“We’re delighted to announce that over one billion people have chosen Windows 10 across 200 countries resulting in more than one billion active Windows 10 devices,” Microsoft corporate vice president Yusuf Mehdi writes in the announcement. “We couldn’t be more grateful to our customers, partners, and employees for helping us get here.”
One billion is a big number—as Microsoft notes, that’s one out of every seven people on the planet—but the bigger news here, perhaps, is that the company is for the first time literally describing users and not just devices/PCs. In all of its previous usage milestone announcements, Microsoft only talked up how many active devices on which Windows 10 was installed. (The most recent figures were 600 million in November 2017, 800 million in March 2019, and then 900 million in late September 2019.)
After Microsoft has taken control of existing Necurs infrastructure, the company and its industry partners have been able to sinkhole the botnet and receive information about all the bots located across the world.
As a final step part of this effort, Microsoft says it’s now working with ISPs and CERT teams to notify users who have been infected so that they can remove the malware from their computers.
In its annual State of Malware Report (PDF link), antivirus software maker Malwarebytes tracked a more than 400% increase in detected Mac malware on a year-over-year basis.
Tallying up threat detections on a per endpoint basis, calculus applied to account for growth in the number of Macs running Malwarebytes software, the firm found 11 threats per Mac endpoint in 2019, up from 4.8 in 2018. By comparison, results show an average of 5.8 threats detected per Windows endpoint over the same period.
The report speculates Macs are quickly becoming a sweet target for cybercriminals due to increased marketshare, though recent industry estimates show Apple’s slice of market shrank over the past two quarters.
Mac threats increased exponentially in comparison to those against Windows PCs. While overall volume of Mac threats increased year-over-year by more than 400 percent, that number is somewhat impacted by a larger Malwarebytes for Mac userbase in 2019. However, when calculated in threats per endpoint, Macs still outpaced Windows by nearly 2:1.
The EU is putting together a consortium to build a new, non-US, based cloud platform. It’s called Gaia-X.
Will Bedingfield, Wired »
The project is a collaboration between the European Commission, Germany, France, and according to an email from a spokesperson for Germany’s Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy “some 100 companies and organisations”. (Firms confirmed include SAP SE, Deutsche Telekom AG, Deutsche Bank AG, Siemens and Bosch.) The first proofs of concept for the European cloud are set to be ready towards the end of this year.
The driving motivation behind the project is “data sovereignty”, or, more accurately “data governance” – an ambition to bring the flow and storage and data under greater European control. “Data sovereignty is the key to GAIA-X,” says Harald Summa, the CEO of DE-CIX Group AG, a group involved in the project. “Especially given that our society is relying more and more heavily on digital services, it is in the interest of a state or a region to enable a certain level of independence from external service providers.”
The project is a direct response to the dominance of American and Chinese service providers. The European Commission has already locked horns with Google, fining the company €4.34 billion for antitrust violations back in 2018. The US Cloud Act requires American firms to provide law enforcement with customers’ personal data on request, even when the servers containing the information are abroad.
Google and Microsoft have recently made similar announcements.
Apple’s US$2.5 billion commitment will include a US$1 billon affordable housing investment fund, a US$1 billion first-time homebuyer mortgage assistance fund, US$300 million in Apple-owned and available land for housing, a US$150 million Bay Area housing fund, and US$50 million earmarked for supporting “vulnerable populations.”
Apple today announced a comprehensive $2.5 billion plan to help address the housing availability and affordability crisis in California. As costs skyrocket for renters and potential homebuyers — and as the availability of affordable housing fails to keep pace with the region’s growth — community members like teachers, firefighters, first responders and service workers are increasingly having to make the difficult choice to leave behind the community they have long called home. Nearly 30,000 people left San Francisco between April and June of this year and homeownership in the Bay Area is at a seven-year low.
The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) made the announcement today in Paris.
As is usual with large internet companies, they brought the change upon themselves as they have gone too far pushing international tax rules to the limit. Countries want their fair share. Large corporations will no longer be able to park assets in tax havens and low taxing countries.
Microsoft President Brad Smith who stumped the crowd at the GeekWire Summit — our annual technology conference in Seattle — with a simple question. “What is the biggest software-related issue to impact the economy in Puget Sound in 2019?”
“Software in the cockpit of an airplane, software that the pilots couldn’t turn off,” Smith said.
Smith was referring to the multi-billion dollar fallout from Boeing’s faulty 737 Max software that resulted in two crashes killing 346 people. Boeing’s manufacturing center is based in Renton, Wash. The company has announced more than $8 billion in costs related to the accidents and the damage to airlines and suppliers extends far beyond that.
The flights reportedly crashed because software tried to push the noses of the aircrafts down repeatedly, due to inaccurate flight data, and the pilots were not able to address the problem in time.
Every day I dive into the internet cesspool and go through a pile of news sources, extracting and making sense of the most fascinating. The stories are curated by hand. No large media organizations. No bots. No unambiguous algorithms deciding what you get to read.