|I'm Rich Stroffolino and these are the tech headlines for the week that was|
|Motherboard reported that Kaspersky Labs found malicious actors had compromised a server for a software update tool from Asus, causing the company to install a malicious backdoor to thousands of computers over five months in 2018. Dubbed ShadowHammer, the file appeared as a signed update from Asus and researchers estimate it hit roughly 500,000 machines, although it appears only about 600 were specifically targeted via MAC addresses. When downloaded, the malware would compare the MAC address to a hashed list of values, if it found a match, it would call back to a fake Asus support site, and download a second-stage backdoor. Kaspersky says the group behind the attack seems to be the same that compromised the tool CCleaner back in 2017. ASUS confirmed that its live update tool had been targeted by Advanced Persistent Threat|
|The US Supreme Court rejected an appeal by Zappos to throw out a class action lawsuit brought by users affected by a 2012 data breach. Zappos has argued that only those customers who's stolen data was used maliciously have grounds to sue. A Neveda federal judge ruled in favor of Zappos, but the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals overturned the ruling, stating users could sue if they can show there is a substantial risk of harm and that it is impending.|
|Sources have told Bloomberg that YouTube cancelled plans for high-end dramas and comedies as part of a pull back from paid original streaming content. The shift will mean that all content on YouTube will eventually stream for free with ad support, although release strategies for existing content is still undetermined.||http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-03-24/youtube-bows-out-of-hollywood-arms-race-with-netflix-and-amazon|
|The Wall Street Journal reports that Nintendo is readying two new Switch consoles that may be available in 2019, according to anonymous parts supplier and software developer sources. One will be targeted at "avid videogamers", but still less powerful than the PS4 Pro or Xbox One X. The other will be a cheaper model that will lose features like vibration, that Nintendo reportedly hopes will be a successor to the 3DS. The report claims both will be announced at E3 and possibly released in time for the holiday shopping season.|
|Here’s everything Apple announced at their services focused event on Monday. TV Channels, which organizes various on-demand and ad-free subscriptions within the Apple TV app with apps like HBO now longer bouncing users to a different app. TV Channels comes in May to tvOS and iOS and to the Mac this fall, and the Apple TV app will also be made available to smart TVs, Rokus, and Amazon Fire devices as well.|
TV+, an ad-free subscription service with content available offline. Apple promised new releases every month and that the service would be available in 100 countries this fall.
News+ which adds adds more than 300 magazines/newspapers as a premium tier for $9.99/month including family sharing, and with the first month free. It was available Monday as an iOS update to users in the US and Canada, and will be available to Australia, the UK, and Europe later this year.
Apple Card, a Masercard backed by Goldman Sachs, offers 3% cash back on Apple purchases, 2% back on Apple Pay purchases, and 1% on physical card purchases. It has no no late fees, annual fees, international fees or over-limit fees. In addition, aApple says it won’t sell data to third parties. It will be available sometime this summer in the US.
Finally, Apple announced Apple Arcade, featuring exclusive games available on any iPhone, iPad, Mac, or Apple TV. Offline play is supported, and family sharing is included. although no pricing was announced. Arcade comes out in the fall to more than 150 countries.
|The European Parliament has given final approval to the Copyright Directive. The legislation was designed to update copyright law in Europe for the "internet age." Members of parliament voted 348 in favor, 274 opposee. A last-minute proposal to remove Article 13, AKA the ‘upload filter’ — was rejected by five votes, althought it was later reported thattAt least two, possibly three Swedish MEPs pressed the wrong button when voting on allowing ammendments. Two other Swedish MEPs that might have voted for the ammendments were absent. . The directive now heads to EU member states, who will have 24 months to translate it into national law.||https://www.theverge.com/2019/3/26/18280726/europe-copyright-directive|
|The US Department of Housing and Urban Development filed charges against Facebook for housing discrimination in its ad targeting system. The charges are the latest in a complaint filed in August 2018, finding there's reasonable cause that Facebook hs served ads that violate the Fair Housing Act. HUD Secretary Ben Carson said in a statement. “Using a computer to limit a person’s housing choices can be just as discriminatory as slamming a door in someone’s face.” In 2016 ProPublica reported that an “ethnic affinities” tool could be used to exclude black or hispanic users from seeing specific ads, which could violate federal law if it affected housing or employment information.||https://www.theverge.com/2019/3/28/18285178/facebook-hud-lawsuit-fair-housing-discrimination|
|Facebook announced several transparancy chaMges to ad practices. It launched a new Ad Library, which provides a searchable index of all active ads about any subject, as well as inactive political and issue ads. The library will also show page creation dates, name changes, mergers with other pages, and where the page is managed from, as well as mechanisms to report ads for violating terms of service. This builds on Facebooks Ad Archive released in May, which included only political and policy ads. Facebook also announced changes to ads for the upcoming EU parlimentary elections, requiring advertisers to be authorized to run ads in a given country regarding the election, and requiring all election ads to be clearly labeled as such, including a "“Paid for by” disclosure at the bottom. This will show who paid for an ad, the overall budget used, and provide contact information.||http://techcrunch.com/2019/03/28/facebook-ads-library/|
|A British review released Thursday found “significant” security problems with Huawei's telecommunications equipment. This follows a US effort to ban Huawei products from next-generation wireless networks. This latest reports found there were “underlying defects” in Huawei’s software engineering and security processes that both governments and hackers could exploit, risking national security. The repot stopped short of banningHuawei equipment, but was endorsed by the country’s top cybersecurity agency. Earlier this week, the European Union issued recommendations on securing 5G networks that also didn't call for a Huawei ban.||https://www.nytimes.com/2019/03/28/technology/huawei-security-british-report.html|
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|END OF SHOW|