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Uber co-founder Travis Kalanick resigns as CEO, report says

The co-founder of ride-sharing company Uber has reportedly resigned as CEO.

According to The New York Times, Travis Kalanick is stepping down “after a shareholder revolt made it untenable for him to stay on at the company.”

>> Read more trending news

>> Click here or scroll down for more

Researchers: Millions of detailed voter records found unprotected on the internet

The personal information of nearly all of America’s 200 million registered voters was left unprotected in an online database discovered last week by a cybersecurity firm in what the company described as the “largest known data exposure of its kind.”

>> Read more trending news

The database, owned by Republican data firm Deep Root Analytics, included names, dates of birth, home addresses, phone numbers, voter registration details and “data described as ‘modeled’ voter ethnicities and religions,” according to UpGuard, the firm that uncovered the information.

“Along with home addresses, birth dates and phone numbers, the records include advanced sentiment analyses used by political groups to predict where individual voters fall on hot-button issues such as gun ownership, stem cell research and the right to abortion, as well as suspected religious affiliation and ethnicity,” reported Gizmodo, which also reviewed the data.

In all, it encompassed 1.1 terabytes of information covering 198 million potential voters.

"With this data, you can target neighborhoods, individuals, people of all sorts of persuasions," Chris Vickery, the UpGuard cyber risk researcher who discovered the database, told The Washington Post. "I could give you the home address of every person the RNC believes voted for Trump."

Vickery found the database while searching for vulnerable data sources online as part of his job. It was not clear whether anyone other than Vickery downloaded the information, or how long it was online and unprotected.

"What is alarming about this now is that I believe it's the first time RNC IDs and model data have been exposed," veteran GOP political data strategist Matt Oszcowski told The Post. "This is not just a list of people; this is unique proprietary information which gives away (Republican) strategy and informs on targeting and methodology."

In a statement released to Gizmodo, Deep Root founder Alex Lundry said the company took responsibility for the mistake and said it happened when the company updated its security settings on June 1. Vickery found the information on June 12.

“Since this event has come to our attention, we have updated the access settings and put protocols in place to prevent further access,” Lundry told Gizmodo. “Based on the information we have gathered thus far, we do not believe that our systems have been hacked.”

Read more on UpGuard.com

Facebook adds fundraising option to Safety Check, among other updates

Facebook’s Safety Check feature will soon allow users to start fundraisers to directly help victims of a particular crisis.

» RELATED: Facebook introduces rainbow reaction to celebrate LGBT Pride Month 

The upgrade is one of four new updates coming to the tool, Facebook announced last week.

According to TechCrunch, fundraising could potentially mean big business for the social media conglomerate.

>> Read more trending news

Facebook’s personal fundraisers have a 6.9 percent plus 30 cent fee that flows into payment processing, vetting and security, TechCrunch reported.

Facebook nonprofit fundraisers have fees of 5 to 5.75 percent. With the new fundraising update, Facebook fundraisers could get even more attention.

» RELATED: Facebook accused of helping advertisers target ‘insecure’ teens 

In addition to the fundraising tool, Safety Check will include the Community Help feature on desktop, which launched on mobile earlier this year, for users to find and give help in terms of food donation, shelter and transportation.

The third update includes a feature for people to add a personal note when marking themselves as safe during a crisis to “reassure friends” and “provide more context.”

» RELATED: Facebook users can now use GIFs in the comment box

And lastly, Facebook will be integrating informational crisis descriptions into the feature for more context about the disaster. Information will feed from NC4, a third party global crisis reporting agency.

The Safety Check feature, first introduced in 2014, has been activated more than 600 times and has notified people that their loved ones are safe more than one billion times, according to Naomi Gleit, vice president of Social Good at Facebook.

Gleit said she and her team hope the latest Safety Check updates continue to help keep the community safe.

» RELATED: Facebook to hire 3,000 to review videos of crime and suicide 

The new improvements will be rolling out in the “coming weeks” for U.S. users.

Click here to read the full news release.

Researchers: Hackers develop highly customizable cyberweapon aimed at electric grids

Hackers, believed to be affiliated with Russia, have developed a highly customizable cyberweapon capable of taking down electric grids, according to researchers in a pair of countries and multiple reports.

>> Read more trending news

Researchers say the malware, dubbed CrashOverride or Industroyer, is the first ever designed to attack electric grids, specifically. It has no capabilities geared toward espionage, U.S.-based security firm Dragos Inc. said in a report issued Monday.

CrashOverride in its current form can be easily re-purposed for use in Europe and parts of the Middle East and Asia, according to Dragos. It has already been used once before – in December, when it was used to briefly shut down one-fifth of the electric grid in Kiev, Ukraine, according to The Washington Post. It’s not clear who was behind that attack, although Ukrainian officials blamed Russia, Reuters reported. Officials in Moscow have denied any involvement. 

“With a small amount of tailoring … (CrashOverride) would also be effective in the North American grid,” according to Dragos.

Both Dragos and Slovakian anti-virus firm ESET have issued alerts to governments and infrastructure operators in an effort to prepare them for the possible threat CrashOverride poses, according to Reuters.

"The malware is really easy to re-purpose and use against other targets. That is definitely alarming," ESET malware researcher Robert Lipovsky told Reuters. "This could cause wide-scale damage to infrastructure systems that are vital."

Dragos founder Robert M. Lee told the wire service that while CrashOverride can cause portions of a nation’s electric grid to go down for several days, it is not currently powerful enough to bring down the entirety of a country’s grid.

Still, Sergio Caltagirone, director of threat intelligence for Dragos, described the cyberweapon as “a game charger” in an interview with The Post.

“It’s the culmination of over a decade of theory and attack scenarios,” Caltagirone said.

CrashOverride is just the second malware discovered that was created with the intent to disrupt physical systems, Wired reported. The first known malware created with such a purpose was the 2010 Stuxnet virus, used by the U.S. and Israel to attack Iran’s nuclear program.

“The potential impact here is huge,” Lipovsky told Wired. “If this is not a wakeup call, I don’t know what could be.”

Will your iPhone or iPad get Apple’s latest iOS update?

Apple is constantly updating its products with fun features, but its next revamp may not make it to all of its gadgets. 

>> Read more trending news

The latest version of the company’s operating system, iOS 11, drops in September and includes an augmented reality app, the ability to use two apps at once and a few other facets.

RELATED: Here's what people think about the leaked alleged iPhone 8 design 

But which devices will get the update?

If you purchased your product after 2013, you’re likely in good standing. But double check below to be sure.

iOS 11 is compatible with the following:

  • iPhone 5S and newer
  • Any iPad Air
  • Any iPad Pro
  • iPad mini2 and newer
  • 2017 iPad 
  • 6th generation iPod

RELATED: 7 hidden iPhone tricks you probably never knew about 

That means devices excluded above, such as the iPhone 5C or earlier, will remain on iOS 10 but don’t jump for joy just yet. Every iOS 11 feature may not come to all products listed. 

RELATED: ‘Do Not Disturb While Driving’ feature coming to iPhone iOS 11

The feature that allows you to view two apps at once will only be available for iPads not iPad minis, and apps that depend on a stylus require an iPad Pro and Apple Pencil.

Learn more about the upcoming operation system and its new components at CNET. 

‘Do Not Disturb While Driving’ feature coming to iPhone iOS 11

Apple made a number of announcements at its Worldwide Developers Conference Monday, but one feature may be a true life-saver.

>> Read more trending news

USA Today reported that Apple Senior Vice President of Software Engineering Craig Federighi announced at the San Jose, California, conference that a “Do Not Disturb While Driving” mode will be available on iPhone and iPads this fall.

The feature is part of the new iOS 11.

“It's all about keeping your eyes on the road,” Federighi said. “When you are driving, you don’t need to be responding to these kind of messages.”

The Verge reported that iMessage, the native text message app on iPhones, will send an automatic message to any texts that come in to say that the user is driving.

The screen will remain dark with muted notifications.

Those not driving can exit from this mode. Users can also mark certain contacts so that any messages they send show up on the phone even if the user is driving, so that “you have the peace of mind that you can get contacted … and that message will go through,” according to Federighi.

A specific release date for iOS 11 has not yet been announced. CNET reported that iOS beta is available for developers Monday.

Amazon earned $70M unlawfully from kids, FTC said. Are you due a refund?

Online retailer Amazon, accused of unlawfully billing parents for more than $70 million in purchases by game-playing children, has settled a case with federal regulators, and refunds are available.

>> Read more trending news 

The deadline for submitting refund requests is May 28, 2018, the Federal Trade Commission said Tuesday.

The charges were made between November 2011 and May 2016, officials said.

Amazon has offered many children’s apps for download to mobile devices such as the Kindle Fire, the FTC said. Children playing games such as “Ice Age Village” could spend unlimited amounts of money to pay for virtual items such as “coins,” “stars” and “acorns” without sufficient parental consent, federal officials said in a 2014 complaint.

“Even Amazon’s own employees recognized the serious problem its process created,” FTC chairwoman Edith Ramirez said in 2014.

The FTC and Amazon agreed last month to end their litigation.

“Since the launch of the Appstore in 2011, Amazon has helped parents prevent purchases made without their permission by offering access to parental controls, clear notice of in-app purchasing, real-time notification for every in-app purchase and refund assistance for unauthorized purchases,” an Amazon spokesman said Tuesday. “The court here affirmed our commitment to customers when it ruled no changes to current Appstore practices were required.

“To continue ensuring a great customer experience, we are happy to provide our customers what we have always provided: refunds for purchases they did not approve. We have contacted all eligible customers who have not already received a refund for unauthorized charges to help ensure their refunds are confirmed quickly.”

The FTC said refund requests can be completed online at https://www.amazon.com/gp/mas/refund-orders/in-apprefund

Customers can go to their Amazon.com accounts and go to the Message Center to find information about requesting a refund under Important Messages. Questions about individual refunds should be directed to Amazon at 866-216-1072, the FTC said.

Ransomware attack: What you need to know

On Friday, ransomware attacks hit tens of thousands of organizations in what is thought to be the biggest cyberextortion attack recorded, according to a report from The Associated Press.

>> Read more trending news

The attack gained attention from media largely after it impacted National Health Service operations in England. It has hit computer networks across the globe in more than 60 countries. The New York Times reported that FedEx in the United States and telecommunications companies Telefónica in Spain and MegaFon in Russia were affected.

Here are things to know about the ransomware attack.

What is ransomware?

Ransomware is malware that locks and disables a user’s computer system and demands ransom in order for the user to regain access to their computer and the files on it. Kurt Baumgartner, a security researcher at Kaspersky Lab, told The AP ransom demands start at $300 and two hours later, increasing to $400, $500 and $600. 

How does the  ransomware attack happen?

The attack exploited a vulnerability in Microsoft Windows that was patched in March but not on machines that had not been updated or patched, according to NPR. It then prompts the pop ups that tells the user their files are encrypted and can be unencrypted if they pay ransom money. Once one computer is affected, the malware spreads itself across the network.

How can future attacks be prevented?

Updating computer operating systems when prompted and maintaining up-to-date software is the best bet against ransomware attacks. Many groups were affected by the attacks because machines had not had updated versions of Windows or had versions that Microsoft was no longer offering patches for.

Texting while driving: Surprising number in one age group say it’s OK

A national survey shows 46 percent of drivers in one age group think texting behind the wheel is just fine.

The most accepting group? People ages 25 to 34, research from insurancequotes.com finds.

>> Read more trending news

The group represents a big slice of millennials, many of whom grew up with mobile devices in hand. The next highest approval rate for sending texts on the go comes from ages 35 to 44, with 22.7 percent.

The survey of 2,000 Americans found 13.7 percent of drivers 18 to 24 were OK with texting while driving, while other age groups approved at 10.1 percent or less.

study released in April that relied on devices in cars found 92 percent of U.S. drivers with cell phones have used them for texting or calling while in a moving vehicle in the past 30 days. Florida received the nation’s worst score for such use after Louisiana.

“I’m not surprised by the results of the study,” state Rep. Emily Slosberg, D-Boca Raton said. “We’re one of four states that don’t make texting while driving a primary offense.”

It’s a secondary offense in Florida, meaning police can’t cite it unless a driver is pulled over for something else. Bills to strengthen penalties did not pass in the legislative session that ended May 8.

>>  Related: 92 percent of motorists use phone while driving; Florida gets study's 2nd worst score

Texting was involved in 6 percent of accidents and cell phone use including talking was a factor in 26 percent of crashes, the National Safety Council found in 2015. Overall phone use in accidents has been rising for several years, researchers said.

Is it acceptable to send text messages while driving?

Age/yes answers

18-24 -- 13.7%

25-34 -- 46.3%

35-44 -- 22.7 %

45-54 -- 10.1%

55-64 -- 5.6%

65-74 -- 1.4%

75+ -- 0.1%

FIRST LOOK: Tesla's solar roofs are here

Tesla is officially taking orders for its solar glass roof, which is said to be cheaper than a regular roof with an "infinity warranty."

>> Read more trending news

Elon Musk tweeted on Wednesday that the solar roof can be ordered in "almost any country." The roofs will be deployed this year in the U.S. and overseas in 2018. 

The roofs will come in textured, smooth, Tuscan and slate. 

The roofs are made with tempered glass and are more than three times stronger than standard roofing tiles, according to Tesla's website.

Learn more here.

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