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Raining USBs: Google’s latest measure to protect users from cyber crime



The tech giant has the key to protecting high-risk users from impending scams in yet another move to safeguard the digital cyberspace.

Google distributes free USBs to safeguard users against cyber crime

Google is giving free physical USB security keys to 10,000 users who are at high risk of experiencing cyber threats.

The “Titan” USB key will provide two-factor authentication which will supply users with an additional layer of security.

Politicians and human rights activists are among the large number of users receiving the USB, which are normally available to buy for $41.

Google’s partner against crime

A number of organisations have partnerd with Google to help fund the distribution of the keys, Partnership Manager Grace Hoyt and Project Manager Nafis Zebarjadi said in a statement.

“We’re excited to be working with these leading organisations to protect high risk user groups and learn more about the needs of at-risk users and organisations.”

“These collaborations help us make the world’s most advanced security even stronger, more inclusive and easier to use – helping everyone stay safer with Google.” 

It comes as the tech giant encourages its users to join its “advanced protection program“.

Under the program, users with high visibility and sensitive information are safeguarded under new protections added to defend against impending cyber threats.

Preventing unauthorised account access, extra protection from harmful downloads and securing personal information are among the measures Google is taking to protect users.

Fighting back against phishing

In late September, the tech giant warned thousands of Gmail users that they had been targeted in a scam coordinated by Russia-linked hacking group APT28,

In an email campaign designed to look legitimate to trick people into revealing their passwords, the Russian fraudsters tried to phish high-profile users.

Shane Huntley, director of Google’s Threat Analysis Group says around 14,000 accounts “across a wide variety of industries” were targeted,

“As we always do, we sent those people who were targeted by government-backed attackers warnings,” Huntly said before confirming the emails were successfully blocked.

Google vows to continue to support their users in the fight against the rise in cyber crime, with these measures the first of many more to come.

Written by Rebecca Borg

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Ramifications of a TikTok ban to impact Open Internet



The United States’ longstanding advocacy for an open internet faces a critical juncture as Congress considers legislation targeting TikTok.

The proposed measures, including a forced sale or outright ban of TikTok, have sparked concerns among digital rights advocates and global observers about the implications for internet freedom and international norms.

For decades, the U.S. has championed the concept of an unregulated internet, advocating for the free flow of digital data across borders.

However, the move against TikTok, a platform with 170 million U.S. users, has raised questions about the consistency of America’s stance on internet governance.

Read more – Big tech to handover misinformation data

Critics fear that actions against TikTok could set a precedent for other countries to justify their own internet censorship measures.

Russian blogger Aleksandr Gorbunov warned that Russia could use the U.S. decision to justify further restrictions on platforms like YouTube.

Similarly, Indian lawyer Mishi Choudhary expressed concerns that a U.S. ban on TikTok would embolden the Indian government to impose additional crackdowns on internet freedoms.

Moreover, the proposed legislation could complicate U.S. efforts to advocate for an internet governed by international organizations rather than individual countries.

China, in particular, has promoted a vision of internet sovereignty, advocating for greater national control over online content.

A TikTok ban could undermine America’s credibility in urging other countries to embrace a more open internet governed by global standards.


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BlackRock CEO Larry Fink says AI leads to higher wages



Larry Fink, the CEO of BlackRock Inc., has outlined his vision for the impact of the firm’s investment in artificial intelligence.

During the company’s recent earnings call, Fink emphasized the connection between productivity gains driven by AI and the potential for rising wages among BlackRock’s workforce.

He explained the firm’s ambition to leverage AI technology to enhance efficiency, enabling employees to accomplish more with fewer resources.

Fink’s remarks underscore BlackRock’s strategic approach to harnessing AI as a tool for optimising operations and driving organisational growth.

Read more – Australia’s productivity gap widens

By leveraging AI-driven productivity enhancements, the company aims to empower its employees to deliver greater value, thereby paving the way for wage increases across the organisation.

The CEO’s statement reflects a broader trend in the intersection of technology and labor dynamics, where advancements in AI and automation have the potential to reshape workforce dynamics and compensation structures.

Fink’s optimism about the transformative impact of AI investment on employee wages highlights BlackRock’s commitment to embracing technological innovation as a catalyst for sustainable business growth and employee prosperity.

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How Udio could threaten the entire music industry



The music industry faces a formidable challenger in the form of AI technology application Udio.

With the emergence of a groundbreaking new app, concerns are mounting over its potential to revolutionise music creation and consumption.

The app, powered by advanced algorithms and machine learning, promises to streamline the music production process, allowing users to generate high-quality tracks with minimal effort.

Tom Finnigan from joins to discuss Udio, along with the goods and bads of AI integration in the music industry.

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