Online shoe and apparel shop Zappos.com is advising over 24 million customers to change their passwords following a data breach, but its website is currently inaccessible to people outside the U.S.
Zappos employees received an email from CEO Tony Hsieh on Sunday, alerting them about a security breach that involved the online shop's customer database.
"We were recently the victim of a cyber attack by a criminal who gained access to parts of our internal network and systems through one of our servers in Kentucky. We are cooperating with law enforcement to undergo an exhaustive investigation," Hsieh said in the email.
Even though he assured everyone that no credit card details had been compromised, Hsieh revealed that the attacker had accessed customer records including names; email, billing and shipping addresses; phone numbers, and the last four digits of their credit card numbers.
The hacker also gained access to password hashes for the accounts registered on the website, prompting the company to reset everyone's access codes. Zappos is currently in the process of emailing its 24 million customers in order to notify them about the security breach and advise them to change their passwords. Read more...
Apple is on the losing end of an initial ruling by the U.S. International Trade Commission in the companys battle with Motorola.
On Friday, an administrative law judge at the ITC made an initial determination that Motorola does not infringe claims in three Apple patents. The ITC took on the case in November after Apple asked it to forbid Motorola from importing certain phones to the U.S. that Apple alleged infringe the patents.
The ruling is now subject to review by the full commission.
Apple declined to comment on the ruling. Motorola said it was pleased with judge's decision. Read more...
The Amazon Web Service (AWS) Free Usage Tier now includes up to 750 hours of Windows Server 2008 R2 without having to pay the hard-to-catch cloud-fluffer anything.
Amazon is targeting developers – especially .NET heads – starting up anything that might turn into bigger paying customers once the devs' applications take off and grow.
Also available in the Free Usage Tier are another 750 free hours of Linux, along with S3, SimpleDB Elastic Block storage, and Elastic Load Balancer.
The amount of room available for free in Elastic Block Storage has also been boosted to 30GB and I/O requests doubled to two million. Read more...
Women may have come a long way in the high-tech field in the last 10 years, but there's still a lot of room for growth, according to a group of female tech executives.
And Marissa Mayer, a vice president at Google, said we're just not doing enough to get more women into the high-tech field.
"I think what we're really playing is a numbers game, " said Mayer, speaking as part of a panel at CNet's Women in Technology panel at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas this week. "Right now, it's a really great time to be a woman in technology -- but there aren't enough women in technology. I worry that a lot of times the conversation gets focused on what percentage of the pie is women. And the truth is the pie isn't big enough."
Part of the larger problem, she noted, is that the United States is not producing enough computer scientists.
"We're not producing enough product designers. We need more people to keep up with all these gadgets, all this tech and these possibilities and the jobs of the future," said Mayer. "We need a lot more people and if we grow that number, then the number of women, by nature, goes up." Read more...
For a touch-based interface, it was awfully hard to get hold of. Microsoft's Windows 8 OS was shown on a handful of prototype ARM-based tablets at the Consumer Electronics Show this week, but almost no one was allowed to try it out.
Nvidia had three Windows 8 tablets in its booth but they were all behind glass. Texas Instruments showed a Windows 8 tablet in a meeting room off the show floor, but a reporter who asked to try it was told that wasn't permitted. Qualcomm, the third vendor of ARM-based chips working with Windows 8, wasn't showing it at all.
Representatives from all three companies said Microsoft has placed tight limits on how they can show Windows on ARM. It's apparently taking no chances that people might have a bad experience with the software before it's ready for release, which could harm its reputation.
"I think they're being a little measured because they want to make sure that when people finally see these things that it's a good experience. They have to get it right," Mike Rayfield, general manager of Nvidia's mobile business unit, said in an interview. Read more...
A key federal agency involved in testing the proposed LightSquared LTE 4G network has concluded that there is no practical way to solve interference between that network and GPS, possibly dealing a crippling blow to the startup carrier's hopes for a terrestrial mobile network.
In a memo released late today, the National Space-Based Positioning, Navigation, and Timing Executive Committee (PNT ExComm) said the nine federal agencies that make up the body had concluded unanimously that none of LightSquared's proposals would overcome significant interference with GPS (Global Positioning System).
LightSquared last year received a waiver from the U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) allowing it to operate a terrestrial LTE (Long-Term Evolution) 4G network on frequencies that have until now been devoted to much weaker satellite signals. But the FCC demanded that concerns over interference with GPS be resolved before the network could be launched.
Tests early last year found devastating interference to many GPS devices, so LightSquared modified its proposal. Further testing took place in November, and other tests had been expected to take place soon.
The PNT ExComm has been involved in testing and results analysis at the request of the FCC and the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA). The body is headed by deputy secretaries of Defense and Transportation and represents other federal agencies and departments. It is charged with coordinating federal GPS activities. Read more...
Among the allures of cloud computing is the promise of easily and seamlessly moving services from one cloud to another. Realizing that kind of portability, however, is difficult. Every cloud service has its own distinct requirements, such as security, governance, and compliance, as well its constituent parts, including Web server, database, storage, and networking requirements.
In an effort to make cloud service more portable, a group of tech giants that includes IBM, Cisco, EMC, CA, SAP, and Red Hat today unveiled the first draft of open interoperability specification called TOSCA (Topology and Orchestration Specification for Cloud Applications). Capgemini, Citrix, NetApp, PwC, Software AG, Virtunomic, and WSO2, among others, are also contributors.
TOSCA aims to let companies create interoperable descriptions -- in a sense, templates -- of their application and infrastructure services, the relationships between the parts of the service, and the operational behavior of the services. The open nature of the standard is intended to ensure service interoperability, regardless of supplier, provider, or host technology. Read more...