Sunday, September 30, 2012



iPhone 5 Problems

iPhone 5 ‘Problems’ Explained Apple has a new iPhone, which of course means it’s time to find problems to harp about. It happens with every new iPhone. Remember Antennagate? How about the battery issues with iOS 5? This time around we’ve got nicked cases, lens flare and, of course, the disaster of Maps. But are these really problems, or are people making such a fuss because it’s, well, Apple? A little of both, actually. There are legitimate beefs, but what company hasn’t had issues with new hardware or software? With the Samsung Galaxy S III, some owners reported battery drain issues with their new handsets in June. But this is Apple we’re talking about, and the expectation is just a little bit … higher. “I do think that users have higher expectations when it comes to Apple,” Gartner analyst Carolina Milanesi told Wired via email. “I also think that there is a particular pleasure by many in finding something wrong almost to show that Apple is not perfect.” And so we’re hearing no end of complaints and criticism now that pundits and the public are using their shiny new iPhone 5′s. Some of them are complete non-issues, but there are some actual problems. Lets break it down… Scratches and chips Shortly after iPhone 5′s started arriving in the mail, some noticed their svelte new handset was chipped right out of the box. Others found that the switch from a glass back plate to anodized aluminum made the iPhone — particularly the black model — more susceptible to unsightly scratches and blemishes. Within a few short days of using my own iPhone 5, I too noticed some chips along its chamfers, the diagonal edges of the device. IHS analyst Kevin Keller, who covers teardown services, explained what’s going on here. Apple has incorporated an aluminum unibody construction for the first time in the iPhone 5 — similar to what Apple has used in MacBooks and the iPad, that is, a single piece of aluminum hollowed out with a CNC machine. “The issue, though, is that aluminum is a fairly soft metal,” Keller said. The aluminum is anodized, a finishing process that is essentially an etch and dye process that gives it color, but there is no sort of protective finish on top of that. “It’s just bare aluminum. It scratches easily. You can scratch it with a key or anything.” This isn’t a problem so much for iPads and MacBooks, but iPhones are often put in pockets along with keys. Whether or not this is actually an issue, though, is in the eye of the beholder. “I actually like the idea of the metal wearing in over time and becoming unique,” iFixit’s Kyle Wiens told Wired. “So I don’t mind the scratching.” As with a plurality of iPhone owners in the past, the threat of scratches may not be a problem for long. “If users care about their phone getting scratched, they’ll put a case on it, so ultimately it’s not really an issue,” Keller said. Personally, I’ve decided to put mine in a case anytime I put it in my backpack to provide added protection while walking around or biking. Maps Yes, Maps is indeed a serious problem. Apple CEO Tim Cook actually issued a formal apology for the app, which was perhaps pushed out a bit prematurely. Apple’s new Maps app is perhaps the most pervasive issue affecting iPhone 5 users. But being a feature of iOS 6, it is affecting other iDevice owners as well. Some of the problems include 3D and satellite images being buggy (like bridges looking wavy, or dropping off in the center); navigation directions sending people to incorrect locations; and out-of-date information on local businesses. The Maps app also lacks transit directions, which Google Maps has. It’s a large enough deal that some are even holding out upgrading until a better fix is in place. “Maps is a huge problem,” iFixit’s Kyle Wiens told Wired. “I refuse to upgrade to iOS 6 until Google releases a maps app. I need transit directions too much.” In the meantime, iOS 6 users can download one of a number of transit apps or map apps, or create a homescreen bookmark to Google Maps’ web app. You point your phone up at the sky to Instagram the bright afternoon sunlight catching the clouds, but then, gasp! The resulting image has a ghastly purple pallor cast around the sun’s powerful rays. It’s an effect known as purple fringing, and it can be attributed to anything from stray UV or IR light, image processing issues, anti-reflective lens coatings, or overexposure. It’s something that plagues many digital cameras. In the iPhone 5′s case, some postulate that because Apple removed the IR/Cut filter in the iPhone 5, its suffering from greater lens flare issues than the 4S. The phone’s new sapphire lens could also be to blame — this is what the photography folks at PetaPixel suspect is at issue. However, the process used to turn sapphire into a lens removes the telltale coloring you typically associate with the gemstone. In some tests, the iPhone 5 does a better job of eliminating this issue than its predecessor, the iPhone 4S. But in others, like PCMag’s investigation, they found that among several major smartphones (the iPhone 5, 4S and 4; Samsung Galaxy S III and HTC One S), the iPhone 5 was the worst offender of this type of lens flare. Should you be concerned? No. It may happen, it may not, but there is zero reason to rush back to the Apple Store and swap out your handset if you see a purple halo in a photo. Macrumors forum member Leotno wrote, “My phone has a streak of light leaking from in-between the glass panel and the structure; it is right under my lock button. Kinda makes the lock button look illuminated. Anyone else notice a problem like this?” Light leakage seems to be a fairly common issue for white handsets — iPhone 4S owners reported a similar thing last year. Others that noticed similar issues with light leaking on their iPhone 5′s took their handset to the Apple Store and were issued a replacement. If you notice this defect and it bothers you, you can try swapping out your handset, or you can just learn to ignore it. Screen glitching One issue that I and others are experiencing is an odd screen glitching that usually happens when you’re putting in your Apple ID password. As you type, horizontal lines appear across the keyboard. I mostly saw this in the App Store app. Videos documenting the issue have appeared on YouTube, if you haven’t noticed it yourself. But despite headlines like “BIG iPhone 5 Screen Issue,” the glitch is just a minor software problem that should be fixed in an upcoming iOS update. It doesn’t affect overall performance, and it’s not something you need to drag yourself to the Genius Bar about. Even with early reviews pointing out some of these issues, it hasn’t affected iPhone sales momentum. Apple reportedly sold 5 million units during the iPhone 5′s opening weekend alone. more @

Apple's iOS 6 Problem

Apple's iOS 6 stumbles on basic connectivity: Wi-Fi Apple is struggling with a number of issues after the release of iOS 6 and the iPhone 5, not least of which is Wi-Fi connectivity. PHILADELPHIA -- Apple's iOS 6 has not fared well with Wi-Fi. Though this isn't the first time a new Apple operating system or device has had Wi-Fi issues, the situation this time around has been exacerbated by the release of the iPhone 5, putting an iOS 6 device immediately into millions of consumers' hands. Not to mention all of the upgrades. Reports cite 60 percent of iPhone and roughly 40 percent of iPad owners upgrading to the new OS so far. The fallout is numerous forum discussions on Wi-Fi connectivity problems. For example, there are currently two major Wi-Fi threads (at least) in the Apple Support Communities -- here and here. Together, those two threads total, so far, more than 150 pages. And count me in as an affected user in the two groups cited above. My iPhone 5 and Retina iPad (now with iOS 6) work on some Wi-Fi networks and not others. Which brings us to yet another thread related to iOS 6 and Netgear routers. The only way I could quickly get my iPhone 5 and Retina iPad working on a Netgear Wi-Fi router was to downgrade the firmware. That worked but seemed like an odd solution. (And, it's safe to say, one a lot of consumers would not be aware of.) And other kinds of Wi-Fi issues are popping up in forums, such as a persistently slow Wi-Fi speeds, which is different than the plain-old-doesn't-connect snafu. (I had the latter issue only.) As usual, Apple is officially mum on the issue, i.e., the company hasn't made an official statement, though Apple's technical support is aware of the problem. The person I contacted said Apple knows about the Wi-Fi problem and that it was tech support's job to "document everything" so Apple can eventually come up with a fix. And while we're on the subject, the 4G LTE on my iPhone 5 and Retina iPad can be spotty (I had been forced to use LTE when I would normally connect to Wi-Fi, but couldn't). Even in dense metropolitan areas (for example, Los Angeles and Philadelphia) connectivity can bounce back and forth between 3G and LTE like a pinball. But that's another topic for another day. Of course, this hasn't been Apple's only problem with the rollout of iOS 6. Apple Maps has been slammed, eliciting an apology from CEO Tim Cook. more @

October 1st delay,Sorry

Sorry guys due to October 1st being a Monday i have scheduling conflicts that week, The uploads your looking for will be delayed, not sure when but thinking Friday, October 7th. If you have request comment here with it and i will post those first if i can find them, other than than remember new stuff will be posted first, so look for the first one for October 7th. I will update this link if i find time to post earlier,thanks

Sunday, September 23, 2012

iphone 5

Hackers claim they cracked iPhone 5

Hackers claim they cracked iPhone 5 just EIGHT HOURS after its release



A San Francisco hacker says he has cracked the new iPhone 5, less than eight hours after its release to the public.
Grant Paul, who develops software for Apple's iOS operating system, posted photos on his Twitter page of a 'jailbroken' iPhone 5.
Apple ships its iPhones and other mobile devices with restrictions that only allow Apple-approved software to be installed.

However, hackers have worked to 'jailbreak' all previous versions of the operating system by exploiting security flaws.
Instructions for stable 'jailbreaks' are posted online, which allow normal users to free their phones of Apple's restrictions.  

Tech news site The Next Web reports that Mr Paul's hack of the new phone is remarkably fast.
The iPhone 5 runs on Apple's new iOS 6 operating system, which does not have the same security flaws as previous versions of the software.
Other hackers have also found cracks to jailbreak older devices running the new operating system.

The development doesn't mean a hack is available for lay-users -- though it does mean one will likely be online much sooner. 
Apple fans lined up around the world to have the first chance at buying the iPhone 5 at 8am on Friday.
At 3.49pm on Friday, Mr Paul tweeted a photo of an iPhone5 screenshot that included Cydia, the app used to download non-Apple-approved software on jailbroken iPhones.
The implication of the photo was that Mr Paul had been able to download Cydia to his iPhone 5 only because he was successfully able to hack it.
He celebrated the remarkable achievement with an understated tweet: 'Taller screens like Cydia too. :)'
As skeptics weighed in, Mr Paul posted a screenshot of the Cydia home page and then a photo of his phone with Cydia on it.
The tech community has largely accepted the pictures as proof that the iPhone 5 has successfully been cracked.

more @


Passenger uses app to track down iPad he left on plane... and discovers it was taken by flight attendant

  • Flight attendant Wendy Dye denied having the iPad when confronted
  • But when it was found in her home she admitted she kept it when a passenger handed it in after finding it left on a seat

 A Nevada man who lost his iPad on an airplane used an app called 'Find My iPad' to locate it inside the home of a flight attendant in Oregon, according to police.
Wendy Ronelle Dye, 43, a flight attendant for Horizon Air, was arrested in Oregon City on Friday evening.
The iPad's owner said he had downloaded the anti-theft app only days before the September 11 flight to Los Angeles, and forgot about its installation until activating it on Wednesday.
While being questioned by police, Dye initially denied having the iPad or knowing one was missing.
The flight attendant then confessed that a passenger brought her the tablet, which cost around $500, saying it had been left on a seat.
She said she never used the iPad and planned to turn it over to airline officials, but placed it in a personal bag and soon forgot about it.
Police say they found some of her personal information on it, however, including a reminder for her husband's upcoming birthday.

Dye, who is charged with Theft II by receiving and Computer Crime, did not immediately respond to a phone message.
A spokeswoman for Alaska Airlines, which owns Horizon, says Dye was suspended pending the police investigation.
She was being held at the Clackamas County Jail with bail set at $12,500.

Verizon iPhones can now access AT&T’s network

iPhone 5 works on AT&T’s network!

Verizon iPhones can now access AT&T’s network without complicated hacking procedures.

NEW YORK  — The Verizon version of the iPhone 5, which went on sale Friday, comes with a secret and unexpected feature: it works on AT&T’s network as well.
Confirming blog reports, The Associated Press found that the Verizon iPhone 5 accepts an AT&T “SIM card” — a little chip that identifies a phone to a wireless network. The phone can then be active on AT&T’s network.
It’s the first time Verizon iPhones have been able to access AT&T’s network without complicated hacking procedures. The feature may mean little to most buyers, since they’re signing up for two years of Verizon service. But it does give them the option of switching carriers.

It’s unclear whether the feature is intended and whether the phones will work with other carriers, such as T-Mobile USA.
Verizon Wireless referred questions about the feature to Apple, which did not respond. Last year, the first shipments of the Sprint iPhone 4S were “unlocked” and worked on AT&T, but Sprint later issued software updates that turned off that capability.

Read more:

Pakistan official offers $100,000

Pakistan official offers $100,000 reward for killing of maker of anti-Prophet Muhammad film



A Pakistani government minister on Saturday announced a $100,000 bounty for the killing of the person who produced an online film that denigrates the Prophet Muhammad.
Federal Minister for Railways Ghulam Ahmed Bilour also asked the Taliban and al-Qaida to extend support to the would-be killer.
Speaking at a press conference at the Peshawar Press Club, the federal minister said whoever is responsible for blasphemy deserves death.

"The American who produced the sacrilegious film in the U.S. is also liable to death and we will shower dollars on the one who killed the blasphemer. If members of the banned militant organizations kill the maker of the blasphemous movie, they will also be rewarded," Bilour announced.

He called for legislation to have the anti-blasphemy law at the global level so that no one could hurt the religious emotions of the Muslims in the name of the freedom of expression.
He said the situation would remain tense until anti-blasphemy law was enacted at the world level.
Bilour condemned the work of the filmmaker, saying it distressed the Muslims across the world.  However, he also condemned the violence during the protests on Friday, which was declared a national holiday in honor of Muhammad, saying it could defame Muslims and their religion.
Bilour said the government had already announced that the police and other law-enforcers would give protesters the opportunity to peacefully condemn the filmmaker and would not crack down on them with baton

At least 15 people were killed and shops and businesses were damaged on Friday during Muslim protests in Pakistan.
The film in question, produced in the U.S. and posted on the Internet under several titles including "Innocence of Muslims," portrays the prophet as a fraud, womanizer and child molester.
The U.S. Embassy in Pakistan has run television spots, one featuring Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, saying the government had nothing to do with the film.
Pakistan had declared Friday a "Day of Love" for the Prophet and Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf said an attack on Islam's founder was "an attack on the whole 1.5 billion Muslims."

Dozens of people, including the U.S. ambassador to Libya, have been killed this month in violence linked to the film, which also has renewed debate over freedom of expression in the U.S. and in Europe.
Protests continued in the Muslim world on Saturday. Scores of people were injured in clashes in Bangladesh's capital between police and hundreds of demonstrators. In Pakistan, more than 1,500 people, including women and children, rallied in the capital.
Thousands of people also protested Saturday in Nigeria's largest city, Kano. The crowd marched from a mosque to the palace of the Emir of Kano, the region's top spiritual leader for Muslims.

About 200 students in Srinagar, the main city in Indian-controlled Kashmir, chanted "Down with America" and "Long live Islam" in a peaceful protest. Some carried a placard that read, "There is no God but Allah and Muhammad is his messenger."

more @


Friday, September 21, 2012

NYPD On The Hunt For Subway Perv

NYPD On The Hunt For Subway Perv NEW YORK (PIX11)— PIX-11 is hitting the streets again, posting "wanted fliers" in the Grand Street M-Station where a perv ran off a train after a 32 year old woman snapped pictures of him as he exposed his genitals and pleasured himself during her commute. The Hispanic man in his 60's picked the wrong woman as a target. Wendy Poon was determined that cops should catch him, and prosecute him. She says she's been victimized before and was sick of the disgusting behavior. "The first time it happened, I was nine. A man in a car positioned himself so I would see him exposing himself. I was so young I didn't even understand what was happening," said Poon. Since then, she been groped several times in addition to men masturbating in front of her on the subway. This time, she was ready--snapping several pictures before he realized it and ran off. Then she headed to the closest precinct, the 112th in Forest Hills, and found a female officer inside to show the pictures to so she could file a report. "She looked at the pictures and she even passed it around to other cops, and they sort of chuckled, so i thought they were going to help me. But she said 'I can't help you.' She told me I should have followed him, then called police to come get him. She said it was common sense," lamented Poon, especially after PIX 11 informed her that was in direct violation to NYPD procedures--victims should never follow a perpetrator, and should only call police to have them track the criminals. Even though the female officer pushed Wendy off to the 104th precinct, she wouldn't give up. She went back into the subway, getting a transit officer to take her seriously, and take a report. We took this as a serious offense too--tracking her down on vacation in Argentina to do a report; now detectives say they have serious leads. NYPD Retired Det Sgt Wally Zeins used to head up the Special Victim's Division that handles sex crimes in Manhattan and says these guys repeat their crimes more than any other type of criminal. "This is a disease besides a crime; this is the beginning of a very serious crime. It escalates." Yet community involvement can nab and prosecute these guys--Shawn, a victim's advocate herself, couldn't wait to help us out. She works with women in Lefrak City, but after seeing us in the subway grabbed some posters and starting taping them up along the station. Meanwhile, the officer at the 112th who tried to push Wendy to another precinct to report her crime--was violating department orders. PIX 11 obtained this departmental directive sent to all officers in January of 2012. It was written after complaints from Council Member Peter Vallone, and, in part, demands that victims "not be referred to another command" meaning any officer, in any precinct, is required to take a full police report, then refer it on to the appropriate agency or group of detectives. Wendy, who is usually a private person, sighed and seemed to find a deeper resolve, "I hope to send a message to other women, not be scared, be brave, do anything you can to report this to police. Embarrass them. Catch them." Copyright © 2012, WPIX-TV

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Subway pervert who masturbated on three

Subway pervert who masturbated on three women aboard trains gets off with NO prison time, thanks to New York State's highest court Darnell Hardware, 27, got three years probation last week because Court of Appeals judges ruled earlier this year that subway grinders — as they are called by law enforcement — can’t be charged with felonies if they don’t use force to pursue their repulsive perversion. Prosecutors say dozens of subway sickos have walked away from charges that previously could have carried sentences of up to seven years since the New York State Court of Appeals ruled they can't be charged with felonies if they don't use force. State lawmakers, prosecutors and women are outraged that a chronic pervert who masturbated on three subway riders got off with no prison time — courtesy to the state’s highest court. Darnell Hardware, 27, got three years probation last week because Court of Appeals judges ruled earlier this year that subway grinders — as they are called by law enforcement — can’t be charged with felonies if they don’t use force to pursue their repulsive perversion. In other words, it’s gross, but it’s not violent. "The court system has let him get away scott free," said Nicola Briggs, 40, of Manhattan, who has faced down a subway grinder before. "It's a slap on the wrist, honestly. I do not think the punishment did fit the crime." Prosecutors say dozens of subway sickos have walked away from charges that could have carried up to seven years since the high court's March ruling. In Hardware’s case, the pervert has indeed been prolific, with a rap sheet that includes 32 arrests, including two sexual assault cases in the Bronx and Brooklyn. The recent subterranean charges stemmed from three incidents in Manhattan between 2003 and 2005, when Hardware rubbed himself to orgasm on two young women aged 22 and 24, and a 17-year-old high school student. "She could feel what was happening but (was) powerless to move," Assistant District Attorney Melissa Mourges said of one victim. Hardware can thank fellow perv Jason Mack for his freedom. In 2002, the 300-pound Mack rubbed against a 14-year-old girl in a packed downtown 1 train — but it wasn’t until 2009 that his DNA was linked to the crime. Mack confessed to the perversion, but Judge Renee White threw out a felony charge because there was no proof the girl felt threatened with violence. The DA's office fought the case all the way to the state's highest court, but lost. Mack ended up facing a max of three months for a misdemeanor sex abuse charge. Briggs, who stood up to a subway grinder in 2010, said that there is something deeply hostile about the crime. "I would disagree that there is not violence involved," said Briggs. "It cuts to the core of someone's psyche - it attacks the self esteem. It is tacitly being condoned by (the court system) not coming down on this. I think there is a sex bias in the court system." State Sen. Bill Perkins introduced a bill last year that would allow prosecutors to bring felony charges against someone with two prior convictions - even if there's been a 10-year period in between offenses. The legislation passed the Senate, but was struck down in the Assembly. Perkins vowed to reintroduce it this year. City Councilman Peter Vallone Jr. called on Albany close the loophole and put convicted grinders on a state sex offenders list. more @

Worst in-flight meals

Buckle up for the worst in-flight meals in the skies: Disgusted passengers share photos of their airline food disasters The on-board service for plane passengers has improved immeasurably over the years. These days fliers typically have more precious leg-room, the latest Hollywood blockbusters on demand and - for the lucky few in first class - the unbridled joy of fully-reclining seats. But despite all this progress, airline food can still be the stuff of gastronomic nightmares, as these stomach-churning photos show. hen it comes to their culinary offerings airlines have never had the best of reputations. Indeed, for some, just hearing the words ‘in-flight food’ can be enough to make them involuntarily wretch and reach for those paper sick bags from the seat in front. Disgruntled fliers fed up with the ubiquitous solid bread roll, unidentifiable slab of meat and tasteless helping of desert are increasingly sharing photos of the dodgy food they've been served online. AirlineMeals is one such site where passengers post pictures of their grim-looking meals, mark them out of ten and name and shame the airlines. Marco ‘t Hart, who set up the AirlineMeals ten years ago, told CNN that the site became successful because of the unpopularity of certain foods. Now the site has more than 26,000 photographs of meals – both foul and fantastic - snapped on 600 plus airlines. However, this selection of photographs showcases some of the grimmest grub on offer. From ancient looking slabs of salmon to congealed meat stews, these airline meals look spectacularly awful. One flier, who uploaded a photo to AirlineMeals, vented their fury about Estonian Air food: 'What was in the meal? Very good question! Starter: cold rice with a few peas, sweet corn, and olive skin. Main course: I believe it was cold Baltic herring (those three pieces of gray, slimy things on the left), potato salad (recycled, I think), lettuce (left by the snails as being inedible), piece of tomato ( for color), bread roll (warm on arrival, but overdone in microwave, so solid within a few minutes). Dessert: able to break this stodgy, doughy thing into pieces, but no flavor at all, so not sure what it was supposed to be. One far-from-satisfied passenger had trouble describing their meal on a Air Botswana flight: 'Meat something with vegetable something. [...] The drink was some fluorescent green soda.' Another flier, this one was jetting from Moscow to Malta on Aeroflot, photographed a suspicious-looking salmon main course. They wrote: 'The worst I’ve had from Aeroflot. The salmon was the same age as my grandma . . . lunch was poor and not fresh. HORRIBLE!' Besides a particularly gross looking meal, a Ukraine International passenger wrote: 'The most striking thing about this meal was the lurid yellow color of the omelet. Decidedly unnatural, but perhaps this was the caterer’s attempt to support the Orange Revolution in Kiev. Sausage was pure plastic, so I didn’t touch it—and I wasn’t sure why it was split down the middle . . . to reveal its meat-free content perhaps?' more @

Monday, September 17, 2012


Coders Behind the Flame Malware Left Incriminating Clues on Control Servers
The attackers behind the nation-state espionage tool known as Flame accidentally left behind tantalizing clues that provide information about their identities and that suggest the attack began earlier and was more widespread than previously believed. Researchers have also uncovered evidence that the attackers may have produced at least three other pieces of malware or variants of Flame that are still undiscovered. The information comes from clues, including four programmers’ nicknames, that the attackers inadvertently left behind on two command-and-control servers they used to communicate with infected machines and steal gigabytes of data from them. The new details about the operation were left behind despite obvious efforts the attackers made to wipe the servers of forensic evidence, according to reports released Monday by researchers from Symantec in the U.S. and from Kaspersky Lab in Russia. Flame, also known as Flamer, is a highly sophisticated espionage tool discovered earlier this year that targeted machines primarily in Iran and other parts of the Middle East. It’s believed to have been created by the United States and Israel, who are also believed to be behind the groundbreaking Stuxnet worm that aimed to cripple centrifuges used in Iran’s nuclear program. The new clues show that work on parts of the Flame operation began as early as December 2006, nearly six years before Flame was discovered, and that more than 10,000 machines are believed to have been infected with the malware. Although the 2006 date refers to the development of code used in the command-and-control servers and doesn’t necessarily mean the malware itself was in the wild all of this time, Vikram Thakur, a researcher with Symantec Security Response, says the details are still troubling. “For us to know that a malware campaign lasted this long and was flying under the radar for everyone in the community, it’s a little concerning,” he says. “It’s a very targeted attack, but it’s a very large-scale targeted attack.” The two security firms conducted the research in partnership with BUND-CERT, the federal computer emergency response team in Germany, and ITU-IMPACT, the cybersecurity arm of the United Nation’s International Telecommunications Union. Although the attackers clearly were part of a sophisticated nation-state operation, they made a number of mistakes that resulted in traces of their activity being left behind. According to data gleaned from the two servers the researchers examined: At least four programmers developed code for the servers and left their nicknames in the source code. One of the servers communicated with more than 5,000 victim machines during just a one-week period last May, suggesting the total victims exceed 10,000. The infections didn’t occur at once, but focused on different groups of targets in various countries at different times; one server focused primarily on targets in Iran and Sudan. The attackers stole massive amounts of data – at least 5.5 gigabytes of stolen data inadvertently left behind on one of the servers was collected in one week. The four pieces of malware used different custom protocols to communicate with the servers. The attackers used a number of means to secure their operation as well as the data they stole – although they left behind gigabytes of purloined data, it was encrypted using a public key stored in a database on the servers and an unknown private key, preventing the researchers and anyone else without the private key from reading it. The attackers, perhaps suspecting that their operation was about to be uncovered last May, attempted a cleanup operation to wipe the Flame malware from infected machines. Flame was discovered by Kaspersky and publicly disclosed on May 28. Kaspersky said at the time that the malware had targeted systems in Iran, Lebanon, Syria, Sudan, Israel and the Palestinian Territories, as well as other countries in the Middle East and North Africa. Kaspersky estimated at the time that the malware had infected about 1,000 machines. The malware is highly modular and can spread via infected USB sticks or a sophisticated exploit and man-in-the-middle attack that hijacks the Windows Update mechanism to deliver the malware to new victims as if it were legitimate code signed by Microsoft. Once on machines, Flame can steal files and record keystrokes, as well as turn on the internal microphone of a machine to record conversations conducted over Skype or in the vicinity of the infected computer. Previous research on Flame conducted by Kaspersky found that Flame had been operating in the wild undetected since at least March 2010 and that it might have been developed in 2007. But the new evidence indicates that development of code for the command-and-control servers – servers designed to communicate with machines infected with Flame – began at least as early as December 2006. It was created by at least four programmers, who left their nicknames in the source code. The Flame operation used numerous servers for its command-and-control activities, but the researchers were able to examine only two of them. The first server was set up on March 25 and operated until April 2, during which it communicated with infected machines from 5,377 unique IP addresses from more than a dozen countries. Of these, 3,702 IP addresses were in Iran. The country with the second largest number was Sudan, with 1,280 hits. The remaining countries each had fewer than 100 infections. The researchers were able to uncover the information, because the attackers had made a simple mistake. “The attackers played with the server settings and managed to lock themselves out of it,” says Costin Raiu, senior security researcher for Kaspersky. Left behind on the locked server were the http server logs, showing all of the connections that came in from infected machines. Researchers also found about 5.7 gigabytes of data stored in a compressed and encrypted file, which the attackers had stolen from victims’ machines. “If their collection of 6 gigabytes of data in a span of ten days in March is indicative of how prevalent their campaign was for multiple years in the past, they probably have terabytes of information that they collected from thousands and thousands of people across the globe,” says Symantec’s Thakur. The second server was set up on May 18, 2012, after Kaspersky had discovered Flame, but before the company had publicly disclosed its existence. The server was set up specifically to deliver a kill module, called “browse32,” to any infected machine that connected to it, in order to delete any trace of Flame on the machine. It may have been set up after the attackers realized they’d been caught. Raiu says the attackers may have realized Flame had been discovered after a honeypot machine belonging to Kaspersky reached out to the attackers’ server. “Around the 12th of May, we connected a virtual machine infected by Flame to the internet, and the virtual machine connected to the [attackers'] command-and-control servers,” he says. Five hours after the server with the kill module was set up on the 18th, it received its first hit from a machine infected with Flame. The server remained in operation only about a week, communicating with a few hundred infected machines, says Symantec. Four Coders The four programmers who developed code for the servers and left their nicknames in the source code, were part of a sophisticated operation that likely included multiple teams – a coordinating team tasked with choosing the specific targets to attack and examining all of the stolen data that came in from them; a team responsible for writing the malware and command modules; and a team of operators for setting up and maintaining the command-and-control servers, sending command modules out to infected machines and managing the stolen data once it came in. Symantec and Kaspersky have redacted the nicknames of the four coders and identified them only by the first initial of their nicknames – D, H, O, and R. Thakur said he’s never seen nicknames left in malware except in low-level malware that’s unsophisticated. But the coders in the Flame operation were clearly a higher caliber than this. “Maybe they just never expected their server to reach the wrong hands,” he says. “But considering that Flamer has links to Stuxnet and DuQu, we would have expected not to see these names. But, at the end of the day, they’re human.” Of the four coders, “D” and “H” were the more significant players, since they handled interactions with infected computers, and were responsible for creating two of the four protocols the servers used to communicate with malware on infected machines. But “H” was the most experienced of the group, responsible for some of the encryption used in the operation. Raiu calls him a “master of encryption,” and notes that he was responsible for implementing the encryption of data stolen from victim machines. “He coded some very smart patches and implemented complex logic,” Kaspersky writes in its report. “We think [he] was most likely a team lead.” “O” and “R” worked on a MySQL database used in the operation ,as well as the development of cleanup files that were used to wipe data from the servers. Based on timestamps of activity on the servers, Symantec thinks the coders were based in Europe, the Middle East or Africa. Command-and-Control Server Setup The command-and-control servers hosted a custom web application the programmers developed — called NewsforYou — to communicate with infected machines. Through the application’s control panel, the attackers could send new modules to infected clients and retrieve stolen data. The password for the control panel was stored as an MD5 hash, which the researchers were unable to crack. The control panel was disguised to resemble a content management system that a news organization or a blog publisher might use, so that any outsider who gained access to the panel wouldn’t suspect its real purpose. While command-and-control servers used by cybercriminal groups generally have showy control panels with the words “bot” or “botnet” clearly labeled on them, making their malicious purpose immediately apparent, the control panel used in the Flame operation was bare-bones in design and used euphemistic terms to conceal its real purpose. For example, file directories for storing malicious modules to send to infected machines were named “News” and “Ads.” The “News” directory held modules meant to be sent to every machine, while “Ads” held modules intended only for select machines. Data purloined from infected machines was stored in a directory called “Entries.” The attackers also used a number of security features to prevent an unauthorized party who gained control of the server from sending arbitrary commands to infected machines or reading stolen data. Often, criminal control panels use a simple point-and-click menu of options for the attackers to send commands to infected machine. But the Flame operation required the attackers to create a command module, place it in a file with a specially formatted name and upload it to the server. The server would then parse the contents of the file, and place the module in the appropriate location, from where it could be pushed out to infected machines. Symantec said this complicated style, which prevented server operators from knowing what was in the modules they were sending to victims, had the hallmarks of “military and/or intelligence operations,” rather than criminal operations. Similarly, data stolen from victim machines could only be decrypted with a private key that was not stored on the server, likely so that server operators could not read the data. The researchers found evidence that the command-and-control servers were set up to communicate with at least four pieces of malware. The attackers refer to them, in the order they were created, as SP, SPE, FL, IP. “FL” is known to refer to Flame, a name that Kaspersky gave the malware back in May, based on the name of one of the main modules in it (Symantec refers to the same malware Flamer). IP is the newest malware. Aside from Flame, none of the other three pieces of malware have been discovered yet, as far as the researchers know. But according to Raiu, they know that SPE is in the wild because a handful of machines infected with it contacted a sinkhole that Kaspersky set up in June to communicate with machines infected with Flame. They were surprised when malware that was not Flame contacted the sinkhole as soon as it went online. They only recently realized it was SPE. The SPE infections came in from Lebanon and Iran. Each of the four pieces of malware uses one of three protocols to communicate with the command-and-control server – Old Protocol, Old E Protocol, or SignUp Protocol. A fourth protocol, called Red Protocol, was being developed by the operators but had not been completed yet. Presumably, the attackers planned to use this protocol with yet a fifth piece of malware. Clean-Up and Coding Gaffes The attackers took a number of steps to delete evidence of their activity on the servers, but made a number of mistakes that left telling clues behind. They used a script called to disable certain logging services and delete any logs already created by those services. At the end of the script, there was even an instruction to delete the LogWiper script itself. But the researchers discovered the script contained an error that prevented this from occurring. The script indicated that a file named should be deleted, not, leaving the script behind on the server for the researchers to find. They also had a script designed to delete temporary files at a regularly scheduled time each day, but the script had a typo in the file path, so that it couldn’t find the tool it needed to erase the files.

iPhone 5 6M sold

iPhone 5 'worst case' launch? 6M sold, analyst says Just how many iPhones will Apple sell this weekend? One analyst says 6 million would be a worst-case scenario. With the iPhone 5's launch this Friday, it's that time of the year when it comes to guessing just how many iPhones Apple will sell. The latest estimate comes from Piper Jaffray's Gene Munster, who in a note to investors today says that at best Apple will move 8 million to 10 million iPhones, and at worst, 6 million. "While we continue to believe an 8 million launch weekend figure is achievable, we believe that the 2 million preorders suggest that the worst case weekend sales figure is likely to be 6 million," Munster wrote. To put that in perspective, Apple sold 270,000 of its original iPhones in the device's first 30 hours on sale back in 2007. Last year it took a weekend to move 4 million. Apple this morning said it had sold 2 million iPhone 5s in the device's first 24 hours of presales online. That was twice as many preorders as the iPhone 4S got last year. Both of those online events were mired with some initial technical difficulties, making the end tallies even more impressive. Cutting through some of the 4S preorder math from last year, and the preorders for the 5 last week, Munster believes Apple sold about 3 million iPhone 4S devices at retail during its launch weekend leading up to the 4 million (including preorders) the company reported as its first weekend sales. "Given the 2 million preorders for iPhone 5, it would require roughly 4 million sales at retail, or 33 percent year-over-year growth," Munster said. "We believe the 33 percent year-over-year growth hurdle should be well within reason for Apple on the iPhone 5 launch, thus 6 million launch weekend units should be worst case." The iPhone 5 goes on sale this Friday at 8 a.m. local time at Apple's retail stores and retail partners. Some of those who preordered it last week have already gotten shipping notices, though like in years past, deliveries are expected to be held until the device's street date.

New Internet Explorer weakness

New Internet Explorer weakness already exploited in attacks

Researchers say a previously unknown hole in IE has already been used to deliver a trojan in real-world attacks.

A previously unknown security hole in Internet Explorer 7, 8 and 9 is being actively exploited to deliver a back door trojan known as "Poison Ivy," researchers warned.

Security blogger Eric Romang, who uncovered the vulnerability this weekend, wrote on his blog yesterday:

I can confirm, the zero-day season is really not over yet. Less than three weeks after the discovery of the Java SE 7 0day, aka CVE-2012-4681, potentially used by the Nitro gang in targeted attacks, a potential Microsoft Internet Explorer 7 and 8 zero-day is actually exploited in the wild.

Romang found an attack that uses Adobe Flash Player to conduct a "heap spray" to bypass ASLR (Address Space Layout Randomization) protection in Windows. A "zero-day" vulnerability, by the way, is one that had previously gone undetected.

The attack, which appears to be exploitable on Windows XP, apparently comes from the same parties responsible for a Java zero-day exploit that was uncovered last month, writes Jaime Blasco in a post on the AlienVault Labs blog.

Security experts have already developed a vulnerability-testing tool known as a Metasploit module for IE 7, 8 and 9 on Windows XP, Vista and 7, as explained in a post today on Rapid7's SecurityStreet blog:

Computers can get compromised simply by visiting a malicious website, which gives the attacker the same privileges as the current use. Since Microsoft has not released a patch for this vulnerability yet, Internet users are strongly advised to switch to other browsers, such as Chrome or Firefox, until a security update becomes available. The exploit had already been used by malicious attackers in the wild before it was published in Metasploit. The associated vulnerability puts about 41 percent of Internet users in North America and 32 percent world-wide at risk (source: StatCounter). We have added the zero-day exploit module to Metasploit to give the security community a way to test if their systems are vulnerable and to develop counter-measures.

Microsoft has been looking into the matter and has some advice for protecting against an attack. Here's Yunsun Wee, director of Microsoft Trustworthy Computing, in an e-mail statement:

We're aware of targeted attacks potentially affecting some versions of Internet Explorer.... We have confirmed that Internet Explorer 10 is not affected by this issue. We recommend customers deploy Microsoft's Enhanced Mitigation Experience Toolkit (EMET) 3.0, which provides effective protections without affecting the Web browsing experience. We will continue to investigate this issue and take further actions as appropriate.

Wee didn't say when Microsoft hoped to have a fix for the vulnerability.

Usher interview on Oprah

He also confessed he had a relationship with Foster's bridesmaid, Maya Fox-Davis, adding: ‘The conversation about the bridesmaid has always been one that’s been complicated.

'Outside of my marriage and our separation and our divorce, I did have exchanges with the bridesmaid. We were friends. She was someone who was part of the children’s lives before.’

Read more:

Sunday, September 16, 2012

iPhone 5

Line already forming in New York for iPhone 5

So far, it's the usual semiprofessional line sitters outside Apple's flagship New York store. Still, the indications are there's significant demand for the device. Buying one on Friday may require a sleeping bag and folding chair.

NEW YORK--The iHaters must be pulling their hair out.

Demand for the iPhone 5 appears to be white hot. Lines are already forming outside Apple stores. In the very early hours this morning, people hoping to buy the handset -- swaddled in sleeping bags or heavy coats -- were camping out overnight in front of Apple's 5th Avenue store, also known as the Cube.

They'd began gathering on Friday, a full week before the devices are scheduled to go on sale at stores. If the iPhone 5 follows the same pattern as other popular Apple products, the lines will continue to grow.

This is the time when the public's adoration for Apple products is in full view. Few tech companies are as good as Apple at generating huge demand, and then turning that demand into spectacle. The media will play their role, interviewing the people at the head of the line at Apple stores who will vouch for the quality of Apple's products.

For Apple critics and the fans of competing devices, the scene must be excruciating.

Those people can console themselves with this: the line in front of the Cube appears to lack many true Apple fans. By that I mean there is little to learn about the public's devotion to Apple by interviewing the five or six people who were waiting in line just after midnight this morning.

Most are publicity seekers.

No, Greg Packer wasn't among them. Packer is a well known publicity hound in New York who has made a hobby out of being first in line at all sorts of events, including Apple's, and then grabbing all the attention when reporters do their man-on-the-street interviews. Packard is gone but those first in line at the Cube today acknowledge they aren't sleeping on the streets solely to buy the next-generation iPhone.

Hazem Sayed told CNET he's in line for a chance to generate some publicity for Vibe, a software application. Google Sayed's name and you'll see that he's as famous for standing in line as he is for creating Vibe. During the iPad 2 sale in March 2011, Sayed paid a college student $900 for the No.1 position in line, and was written up in and other media outlets.

Behind Sayed in line was Jessica Mellow, a body-paint artist and model, who is also a veteran line sitter. Mellow and buddy Keenan Thompson camped out in front of the Cube for the iPhone 4S sale last October. She readily acknowledges that she is in line partly in an effort to promote a company.

So, does the appearance of these kinds of marketers signify anything important? Well, some might ask that if demand for the iPhone 5 wasn't significant and Apple product releases didn't attract a lot of attention, then these people wouldn't be sleeping on the cold concrete.

All the indications are that a large number of legitimate iPhone fans will soon line up behind them.

Apple managers said last week they were "blown away" by the number of iPhone 5 preorders. Apparently, the company exhausted its stock of phones available for preorder within an hour on Friday. The wait times for preorders are now two or three weeks. For those people that absolutely must own the handset the first day it goes on sale, the only way to guarantee that is standing in line at an Apple store or some other participating retailer.

To Apple's detractors, these promoter/line sitters are perfectly suited for these events. To them, the line sitters are symbols of how demand for the iPhone is largely a product of hype.

more @

Cats Sleeping

New Yorkers forget to cash

New Yorkers forget to cash in $37M of lottery loot

Hey, you never know — and some people never find out.

A whopping $37.6 million in lottery prizes went unclaimed in New York last year from dreamers who plunked down their dollars for Powerball, Mega Millions and other tickets and never bothered to check them, according to New York Lottery statistics.

The clock just ran out for one lucky $10,000 Powerball winner who bought his ticket for the Sept. 17, 2011, drawing at College Wines & Liquors on Flatbush Avenue in Brooklyn. The ticket holder had until midnight yesterday to claim the prize.

“A lot of times, they get lost, they get thrown away. A lot of people don’t know how to read the tickets,” said Anthony Bellay, who owns the liquor shop.

Bellay said he didn’t even know the store had sold the winning ticket. When told by The Post last week of the impending one-year deadline for the winner to come forward, Bellay said he would put a sign in his window.

There are hundreds of other winners out there in New York City, The Post found.

Some 250 winning tickets sold in the city for “draw games” such as Mega Millions and Win 4 from September 2011 through early March 2012 have gone unclaimed.

The biggest outstanding prize is a $250,150.00 Mega Millions ticket sold for the Dec. 6, 2011, drawing at the Quick Stop convenience store on Grand Avenue in Maspeth, Queens.

Ali Alsukimi, a store clerk, said he heard the lucky winner had already collected his prize and spent all of the cash.

“A short Irish man,” he said of the supposed winner.

But lottery officials said that the ticket holder still hasn’t come forward.

Lottery players may also want to look through their pockets for a Take 5 ticket purchased for the Dec. 11, 2011, drawing from the True Blue Deli on Frederick Douglass Boulevard in Manhattan. The ducat is worth $35,136.50.

The New Year’s Day Take 5 drawing made the holder of a ticket bought at the New Li Hua Discount & Gift shop on Wyckoff Avenue in Brooklyn $61,785 richer — if the winner comes forward.

And someone who gambled on the Win 4 game, buying 10 tickets from the Rup Food Mart on Amboy Road in Staten Island, has until next week to collect the $50,000 prize. All the unclaimed cash goes back into the state lottery prize pool.

Lolymary Questel, of Queens, was an 11th-hour winner of $1 million earlier this year. The preschool teacher found her winning ticket last spring while cleaning out her purse and cashed it with just a few weeks to spare.

“A lot of people think with these draw-game tickets that they have no expectation of winning, so they don’t check,” said Carolyn Hapeman, a lottery spokeswoman. “That’s a habit that I would seriously advise people to get out of.”

Julia Alfred, 53, of Woodside, admitted to the bad habit of tossing aside her tickets without checking them, assuming that the Bagelman shop near her home would not sell a big winner.

But a $10,000 winning ticket for the Nov. 2, 2011, Powerball game was purchased at the deli and remains unclaimed.

“Really? Here?” Alfred said. “I gotta get my tickets!”

Read more:

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Money-Laundering Inquiry

Money-Laundering Inquiry Said to Aim at US Banks

Federal and state authorities are investigating a handful of major American banks for failing to monitor cash transactions in and out of their branches, a lapse that may have enabled drug dealers and terrorists to launder tainted money, according to officials who spoke on the condition of anonymity.

These officials say they are beginning one of the most aggressive crackdowns on money-laundering in decades, intended to send a signal to the nation’s biggest banks that weak compliance is unacceptable.

Regulators, led by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, are close to taking action against JPMorgan Chase [JPM 41.57 0.17 (+0.41%) ] for insufficient safeguards, the officials said. The agency is also scrutinizing several other Wall Street giants, including Bank of America [BAC 9.55 0.15 (+1.6%) ].

The comptroller’s office could issue a cease-and-desist order to JPMorgan in coming months, an action that would force the bank to plug any gaps in oversight, according to several people knowledgeable about the matter. But the agency, which oversees the nation’s biggest banks, has not yet completed its case. JPMorgan is in the spotlight partly because federal authorities accused the bank last year of transferring money in violation of United States sanctions against Cuba and Iran.

In addition to the comptroller, prosecutors from the Justice Department and the Manhattan district attorney’s office are investigating several financial institutions in the United States, according to law enforcement officials.

The surge in investigations, compliance experts say, is coming now because authorities were previously inundated with problems stemming from the 2008 financial turmoil. “These issues may have been put on hold during the financial crisis, and now regulators can go back to focus on money-laundering and other compliance problems,” said Alma M. Angotti, a director at Navigant, a consulting firm that advises banks on complying with anti-money-laundering rules.

Until now, investigators have primarily focused on financial transactions at European banks, most recently Standard Chartered [STAN-LN 1506.50 55.00 (+3.79%) ]. The authorities accused several foreign banks of flouting American law by transferring billions of dollars on behalf of sanctioned nations.

As the investigation shifts to American shores, the Justice Department and the Manhattan district attorney’s office are moving beyond those violations to focus on money-laundering, in which criminals around the globe try to hide illicit funds in United States bank accounts. If these new cases follow the pattern of previous ones, prosecutors could follow up on regulatory actions with their own complaints.

Despite shortcomings, banks spend millions of dollars a year to guard against money-laundering. Compliance experts argue that violations are typically unintentional and often harmless because they aren’t always exploited by criminals.

Still, prosecutors and regulators have spotted gulfs in the way financial institutions oversee suspicious cash transfers, according to the federal and state officials. Under the Bank Secrecy Act, financial institutions like banks and check-cashers must report any cash transaction of more than $10,000 and bring any dubious activity to the attention of regulators. The federal law also requires banks to have complex controls in place to detect any criminal activity.

The comptroller’s office, JPMorgan and Bank of America declined to comment.

The investigations are gaining momentum as concern is growing in Washington that illicit money is coursing through the American financial system.

Back in July the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations accused HSBC [HSBA-LN 584.40 16.30 (+2.87%) ] of exposing “the U.S. financial system to money-laundering and terrorist financing risks” between 2001 and 2010. The British bank, which is also under investigation by federal and state prosecutors, is suspected of funneling cash for Saudi Arabian banks with ties to terrorists, according to federal authorities with direct knowledge of the investigations. HSBC officials have pointed out that they had strengthened controls to prevent money-laundering and replaced employees tainted by the allegations. Standard Chartered maintains that “99.9 percent” of the transactions under scrutiny complied with that rule and involved legitimate Iranian banks and corporations.

The case against HSBC alarmed banking regulators, who wondered if monitoring flaws could be pervasive in the banking industry. The comptroller’s office, which lawmakers accused of missing warning signs about HSBC’s weaknesses, has stepped up its scrutiny of American banks in recent months.

In April, the regulator issued a cease-and-desist order against Citigroup [C 34.79 0.34 (+0.99%) ] for gaps in its oversight of cash transactions. The order cited “internal control weaknesses including the incomplete identification of high-risk customers in multiple areas of the bank.” A person close to the bank attributed part of the problem to an accident when a computer was unplugged from anti-money-laundering systems.

Citi did not admit or deny wrongdoing, but said in April that it had already undertaken many of the reforms required.

Federal officials are now examining whether problems run even deeper and if criminals have managed to exploit these vulnerabilities. An example of how criminals can evade the system surfaced publicly in a federal drug case in a Texas court this summer. Mexican drug cartels hid proceeds from cocaine-trafficking in two accounts at Bank of America, according to law enforcement testimony in the case, and some of the money was used to buy racehorses.

Bank of America was not accused of wrongdoing, and the comptroller’s office has said privately it is unlikely to bring an action related to the case, according to a person with knowledge of the matter.

Authorities have not disclosed the scope of their inquiries at Bank of America and JPMorgan, or the period being examined.

Any regulatory action against JPMorgan would be another black eye for its chief executive, Jamie Dimon, and the bank, which was rattled this spring by a $5.8 billion trading loss. That misstep brought additional scrutiny of the bank’s risk controls and compliance efforts.

Last year, JPMorgan agreed to pay $88.3 million to the Treasury Department, which had accused the bank of thwarting United States sanctions by processing roughly $178.5 million for Cubans in 2005 and 2006. Even after bank officials spotted the questionable transactions in 2005, the Treasury said, they failed to report the problem to federal authorities. JPMorgan also made an improper $2.9 million loan in 2009 to a bank tied to Iran’s government-owned shipping line, according to the Treasury Department.

In a 2011 statement, Treasury officials called the bank’s actions “egregious,” adding that JPMorgan’s “managers and supervisors acted with knowledge of the conduct constituting the apparent violations and recklessly failed to exercise a minimal degree of caution or care.” At the time, JPMorgan said that it had not dealt directly with institutions in Cuba and Iran and that it had merely acted as a middleman.

Friday, September 14, 2012

Canadian soccer match fixed

Canadian soccer match fixed by global crime syndicate

CBC News has learned details of how a European crime syndicate bribed Canadian soccer players to fix a semi-professional game between Trois-Rivières and Toronto teams as part of an international match-fixing scheme to make money from online bets.

In an exclusive story led by CBC's senior investigative reporter Diana Swain that airs tonight on The National, CBC News reveals evidence of the match-fixed Canadian Soccer League game that surfaced in hundreds of hours of police wiretaps obtained by CBC News from a German court case on one of the largest sports-fixing scandals to hit Europe.

At least one game in the CSL, a semi-pro league operating in Ontario and Quebec as a feeder system for Canadian major league clubs, was compromised by match fixing, according to the German wiretap transcripts.

Wiretaps show the crime syndicate targeted a Sept. 12, 2009, game in Trois-Rivières between its home team, Attak, and the Toronto Croatia.

Court documents show that €15,000 ($18,000 Cdn) in bribes were paid to several players on the Toronto Croatia team.

Former Trois-Rivières player Reda Aggouram, who played in that game, told CBC News he had no idea that some players on the Toronto Croatia team were being paid to manipulate the game, but he does remember scoring an easy goal.

"I remember my goal, it was the free kick for us," said Aggouram. "One of our players took the free kick, and then the goalie, he didn't punch it away, he punched it in front of the net, and then I took the rebound."

The German court found that the Europe-based crime syndicate had manipulated a number of games, ranging from a Champions League contest to a qualifier for the 2010 World Cup.

The Canadian Soccer League, which is largely run by volunteers, was unaware of the verdict when approached by CBC News, even though it happened months earlier.

To date, six people have been convicted due to their roles in the match-fixing syndicate. The stiffest sentences were handed down to Ante Sapina and Marijo Cvrtak, both of Croatia, who were each sentenced to 5½ years behind bars in May 2011.

Four others were convicted and sentenced to terms ranging from a suspended 18-month sentence to three years in jail.

Sapina and Cvrtak have appealed their convictions.

Six other men are currently on trial in Germany.

The syndicate manipulated domestic league games around the world, including Canada, Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Belgium, Turkey, Hungary, Slovenia and Croatia.

No charges have been laid in Canada. Ontario Provincial Police and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police said that no formal complaints have been filed with them.

If you have any information on this story, or any other investigative tips, please email us

iPhone 5 sales

iPhone 5 sales exhaust initial supply, trip up servers

Early buyers of Apple's latest iPhone once again some slammed online stores, and the first batch of iPhone 5 models sold within an hour were sold, pushing delivery times back for later customers.

Apple's online store in France handled iPhone 5 orders with no trouble, but not all e-commerce sites handled the load so gracefully.
(Credit: screenshot by Stephen Shankland/CNET)

The iPhone 5 hiccuped onto the market today, taking down several online stores and quickly selling out the first supply of Apple's new smartphone.

Initial stock from Apple for release day delivery sold out in less than an hour. Those looking to purchase the phone just after 1 a.m. PT discovered new orders from Apple's online site had estimated shipping times of "2 weeks" instead of the original "delivers by" September 21 message.

How far back can Apple push it? In the iPhone 4S case last year, Apple extended delivery of new orders to three to four weeks after the launch. Some buyers ended up canceling online orders and waiting in line at retail stores instead.

In the United States, early buyers today found the both Apple and AT&T's online stores down for maintenance. Savvy users discovered that orders could still be placed through Apple's iOS app, where buying options went live immediately after midnight. Meanwhile, Verizon's site appeared to be fully functional, unlike Sprint's, which spent its first half hour at a crawl when trying to view the ordering page.

"It's coming. We're excited and readying the store for your orders. Check back soon to place your pre-order," Sprint's store page read.

Sprint's site recovered by about 1:30 a.m. PT., and AT&T's was working by 1:50 a.m. PT.

Apple's online stores in the U.K., Germany, and France responded smoothly to preorder requests. Curiuosly, Apple's online store in the United States worked smoothly from France for a time but wasn't available from California in CNET's initial attempts to get through.

Actually completing the order can be another matter: When blogger Danny Sullivan tried to place his preorder through the Apple store with for a phone on AT&T's network, Apple's site told him, "We have an iPhone for you. We're currently unable to reach the carrier systems to process your order, but will reserve an iPhone for you." It offered a reservation confirmation and promised to e-mail him when he could proceed with his order.

In Germany, servers at Deutsche Telekom's T-Mobile division were sluggish to respond, but a preorder page was available. Trying to place an order, though, was a different matter: the Web page wouldn't load.

"A communication error occurred," the T-Mobile Germany site said. "The Web Server may be down, too busy, or experiencing other problems preventing it from responding to requests. You may wish to try again at a later time."

In the U.K., Orange's online store went offline. T-Mobile UK (the other half of the Everything Everywhere partnership that will have the LTE advantage in the U.K.) offered an iPhone 5 preorder button, but on its online store, the iPhone 5 wasn't initially available. It began offering iPhone 5 preorders not long into the day, though at about 1 a.m. PT or 9 a.m. local time. And 3 UK offered preorders but was unable to fulfill them even at 2:30 a.m. PT.

Amid the buying frenzy is a potential problem for Apple: supply of accessories to support its new Lightning dock and cable connector have been pushed to next month, potentially weeks after buyers get the first device that uses it. That includes the $29 30-pin to Lightning dock adapter, which lets users connect the iPhone 5, iPod Nano, and iPod Touch to the now outdated 30-pin cables found in all previous iPods and iPhones. New orders for the adapter ship in October, while the Lightning to USB cable, which also is included with the iPhone 5, currently shows a shipping wait of two to three weeks.

The sixth-generation phone is thinner, longer, lighter, and comes with a faster processor and faster LTE wireless networking. And it comes with greater sales ambitions: Apple is releasing it for sales in more countries sooner. Some analysts expect that faster sales ramp will mean more revenue for Apple in the fourth quarter of 2012.

But keeping up with demand for the tremendously popular product is tough.

Apple's own online store experienced intermittent errors shortly after sales began at midnight Pacific, steadying about 45 minutes later. The company's carrier partners experienced more substantial hiccups, with AT&T and Sprint buyers reporting delays of up to two hours while trying to purchase a handset.

This year, many sites eased into the iPhone 5 era. Vodafone Germany initially only offered a sign-up page to get more information on the phone. It added a preorder page later, but at about 2 a.m. PT, trying to use it produced an error that the Web page couldn't be reached.

In France, SFR, Bouygues Telecom, and Orange only showed pages where people could sign up to find out about availability.

Likewise, O2 in the U.K. offered information but no preorder page for the iPhone 5.

This is Apple's second time launching on three of the largest carriers in the U.S. at once. Before the iPhone 4S, Apple only dealt with AT&T. Last year the company brought both Verizon and Sprint into the fold with the iPhone 4 and iPhone 4S respectively.

Apple sold more than 4 million iPhones during its launch weekend last year, nearly twice the 1.7 million iPhone 4 models sold in the same period in 2010. In 2009, Apple sold about 1 million iPhone 3GS'.

Part of the reason for the larger numbers last year was not just the growth of the smartphone market, but also that Apple was offering it on more carriers, and in more countries. The 4S was available in seven countries initially, and the iPhone 5 is available in those same seven, plus two more -- Hong Kong and Singapore.

Updated at 1 a.m. PT with details on orders through Apple's store in the U.S. Updated at 1:47 a.m. PT with the exhaustion of the initial supply and Sprint's site recovery. Updated at 2:37 a.m. PT with further details from European carrier sales.

more @

Thursday, September 13, 2012

More on iphone 5

From 9to5 Mac

Sprint and Verizon won’t support simultaneous voice and data on iPhone 5

Unlike the the carrier’s lineup of LTE Android smartphones, we have been able to confirm with Verizon that the new iPhone 5 will not support simultaneous voice and data over the carrier’s LTE network.

A Verizon spokesperson told us:

“The iPhone 5 was designed to allow customers to place a voice call on the Verizon Wireless network, while simultaneously letting customers access the Internet over the WiFi.”

However, we have been able to confirm with AT&T that the feature will work on its GSM model of the iPhone 5. We were told:

“AT&T customers can talk and surf simultaneously on the new iPhone 5.”

We know Apple is shipping the same CDMA model iPhone 5 to both Sprint and Verizon, so it’s probable that Sprint’s iPhone 5 will not support simultaneous voice and data as well.

more @

iPhone 5 pre-orders

Apple has confirmed to Wired via e-mail that it will begin accepting online pre-orders of the iPhone 5 during the wee hours of the morning beginning at 12:01 a.m. PDT on Sept. 14. So if you’re hankering for a new iPhone 5, be prepared to fire up the coffee machine tonight.

Apple’s carrier partners Sprint, AT&T and Verizon have also confirmed that pre-orders will begin on early Friday morning. Sprint and AT&T will begin pre-orders at 12:01 a.m. PDT Sept. 14, while Verizon will throw open its online doors a full minute earlier at 12 a.m. PDT Sept. 14.

If you’re the type of person that enjoys standing in lines, the new iPhone 5 will be available for purchase in Apple retail stores beginning at 8 a.m. local time on Sept. 21.

iPhone 5 'Passbook'

Apple: Swipe Your iPhone 5 'Passbook'

Apple on Wednesday unveiled the iPhone 5, powered with an upgraded operating system iOS 6 that includes new travel features, benefiting road warriors.

Three airlines have committed to Apple's [AAPL 682.98 13.19 (+1.97%) ] new Passbook feature that comes with iOS6 — Delta Air Lines [DAL 9.45 -0.05 (-0.53%) ], American Airlines and Virgin Australia.

A kind of digital wallet, Passbook aims to be a one-stop shop for passes including boarding passes, retail coupons, coffee cards and concert tickets.

With Passbook, mobile boarding passes will appear on your iPhone’s locked screen, when you arrive at the airport. Instead of using the airline's specific mobile app or searching for your electronic boarding pass through emails, the electronic boarding pass will be easily available.

"And if your gate changes after you’ve checked in for your flight, Passbook will even alert you to make sure you’re not relaxing in the wrong terminal," according to Apple.

A recent graphic of Passbook features several businesses including Starwood Hotels & Resorts [ Loading... () ]movie tickets from Fandango, a Delta boarding pass, a Target coupon and Starbucks store card.

Battery Life, 'Lightning' Adapter

Improved battery life on the new iPhone will also help travelers unable to plug in. The smartphone can be used for up to 225 hours of standby, 40 hours of music playback, 10 hours LTE use (a kind of wireless technology), 10 hours video, 8 hours 3G use and 8 hours for Wi-Fi.

One potential downside when traveling with the new iPhone will be the power adapter. The smaller plug, called Lightning, means you’ll need to purchase a special adapter to continue using most iDevice accessories such as docks and cradles. They cost $29 each, or $39 if you want one with a cord attached. A Lightning-to-USB cable goes for $19.

Many hotels offer docking-device alarm clocks for current model iPhones, so this might be a big inconvenience.

The new phone is available for pre-order Friday, and for delivery September 21. iOS 6 will be available for download on September 19. (Read more: Apple Introduces Thinner, More Colorful iPhone 5)

What does A Trillion Dollars look like

What does A Trillion Dollars look like

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Apple's iPhone 5

Apple's iPhone 5 got the attention, but the company made several other product announcements Wednesday. Here are the highlights:

— iPhone 5. A taller, thinner phone with access to fast new wireless data networks. Goes on sale Sept. 21 in the U.S. and eight other countries, starting at $199.

— 5th-generation iPod Touch. Same build as the new iPhone. Available in October starting at $299. It will co-exist with the cheaper, existing iPod Touch.

— 7th-generation iPod Nano. Much larger than the old model, but thinner. The 2.5-inch display now plays video. Available in October for $149.

— New iTunes. Arriving in October, this free software update for Macs and Windows PC will have a cleaner look and integrate more closely with Apple's iCloud online storage service.

— iOS 6. The new version of Apple's operating system was announced in June, but Apple revealed Wednesday when it will become available for download: on Sept. 19. It will contain a new mapping application, replacing Google Maps, and tighter integration with Facebook.

— EarPods. Apple has redesigned the classic white earbuds that ship with its products, for a better fit in the ear. They're on sale separately for $29.

Nintendo's $300 Wii U

Nintendo's $300 Wii U goes on sale November 18 in U.S

NEW YORK/TOKYO (Reuters) - Nintendo Co's Wii U will hit U.S. store shelves November 18 starting at just under $300, as the creator of Super Mario looks to regain the lead in gaming from Sony and Microsoft, and fend off tablet and smartphone makers led by Apple Inc.

The new version of the console that took the industry by storm six years ago comes with a built-in DVR that will allow users to watch and record live television like a cable set-top box.

It will go on sale in Japan on December 8 for about $340 (26,250 yen).

Executives have said it will stream video from Netflix Inc, Inc, Google Inc's YouTube, and Hulu. It will also come with touch-screen controllers - helping to push its price tag above rival consoles.

Nintendo is fielding the successor to the Wii in the busy year-end holiday shopping season, going up against Sony's PlayStation 3 and Microsoft's Xbox 360. They start at $250 and $200, respectively.

The original Wii became the world's biggest selling home console shortly after its 2006 launch, with motion-controlled gaming and a slew of software titles that appealed to users beyond traditional gamers.

What became a 100 million-machine bonanza for Nintendo is waning. In the three months to June 30, sales of its Wii more than halved to 710,000 from 1.56 million a year earlier.

Supporting two "GamePad" controllers designed to look and function like tablets, the first new console from Nintendo in six years will come with a gamer's social network function called "Miiverse." It will be its first machine in 16 years to launch with a dedicated "Super Mario" game title.

In addition to the basic 8 gigabyte model costing $299.99, Nintendo will sell a "deluxe" 32 GB version for $349.99 in the United States and 31,500 yen in Japan.


Repeating the Wii's success, however, will be tough as Nintendo battles not only with Microsoft and Sony, but tackles tablet and smartphone makers led by Apple that are eating into the $78 billion gaming market.

Apple on Wednesday revealed its latest iPhone with a bigger screen, better definition and a wireless function that allows users to view their smartphone images and games on TVs equipped with an Apple TV receiver.

For now, Nintendo, which began in 1889 making playing cards in the back streets of Kyoto, has a big enough cash pile built up during the Wii boom -- about $14 billion -- to stick with its hardware strategy.

However, if the Wii U fails to win over gamers amid a flood of tablets and smartphones, it may, analysts say, have to consider leveraging its software assets by letting Super Mario roam across devices built by other companies.

The console, unveiled in June, is available in black and white and has a 6.2-inch touch screen that includes a stylus. The GamePad controller has traditional buttons with left and right analog sticks.

Nintendo has said 23 new Wii U titles, including Nintendo Land, are in development. Third-party titles include Mass Effect 3 from Electronic Arts, Darksiders II from THQ and Ubisoft's exclusive Wii U title Zombi.

($1 = 77.8700 Japanese yen)

(Reporting by Tim Kelly in Tokyo and Nayak Malathi in New York; Editing by Michael Watson and Maureen Bavdek)

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Amazon's new $199 tablet

Amazon's new $199 tablet gets tepid reviews

(Reuters) - Inc's latest $199 tablet computer got tepid reviews from some closely watched gadget reviewers, a potential hiccup for the world's largest Internet retailer as it tries to grab a bigger share of one of the hottest technology sectors this holiday season.

David Pogue of The New York Times said the 7-inch Kindle Fire HD has no camera on the back, no GPS navigation, no speech recognition, and trails Apple Inc's more-expensive iPad in thickness, screen size, screen sharpness, Web speed, software polish and application availability.

Walt Mossberg of the Wall Street Journal said the 7-inch Kindle Fire HD is not as "polished, fluid or versatile" as the iPad. After prolonged use, some apps and content took longer to launch and web pages loaded more slowly through the new Wi-Fi technology, compared to the iPad, he added.

Ads "assault" users every time they start the device or resume using it, Mossberg also noted. Amazon said this weekend that customers can turn ads off for $15.

Consumer Reports highlighted the limited apps available for the device, while noting storage is bigger at 16GB but still limited. The tablet ships without a charger, which the magazine called "annoying."

"It may not be for everyone," said Paul Reynolds, Electronics Editor at Consumer Reports.

An Amazon spokeswoman did not respond to a request for comment on the reviews on Wednesday.

Amazon's new range of tablets, launched last week, are crucial for the company's goal of selling more digital content, such as ebooks, music, video, games and apps.

Lukewarm reviews could put off some potential buyers, however, low prices for the new Kindle tablets will likely ensure solid sales, analysts said.

"The original Kindle Fire had similar tepid reviews last year, but it sold very well out of the gate" said R.J. Hottovy, an equity analyst at Morningstar. "There's enough intrigue about the software, features and services that come with the products to draw consumers."

Anthony DiClemente, an Internet analyst at Barclays, raised his estimates for Kindle Fire tablet sales on Tuesday and he expects the devices to help Amazon generate more digital media revenue.

The analyst is not changing sales estimates based on tepid reviews for the 7-inch Kindle Fire HD device. However, he said such reviews may help Google Inc's Nexus 7, a 7-inch tablet that launched earlier this year to positive reviews.

The Nexus 7, which starts at $199, is the current "gold standard" for 7-inch tablets, Reynolds of Consumer Reports said.

Consumer Reports has not finished reviewing the 7 inch Kindle Fire HD, but Reynolds said the Amazon device is "looking like a pretty promising competitor."