Tech Friday


  • Microsoft is making a big push for Windows 10:
  • Microsoft recently announced that after nearly 4 years, Windows 10 topped 800 million users
  • One thing driving adoption is the pending end of support for Windows 7. Mainstream support ends in less than a 1 year after a nearly 10 year run
  • End of support means that Windows 7 software will no longer receive updates, including security updates
  • There are still hundreds of millions of PCs running Windows 7
  • Support for Windows 7 will be available, at a cost. And that cost will increase over time
  • Experts expect to many Windows 10 migration projects to be completed before the end of the year
  • Microsoft wants to move everyone to Windows 10 in order to streamline support and to encourage the use of new technologies such as HoloLens
  • A Microsoft nagging campaign has stated to convince people to upgrade to Windows 10
  • Popups will remind Windows 7 users that free support for Windows 7 ends January 14, 2020
  • Learn more about it here:https://blogs.windows.com/windowsexperience/2019/03/12/making-the-transition-to-windows-10-and-office-365/
  • Tech giants push toothless privacy bill:
  • Washington state is looking to pass a privacy bill supported by the technology giants, but panned by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU)
  • Washington State Senator Reuven Carlyle has said the bill borrows best practices from the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and California’s Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA)
  • Microsoft President Brad Smith said that he believes the law could become a de facto standard globally because Microsoft and Amazon are both based in Washington
  • Some privacy experts have said the bill is a step backwards from the CCPA or GDPR
  • Shankar Narayan, director of the Washington ACLU’s Technology and Liberty Project said "Nobody wants data privacy for consumers more than we do" but this bill won’t get us there
  • The ACLU has supported a separate bill that called for stronger data regulations and a ban on facial recognition technology until it could be vetted for bias against people of color
  • The ACLU tested Amazon Rekognition, used by police in Orlando, Florida, and found that it falsely matched 28 members of Congress with mugshots
  • The proposed bill recently cleared the Washington State Senate and is now in the Washington State House
  • This bill bears watching as it could become a de facto stanadard for the nation. In February, the US House and Senate were debating a new, nationwide data privacy law. Get more information about it here:https://nakedsecurity.sophos.com/2019/02/28/us-house-and-senate-debate-new-data-privacy-law/
  • Hacker remotely kills car engines through GPS tracking apps:
  • A hacker cracked thousands of accounts belonging to users of two GPS tracker apps
  • He was able to monitor the locations of tens of thousands of vehicles and kill the engine of some vehicles in motion
  • The hacker, known as "L&M", told Motherboard he hacked into more than 7,000 iTrack accounts and more than 20,000 ProTrack accounts
  • These are apps used by companies to monitor and manage fleet vehicles
  • L&M was able to monitor vehicles in countries including South Africa, Morocco, India and the Philippines
  • In some cases, the software can kill the engine of vehicles that are stopped or are traveling 12 miles per hour or less
  • L&M discovered that customers are given a default password of 123456
  • He captured "millions of usernames" using an Application Programming Interface (API) and wrote a script to attempt to login using those usernames and the default password
  • "I can absolutely make a big traffic problem all over the world" L&M said. "I have fully [sic] control hundred of thousands of vehicles, and by one touch, I can stop these vehicles engines." he told Motherboard
  • L&M contacted the companies in question to ask for reward
  • "They warned after my attack [sic], and that was a success for me. To force them take care about security" L&M said