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theEweekly Wrap

More wearable tech-Charity warns webcam users- LinkedIn is hijacked

Wearable tech range to expand to rings and socks

Following in the footsteps of Fitbit's Flex and Nike's Fuelband which are amongst the current leaders in sensor technology, US based Heapsylon have introduced their sensor-equipped socks.

The socks will be able to monitor the wearer's heart rate and balance during exercise, alert diabetic users of ulcers, and transmit warnings to carers of the elderly if they are about to faint or fall.

Meanwhile the Geak Ring, developed by Shanghai based company Shanda, enables users to unlock their Shanda phones simply by tapping the two devices together using near field communication (NFC).

The device will also be able to trigger downloads of contacts and photos onto friends' phones by tapping them against the ring. This is only possible between Shanda phones and the Geak Ring at present but the manufacturer intends to extend the field range to other providers.

The development of wearable technology is currently in the experimental stage, as the world is learning after the unveiling of Google Glass in May. Manufacturers are prepared for early products to flop but despite this the wearable tech is built to last with a projected life-span of 99 years.

Apple's Chief Executive Tim Cook recently warned that the wearable devices still have many problems to overcome.

He said: "There's nothing that's going to convince a kid that's never worn glasses or a band to wear one. So I think there's lot of things to solve in this space, but it's an area where it's ripe for exploration."


Webcam users warned by charity

A charity has warned webcam users to be more aware of the dangers that lie behind the small camera, stating that users are easy prey for hackers.

Childnet International has recommended that teenagers, and other users, should disconnect or cover up their webcam when they are not using them to avoid predatory spying.

A BBC Radio 5 Live investigation discovered sites where hackers shared secretly taken images and videos of webcam users, who had left their laptops open in private areas such as bedrooms or bathrooms.

Hackers are able to gain access using a piece of malware called a remote-access Trojan (Rat).

The malware tricks victims, known to hackers as 'slaves' or 'bots', into visiting a specific website or spreading an infected file.

The report uncovered a range of hacker websites with images of 'female slaves' and 'ugly slaves', though the extent to which this practice actually occurs is still under investigation by the police.

An Association of Chief Police Officers representative said: "Police have come across webcam hacking through cyber investigations.

"Any unauthorised intrusion into an individual's computer is an offence under the Computer Misuse Act and the police are able to prosecute offenders. Ensuring anti-virus protection is in place is important to prevent illegal access of your computer."


LinkedIn user privacy compromised again

On Wednesday evening LinkedIn suffered a DNS issue which redirected users to another site for an hour.

LinkedIn acknowledged the hijack in a Tweet the social network had stated nothing further by Thursday morning to suggest that the vulnerabilities have been fully resolved; DNS hijacking is the process of redirecting a domain name to a different IP address.

Users were directed to an India-based website,, which does not require a Secure Sockets Layer. As a result, anyone who was rerouted to this site will have sent it their unsecure cookies history.

A statement from Co-founder Bryan Berg implied there was more to the incident than LinkedIn's Tweet suggested:

"LinkedIn just got DNS hijacked, and for the last hour or so, all of your traffic has been sent to a network hosted by this company []. And they don't require SSL, so if you tried to visit, your browser sent your long-lived session cookies in plaintext."

Wednesday's security breach is reminiscent of LinkedIn's problems in 2012 when 6.5 million passwords were leaked online. Today the issue up in the air is that if third parties get hold of cookies in plaintext then members' accounts, and internet presence, has been compromised.



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