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AI defeats the hackers

AI and machine learning are already making inroads as far as preventing spam from getting through to the user, and it’s now being employed to prevent scams that use compromised, legitimate email accounts, writes Indi Siriniwasa, Vice President Trend Micro, Sub-Saharan Africa.

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The technology that exists now analyses the user’s writing style, based on previous emails and compares it to the fake emails. 

While there has been so much focus on all kinds of malware that could be downloaded from email, or picked up through malicious links, email hacking is a regular method of attack for the cybercriminal. It is still a favourite amongst hackers because it is the easiest and most successful way to spread high-risk threats. 

The thing with hacking an email account is that the hacked account can be used for fraud. For example, a cybercriminal may gain access to a financial advisor’s account – and address book – and send spoof emails to clients asking them to make payments into their account. Alternatively, the compromise can provide the cyber criminal access to the company’s network, potentially allowing the hacker to spy on the organisation or even steal personal information. 

This kind of cyber attack is quite different from email attacks that contain malware. There are a number of reasons that attackers use this method: to make a political point, sabotage, revenge, and of course, to make money. These cyber criminals will use a number of different means to get money out of the targets, such as keyloggers, phishing and social engineering. 

A number of industries are severely affected y this kind of compromise and range from healthcare to education. AI and machine learning can enhance protection, potentially preventing corporate disaster. There are, of course, tools available to prevent these breaches.. 

You can’t compromise on the right kind of security software that is properly configured and updated on a regular basis. However, don’t overlook the importance of staff education on every level – from CEO down. Ensure that everyone in the organisation understands how to keep their email secure and how to avoid clicking on malicious links. 

Your security is effectively as good as the people who are using the network and it’s imperative to create a culture of security in every organisation in order to combat cybercrime. 

Cyber criminals don’t take days off and neither should we.

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CES: So long, and thanks for all the beer!

Last week, the Las Vegas expo showed off its fun side with state-of-the-art technologies for enjoying beer, writes BRYAN TURNER

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From craft beer-making machines to robots that pour beer, CES had more beer than usual in Las Vegas last week. And even free beer if you found the right stand. Stampede’s saloon-style booth offered beer to visitors who tried out its latest drones, virtual reality, and other gaming products. No beer tech, though.

Here are some of the beer technologies that stood out:

LG HomeBrew – Craft beer made at home

LG’s HomeBrew craft beer-making machine,  debuted at CES 2019, brings the brewing process home thanks to single-use capsules,  a self-cleaning feature, and an algorithm optimised for fermentation. 

Like a Nespresso coffee machine, the beer maker uses capsules, which contain malt, yeast, hop oil and flavouring. At the press of a button, LG HomeBrew automates the whole procedure from fermentation and carbonation to ageing. A companion app lets users check HomeBrew’s status at any time during the process, from their handsets.

The beer machine not only offers a simple way to make craft beer, but also enhances the quality of beer it makes. The fermentation algorithm intelligently controls the fermenting process with precise temperature and pressure control. It automatically sanitises itself, using nothing more than hot water, ensuring everything is hygienically clean for the next batch.

Designed with discerning beer lovers in mind, HomeBrew allows for in-home production of batches of more than 4 litres of beer in a variety of styles. The following five distinctive, flavoured beers are available now: 

  • Hoppy American IPA
  • Golden American Pale Ale
  • Full-bodied English Stout
  • Zesty Belgian-style Witbier
  • Dry Czech Pilsner

The only catch? It takes about two weeks to make, depending on the beer type.

“LG HomeBrew is the culmination of years of home appliance and water purification technologies that we’ve developed over the decades,” said Dan Song, president of LG Electronics Home Appliance & Air Solutions Company. “Homebrewing has grown at an explosive pace, but there are still many beer lovers who haven’t taken the jump because of the barriers to entry, like complexity, and these are the consumers we think will be attracted to LG HomeBrew.”

Click here to read about the party speaker that holds beer and robots that pour beer.

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CES: Alienware gets Legend-ary

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At CES in Las Vegas last week, Dell’s Alienware released a family of high-end, thin, light, and affordable machines for both amateur and professional gamers – and a new identity.

Alienware marked CES 2019 as a brand milestone with the debut of a new design identity, Alienware Legend. It aims to set a new bar of excellence for what gamers want most – performance and function. Alienware says it evaluated multiple concepts and chose one that was the biggest and boldest departure from its current look.

Alienware Legend, says the company, stays true to the brand’s core design tenets, taking cues from its deep roots in sci-fi culture and its early industrial designs, to distinguish the brand from the rest of the industry. The new Legend design is optimised with cutting-edge thermal cooling technology to achieve and sustain overclocking power, improved AlienFX lighting, and ultra-thin screen borders. It also unveiled a new “three-knuckle hinge” design that reduces the overall dimension while creating a stronger assembly, all combining to yield a better gaming experience.

“We’re excited to come to this year’s CES with some truly groundbreaking products, next-gen software and strategic partnerships that will bring more people to experience PC gaming and advance the industry,” said Frank Azor, vice president and general manager of Alienware. “The legend design answers the call for more and better from our gaming community, and the new G Series laptops will make PC gaming even more accessible to those looking for high-performance gaming at a cost they can appreciate.”

Click here to read about Alienware Legend in action with the Area-51m and m-series laptops

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