indispensable. When planning a trip, some really nice online tools are at your hands, such as the GoEuro search travel search engine for example. It compares modes of transport and their various prices and times for the desired route of the user. Another great online resource is airbnb, in terms of booking a place to stay you want.

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Power – Your phone is only as useful as it’s battery life and you are likely going to need some form of backup after using GPS to find the sights, the camera to capture the sights, the wifi to share the sights and the screen to watch Captain America on the long sticky bus ride back to the hotel from the sights. The Anker Astro 3E 10000mAh portable charger is the ideal solution and a backpack must have. Cheap, light and quick to charge even the more demanding hardware. Perfect to resurrect a dead phone with your eticket stored in your inbox.

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A neat little trick, you probably already know is how to charge them all, a simple 4 Gang, with an adapter. I have seen folks in the past buying three adapters or families squabbling over the single adapter they packed.

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Travel can be stressful and unexpected, it’s doesn’t have to be and hopefully this year technology will help you enjoy it a little more.

 

Posted in: Editorial, Gadgets
By June 5, 2014 Read More →

Top tips to help you afford the latest gadgets

ironman2-apr23It seems like every few months a new swish gadget hits the market. Unfortunately, the latest gizmos do not usually come cheap and even for the most avid tech geeks, it can be difficult to finance the latest state of the art technology. Not all of us have the means of a multi-billion dollar corporation like Stark Industries at our disposal and that is why it is handy to know a few tips and tricks which can help making it easier to afford new technology, fancy gizmos and fun gadgets.

 

eBay Is Your Friend

Set up a “saved search” on eBay for the item you are looking for and that way you will be notified immediately as soon as it is being sold. Quite often, you will find second hand items on eBay that are in mint condition and some might only have been taken out of their box but they were never used. This will usually knock a few pounds off the price and you might be able to get yourself a bargain. 

 

Claim It Back

If you are self-employed and need the latest gadget for your business, you might be able to claim back the expenses of the item when filling in your tax return. You can find more information on whether you are eligible to claim back expenses for an item by clicking here.

 

Borrow the Money

There are ways to cheaply borrow money and one way of finding out is by using Totally Money’s ‘Cheapest Ways to Borrow’ tool to find out what the cheapest way of borrowing money would be for you. The tool also lets you know how long it will take you to pay back the borrowed money, so that you know exactly what you’re getting into. One of the suggestions this tools makes is taking out a 0% interest credit card. That way you can pay back the money interest free over a period of time until the 0% expire.

 

Sell Old Gadgets

Once we upgrade our technology most of us have no more use for the previous models, whether that is a phone, a laptop or an e-reader. There are plenty of places that will pay you money for trading in your old gadgets. This might help you to raise some money for the newer version of a gadget.

Posted in: Editorial, Gadgets
By June 5, 2014 Read More →

Finance In Apps: A Few Suggestions For Investors

MobileCash_3We’ve all grown accustomed to the idea of simplifying everyday tasks and duties through the use of electronic apps, and in the last few years finance has become a significant category in this regard. Many may have thought of the idea of using a smartphone to conduct financial dealings as unsafe or insecure just a few years ago. However, now it’s become a popular idea to manages finances via mobile devices through better security on our phones and incredibly high-quality, high-security apps available. The most widely known apps in the finance genre tend to be those geared toward banking (such as the newly updated Wells Fargo app) and those used for quick mobile payments and cash exchanges (such as Venmo). However, another category within the finance genre has also become quite impressive on the app front in recent years: inve sting.

You may think of investing as a concept demanding one’s full attention for extended periods of time, and indeed for those working full time in stock markets that’s essentially the case. But for those simply looking to manage their investment portfolios and make occasional purchases and sales of stock or material, a mobile app can be wonderfully convenient. If this is something that interests you, there are a few different investment apps in particular worth looking into to simplify your personal finance practices.

The first app I’d point out to any mobile user with an interest in personal finance and investing opportunity is financial-tracking app Personal Capital Finance. This type of app is nothing new, because there are literally dozens of tools out there for keeping tabs on what you spend and what you have in your accounts. However, few (if any) combine this information with investment portfolios as effectively as Personal Capital Finance. This app essentially maps out your entire financial life, combining account information and expense tracking with complete layouts of your investments and their performances. For those interested in managing finances on the go, it’s a great tool simply for keeping everything organized and in perspective.

Beyond basic financial management and tracking, it’s also fun—particularly for mobile users—to find interesting and simple ways to invest. For that reason, the mobile app designed by the gold pricing, reference, and investment site BullionVault is another fun choice for investors. The purchase of gold bullion is viewed by many as something of a simple investment in that it can be done at independent websites rather than through the complex measures involved in setting up stock portfolios. That all makes it fairly simple to adapt the process to a mobile tool. The BullionVault app shows users up-to-date prices on gold and allows the full purchasing, selling, and storage options offered on the accompanying website. This gives you a manageable, quick-hitting means of controlling one particularly unique and popular type of inves tment.

Finally, for those looking to manage stock portfolios from mobile devices while cutting the scope of the process, investing app Motif is unique and, really, pretty awesome. Mentioned by Daily Finance as one of the best five mobile tools for investing, the app essentially allows you to approach investment with a themed bundle. The app offers packages like “Housing Recovery” or “Biotech Breakthroughs,” each consisting of several stocks and allows you to invest in the entire bundle with ease. The app itself is free, though I should note $250 minimum is required to get your actual investments started. Still, it’s a wonderfully easy mobile finance tool and a helpful app for beginner investors looking to experiment and learn.

Finance, and specifically investing, remains an ever-expanding and improving app category. But if you’re just looking to get started with managing your money and investment opportunities from your mobile devices, these are a few suggestions that can get you off to a good start.

Posted in: Editorial
By June 3, 2014 Read More →

Wiring for Sound: Choosing the Right Headphones

03-EKOCYCLE-Beats-headphonesHeadphones are one of the best things to come out of our technological innovation. What other device allows you to drown out your noisy neighbour but still listen to that new song in perfect clarity. That said, the market is inundated with headphones and it’s tough to differentiate between a good headphone and good marketing.

 

Here’s a guide to get you started:

 

(Un)necessary accessories

One of the more popular accessories for headphones is the anti-tangle feature. The premise is, because we’re so impatient that we can’t spend the 15 seconds it takes to untangle the wires on a headphone, we need a feature that minimises the tangling. If you’ve found a pair of headphones you like, and it just so happens it has an anti-tangle feature, so be it. Just don’t centre your buying process around this one feature.

However, a pair of headphones with Bluetooth is a different story because you can then listen on your headphones completely wirelessly (although most come with a wire just in case). Better still, it doesn’t substantially degrade the music quality, which makes the feature well worthwhile.

Another feature that is recommended is a built in mic. If you’ve ever been on a jog or a bike and received a call, this feature is a life saver. Also, many of the headphones with microphones also have a volume and pause control built in, another added bonus.

 

Being practical

Of course, one of the main activities people like to do with music in the background is exercise. A lot of people exercise to music, be it dancing, aerobics, some high-intensity cycling (euphemistically called ‘spinning’ to make it sound less gruelling!) or even a gentle (or not so gentle) jog. You might want to consider splash-proof headphones designed for those who are working up a sweat to music. Some JVC HA-EBX5 headphones might just do the trick while you strive to shape up indoors or outdoors.

 

Worlds of sound for less

Unless you’re an audiophile or have a job where only the crispest, clearest sound quality is acceptable, you don’t need to spend a lot of money on a headphone. For an in ear headphone, the Sol Republic Jax are a great choice. They deliver pulse pounding bass with barely any distortion, all without overpowering the midrange and treble frequencies. As a bonus, they come with a microphone and volume control.

For an over the ear headphone, Griffin Woodtones are a great buy. They’re comfortable, stylish, and have a balanced, well rounded sound. They even use a real wood finish to round out the look.

 

Headphone highs

Here’s where to choices get tricky. The best sounding headphones can cost thousands of euros, with bells and whistles that any audiophile can appreciate. If money is no object, then you might be interested in a set of Grado PS1000s. This headphone makes listeners feel as if they’re in the room with the band. The sound comes in crisp and clear. Cymbals sizzle and the texture of the bass comes in like never before.

As you can see you can get great sounding headphones for any price. Whether you’re looking for a replacement for those white iPod headphones, or want to transform your listening experience, there’s something out there for you.

Posted in: Editorial, Gadgets
By June 2, 2014 Read More →

The Best In-Car Technology

Nvida-Tegra-Auto-Driver-500x280In-car technology has been improving greatly in recent years. In fact, it seems that the motoring industry cannot get enough of new technology and innovations. The amazing thing here is that this applies to almost every segment in the automotive industry.

At a time where innovative in-car technology is one of the major deciding factors of most consumers, many car manufacturers find it important to either have events or attend events to showcase their latest offerings: in 2014, Las Vegas was the popular venue for the reveal of several latest innovations.

Before we take a look at some of those innovations, a common-sense reminder – no matter how advanced technology becomes, there is no substitute for driver ability and being totally confident and knowledgeable regarding the rules of the road. Top Tests is a great website for reviewing and refreshing driver know-how.

 

Performance Data Recorder

Set to be available for Chevrolet Corvette next year, this in-car technology has been gaining a lot of buzz already. Think of having a GoPro and telemetry device together in your vehicle. This is how the performance data recorder is reported to work. A camera is mounted on the headliner trim while the telemetry hardware will measure and record everything in the SD card, allowing you to simply upload and edit the raw data when you get home.

 

Bluetooth Audio

Think of smart television and how you use your smartphone to play YouTube clips on it. With this Bluetooth audio, users can now set a playlist and play it through the car’s speakers without having to use bothersome and unsightly cables or transfer the playlists to another device. This simple-sounding device has proven to be useful and hassle free during testing and could be a game changer. Pay attention music lovers everywhere!

 

Smartphone App Integration

This is another in-car technology that focuses on how to use your smartphone for various activities in the car. This allows smartphones to directly connect to the vehicle’s infotainment system, which usually features Pandora Internet radio and others. Once synced up, you or your passengers can simply access the controls directly from the mobile device, eliminating the need to lean over to reach the controls and opening up control to everyone in the car.

 

NVidia Customisable Digital Cockpit

How would you feel if you could customise not just the exterior look of your vehicle but the digital cockpit as well? It sounds pretty amazing and we are guessing this is something to look forward to. The NVidia customisable digital cockpit will let drivers choose their preferred colour, texture, and instrument panel configurations.

 

Solar Concept

This is a new feature that will be offered by no other than Ford C-Max Energi. With this, the vehicle’s battery can recharge itself using the rooftop solar panels making it even more practical than it already is.

These are just some of the latest advancements in in-car technology. This selection will definitely get you excited since these features are not just for show and style but for practical uses to benefit the driver experience too.

 

Posted in: Editorial, Gadgets
By May 29, 2014 Read More →

Smartphones – your best budget options

SAMSUNG G X2014 is a great year for those of you looking for a budget smartphone. The Apple range of smartphones won’t be within your budget bracket but there are more than enough great handsets with good performance for you to choose from.

 

ZTE Blade V

Budget quad core/5MP camera phone

 ZTE BLADE V

 

 

Coming in at a mere £100, the ZTE Blade is a great handset for those wanting to get the most for their money. With a small 4-inch, 480 x 800 LCD screen you’ll be more than able to enjoy video and photographic content. Coming pre-loaded with Android 4.1 means you’ll have all the features that Android users enjoy as well as a host of apps available through the Google Play store.

 

Build quality isn’t the best but at this price it’s one of the nicer looking phones available.

 

Sony Xperia M

Affordable well designed smartphone with great battery life

 SONY XPERIA M

 

 

The Experia M is a great budget phone for those of you who’ve got a little more to splash out. It’s no Xperia Z1 but for £180 this is a great little smartphone. Featuring many design similarities see in the rest of the Xperia series, the build quality looks and feels great. The M runs on the Jelly Bean Android OS and is powered by a more than capable Qualcomm S4 plus dual-core CPU which means you’ll be able to run most apps with extreme ease.

 

With 9 hours of battery life, one charge cycle will get you through the day with no problem unless you’re a real smartphone addict. However with only 2GB of memory, it’s advised you purchase a microSD card to make use of the expandable memory slots on the phone. If you’re looking for a sub £200 smartphone this is a more than capable handset.

 

Samsung Galaxy Y

Ultra budget smartphone

 SAMSUNG G X

 

 

If spending more than £100 seems like a daunting prospect, you’ll be more than glad to discover this handset costs a mere £45! This ultra compact smartphone has a 3-inch screen and a 2 megapixel camera. For the price it’s a good phone but don’t expect to be playing the latest games on it. If you just need a simple phone for light internet browsing, emails, texts and phone calls then this is a great little number. Be sure to check out the Samsung Galaxy Y from Mobile by Sainsbury’s for a really competitive price!

 

HTC Desire500

Attractive handset at an attractive price

 HTC DESIRE 500

 

The HTC desire is our favourite looking budget handset of the moment. With a 4.3-inch screen with 480 x 800 resolution, viewing photos and videos is really enjoyable. The 8megapixel camera is more than useable and great for snapping a quick picture.  With a Snapdragon 200 quad-core processer with 1GB of RAM, the Desire500 is up there with the high performance budget handsets.

 

At a price like this you’ll be hard pushed to find a handset that combines design and powerful processing with such success.

 

Nokia Lumia 620

Windows phone with unique and quirky design

 NOKIA LUMIA 620

 

 

If you’re after something a bit different the Nokia Lumia 620 is a great option. The quirky and colourful design make this an eye catching handset and for a mere £150 this phone very reasonably priced.  What also makes this phone different is that it runs on Windows 8, unlike the rest of the Androids on this list. Windows 8 is a beautiful operating system and the 1GHz dual-core Snapdragon S4 CPU is more than capable of running the OS without lag. One of the disadvantages of the Windows 8 operating system is that you’ll have access to less apps, though the majority of popular downloads do have windows versions!

 

Nokia handsets are renowned for the quality of their cameras, and the Lumia 620 is no exception. Despite not having as many megapixels as other phones in this list (the Lumia 620 sits at just 5MP) the lens and overall picture quality is significantly higher. At the great price it’s easily one of the best handsets in the budget bracket range.

 

Motorola Moto G

The Rolls Royce of the budget smartphone range

 MOTO G

 

Finding faults with the Moto G was extremely hard when we got our hands on this smartphone. The Moto G features a great 4.5-inch screen that makes apps, photos and video look great. When you consider you’re getting 720p resolution, this is the best screen for your money.

 

Design wise it isn’t the best looking phone, or the slimmest. But what it lacks in looks it more than makes up for in specs. With a Snapdragon 400 CPU with 1GB ram and using the latest build of Jellybean, you’ll be able to enjoy the vast majority of games and apps in HD!

 

For a mere £135 for the 8GB model and £160 for the 16GB model – the Moto G is a top pick for us as it’s very affordable and performs like more expensive phones. What more could you want?

 

With so many great budget options for smartphones, there’s no excuse not to get involved. Take a look at what you can get for your money today.

Posted in: Editorial, Phones
By May 28, 2014 Read More →

Samsung Galaxy S5 is it worth the hype?

s5The Samsung Galaxy S5 is the natural successor of the Samsung Galaxy S4, which was one of the most sought after models released to the market. However, does the Samsung Galaxy S5 offer anything worth getting excited about or is it better to wait for the S6?

The S5 features various improvements to its camera, display, design and operating software. However, there has been significant debate in the tech world about if an upgrade to the Samsung S5 is necessary in spite of the improvements.

Here, we will explore if the Samsung Galaxy S5 is worth the hype or if it a development that will ultimately fail until the release of the S6.

The Samsung Galaxy S5 Design

It is evident that Samsung has put in a lot of effort to make the S5 design different from its predecessor. It features a dimpled back to differentiate it from the glossy and smooth design on the S4. One of the main drawbacks, however, is that this handset is mostly made of plastic.

As this is supposed to be a high-end phone, some might expect a more expensive, luxurious material. Sony, Apple, Nokia, and HTC have all experimented with metal to make their high-end phones but Samsung seems reluctant to shift from plastic.

The Samsung S5 has been designed to be both dust and water resistant in about 3.3 feet of water for almost 30 minutes. The phone is available in a variety of colour finishes including sweet pink, champagne pink, shimmery white, copper gold, electric blue and charcoal black among others.

The S5 features a big and bold 5.1-inch full HD super AMOLED screen. One of the best aspects of this handset is its clear screen. It is a bright screen and this makes it ideal for users who spend a lot of time browsing the internet.

The Samsung Galaxy S5 Main Features

You can tell after just a few minutes that the S5 is definitely more usable when compared to the S4. Mostly because it includes more features that consumers are likely to use every day.

S Health

S Health is one of the most noticeable features on this phone. It includes a heart rate monitor that is placed at the back just below the camera. The monitor allows you to track your pulse. S Health has been designed to help users monitor their daily activity. However, it does not offer the same benefits you get from devices solely designed for this function.

Ultra Power Saving Mode

Samsung is making an effort to come up with a battery that will last longer when you need it the most. The ultra-power saving mode activates on your phone when you need it to reduce power consumption when the handset is not in use. The feature reduces available apps to six to reduce total power use and increase battery life.

Camera

The Samsung Galaxy S5 camera offers selective focus. This feature allows users to take pictures and then defocus the background. The downside is that the camera takes a while to ‘fire up’, especially if it is in sleep mode. Furthermore, its autofocus is swift but it is not always accurate.

Fingerprint Scanner

Samsung have decided to place a fingerprint scanner on the S5 home key. This is an intuitive program, but risky as it does not always pick up the fingerprint. Users are required to swipe vertically for the scanner to work but it is also possible to swipe sideways with less accuracy.

Performance

The Samsung Galaxy S5 handset comes with a 2.5 GHz CPU that makes it one of the
most powerful models on the market. However, with that being said, some of the features are slow. As mentioned, the camera can take a while before it is ready to work.

The model offers 16 GB internal memory, but only about 11 GB is available for use. The good news is that Samsung has eliminated some apps that were considered less significant on the S4, but you can still choose to download them in the Google Play Store. This gives users greater control over their internal memory.

Conclusion

The progression when it comes to performance and in-phone features make this upgrade more than worthwhile if you are coming up to the end of one of a number of long term mobile phones contracts. There are a number of great value contracts from Virgin Media available now that you can take advantage of to get the Samsung Galaxy S5 for a great price.

The Samsung Galaxy S5 has an amazing screen and it offers plenty of battery life. This is a powerful and competent phone with unique elements that make it different from any other model available.

 

 s5colourss5_v_5s

Samsung Galaxy S5 – Size comparison with iPhone 5S

 

 

Posted in: Editorial, Phones
By May 27, 2014 Read More →

4 Technological Advances to Influence the Gaming Industry

Gaming innovation articleNintendo revolutionised the gaming market in 2006 when they introduced their motion sensing Wii console. Their innovative controller brought about a host of new ways for the whole family to play and made their Wii the bestselling console of the last generation.

Microsoft then went one step further and followed up with their Kinect technology, making motion detection without the need for a controller the next gaming success.  Nintendo attempted to match this success with their new Wii U device, but the impact was far less impressive than expected.

Now there is innovative new gaming technology in development. Here are four technological developments that are set to change the future of gaming success:

 

Super-sensitive motion tracking

Motion gaming is set to escape the living room and be introduced to our portable devices.  Technology such as the Leap Motion device will be controlling games on laptops and PCs. The controller masters super-sensitive tracking of hand and finger actions, accurately detecting movements as small as 1/100th of a millimetre.

What’s more, motion gaming of the future won’t even require players to move their bodies to control the game. Eye tracking sensors will integrate into smartphone and gaming devices to allow control of games with eye movements alone.

 

Motion gaming for smartphones

The 2014 Silver Edison Award for the most innovative new product of the year was awarded to Rolocule Games for their Rolomotion technology. Their product turns your smartphone into your gaming controller so you can control games on your television. The Rolomotion app links to a smart TV and utilises the in-built sensors to control the game with the players’ natural movements.

 

Immersive gaming

Headsets that allow complete immersion into the game are already in the pipeline, with the Oculus Rift being highly anticipated. The headset will allow the gamer to experience the game with a 100˚ field of vision and head tracking abilities that let you look around as in real life.

Combine the headgear with a 360˚ treadmill and you have total immersion into the gaming reality. Virtuix are set to release their treadmill that allows players to walk and run in any direction within their virtual realities.

 

EEG headsets

EEG headsets in gaming are bringing the ability to monitor players’ emotions and focus and translate that into gaming commands. Throw Trucks With Your Mind is one example in which an EEG headset measures electrical impulses in the scalp to gauge the players focus. Normal directional gaming controls are used, but the level of focus of the gamer determines the power at which objects are thrown in the game.

 

This article was provided by The IT Job Board, who are currently advertising over 150 game developer jobs on their site.

Posted in: Apps & Games, Editorial
By May 22, 2014 Read More →

Another massive security breach at Ebay – What you need to know!

Ebay are encouraging all users to change their passwords.

Ebay are encouraging all users to change their passwords.

Ebay has fallen victim to a massive security breach, proving that not even corporate giants are immune to hacking. According to USA Today, the huge cyber-attack occurred sometime between February and March; however, officials state that the breach was not discovered until May.

Triggered by hackers who managed to gain access to employee login credentials, it allowed the intruders to target the main database and steal usernames, passwords and other personal information. 145 million active users’ data has now been compromised and Ebay are strongly urging everybody – even those with inactive accounts – to change their passwords.

 

Widespread panic

It is still not known how much information was actually stolen; however, Ebay are confident that they will find an answer within the next couple of weeks.

After this widespread disaster many users are now stuck wondering how to increase their security systems, not just on their online accounts, but also their home PCs. The popularity of cloud based security systems is steadily increasing and companies such as Cheeky Munkey are at the top of the security food chain, providing innovative and bespoke systems that are near impenetrable.  

On a positive note, Ebay have stated that the breached database did not hold any financial information; furthermore, there is no evidence to suggest that the hackers have attempted to gain entry to Paypal. However, regardless of whether or not users are encountering problems, Ebay are taking the security breach very seriously.

 

Changing passwords

Studies conducted by Software Advice, a company that review IT security software, revealed that 67% of Internet users who have accounts registered with companies that have suffered from hacks don’t change their passwords. Hackers can remain under the radar for months, possibly even years, withholding user information and waiting for the opportune moment to strike; therefore, even those who don’t suffer from issues straight away are still subject to problems in the future.

Experts state that the best way to combat hackers is to choose a password that has a unique combination of letters, numbers and symbols. Most websites now contain a password strength indicator that can give new users an idea of how well protected they are.

Having a different password for every website can also be beneficial. While this can be difficult to maintain, password managers are available to make the process easier. These programs will require one master password in order to gain access to every other password; therefore, this “master password” should be very strong. In addition, password manager software usually contains a generator that will create highly complex passwords for website registration; ensuring users have the best possible security systems available.

 

Conclusion

While this Ebay security breach is unfortunate and inconvenient, it’s certainly been a wakeup call. Most Internet users aren’t aware of the dangers of hacking, and sometimes, a widespread panic is just what the world needs for people start taking the severity of cyber-attacks seriously.

 

Image Credit: Cult of Android

 

Posted in: Editorial, News
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