Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Google I/O keynote roundup: Project Glass, Nexus 7, Nexus Q and Jelly Bean

Google IO keynote roundup Glass, Nexus 7, Nexus Q and Jelly Bean

Did you keep up with everything Google announced at today's I/O keynote? Believe us, we had a difficult time too. Covering everything from Jelly Bean to jumping out of perfectly good airplanes, there was plenty to keep the audience oohing and ahhing. It makes sense to have this plethora of news in one handy place, right? After the break you'll find every piece of action that Sergey and Friends covered in Moscone West this morning -- as well as the video of the keynote -- so make sure to save a little extra time for yourself to enjoy every last bit of it.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Analyst predicts Apple iPhone 5 to be a true world phone when launched

With the Worldwide Developers Conference out of the way and Apple successfully unveiling their MacBook Pro with a Retina Display, all eyes are now focusing on the brand’s next hardware announcement, which is highly expected to be that of the iPhone 5. Since Apple stuck with the same design for the iPhone 4S, a lot of talk surrounding the design of the upcoming iPhone has been surfacing. However, there is also interest generating as to what other features will be thrown into it. Commenting on this is a report by CNET, which states that the next iPhone will be a true 3G/ 4G world phone, along with having significant improvements over the iPhone 4S.

The report states, “The sixth-generation iPhone is expected to sport three big improvements, says analyst Shaw Wu. Picking up intel from suppliers, Wu sees a new form factor, a slightly larger screen, and 4G LTE support built into Apple's next flagship phone. These features should help the upcoming iPhone outscore the iPhone 4 and 4S at picking up new customers and enticing existing ones to upgrade.”

Larger display to be featured here (Concept image - Fuse Chicken)

There has been a lot of talk about iOS 6 and how it will benefit China. The country has the biggest smartphone market in the world and Apple plans to offer services that cater specifically to the country. At the Worldwide Developers Conference, Apple had announced that Siri could now understand Mandarin and Cantonese, so one would expect the iPhone 5 to adopt specifications that can work well on a global scale and not just cater to the U.S audiences. According to the report, “The phone (iPhone5) will work with China Mobile's proprietary TD-SCDMA 3G network, says the analyst. Both China Mobile and China Unicom have been testing 4G LTE. But full adoption of LTE is a few years away, so support for 3G is crucial if Apple is to gain further traction in the Chinese market.” Wu goes on to state that by combining iOS 6 with the iPhone 5, Apple will be a few steps closer to offering the iPhone on China Mobile.

The other major news surrounding the upcoming iPhone pertains to the redesign that it is expected to feature. The screen size of the iPhone has remained the same, since it was first launched. Apple is expected to increase the size of the display to 4-inch diagonally. While the width will not change, the brand will raise the height, thereby giving it an aspect ratio of 1136 x 640.

Other major changes include the relocation of the headphone jack from the top to the bottom, the redesigned speaker grille and the connector dock. With the possible change in design, we can also see that Apple will change the design of the dock connector at the bottom and it will be a lot smaller in comparison. This change is believed that is to be implemented is done in order to fit the handset with LTE capabilities.

Military hunting smartphone safety to hold off enemy bugs, spooks


Ah, smartphones -- the delightful little slates carry our contacts, our content -- even our cash, and they still fit right in our pockets. No surprise then, that a lost or stolen phone can be a minor disaster -- or a major security risk (just ask the President). Now that soldiers are packing them to send GPS coordinates or situational images in the field -- on top of using them at home -- DARPA has enlisted security company Invincea to fortify the devices. Its first effort, encrypting OS files and filling the memory of a lost phone with worthless data, has already been deployed to 3,000 troops in Afghanistan. Its next target is to cloister apps into virtual rooms within the OS, locking off access to sensitive parts of the phone like its GPS or contact lists. That would keep any nasty bits of malware from potentially gaining root privileges so soldiers can fight, and Facebook, without compromise.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Firefox teases something 'big' coming for Android next week

Firefox teases something 'big' coming for Android next week

There's been a steady flow of betas for Firefox's Android offering and now the official Twitter account promises something "big" on the way next week, along with this image. The size declaration plus a lack of updated features (specifically Flash support) on tablets so far has us looking there for something new, although the image clearly shows a phone with the words "Fast. Smart. Safe." Also curious is an update for the Firefox beta on Android today which the Twitter account also admonishes those looking for an early preview of next week's news to check out. Finally, there's the timing, as Firefox's main browser rival Chrome has been rumored to be taking over as the standard bearer in Android Jelly Bean next week during Google I/O. Leave all relevant speculation or information in the comments below.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Flashback Friday: Microsoft’s Original Surface

Flashback Friday

If the name “Surface” seemed familiar to this week when Microsoft introduced its new line of tablets, there was a reason for that.
Back in 2008 Microsoft released the Surface which was, at the time, a table-sized interface that could be used in businesses for a host of different situations. The dream wast that some day these devices would be in homes everywhere, but that always seemed a bit far-fetched to most pundits out there.
In 2011 the name of the software changed to PixelSense and no one seemed to think too much about the name change. Now we learn in 2012 that the reason for this was the company planned to repurpose the title for another use.  With the exception of the touch interface, this doesn’t even feel like a spiritual successor to the original concept, but the name is Microsoft’s to do with as it pleases.
There is still a part of me that would like to see the Surface tables show up in more locations.

Google Doodles for Alan Turing, the father of computer science

If you go to the Google homepage today, you will see the belt of binary that will eventually spell out the word 'Google' (note, the interactivity doesn't seem to work in all browsers). The Doodle is made in honour of Alan Turing, the English mathematician and computer scientist who has been widely known as the father of computer science and artificial intelligence. Turing was born on the 23rd of June in 1912 in London. His father was a member of the Indian Civil Service and Turing was actually conceived while his parents were in Orissa. However, his parents wanted their children to grow up England and therefore returned to give birth. Turing's father's civil service was still active afterwards and throughout Turing's childhood, his father travelled frequently between England and India.

Google Doodles for Alan Turing and his algorithms

Since he was young, Turing displayed signs of being a genius, particularly with mathematics and science. However, at one of the schools that Turing went to as an adolescent, he wasn't as respected as the other schools he had gone to because this school discounted the value of science and stressed the importance of learning the classics. Turing overcame this challenge and continued to educate himself in the fields that he enjoyed studying. For college, Turing went to Kings College in Cambridge where he studied mathematics. In 1931, Turing worked on what would later be called the Turing machine. He proved that any such machine would be able to make mathematical computations if they were presented as algorithms. These machines are till this day used in the study of computer science.

During the Second World War, Turing also served as a German code breaker in England. During his time doing that, he and fellow mathematician Gordon Welchman suggested a code breaking machine that was superior to the Polish machine they were using at the time. The first machine of its type, called the bombe, was installed in March 1940 and more than two hundred such bombes were in operation by the end of the war. In 1952, Turing was arrested for homosexuality, which in England was considered gross indecency under Section 11 of the Criminal Law Amendment Act 1885. Turing was given the choice of imprisonment or chemical castration (being injected with female hormones) and he chose the latter. This conviction stripped him of his security clearance with the British government and his work in computing with the government had to stop. In 1955, Turing was found dead and an autopsy revealed cyanide poisoning.

Surface could have a poorer battery life than iPad.

It’s a little strange that Microsoft never revealed many of the critical specifications of their new Surface tablets and we can draw two conclusions from this – One is that they know some of hardware components are not up to the mark and won’t be able to compete with others or second being, they haven’t actually finalized on some of the components, which could change by the time the tablet actually launches. Many were wondering about what sort of battery life the Surface would offer? According to Computerworld’s estimates, it may not be as good as that of Apple’s iPad.

Enter the all new iPad killer (?)

According to the Surface specifications up on Microsoft’s site, the Surface running Windows RT has a 31.4Wh rating, which is good 10Wh less, as compared to the Windows 8 Pro-based Surface, which has a rating of 42Wh. This is understandable, since the Ivy Bridge running Surface will be a bit more power hungry. When comparing the RT Surface to the new iPad, Apple’s tablet seems have a stronger battery life, since it also has a 42.5Wh rated battery. If the new iPad can last about 10hrs (according to Apple), then we should expect the Surface to clock out somewhere around 7 hrs. The Surface Pro cannot be compared to the iPad since it’s designed to take on Ultrabooks, at least that’s what Microsoft says. If we compare it to Apple’s MacBook Air, which has a 35Wh battery, then the Surface does have about 20 percent more battery capacity, so in theory, it should last longer. Ultrabooks may still have an edge over the Surface, but then again, they do come with bigger screens and bigger battery packs. CEO of iFixit, Kyle Wiens, has cautioned against reading too much into the estimates as there are simply too many unknowns that will determine Surface's battery life.

In case you missed it, Microsoft unveiled on Monday, their new tablet PCs designed as a platform to showcase the capabilities of Windows 8. These tablet PCs are designed and built entirely by Microsoft and could serve as a possible reference to OEMs designing their own tablet PCs. 

Here are some of the highlighted features of the Surface:

  • Software: Surface sports a full-sized USB port and a 16:9 aspect ratio, which is the industry standard for HD. It has edges angled at 22 degrees, a natural position for the PC at rest or in active use, letting the hardware fade into the background and the software stand out.
  • VaporMg: The casing of Surface is created using a unique approach called VaporMg (pronounced Vapor-Mag), a combination of material selection and process to mold metal and deposit particles that creates a finish akin to a luxury watch. Starting with magnesium, parts can be molded as thin as .65 mm, thinner than the typical credit card, to create a product that is thin, light and rigid/strong.
  • Integrated Kickstand: The unique VaporMg approach also enables a built-in kickstand that lets you transition Surface from active use to passive consumption – watching a movie or even using the HD front- or rear-facing video cameras. The kickstand is there when needed, and disappears when not in use, with no extra weight or thickness.
  • Touch Cover: The 3 mm Touch Cover represents a step forward in human-computer interface. Using a unique pressure-sensitive technology, Touch Cover senses keystrokes as gestures, enabling you to touch type significantly faster than with an on-screen keyboard. It will be available in a selection of vibrant colors. Touch Cover clicks into Surface via a built-in magnetic connector, forming a natural spine like you find on a book, and works as a protective cover. You can also click in a 5 mm-thin Type Cover that adds moving keys for a more traditional typing feel.

Google may be testing new search interface

Last year, Google incorporated some new changes in its products wanting to ensure that all its products have a seamless interface. The most talked about change was the complete facelift that it gave Gmail. Now, a video that surfaced on the Spanish site Telco-Net shows that Google is likely to be testing a new web search interface. The video reveals that Google plans to transform the left-hand sidebar into a horizontal bar on the top of the results.
Walking on a Bed(of)rocks..

In the short video below, one can clearly see that the UI is more vertically-oriented with other sections like Images, News and Search tools, on the top rather than on the side. The Search tools come in the form of a series of dropdown menus on the top. Google has forced the new Gmail interface on people by terming it as a ‘neat and clean look.’ Several users weren’t happy with it and getting a hang of the new interface wasn’t as easy for many. This new search interface also looks neat and clean, but there is no sign of any social integration. The absence of social networking buttons could be as no user was signed into any account. 

This leaked information is inspired by Google’s tablet interface. This reminds us of the Google Nexus, which is supposed to hit markets soon. Come the 27th of June, Google is expected to take the wraps off this flagship tablet. The unveiling is expected to take place at the Google I/O developer conference that will run from the 27th to the 29th of June. The cost of the tablet is believed to be kept to a minimum because it supports only Wi-Fi connectivity and is devoid of a rear camera. However, it will feature a front facing camera that allows one to video chat. The tablet is also expected to be called the Google ASUS Nexus 7. Some rumoured specs include a display featuring a resolution of 768 x 1280, Nvidia Tegra 3 quad-core 1.3GHz Cortex A9 processor and Nvidia ULP GeForce GPU.

Last year Google was on a change-spree tweaking several products. Besides a makeover to its Gmail service, the search giant even redesigned its navigation bar. The horizontal black bar at the top of the page was replaced by links to the services in the new drop-down style. Recently, we saw them initiate the new website that encourages endangered languages. Across the world, there are various languages which are getting extinct. Google’s new Endangered Languages Project allows users to update the website with all the information and research about such languages. 

Though Telco-Net calls the video exclusive, they haven’t mentioned, where and how they found it.

Take a quick look at the video here

Apple HDTV running iOS may be launched by Q4 2012

The rumours of an Apple HDTV have been floating around for quite a while and the major talking point about this integrated television, besides its features has been the television's launch date. A report from BGR shed some light on the situation as they claim Brian White, an analyst at Topeka Capital Markets has relayed a report from who state that Apple’s manufacturing partner Hon Hai is scheduled to receive LCD panels designed for the Apple HDTV by the third quarter of 2012. This is a solid indication that an HDTV from Apple may be launched by the fourth quarter of this year, which is just in time for the holiday season.

Topeka Capital Markets analyst Brian White wrote in a note to clients on Thursday, “This morning, the Chinese character version of indicated in an article that Hon Hai Precision expects to start receiving LCD TV panel orders from Sharp in 3Q12 instead of 4Q12 as was originally planned. Recall, Hon Hai invested in Sharp earlier this year to secure LCD panels that we believe will largely support a new Apple TV.”

Will the Apple HDTV look like this?

He went on to add, “Based on a recent interview by with a Sharp executive and information from sources at the company, the online news source believes the order is for the new Apple TV and could be available for the holiday season. In our view, a holiday launch would make for a very merry holiday season for Apple and consumers. However, we will continue to monitor the data points surrounding the timing of this launch as they could change.”

The news surrounding the launch of the television has been going around for quite a while with many analysts believing that it will launch by either the end of this year or by early next year. As of now, the television is a mythical product and yet the news about it is surfacing on a consistent basis. 

Late last month, it was reported that Apple had approached Foxconn with orders to build the Apple HDTV and the device is currently in its trial production stage. The news that Foxconn may finally be working on the television matches up with the timeline laid out by noted Apple analyst Gene Munster, who recently predicted that the company would announce the television this December and begin shipping it in early 2013.

The news surrounding the Apple HDTV began to gather steam when it was revealed in the late Steve Jobs’ biography that he had finally cracked it. The Apple HDTV is believed to be a television measuring anywhere from 32 to 55-inches and will have features, such as FaceTime using an iSight camera, Siri, which is Apple’s voice recognition assistant and resemble the brand’s Cinema Display, but much larger in comparison.

With Apple possibly launching the HDTV by December, do yu think it'll go on to be as big as the iPhone, iPad, iPod and Macs?

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Google finds about 9,500 new malicious websites every day

Combating malware, in an age where ignorance could leave one with an infected system is crucial and Google with their Safe Browser aimed at protecting scores of users from the dangers of malware and phishing. Now five years on its Safe Browsing route, Google has in an official blog post revealed that each day they discover about 9,500 malicious websites. While some of these websites are innocent websites that have been bogged down by malware, there are others that are built for distributing malware or phishing. "While we flag many sites daily, we strive for high quality and have had only a handful of false positives," they added further. 

At present their protection covers popular web browsers, such as Chrome, Firefox and Safari, in addition to the protection of their search results and ads.

Chart 2

To give their users a better perspective of the achievements of their Safe Browser, Google states that they protect 600 million users through built-in protection for Chrome, Firefox and Safari and that each day they show several million warnings to Internet users. Google reiterates further that when users do spot a red warning pop-up on their screen, they should not visit these sites flagged as malware or phishing sites. The post further states that Google has found that each day about 12-14 million Google Search queries depict their attempts to advise users against visiting sites that are currently compromised, and this warning gets cleared, once the site in question "has been cleaned up."

Through their download protection service for Chrome, Google claims to provide malware warnings to about 300 thousand downloads, each day. The post further adds, "We send thousands of notifications daily to webmasters. Signing up with Webmaster Tools helps us communicate directly with webmasters when we find something on their site, and our ongoing partnership with helps webmasters who can't sign up or need additional help. We also send thousands of notifications daily to Internet Service Providers (ISPs) & CERTs to help them keep their networks clean. Network administrators can sign up to receive frequent alerts."

Phishing is one of the vices that Google has been fighting. Through the course of their Safe Browser program, they observed that many of these phishers "go right for the money." They add "that  pattern is reflected in the continued heavy targeting of online commerce sites like eBay & PayPal." The report alarmingly highlights that though the same techniques that were being used 5+ years ago, are being put to use even today these attackers are successfully tricking people. The attacks, too are getting more creative and sophisticated. The report, in a nutshell describes these modern attacks as being faster, more diverse and as being used to distribute malware.

Instances of malware, too have been found to be on the rise. And the report lists down two main categories of websites that can harm users, these are - 

  • Legitimate websites that are compromised in large numbers, so they can deliver or redirect to malware.
  • Attack websites that are specifically built to distribute malware are used in increasing numbers.

It adds, "When a legitimate website is compromised, it’s usually modified to include content from an attack site or to redirect to an attack site. These attack sites will often deliver "Drive by downloads" to visitors. A drive by download exploits a vulnerability in the browser to execute a malicious program on a user's computer without their knowledge."

Image credit: Getty Images

RIM ditches keyboards to offer touchscreen BlackBerry 10 devices

As we know, RIM has been struggling to sustain its position in the competitive smartphone space. The company has now begun to adapt to some changes and probably realized that keyboards may soon become passé. The market is inundated with devices that run on iOS, Android and Windows Phone, so, RIM’s newest Blackberry 10 operating system will not support a physical keyboard and will go all touch. It won’t be for the first time that RIM will launch phones with touchscreens, it has done so in the past and failed. There are some corporate users who still opt for Blackberry because of the ease of typing that QWERTY offers. The usual norm among people is that touchscreens are difficult to type on. Colin Gillis, an analyst with BGC Financial, called it puzzling that RIM isn’t leading with its strength by releasing a keyboard BlackBerry first. “The physical keyboard is the most dominant item that separates out Research In Motion from its competitors,” Gillis said. RIM's touchscreen devices running on Blackberry 10 are expected to hit markets later this year. The news also has it that RIM is likely to offer the Blackberry 10 OS for devices with physical keyboards but some time later. Reports claim that the first handset running on BlackBerry 10 using a physical QWERTY keypad is expected to release in the first quarter of 2013.

The prototpe goes official

Over the last couple of years, Google and Apple have been quick to deliver newer features and have been consistently updating their software for devices. However, RIM has faced so many delays that we wonder if users would be willing to wait. Moreover, considering the iPhone 5, Android’s Jelly Bean and Windows Phone devices are in the pipeline for release this year, RIM hasn’t been quick to deliver devices and this constant delay has cost it.. On the other hand, iPhone has been striving to assure corporate users that it isn’t just about style and can deliver corporate and security features too. Reportedly, an increasing number of top companies and government departments that were once devoted to the Blackberry are instead now giving some staff the option of using Apple's iPhone or smartphones running on Google's Android-operating system.

RIM has been pinning its hopes on the BlackBerry 10 system, which is said to offer multimedia, Internet browsing and apps experience that customers demand. Gills said,  “If you are not playing to your historical strengths you may find it more difficult to get traction. There is a spot in the market for RIM but the company “just got to get it together. Jefferies analyst Peter Misek says that BlackBerry 10 is all about touch and closing the gap with Apple, so there is no reason for people to be surprised about the only-touch device from RIM. “They are going to build a BlackBerry device with a keyboard, but it’s just going to take longer,” Misek said. “Maybe it will come a month or two after, but frankly it might be already too late.”

While RIM prepares to come out with a stronger device to compete with the iPhone, Apple moves a step ahead with a slew of new features. Android also has an army of high-end smartphones while Windows Phone 8 is likely to target high-end smartphones too. The competition is fierce, and RIM better buck up. 

Facebook will let you edit comments soon

Facebook invites you to comment on your friends' pictures, status updates and activity but how many times have you commented on someone's picture, intending to say "nice shot", but instead you've typed, "nice sh*t"? Or just in general made mistakes while typing so your generally good intentions can be completely misconstrued? Previously all you could do is delete the comment and type a new comment, or type up a subsequent comment explaining and apologizing for your mistake. Which can be a little time consuming and/or untidy. Facebook has now started letting users edit comments so you don't have to delete your mistaken words or explain them. Next to your comment, Facebook will place a small little pencil, the same as the one that shows up when you want to edit something on your Timeline, which will let you edit your comment or delete it entirely.

Official Facebook app finally coming to iPad

According to Mashable, Facebook says that they will leave a comment history up as well for subsequent commentors to have the full context of the entire conversation. That way, if you comment on one that's edited and your comment wouldn't necessarily make sense anymore, other people will be able to see exactly what you commented to so they understand the full context of your comment. The company started rolling out this feature to all its users yesterday and if you don't see it on your account yet, have no fear, you will see it soon.

Another way that Facebook is about to change soon is to stop its Credits system and start allowing users the option to pay for subscriptions and in-app power ups in their own currencies. So if you live in the United Kingdom, Facebook will charge you for purchases in Pounds Sterling, if you live in India, you will be charged in Rupees. Application developers will have to phase out the Credits system from their apps by the end of this year. If you are a user that has bought Credits, your balance will be made available for you to use to make in-app purchases in your own currency. Facebook is also going to start allowing developers to create subscription based models for their applications. A developer will soon be able to charge users a recurring sum for content that might be premium and exclusive. They will have to split 30% of the revenue generated from subscriptions with Facebook. What do you think? Is Facebook going in the right direction? Will you like being able to edit your comments and subscribe to apps via Facebook? Let us know what you think in the comments section below.

Samsung Galaxy S III is one explosive handset, literally!

The top portion of the Samsung Galaxy S III

The case of overheating devices seems to have popped up once more and this time around it happens to be none other than the flagship smartphone from Samsung, the Galaxy S III. An Irish-based user of the Samsung Galaxy S III has taken to a web forum, to voice his grievance about how an over heating issue has caused his newly purchased smartphone to burn up from the inside. He stated that the Samsung Galaxy S III was placed in a car mount and then suddenly the smartphone burst into a white flame with sparks and a bang. Explaining the situation, he stated, “I pulled in to look at my phone, the phone burned from the inside out. Burned through the plastic and melted my case to my phone. The phone kept working but without any signal. I brought it to the carphone warehouse and they told me that they couldn’t replace it for me that they had to send it off to be checked out first. No even replacement phone, left with nothing. The phone was destroyed and it slightly burned a piece of plastic on the inside of my car.”

He went on to add that the store he purchased it from refused to provide him with a replacement and that it needed to be sent to Samsung. Since the store did not provide him with a replacement handset, Samsung contacted him and provided him with a replacement Galaxy S III and told him that they would send him some free stuff as well. However, the brand did not confirm if it was a fault of the smartphone.

Another view of the burnt Samsung Galaxy S III

Samsung later on issued a statement stating, “Samsung is aware of this issue and will begin investigating as soon as we receive the specific product in question. Once the investigation is complete, we will be able to provide further details on the situation. We are committed to providing our customers with the safest products possible and are looking at this seriously.”

This may be just a one off incident and as the user mentioned, it could have been caused due to the fact that it was placed on the car mount as well as the car’s heating system. However, if this happens to you, then we strongly advise you to contact Samsung regarding the situation as they will advise you accordingly.

Besides this one off case, there has not been any other such issue with the Samsung Galaxy S III and to understand more on this device, here is a look at our review.

If one has missed out or just wants a quick look, here are the highlighted specifications of the Samsung Galaxy S III:

  • Android 4.0 with TouchWiz
  • 1.4 GHz quad-core Exynos 4212 processor
  • 4.8-inch HD Super AMOLED display with a resolution of 1280 x 720
  • 8MP camera with AF, LED flash, BSI sensor and 1080p HD video recording
  • 1.9MP front camera with a resolution of 720p for video chat
  • 16/32/64GB Internal memory, expandable upto 64GB
  • 1GB RAM
  • NFC, Wi-Fi, DLNA, GLONASS, micro-USB 2.0, HDMI, Bluetooth 4.0
  • 2100 mAh battery

Hacker steals data from VISA and MasterCard; announces on Twitter

hacker, going by the name Reckz0r (@Reckz0r), recently tweeted  that he has managed to illegally     access the servers of 79 large banks, which he had been targeting since the past 3 months. In a follow-up tweet, Reckz0r revealed that he leaked half the data from VISA, one of the world's largest credit and debit-card processing networks and MasterCard. He also went on to state that the entire file was about 50GB or more. Reckz0r wrote, "I just leaked a half data of VISA & Mastercard, the full one is about 50GB or bigger," and in an earlier tweet, mentioned, "I penetrated over 79 large banks, I've been targetting these banks since 3 months."


In a more detailed post on Pastebin, wherein he has also provided the download link, he wrote -

"Hello folks. I'm Reckz0r, oh f*** that part, I've been saying that for ages, Just call me Reckz0r or Reckz, or Jeremy. Today, I am here to fulfill your 'lulz' attention with some excitement & entertainment!

Today's target is VISA & Mastercard, I will be only leaking a portion of the credit card information, as I cannot leak the entire data, it's too large, and this is the certain proof that i've hacked into VISA & Mastercard....

I'm also censoring the credit card information such as CC Number, Secret Code, Expiry date for security measures, I also edited the way the information will look, the original one looked bullshit.

REASON: Curiosity & Challenge


Only recently, Global Payments, Inc. confirmed reports about a major cyber intrusion exposing the credit card numbers belonging to a whopping 1.5 million MasterCard and Visa customers. Reports thereafter highlighted that Visa Inc. dropped Global Payments from its list of approved service providers. However, it isn't clear at the moment, if the data that Reckz0r has now leaked is related to that.

The report further highlighted that Global Payments Inc. believed that the so-called Track 2 card data had been stolen during the breach, but card holders' names, addresses and social security numbers were not obtained. A person improperly using Track 2 information can transfer the account number and expiration date of a card to a magnetic stripe on a fraudulent card and then try to use it to make online purchases. The attempt could be blocked, however, if an online merchant asks for the CVV code, or the three or four digits usually located on the back of card. 

Global Payments is one of dozens of companies that operate along the payment-processing chain. They are targeted by hackers due to the vast amount of sensitive financial information they handle. The breach was first reported by a blog on computer security and cybercrime, Krebs on Security, which said it could affect more than 10 million card holders.

Security breaches, such as the one mentioned above or the recent issue wherin, scores of LinkedIn users had their crucial details compromised are emerging as a worrying trend. It is now, more than ever, becoming a reliability issue about storing or using secure data online like credit card or bank cards for shopping, bill payments etc. Is the data really safe? Or is it merely fodder for a hacker to test his skills and threaten to share your information with the free world? Companies that store our data will surely need to beef up their current security as existing security measures are seemingly growing redundant. If large and age-old, trusted companies, like VISA or MasterCard have had data breaches, it begs the bigger question – how safe is safe?

Amazon Appstore Finally Coming to Europe This Summer

Amazon Appstore Test Drive on Android

Reports had claimed that the Amazon Appstore was on its way to Europe this summer, and now Amazon itself has confirmed that Android users on the other side of the Atlantic will finally get a proper Google Play alternative in the coming months.
Users in the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Italy, and Spain will see the Appstore first, but Amazon has plans for “further global expansion in the near future.” The retail giant is now inviting developers to visit the Amazon Mobile App Distribution Portal and submit their applications for these countries.
Amazon notes in its press release that the Appstore now offers tens of thousands of apps and games in the United States, despite being up and running for just one year. The company believes that nifty features like 1-Click purchasing and Test Drive — which allows customers to try apps before they decide to buy them — are a few of the reasons why the Appstore is popular amongst both consumers and developers.
It’s going to become even more popular for developers, too, thanks to Amazon’s new distribution terms. The company has finally agreed to pay developers 70% of the list price for each and every app they sell from July 1.
Under its previous terms, Amazon would pay 70% of the sale price and only 20% of the list price — whichever was greater. The problem with this, of course, is that sometimes the company would discount apps without a developer’s permission — which it does reserve the right to do — meaning that developer would earn a lot less than originally intended.
The new 70% cut provides Appstore developers with the same deal Apple offers to Mac and iOS developers who sell their software via the Mac App Store, and the App Store.
Are you looking forward to getting the Amazon Appstore in Europe?

Nokia Drive Will Come to All Windows Phone 8 Devices — Even Those From HTC, Samsung

Nokia Drive on Windows Phone 8

f you’re planning to purchase a new Windows Phone 8 device later this year, then one feature you may look forward to is Nokia Drive, Nokia’s popular turn-by-turn navigation service which is currently available in over 110 countries. The Finnish company has confirmed that Nokia Drive will be pre-installed on all Windows Phone 8 devices — even those manufactured by rivals HTC and Samsung.
In a post on its Conversations Blog, Nokia writes:
Nokia Drive is one of the major apps that on Nokia’s location platform. Today, we are also making this platform and its unrivalled quality of data and richness of features available on Windows Phone 8 for all partners. This means that Nokia’s Location platform will be central to the Windows Phone 8 experience, with the intention of developing smartphones that bring advanced location experiences.Windows Phone 8 partners and developers will be able to use our location assets to build location-based apps and experiences of superior quality.
If you already own a Nokia Lumia smartphone, you’re probably already familiar with Nokia Drive. But for those of you who know nothing about it, Nokia has provided a number of reasons why its location platform is “the biggest in the world”:
  • We have maps data for more than 190 countries in more than 50 languages and navigation in more than 110 countries
  • We collect information from Nokia Drive users and local authorities to provide traffic alerts in 26 countries, and also allow dynamic rerouting
  • We have venue maps in over 5,000 shopping malls, train stations, airport, sports venues, etc. in 35 countries
  • We support multi-modal routing: by car, on foot (including footpaths, shortcuts, etc. in over 400 cities) and by public transportation (over 100 cities)
So there’s another great feature you can look forward to in Windows Phone 8.