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In a case that may involve potential privacy violations of thousands of people, researchers have found that Israeli spyware maker NSO Group resorted to using phone location data of real people while showcasing its Covid-19 contact-tracing software to governments and journalists, TechCrunch reported.
The NSO Group launched its contact-tracing technology named “Fleming” in March 2020 amid rising Covid-19 cases around the world.
Two months later, a database belonging to the Fleming program was found unprotected online.
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The database contained more than five lakh data points for more than 30,000 distinct mobile phones.
The NSO Group quickly secured the database when TechCrunch reported, but the Israeli company denied there was a security breach.
Forensic Architecture, an academic unit at Goldsmiths, University of London, received and analyzed a sample of the exposed database, which suggested that the data was based on “real” personal data belonging to unsuspecting civilians, putting their private information at risk.
“The sample of the exposed database we received has over 149,000 data points… We investigated the nature of the data: whether it was based on “real” personal data belonging to many unsuspecting civilians and, if so, whether it was properly obfuscated in a way protecting private identities, or if it was “dummy” data,” the researchers said on Wednesday.
Want to read more in Hindi? Checkout: शोधकर्ताओं ने चंद्रमा पर 1,09,000 से अधिक प्रभावी क्रेटर्स की पहचान की
“The spatial ‘irregularities’ in our sample — a common signature of real mobile location tracks — further support our assessment that this is real data. Therefore, the dataset is most likely not ‘dummy’ nor computer-generated data, but rather reflects the movement of actual individuals, possibly acquired from telecommunications carriers or a third-party source.”
The exposed data included location information from Rwanda, Israel, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and Bahrain, the researchers said.
NSO’s Covid-19 contact-tracing software is designed to make it easier for governments to visualize and track the spread of the virus by feeding location data from cell phone companies. It aggressively pitched the system earlier this year.
NSO is better known for ‘Pegasus’ — a malware sold to governments to enable the remote infection and surveillance of private smartphones. (IANS)
Khadi is no longer a dull, drab fabric meant only for politicians' wardrobes. A fashion show organised by the Khadi Gramodyog Board as part of the Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav to mark the 75th year of India's Independence showcased the use of Khadi in traditional, as well as, contemporary and festive wear. From lehengas in resplendent Khadi silk to western clothes and casual wear, the models on Thursday night displayed new facts of the fabric.
Several well-known Indian designers including Ritu Beri, Farah Ansari, Rina Dhaka, Asma Husain, Aditi Rastogi and Himmat Singh showcased their designs. Gaurav Gaur directed the fashion show with clothes like lehengas, kurtis, kurta pajamas and partywear.
Lucknow's chikankari and silk artisans also participated in the event. A wedding collection in Khadi was the highlight of the show. "The show was based on the concept 'Khadi for nation, Khadi for fashion' and the fabric for all costumes was provided by Khadi Gramodyog Board," said a spokesman. (IANS/ MBI)
Keywords: lucknow, clothes, lehengas, fashion, fabric
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Intel saw its stock tumbling by more than 8 percent after the chipmaker said the industry-wide component shortage affected its PC chip business during the third quarter (Q3). Intel CEO Pat Gelsinger told CNBC late on Thursday that he didn't expect the semiconductor shortage to end until 2023. "We're in the worst of it now, every quarter, next year we'll get incrementally better, but they're not going to have supply-demand balance until 2023," Gelsinger was quoted as saying.
The company delivered its Q3 results with revenue up 5 percent (year-over-year) driven by strong demand in its DCG and IoTG businesses, despite the highly constrained industry-wide supply environment. "Q3 revenue was $18.1 billion slightly below our guide due to shipping and supply constraints that impacted our businesses," George S. Davis, Chief Financial Officer, said in a statement. He also announced plans to retire from Intel in May 2022. In the third quarter, the company generated $9.9 billion in cash from operations and paid dividends of $1.4 billion.
| Photo by Slejven Djurakovic on Unsplash
According to the company, the demand remains strong in its PC business with particular strength in commercial, desktop, and higher-end consumer notebooks. In an earnings call, Gelsinger said that the digitization of everything accelerated by the four superpowers of AI, pervasive connectivity, cloud to edge infrastructure, and ubiquitous compute are driving the sustained need for more semiconductors. "The market is expected to double to $1 trillion by 2030. In that timeframe, the market for leading-edge nodes will rise to be over 50 percent of the total, while the market for leading-edge foundry services will grow at twice the rate of the semi-industry overall," he envisioned.
PC demand remains very strong, and "We believe the 2021 TAM (total addressable market) will grow double digits even as ecosystem shortages constrain our customer's ability to ship finished systems," Gelsinger added. "Customers continue to choose Intel for their datacenter needs and our third-gen scalable Xeon processor Ice Lake has shipped over 1 million units since launching in April, and we expect to ship over 1 million units again in Q4 alone," he informed. (IANS/MBI)
Keywords: Intel, Chip, processor, Desktop, AI, Semiconductor, PC, Processor
Micro-blogging site Twitter has announced that its audio chatroom Spaces is now open to anyone who wants to host. The Spaces team in a tweet said that the users on both Android and iOS will now be able to host Spaces. "The time has arrived -- we're now rolling out the ability for everyone on iOS and Android to host a Space," the firm said in a tweet.
Earlier this year, the company had limited access to hosting Spaces to accounts with at least 600 followers, saying that it found these accounts would be more likely to have a good experience due to the existing audience. Twitter recently announced a new accelerator programme for creators on its audio conversation platform Spaces, to "discover and reward" around 150 creators with technical, financial and marketing support.
The 'Twitter Spaces Spark' programme is a three-month accelerator initiative. Those selected will get a stipend of $2,500 per month, $500 in monthly ad credits to spend promoting their Spaces on Twitter and early access to new Twitter features. They will also get support from Twitter's official social media handles, and "opportunities for prioritised in-app discoverability for well-performing Spaces".
Twitter has also announced plans to roll out paid Ticketed Spaces for iOS users where some hosts on its live audio feature can now sell access to Ticketed Spaces. Twitter had previously said that it will take a 3 per cent cut of creators' earnings from Ticketed Spaces. (IANS/ MBI)
Keywords: android, creators, ticketed, access, twitter, spaces