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Cops Take Down the 'World's Biggest' Video Game Cheat Ring

WIRED

This week, the Justice Department indicted a 22-year-old on charges of tampering with the water facility where he used to work. It's a stark reminder that while the power grid gets most of the attention, it's not the only piece of critical infrastructure that's vulnerable to potentially devastating attacks. We also took a look at YouTube's ongoing problems with moderating kid-focused content; a WIRED investigation found dozens of creepy thumbnails on videos for Minecraft and child-centric pursuits that were at or near the top of the platform's "Topic" pages. It's not quite as dire a situation as the so-called Elsagate controversy from a few years back, in which the YouTube Kids app was flooded with grotesque videos featuring popular children's characters performing unspeakable acts. But it still shows that YouTube has a lot of moderation work still ahead of it.


Could hackers trick voice assistants into committing fraud? Researchers say yes.

#artificialintelligence

Voice assistant technology is supposed to make our lives easier, but security experts say it comes with some uniquely invasive risks. Since the beginning of the year, multiple Nest security camera users have reported instances of strangers hacking into and issuing voice commands to Alexa, falsely announcing a North Korean missile attack, and targeting one family by speaking directly to their child, turning up their home thermostat to 90 degrees, and shouting insults. These incidents are alarming, but the potential for silent compromises of voice assistants could be even more damaging. Nest owner Google -- which recently integrated Google Assistant support into Nest control hubs -- has blamed weak user passwords and a lack of two-factor authentication for the attacks. But even voice assistants with strong security may be vulnerable to stealthier forms of hacking.


CES 2019: What we learned from the world's biggest tech show

The Independent - Tech

Every year the technology industry gathers in Las Vegas for the Consumer Electronics Show (CES), an event that often sets the agenda for the coming 12 months. This is what CES 2019 taught us. The first 5G networks are expected to begin rolling out this year, and so the next-generation connectivity technology was being mentioned everywhere at CES. Intel, Qualcomm and Samsung all spoke about harnessing the technology to not just offer faster mobile internet speeds, but also to connect more devices and appliances to each other and be able to handle more data in the process. Experts at the show also commented on the higher capacity of 5G networks being able to support the software needed to power networks of driverless cars and robots. The halls of this year's CES hinted at a world where homes, cars and even entire cities are connected to one another, with people able to use these connections to complete tasks every day.


Nuclear nonproliferation and blockchain

@machinelearnbot

Don't worry if you have yet to hear about blockchain, the emerging technology set to reshape everything from finance and trade to global governance--you are in good company. According to one recent survey of 12,000 people in 11 countries, 60 percent had never heard of the technology and 80 percent could not explain how it works. Yet, for a technology that few understand, blockchain is sure making waves. The World Economic Foundation (WEF), for example, found that 80 percent of global banks will have initiated blockchain-related projects by the end of 2017. Perhaps even more startling: By 2027, the WEF predicts, 10 percent of global gross domestic product will be held in blockchain technology.


Why Elon Musk is Wrong about AI – Hacker Noon

#artificialintelligence

AI will rise up and kill us all. Didn't Facebook have to shut down their latest monstrous experiment because it went rogue and developed its own secret language? For all we know, Skynet's factories are cranking out an army of Terminators already! The only problem is, it's all nonsense. It's an "existential threat worse than North Korea," he warns. Last I checked they have nukes and a little madman in power and super-AI is still confined to the pages of cyberpunk novels, so I'm not buying it. Look, the guy is a lot smarter than me and I think his batteries, cars and solar roof tiles will change the world but he's spent a little too much time watching 2001: A Space Odyssey.