International stories and articles from our Flipboard mag.

SEP
17

How to back up and prepare your iPhone prior to installing iOS 13

iOS 13 adds a dark mode to your iPhone, and much more. 

You don't have to have one of Apple's new iPhone 11s to get iOS 13. On Thursday, Apple will release iOS 13 for iPhone and iPod Touch owners. The software update brings with it plenty of new features, including a dedicated dark mode, a new swipe keyboard and a revamped Photos app (complete with video editing tools). But before you anxiously begin tapping that update button, there are a few things you should do on your iPhone to ensure everything goes as smoothly as possible. 

You don't want to be one of those people posting on Facebook that iOS 13 lost your contacts and you need phone numbers -- there's no reason for that to happen in 2019. 

Take a few minutes right now and do some fall cleaning, then create a backup of your iPhone; just in case. Then after you've done all of that, install iOS 13

Now playing: Watch this: Hands-on with the iPhone 11's ultra-wide-angle camera

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SEP
12

Firefox Launches Browser-Based VPN: How to Try It Now

Mozilla is publicly beta-testing its own browser-based VPN-like service, and if you're a U.S. resident, you can get in on the action.

The service, officially called the Firefox Private Network, is free to use (for now) to anyone based in the United States with a Firefox account and the desktop Firefox browser (Windows, Mac or Linux). To try it out, go to https://private-network.firefox.com/ and install the browser extension.

The Firefox Private Network is not a true VPN, and to its credit, Firefox doesn't call it one. The service will encrypt only the web traffic handled by the Firefox browser on your desktop. Unlike true VPN services, it won't secure the data handled by other internet-facing applications such as email clients, Spotify or online games.

MORE: Best VPN Services

Nor will the service let you watch streaming video from overseas, as it doesn't let you choose from which country to appear to be connecting to online services. We logged onto Netflix while connected the Firefox Private Network, but got just the regular old U.S. version of the streaming service. 

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SEP
05

Facebook's dating service is launching in the US

The company said that its matchmaking service, Dating, is finally launching in the United States on Thursday, more than a year after the company first announced the feature.

If that sounds unusually slow for the company that once famously had the motto "move fast and break things," you're right.

"We've been really slow, actually, with this rollout," Charmaine Hung, a product manager at Facebook Dating, told CNN Business. "We really wanted to make sure we got it right because dating is so personal."

The US is now the 20th country to have access to Dating. The feature allows anyone with a Facebook account who is 18 or older to set up a dating profile from within the Facebook mobile app.

Facebook's decision to move into the dating space may strike some as brazen or tone deaf. For more than a year, the social media company has come under fire for its data privacy practices, most notably with the Cambridge Analytica scandal. Now Facebook is asking users to trust it with one of the most intimate activities they do online: search for love.

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AUG
27

Windows 10: We're now gearing up for 1909 with new throttled release, says Microsoft

Microsoft's plan to split Windows 10 from shell is happening Windows 10 preview shows signs of Windows OS separating from the shell in line with Microsoft's modular plans.

Microsoft has released a new preview of Windows 10 version 1909 from the 19H2 branch, but the update is more about testing how it releases Windows 10 than delivering new features. 

The latest preview of Windows 10 19H2 is part of Microsoft's new approach to improving feature updates after the problems encountered during the delayed Windows 10 1809 release

The company in July revealed plans to roll out future September-targeted Windows 10 releases more like a monthly update, in this case for devices already on the current May 2019 Update. 

SEE: 20 pro tips to make Windows 10 work the way you want (free PDF)

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AUG
22

We tested popular cellphones for radiofrequency radiation. Now the FCC is investigating.

The Apple iPhone 7 was set to operate at full power and secured below a tub of clear liquid, specially formulated to simulate human tissue.

With the push of a button, a robotic arm swung into action, sending a pencil-thin probe dipping into the tub. For 18 minutes, it repeatedly measured the amount …

Original author: Sam
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AUG
22

Google proposes new privacy and anti-fingerprinting controls for the web

Google today announced a new long-term initiative that, if fully realized, will make it harder for online marketers and advertisers to track you across the web. This new proposal follows the company’s plans to change how cookies in Chrome work and to make it easier for users to block tracking cookies.

Today’s proposal for a new open standard extends this by looking at how Chrome can close the loopholes that the digital advertising ecosystem can use to circumvent that. And soon, that may mean that your browser will feature new options that give you more control over how much you share without losing your anonymity.

Over the course of the last few months, Google started talking about a “Privacy Sandbox,” which would allow for a certain degree of personalization while still protecting a user’s privacy.

“We have a great reputation on security. […] I feel the way we earned that reputation was by really moving the web forward,” Justin Schuh, Google’s engineering director for Chrome security and privacy told me. “We provide a lot of benefits, worked on a lot of different fronts. What we’re trying to do today is basically do the same thing for privacy: have the same kind of big, bold vision for how we think privacy should work on the web, how we should make browsers and the web more private by default.”

Here is the technical side of what Google is proposing today: To prevent the kind of fingerprinting that makes your machine uniquely identifiable as yours, Google is proposing the idea of a privacy budget. With this, a browser could allow websites to make enough API calls to get enough information about you to group your into a larger cohort but not to the point where you give up your anonymity. Once a site has exhausted this budget, the browser stops responding to any further calls.

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AUG
22

15 courses to improve your social media knowledge

What are your goals for social media in the coming year?  

You might want to consider a little extra training to learn the latest trends and tips for bolstering your social media presence. Here are 15 top online resources and classes you can take.

[RELATED: Earn recognition for your incredible comms efforts]

The best part is, most are free.

Social media training from Hootsuite Academy

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AUG
19

How to Make Sure Your Passwords Haven't Been Stolen

One of the best things about having a solid password is that you don’t have to change it. If it’s strong, unique, and hasn’t been compromised by an …
Original author: Murphy
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AUG
17

Take these 5 critical steps to protect yourself from cybercrime

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AUG
11

Microsoft patent reveals controllers to transform smartphones into handheld Xbox

A Microsoft patent filed last month revealed plans for controllers that will transform smartphones into handheld Xbox consoles, in what may be the system’s first foray into gaming on the go.

The patent, filed on July 9, is for a charging device for removable input modules. While there is no specific mention of the Xbox in the application, a couple of the drawings feature all-too-familiar buttons and symbols.

The patent is specifically for the charger of the controllers, which the filing said will temporarily attach to a touchscreen device to provide input controls. Possible features for the controllers include built-in speakers, a headphone jack, and wireless headphones support.

The controllers will address certain issues commonly experienced in games for a touchscreen device such as a smartphone, including slipping fingers, obscured parts of the display, and the cramped space for on-screen controls.

Designer Sarang Sheth from Yanko Design took a stab at mock-ups for the controller mentioned in the Microsoft patent, creating what may be the first look at an upcoming Nintendo Switch challenger.

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AUG
11

Clever attack uses SQLite databases to hack other apps, malware servers

SQLite databases can be modified in such a way that they execute malicious code inside other apps that rely on them to store data, security researchers have revealed.

In demos presented at the DEF CON security conference in Las Vegas today, Check Point security researcher Omer Gull showed demos of a tainted SQLite database hijacking the command and control server of a malware operation, and malware using SQLite to achieve persistence on iOS devices.

Clever SQLite attack lets hackers get iOS persistence

The idea is that vulnerabilities in how third-party apps read data from SQLite databases allows a third-party to hide malicious code in the SQLite database's data.

When the third-party app, such as iMessage, reads the tainted SQLite database, it also inadvertantly executes the hidden code.

In the iMessage demo he presented at DEF CON, Gull showed how malware or a threat actor that manages to replace or edit the "AddressBook.sqlitedb" file can insert malicious code inside an iPhone's addressbook.

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AUG
11

Warning Issued For Apple's 1.4 Billion iPad And iPhone Users

Apple is having a bad week. Just days after Face ID was hacked and the company’s “user-hostile” iPhone battery practices were exposed, an extraordinary story of Apple neglect has resulted in a warning every iPhone and iPad user needs to know about.  

Every iPhone released since 2011 is potentially vulnerable to having their data and passwords stolen

Apple

Picked up by AppleInsider, security firm Check Point has revealed it has found a way to hack every iPhone and iPad running iOS 8 right up to betas of iOS 13. This spread covers eight years of devices (iOS 8 supports the 2011 iPhone 4S) and, with Tim Cook stating there are 1.4BN active iOS devices around the world, this is worrying news for the owners of pretty much all of them. 

What Check Point discovered is that the Contacts app built into iOS can be exploited using the industry-standard SQLite database so that any search of Contacts can trick the device into running malicious code capable of stealing user data and passwords. 

"SQLite is the most wide-spread database engine in the world," said Check Point. "It is available in every operating system, desktop and mobile phone. Windows 10, macOS, iOS, Chrome, Safari, Firefox and Android are popular users of SQLite."

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AUG
10

Google Warning: Tens Of Millions Of Android Phones Come Preloaded With Dangerous Malware

Getty

Millions of shiny new Android smartphones are being purchased with dangerous malware factory-installed, according to Google's own security research team. There have been multiple headlines about the millions of harmful apps being installed from the Play Store, but this is something new. And the danger to unsuspecting users, trusting that new boxed devices are safe and clean, is that some of that preinstalled malware can download other malware in the background, commit ad fraud, or even take over its host device.

Android is a thriving open-source community, which is great for innovation but not so great when threat actors seize the opportunity to hide malware in basic software loads that come on boxed devices. New phones can have as many as 400 apps factory-installed, many of which we just ignore. But it transpires that many of those apps have not been vetted. The apps themselves will work as billed, providing a useful capability or service, so we can be forgiven for not considering the risk that might lurk within.

Google's Maddie Stone, a security researcher with the company's Project Zero, shared her team's findings at Black Hat on Thursday. "If malware or security issues come as preinstalled apps," she warned, "then the damage it can do is greater, and that's why we need so much reviewing, auditing and analysis."

The risk impacts Android's Open-Source Project (AOSP), a lower-cost alternative to the full-fat version. AOSP is installed on lower-cost smartphones where cheaper software alternatives help keep prices down. This means owners of Android-badged devices from the likes of Samsung and Google itself are safe from this particular risk.

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AUG
01

Edward Snowden says Facebook is spying on you

Well, yeah.

Image: Getty Images for WIRED25

By Jack Morse2019-08-01 19:53:50 UTC

The U.S. government is not the only one that's watching you. 

So warns famed NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden, who on Thursday called Facebook to task for spying on its users. What's more, he promised to teach people how to fight back against such corporate surveillance

"In the weeks ahead, I aim to explain how each of these site [Facebook, Instagram, Youtube] spies on you, and methods to limit how much they know about you," he tweeted. "If you use them, keep an eye out."

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AUG
01

Using AirDrop could allow hackers to obtain your phone number

Turn off Bluetooth if you don't want to broadcast any personal, potentially identifying info.

Image: lili sams / mashable

By Raymond Wong2019-08-01 15:40:48 UTC

Apple's AirDrop is undeniably convenient for sending photos, videos, links, and more between iPhones, iPads, and Macs. But there's one thing you probably didn't know AirDrop's sharing: part of your phone number, which in the wrong hands, could be used to recover your full digits.

Security researchers at Hexway (via Ars Technica) have discovered a "flaw" in AirDrop that can used to obtain unsuspecting iPhone users' phone numbers using software installed on a laptop and a Bluetooth and WiFi adapter to sniff them out.

Because of the way AirDrop works — it uses Bluetooth LE (Low Energy) to create a peer-to-peer WiFi network between devices for sharing — it broadcasts partial hashes of an iPhone user's phone number in order establish the device as a sending/receiving contact when sending a file.

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AUG
01

Facebook Is Putting Us All on the Map

One of Facebook’s continent-spanning population density maps. Credit: Facebook

2019 has been a distinctly dramatic year for Facebook. Since January, the social media behemoth has been hit with a $5 billion fine for privacy violations and remains embroiled in U.S. antitrust investigations. In June, the company announced the release of Libra, its very own form of cryptocurrency, sparking criticism and speculation around the world.

Amidst all this hubbub, you may have missed that Facebook has also begun using artificial intelligence to map most of the population of the African continent. Facebook researchers combined computer vision techniques, population data, and high-resolution satellite imagery to search for built-up structures across the continent. They then created population density maps based on the number of buildings they observed.

Facebook’s Connectivity Lab has already released similar population maps for 22 countries, including Malawi, South Africa, Ghana, Haiti, and Sri Lanka, but this is its first continent-wide effort. Eventually the company plans to map population density around the world.

Facebook positions its map-making as a humanitarian effort emphasizing how the data (which is freely available to everyone) will enable aid agencies to “determine how populations are distributed even in remote areas, so that health care workers can better reach households and relief workers can better distribute aid.” It’s rhetoric that sounds rather similar to how Facebook is pitching the Libra cryptocurrency, which it claims will help poor people access financial services. Both Facebook’s altruistic-sounding maps and Libra invite the same key question: What’s in it for Facebook?

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AUG
01

How To Optimize Your LinkedIn Profile With 5 Easy Steps

 If your online presence is not optimized for discovery, you (or your business) aren't relevant, point-blank. 

Within minutes of receiving a referral or researching a new job, business, or client, you start typing into a search engine to research that person or business. This is standard means your online platform can make or break whether a lead converts to a win. 

One mission-critical cog in the online visibility machine is your LinkedIn profile. You may know how effective an active LinkedIn profile is, but being active alone will provide little to no return. Here are some simple optimization tips to add to your profile to improve your search rankings and start converting those potential leads into conversions.

Headline 

Your headline content is critical for search visibility. Include applicable keywords and search terms that will help surface your profile when being searched. 

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JUL
31

How to make money from home (full-time or part-time)

The commute. The hours. The work. Everything about your full-time, in-office job is leaving you lifeless and miserable. You’re ready for a change, but unsure of what your next move will be.

Have you considered working from home? The stigma surrounding work from home positions is often drawn from the idea of joining a multi-level marketing regime. However, there are so many more options for work from home positions than your typical pyramid scheme.

In this article, we’ll take a deep dive into real ways to make money from home.

Follow Ladders’ magazines on Flipboard covering Happiness, Productivity, Job Satisfaction, Neuroscience, and more!

 

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JUL
31

Face filter bug reveals young vlogger is actually a middle-aged woman

She had built a reputation on Chinese social media with her “sweet and healing voice” which had enchanted thousands of followers. She was “worshipped” as a “cute goddess” – youthful and lively. Until a technical glitch during one of her livestreams revealed her to be a middle-aged woman, and not the young girl she presented herself as.

This is the story of Chinese vlogger “Your Highness Qiao Biluo,” who has found herself in the middle of heated discussions on beauty standards after a face filter bug unmasked her carefully crafted online persona, beloved by over 100,000 users on Douyu – a streaming service often likened to Twitch.

The incident took place on July 25 during a livestream with another Douyu influencer known as Qingzy, according to local outlet Lychee News.

The Global Times reports the accidental face reveal took place after fans urged the streamer to drop the filter. While she initially refused, she agreed to do so if they donated a certain amount. “I can’t show my face until I receive gifts worth 100,000 yuan ($11,950),” Biluo said. “After all, I’m a good-looking host.”

Followers were quick to pour in donations, with the largest reported to be around 40,000 yuan (about $5,800), according to BBC. This is when the filter suddenly malfunctioned, revealing her face to the thousands of followers. Biluo didn’t even realize the filter had stopped working, until viewers started fleeing the stream en masse.

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JUL
31

Apple Just Announced Something Unthinkable About the iPhone. Here's Why It's Actually Great News

Yesterday, Apple announced its most  recent quarterly results, and while iPhone sales have continued to cool, there's good news overall as the company beat expectations. Expectations, it turns out, are everything.

In fact, one of the most interesting things we learned is that you can make the case that the iPhone is no longer Apple's most important product. Which is saying a lot considering that it's probably the most successful product, ever. It transformed Apple from a niche computer manufacturer into the first trillion-dollar company.

It also made Apple the most profitable company on the planet and increased the company's revenue by a factor of 10. It's been a no-brainer to say that the iPhone is Apple's most important product ever--but not anymore. At least not if you measure it by its importance to the future of Apple. 

Because something has happened--for the first time in seven years, the iPhone represents less than half of Apple's total sales.

Certainly, the iPhone is important. In fact, the iPhone still generates enough revenue that, if it were its own company, it would rank in the top 30 on the Fortune 500. Higher, in fact, than UPS or Wells Fargo. It also still makes up the largest chunk of Apple's revenue. 

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