Facebook, Google, Apple Joined Four Biggest Scandals Last Week

Author - Oct 14, 2018


Facebook, Google, Apple Joined Four Biggest Scandals Last Week

From the account hack, the data leak to the bogus advertisement, Facebook, Google, Apple and Intel did not have the best week last week.

The last week was not easy for some of the giants in the world of technology, including Facebook, Google, Apple and Intel. No matter if you are a tech lover or not, you may have heard about their scandals. If you haven’t, that’s okay too, because the following briefings will help you catch up with the latest technology incidents. What you are going to read may raise some questions of trust in the biggest names in the world; however, stay calm and read till the end.

1. Facebook got hacked again, including Mark's account

Friday, September 29th marked the biggest Facebook hack in history when attackers stole 50 million users’ accounts and another 40 million users might have been affected from the incident.

Taking advantage of the security vulnerability relating to the “Happy Birthday” videos and “View as” feature, attackers stole some sort of digital key called “access tokens” allowing them to take control of the accounts. More seriously, not only Facebook accounts were affected, but the related third-party social network accounts may also be stolen too, namely Tinder and Spotify.

As shocking as it may seem, Mark’s Zuckerberg was among the hackers’ victims. When the attack was first discovered after ten million users were attacked, Facebook CEO already got hacked too. And he was not the only high-profile victim considering COO Sheryl Sandberg being another one.

Kết quả hình ảnh cho mark zuckerberg

About this massive hack, Zuck had little to speak for himself and his company. In March, Mark claimed his company’s responsibilty in protecting users’ data and emphasized that if he couldn’t assure that, he would not deserve serving his users at all. Despite that promise, in September, facing the question: why should Facebook users still trust it?, Mark couldn’t give any satisfying answers. With all the effort, he kept repeating how serious the incident was and how seriously they took the case as well as how hard he promised to work to address this problem. He added that Facebook had “a lot of talented people working on this and, I think, doing good work”; however, that seem not convincing at all.

2. Google+ users’ data leaked, nothing was discovered until three years later

Google is another giant that got in security incident as there has been official information about how Google+ exposed its users’ data. This leak was caused by a faulty API used in Google+, according to The Wall Street Journal, and affected almost 500,000 users, which may have involved another 438 apps using this API.

API is supposed to reveal only public data of users; however, due to a bug in the API, not only public but also non-public information was leaked and this happened to the people connected with Google+ users, too. The leak involved full names, email addresses, dates of birth, profile photos, living locations, gender, jobs and relationship status; no other communication data was exposed. To fix this, the giant decided to shut down Google+ for good.

Kết quả hình ảnh cho google+ data leaked

Although the number of victims was not extreme, what should be noted is that this incident has lasted for the last three years and Google did not discover it until March 2018. Furthermore, it had the choice to inform its users about this problem as soon as the leak was confirmed, but it chose not to. In defense, Google said there seem not to be any data misuse detected, but there is no certainty about the other 438 apps as Google did not conduct any check-ups on them. Google added that this Google+ version had small number of users and 90% of using sessions lasted shorter than five seconds.

3. Apple, Amazon and Bloomberg’s story on Chinese spy chips

Last week, Bloomberg reported that manipulated hardware was found on a US telecom company’s network. According to Bloomberg, an “implant” was discovered by security expert Yossi Appleboum after “unusual communications” was found on Supermicro server prompting a physical inspection.

Kết quả hình ảnh cho chinese spy chip

As reported later, Apple and Amazon used Supermicro hardware which was implanted with the suspicious chip that may have been used for collecting intellectual property and trading secrets. Though, the names of the company as well as 17 other people speaking about the manipulated hardware were not revealed. Sen. John Thune, the top Republican on the Senate Commerce Committee, required briefings from Apple, Amazon and Supermicro  about the incident.

Responding to the story, Apple denied the reported information. It claimed finding no malicious chips or any vulnerabilities mentioned by Bloomberg. To strengthen its words, Apple stressed that it has always been transparent about how it processes and protects data; and that it conducts regular screenings to ensure the system safety. Plus, if there were an incident like Bloomberg told, Apple would be the first to work on it. Like Apple, Amazon declared that there was nothing relating to a malicious hardware to be discovered. Supermicro made the same statement by saying it found no evidence of unauthorized components on its products.

4. Intel Core i9 9900K is not as impressive as advertised

Intel has recently received several feedbacks for its bogus advertisement on its new Core i9-9900K, retailed at $488 excluding a cooler when shipped. After a gaming test (on Ashes of the Singularity) was conducted by a third party, namely Principled Technologies, it was announced that “Intel’s Core i9 9900K is 50% faster than AMD’s Ryzen 7 2700X in games.”

To mention the positive side, Principled Studies publicized details about their methodology for the test that used GeForce graphics drivers, an Nvidia GTX 1080 Ti, the resolution limited to 1080p, and each system had its BIOS updated.

Nevertheless, Steve Walton from Hardware Unboxed discovered flaws in the way the test was conducted and he carried out his own test. Firstly, when Principled did the test, for Ryzen, it did not activate and configure an XMP profile, a crucial step, which it did to Intel giving it a significant performance particularly for games. As Walton configured memory on both platforms and it was shown that Ryzen 2700X was 18% faster. Moreover, Game Mode was activated inside Ryzen Master utility on all AMD systems, which made the Ryzen 7 2700X became a 4-core CPU, crippling heavily multi-thread benchmarks like Ashes of the Singularity. This is the same way that Intel’s Core i9-9900K was claimed 50% faster than Ryzen. At a price 68% higher than that of its rival, Intel should have done better than just exaggerating about its product.

In his response to criticism, Principled co-founder Bill Catchings denied being dishonest in the test and he promised to do some retest if necessary. He stated, "We are confident in our test methodology and results.” Bill’s explanation still raised a lot of arguments of how they conducted the test, so it may be helpful waiting for further tests from the community.

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