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Microsoft

Dutch privacy regulator says Windows 10 breaks the law

posted onOctober 15, 2017
by l33tdawg

The lack of clear information about what Microsoft does with the data that Windows 10 collects prevents consumers from giving their informed consent, says the Dutch Data Protection Authority (DPA). As such, the regulator says that the operating system is breaking the law.

Skype finally getting end-to-end encryption

posted onJanuary 11, 2018
by l33tdawg

Since its inception, Skype has been notable for its secretive, proprietary algorithm. It's also long had a complicated relationship with encryption: encryption is used by the Skype protocol, but the service has never been clear exactly how that encryption was implemented or exactly which privacy and security features it offers.

Microsoft says security fixes will noticeably slow older PCs

posted onJanuary 10, 2018
by l33tdawg

It's been clear for a while that the fixes for the Meltdown and Spectre memory vulnerabilities would slow down PCs, but just how bad is the hit, really? Microsoft has run some benchmarks, and it's unfortunately bad news if your system is less than fresh. While the patches for Meltdown and one variant of Spectre will have a "minimal performance impact," fixing a second Spectre variant through low-level microcode imposes a tangible speed penalty -- and it's particularly bad on systems released around 2015 or earlier.

Microsoft’s ‘Enterprise-Grade’ Face Authentication Fooled By Photo

posted onDecember 21, 2017
by l33tdawg

Although the issue has been patched through Microsoft's Fall Creators Update, outdated versions of Windows 10's Hello facial recognition can be spoofed with a photo, a German security firm said this week.

With some extra work as little as a low-resolution, laser-printed photo taken with a near infrared camera can be used to trick a Hello-capable PC, SySS explained. It demonstrated the problem in a series of YouTube videos.

Microsoft's New Chip Could Secure the Next Generation of IoT

posted onDecember 7, 2017
by l33tdawg

The Internet of Things security crisis persists, as billions of inadequately secured webcams, refrigerators, and more flood homes around the world. But IoT security researchers at Microsoft Research have their eye on an even larger problem: the billions of gadgets that already run on simple microcontrollers—small, low-power computers on a single chip—that will gradually gain connectivity over the years, exponentially expanding the internet of things population. And that connected electric toothbrush needs protection, too.

Xbox One X review: An exclamation point for hardware, a question mark for software

posted onNovember 3, 2017
by l33tdawg

When the Xbox One launched in 2013, Microsoft had to try to convince gamers that extra features and hardware like the Kinect made its console worth $100 more than Sony’s PlayStation 4. Today, Microsoft is trying to convince many of those same gamers that the extra horsepower in the Xbox One X makes it worth $100 more than the PS4 Pro for the definitive living room 4K gaming experience.

Microsoft is using Cortana to read your private Skype conversations

posted onOctober 10, 2017
by l33tdawg

Cortana is a decent voice assistant. Hell, "she" is probably better than Apple's woefully disappointing Siri, but that isn't saying very much. Still, Microsoft's assistant very much annoys me on Windows 10. I don't necessarily want to use my desktop PC like my phone, and sometimes I feel like she is intruding on my computer. While some people like Cortana, I am sure others agree with me.