Jay Harris

Jay Harris

Tuesday, 18 April 2017 17:38

What is Torrenting?

One of the first things a person does after booting up a brand new PC is download a different web browser, especially if you’re on a Windows platform. Unless your system came with a torrenting client pre-installed (which is highly unlikely), using a typical client-server approach to data transmission is pretty much the way things go.

Most files get downloaded from servers that are usually always switched-on, and thus readily available, because they serve as central points of contact for any user (aka “client”) who wishes to download files.

This method of transmitting data using a client-server architecture does have one major risk a user should know about: if servers go down for any reason at all and there’s no current mirrors of the server in question, you’re pretty much out of luck.

There is no way to obtain files in such a case.

However, it’s said that more than a third of the world’s Internet traffic now runs on BitTorrent. Not just PCs and Macs, but also many advanced routers now support BitTorrent tech for uploading and downloading files.

Torrenting takes a peer-to-peer (P2P) approach when transferring files. Instead of maintaining data in one central location, it relies on users (aka peers) to send and receive parts of a file, as needed, directly to and from each other.

Because there is no concept of a master directory for P2P file sharing, an index of records is maintained centrally, in locations known as “trackers.” These trackers keep an eye on peers that are supplying and requesting data.

However, trackers may not necessarily track every single file shared using BitTorrent. These trackers cannot be considered to be “universal” or “comprehensive,” much less “authoritative.”

The process of using BitTorrent  technology to transmit files is usually called torrenting. The protocol is standardized and has resulted in a variety of BitTorrent  apps being developed and utilized on a large scale (even on mobile devices).

However, the distributed nature of BitTorrent doesn’t necessarily mean a file will always be available to download, from one source or the other, whenever you wish.

Depending on the number of peers that a torrent has (which often corresponds to the popularity of a torrent’s content), a user may have multiple active sources, or none, for the time being.

How Does Torrenting Work?

Unlike browser apps and similar kinds of software, where finding download links is a straightforward affair, in the case of torrents, locating sources can get a bit tricky.

If you already know exactly what you want, such as a disk image of a freely available Linux distribution (like Fedora or Ubuntu), it makes sense to go to the vendor’s website, where they’ll give instructions for downloading the necessary files using a torrent client.

Torrenting involves the use of  “.torrent” files, which are plain text files that provide information to the client app about the contents of that torrent, like:

  • Which trackers to use
  • Different file sizes
  • The trackers’ URLs 

Torrent files do not contain the actual contents that get downloaded, they only point your torrent app in the correct direction, so to speak. The client’s app then creates the necessary structure in your PC’s file system, as per the hierarchy given in the torrent file.

Often many files are downloaded simultaneously, depending on the number of connections that get made.

Each torrent has “seeders” and “leechers”.

Seeders are those who have a complete copy of the torrent in question. They just upload parts of the torrent as and when needed, to other users requesting those parts.  Seeders don’t need to download anything (for that torrent) because they already have the complete copy.

Now for leechers, unless you’re the first uploader, all new downloaders start off as leechers. That means you’ll often be simultaneously receiving and sending different parts of the same torrent, while you’re completing a download.

These parts may come from seeders or even other leechers.

In case you don’t have an idea of where to get the files that you need, it’s time to use a search engine. Anyone can use web search engines, such as Google and Bing, but did you know there are search engines specifically meant for torrents?

Unfortunately, here is where things start to get a little problematic.

One of the most popular search engines for torrents, Torrentz.com, became practically useless several months ago when its homepage indicated that it no longer functions as a meta-search engine. Just a few days ago, another big torrent search engine, Bitsnoop.com, had to cease operations as well.  

This isn’t the first time file-sharing platforms have been targeted

Why You Should Deal with Torrents Carefully

Many users will remember having used Napster at some point of time. Like BitTorrent, Napster was also used once upon a time to share files and was wildly popular back in early 2002. However, some of the problems applicable to Napster, have plagued torrents today as well.

Given the distributed nature in which files are kept and the fact that most Internet users keep changing their IP addresses from one session to another; this system provides a mild degree of anonymity when sharing content.

Why? Well, it’s because no one has a way of determining the actual identity of the source where you’re downloading the file from, even if the corresponding torrent file was obtained from a reputable source, such as Fedora, Ubuntu, Internet Archive, etc.

This anonymity is in sharp contrast to when you see a padlock icon in the address bar of a browser, upon visiting a website that has been secured using SSL. That security certificate provides a degree of authenticity about the actual identity of the website and its owners.

In the case of torrents, this mild degree of anonymity gets misused for illegally sharing copyrighted material.

Copyrighted material is often in the form of:



Many users get a copy of these items free of charge and often get away with it without raising any alarms. Naturally, organizations such as the RIAA are up in arms over the resulting loss of revenue.

Hence, law enforcement agencies have become increasingly vigilant about the misuse of such software, as torrenting often amounts to an infringement of intellectual property.

In many jurisdictions of the world, laws have been passed against search engines which enable the discovery of illegally shared copyrighted material.  These rules ask ISPs to restrict access to such services. We do not advocate sharing copyrighted material, whether via torrents or any other method.

Also, if you deliberately want to share something by masking your identity, doing so may raise a few eyebrows for those monitoring the network, whether it’s your ISP or the government. However, it is true that a user’s actual IP address is visible to other peers of your torrent.

Which is slightly risky, because you have no idea about the trustworthiness of the peer who now knows your IP.

In Conclusion…

VPNs can do a good job of providing a strong level of privacy while using the Internet for torrenting purposes. For a more general (and current) overview of what VPNs are and how they work, here is a handy explanation of what goes on behind the scenes.

Source : cloudwards.net

Impostor scams resulted in more than 400,000 complaints to the FTC last year. Find out what they are and how to protect yourself from them.

Falling victim to a scam can be embarrassing, frightening, and financially devastating. Unfortunately, sophisticated scam artists know whom to target and how to use psychological tricks to get countless smart, hardworking people to part with their cash.How many people fall victim to scams? Far more than most people realize. Just one specific type of trick -- called an impostor scam -- led to 406,578 complaints to the U.S. Federal Trade Commission in 2016 alone. Impostor scams prompted the second-highest total number of consumer complaints to the FTC, with only debt collectors causing consumers more trouble. This was the first time more people alerted the FTC to impostor scams than to identity theft.Because impostor scams are cleverly designed to play on your fears, it's hard to avoid falling for them. If scams were easy to avoid, consumers wouldn't have suffered $744 million in losses from fraud in 2016.The seven tips below can help you keep yourself safe and avoid losses.

1. Know the common tricks

Impostor scams begin when a scammer calls, sends an email, or sends a letter. The scam artist pretends to be someone they aren't so they can convince you to send them cash or give them your personal information.Scammers usually pretend to be someone in a position of authority or a family member in dire trouble. Common tactics are used again and again by thieves who know what kinds of correspondence prompt people to send money. Some of the most common impostor scams include:

  • The IRS impostor scam: You get a call and are told you owe back taxes. You're threatened with fines, fees, arrest, or deportation if you don't wire money immediately.
  • The "government agent" impostor scam: Someone from "the government" calls with great news: You've won a lottery. You just have to wire taxes and fees first in order to collect your payment.
  • The "debt collector" impostor scam: You get a call or a letter alerting you to the fact you've been sent to debt collections. The letter might look like it comes from a law firm or from a court. It will warn you of dire legal consequences if you don't quickly wire money.
  • The grandparent impostor scam: Your "grandson" or "granddaughter" calls in desperate trouble. They're trapped somewhere and need you to wire cash right away so they can get home. They definitely don't want you to tell Mom and Dad.

All these scams have two things in common: a sense of urgency and a claim that something bad will happen if you don't pay up. If you're told there's a problem your cash can solve, think twice about giving in to the fear the caller tried to instill in you.

2. Do an internet search before sending cash

When an impostor scam is being operated, scammers don't just target one person; they'll call thousands of people and present the exact same scenario. This works to your benefit, because these scams make the news.If you've received an email, letter, or phone call alerting you to a situation that requires you to send money or provide personal information, take to the internet and type the scenario into a search engine. You may immediately find warnings about a scam that is sweeping the nation.It's unlikely that your grandson is trapped in Canada at the exact same time there's a major scam going on where people pretend to be grandkids trapped in foreign countries -- so if that scenario comes up in your search, you'll know you were targeted by a trickster.

3. Protect your social-media accounts

Impostor scams are most effective when the caller seems to have information about you and your family. Your "grandson" may know the names of his mom, dad, and siblings. The "debt collector" may have details about where you live, where you work, and the car you drive.How do scammers get this info? Often, you unwittingly give it to them by sharing your life on social media. Your Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and other accounts provide lots of details. Scammers use this personal information to convince you they know who you are.To reduce the chances that your social-media information will be used against you, consider making your accounts private so only friends and family can see what you post. If you must have public profiles and pages, be cautious about the personal information you provide and be aware that others could use your data to trick you.

4. Don't trust caller ID

When a scammer calls and tells you they're from the IRS, Health and Human Services, or another government agency, your caller ID may show that the phone call actually is coming from the federal government.The problem is that the caller ID may not be correct. The Federal Trade Commission warns that caller IDs can be faked. Scammers make calls look as if they are coming from official sources, even though the call may be coming from anywhere in the United States, or even from outside the country.Although you shouldn't trust caller ID to prove a call is legitimate, write down the number if you suspect you're being scammed. The FTC might be able to use it to trace the party who is committing impostor crimes.

5. Tell the caller you'll call back

A perpetrator of an impostor scam wants you to provide your personal information or commit to sending money during the first phone call. But you don't have to let the call you received be the only contact. Tell the caller you'll call back, hang up, and go online to look up the official number of whoever was supposedly calling.If the call came from the "IRS," go to the IRS.gov website to find contact details. If the call was from your "bank" or a "law firm," call back a number you find on the company's official website. If the call was supposedly from your grandchild, call the number you have stored under their name -- and if you don't have one, call their parents. Whoever you get on the line can tell you whether the call was legitimate.

6. Never, ever send funds via wire transfer

It's extremely unlikely that there's a legitimate situation that would require you to wire money. If you owe someone cash, there should be multiple ways to pay -- including sending a check in the mail. A wire transfer isn't a common payment method, and in fact, the FTC categorically states: "The government will not ask a consumer to wire money, and it is illegal for telemarketers to ask you to pay by wire."Scammers prefer wire transfers because the money is difficult to trace and virtually impossible to recover. If you're asked to send money via a wire transfer, this is a likely scam. Just don't send it.

7. File a complaint with the FTC

If you get a call you think is a scam, let the FTC know by filing a complaint at ftc.gov/complaint. The FTC won't help you to resolve your specific situation, but it will provide information about steps to take if you suspect a scam.The FTC will also record your complaint to track patterns of criminal behavior. The information you provide could help others avoid becoming victims.

The $16,122 Social Security bonus you could be missing 
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Teresa Kersten is an employee of LinkedIn and is a member of The Motley Fool's board of directors; LinkedIn is owned by Microsoft. Christy Bieber has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends Facebook and Twitter. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

Source : fool.com

(This article about job hunting is adapted from What Color Is Your Parachute? 2017 Edition by Richard N. Bolles.)

Some of the 10 traditional job hunting methods that follow have a pretty good track record and will repay you for time spent pursuing them. But others have a really terrible track record and are a waste of your time and energy.

The success rate figures cited are a mash of studies I’ve seen, plus, where no studies have been done, my own impressions over the past 45 years of working with job hunters or career changers and writing What Color Is Your Parachute?:

1. Looking for employers’ job postings on the Internet. This method apparently works just 4% of the time, on average.

 he anecdotal evidence is sometimes impressive. You will hear stories of job hunters who’ve been tremendously success­ful in using the Internet to find a job. For example, there’s the systems administrator in Taos, N.M., who wanted to move to San Francisco and posted his resumé at 10 p.m. on a Monday night on San Francisco’s Craig’s List site. By Wednesday morning, he had over 70 responses from employers.

The question is: Are stories like this flukes or is his a univer­sal experience? Sadly, it turns out that this job-search method actually doesn’t work for very many who try it. One exception: if you are seeking a technical or computer-related job, an IT job or a job in engineering, finances or health care, the success rate rises to around 10%.

2. Posting, or mailing out, your resumé to employers. This works at getting you a job (or, more accurately, at getting you an interview that leads to a job) only 7% of the time, apparently.

And I’m being generous with that estimate. One study suggested that only 1 out of 1,470 resumés actually resulted in a job. Another found the fig­ure to be even worse: 1 job offer for every 1,700 resumés floating around out there.

3. Answering local newspaper ads. This method works some­where between 5 and 24% of the time. The range is due to the level of sal­ary being sought. Job hunters looking for low-level salary jobs find this method works 24% of the time; those looking for a high salary find it works only 5% of the time.

4. Going to private employment agencies or search firms for help. These agencies used to place just office workers; now it’s hard to think of a category of jobs they don’t try to place, especially in large metropolitan areas. This method apparently works between 5%and 28% of the time.

The wide varia­tion in the success rate is due to the fact that these agencies vary greatly in their staffing (ranging from extremely competent down to inept or running a scam). But, at their best, agencies are four times more effective than just depending on your resumé.

5. Answering ads in professional or trade journals, appropriate to your field. This method apparently works only 7% of the time. A directory of these associations and their journals can be found at Directoryofassociations.com.

6. “Job Clubs.” There are hundreds of job-hunting support groups that call themselves “job clubs.” Sorry, they are not. They tend to meet only once a week, and then for only a couple of hours. That’s why their job-hunting success rate is usually around 10%, if that.

A true “job club” is something quite different. When the late Nathan Azrin coined the term, it meant that job hunting was a 9 to 5 job, Monday through Friday, every week, for group members. You met with other job hunters between 9 am and 12 pm each day. From 1 to 5, you went out and visited places individually, doing informational interviews or keeping appointments you’d set up. Before going out, you’d share with the group what kind of job you were looking for, so you had other eyes out looking for leads. These job clubs had success rate of 84%.

7. Going to the state or federal employment office. It could be the unemployment service office or one of the federal government’s nationwide CareerOneStop business centers, now alternatively called AmericanJobCenters to get instructions on how to better job hunt and find leads. This method works 14% of the time.

8. Going to places where employers pick up workers. If you’re a union member, particularly in the trades or construction, and you have access to a union hiring hall, this method will find you work, up to 22% of the time. But the job may last just a few days.

Moreover, this is not a method open to a large percentage of job hunters. Only about 7% of private sector employees are union members these days.

The modern-day version of “pickup work” is the so-called sharing economy, where you can use, say, your home (Airbnb) or car (Uber or Lyft) to make extra money.

9. Asking for job leads. With this method, you ask family members, friends and people you know in the community (or on LinkedIn) if they know of any place where someone with your talents and background is being sought. It works 33% of the time.

By asking for job leads, you have an almost five times better chance of finding a job than if you had just sent out your resumé.

10, Knocking on the door of any employer, office or manufacturing plant. This method works 47% of the time and works best with small employers. Sometimes you blunder into a place where a vacancy has just developed.

By knocking on doors, you have an almost seven times better chance of finding a job than if you had just depended on your resumé.

Source : forbes.com

  • Around 20 per cent of dark web pages use pictures and data from regular sites
  • Tracking scripts set up to analyse browsing behaviour are on 27% of dark pages
  • This may allow 'surface' sites like Google to track the behaviour of criminals

Criminals using the dark web to buy drugs and even hire hit men could be unmasked.

That's because the dark web - a secret network that requires specialist software to gain access - is rife with trackers that could be used to follow the browsing behaviour of its members.

Researchers reported that internet companies such as Google could track the behaviour of dark web users by exploiting these privacy faults.Scroll down for video 

Criminals using the dark web to buy drugs and even hire hit men could be unmasked, according to new research

Scientists found serious privacy faults when they investigated the Tor network, a dark web service that uses encryption to hide the identity of its users.

'The dark web is maybe not as dark as it seems,' Iskander Sanchez-Rola at the University of Deusto, Spain, who led the investigation, told New Scientist.

They analysed more than 1.5 million deep web pages as part of their investigation. 

The team found connections between the dark web and regular internet browsers, known as surface browsers.

They found that more than 20 per cent of of dark web pages included pictures and documents that originated on surface websites.

Companies that own these page elements can track when they are accessed by someone on the internet.

This could give internet companies a window into hidden criminal activity.

The researchers said that Google could keep tabs on up to 13 per cent of dark web domains if they made use of this privacy fault.

They also found that tracking scripts set up to analyse browsing behaviour are present on 27 per cent of dark web pages.And almost 43 per cent of this software originates from Google, they said.

The Silk Road: The Deep Web has existed for more than a decade but came under the spotlight last month after police shutdown the Silk Road website - the online marketplace dubbed the 'eBay of drugs - and arrested its creator
The Silk Road: The Deep Web has existed for more than a decade but came under the spotlight last month after police shutdown the Silk Road website - the online marketplace dubbed the 'eBay of drugs - and arrested its creator

They added that if a hidden and surface web page are using the same tracking scripts, it is possible for anyone to follow a user's browsing behaviour.

And when a dark web user moves from the dark web to a normal web page, it may be possible to reveal their identity.The links between the surface and dark web could also reveal the IP addresses of people using Tor services. 

'This research has demonstrated for the first time how much of the dark web is intrinsically linked to the surface or clear web,' security researcher Sarah Jamie Lewis said to New Scientist.

She has developed software called OnionScan, which analyses the dark web to search for faults in privacy.Up to 35 per cent of dark web servers could be exploited to reveal the identity of their users, she said.

Source : dailymail.co.uk

We were gifted with another stellar week of game releases on the App Store yesterday. Not only do we get a free mobile version of the popular Dynasty Warriors franchise, but we also get a new open-world game from Gameloft, the team behind Asphalt, Brothers in Arms and Modern Combat. Also, if you’re anxious for baseball season to start, you should MLB Tap Sports a try. Really fun one-touch game.

Dynasty Warriors: Unleashed

Dynasty Warriors is the legendary ultimate high adrenaline battle experience in Action Combat games. Celebrate the return of your favorite heroic characters, massive battles overflowing with onslaughts of relentless enemies wrapped in a timeless epic saga to unite the three kingdoms. Your elite warriors and cunning strategies are forces to be reckoned with. Promote your generals, build your armies and, battle to the death as you strive to fulfil the vision of your ancestors.

  • Survive massive battles against unyielding hordes of enemies
  • Choose Wisely: 48 legendary characters from the Dynasty Warriors series!

– Each officer has their own unique skills and abilities
– Create powerful officer teams to conquer every mode

  • Strengthen your officers with the signature weapon system!
  • Dynasty Warriors comes to mobile with a variety of game modes!

– Skirmish: Battle in real time with up to four players
-Boss Fight: Jump in and raid the boss with your friends
– Raid: Steal fragments from your opponent
– War Supply: Occupy mines and acquire resources
– Conquest: Compete with other players to take control of the map

[Download Dynasty Warriors: Unleashed free on the App Store]

Final Shift

1 ship, 5 lanes & a ton of objects in your way.
How fast can you shift when you are speeding down the fast lane and obstacles are in your way?

Collect gems and unlock all 15 space ships.

[Download Final Shift free on the App Store]

Gangstar New Orleans

The gold standard for open-world action-adventure series is back, in the fascinating city of New Orleans. With hundreds of vehicles, an outrageous arsenal, and complete freedom to roam this vast city, you have all the tools to become a criminal legend.

Biker gangs, crooked cops and even Voodoo priests prowl these streets and hide in the bayou. And you? You’re the least common criminal of all! Become a man on a mission to claim the Big Easy as your own criminal capital… by any means necessary.

– Discover an open world bustling with life… and crime!

  • Take on dozens of story missions through varied districts, each with its own unique flavor, from the French Quarter to the slums and even the mysterious bayou.
  • Enjoy the AAA graphics and soundtrack to experience the city’s fascinating atmosphere.

– Defend your Turf and raid others

  • Exclusive to Gangstar New Orleans, Turf Wars introduce new competition and excitement to your favorite series.
  • Claim your Turf and defend it from your rivals — the resources you’ll gain will come in handy when it’s time to craft new items.

– Make your own path!

  • Create a character in your image using lots of customization options!
  • Equip, fuse and evolve hundreds of weapons, vehicles, thugs and more to tailor your gangster skills to fit your personal style. From sniper to explosives expert, there are plenty of approaches — which one will you pick?

[Download Gangstar New Orleans free on the App Store]


The calming yet addictive puzzle game is back!
With over 100 hand-crafted puzzles, Kami 2 takes you on a mind-twisting journey that combines logic and problem-solving.

Can you achieve perfection?
Flood each puzzle with a single color in as few moves as possible to claim a ‘Perfect’ sticker. But watch out for subtle new tricks and fiendish surprises.

Want even more?
Beat the global Daily Challenge, earn a winning streak and compare your scores to other players. Test yourself on thousands of user-generated puzzles, uploaded daily.

Get creative and take on the world.
Craft your own KAMI designs using the Puzzle Builder. Design and share your creations, send them to your friends and challenge the world to beat your score.

[Download KAMI 2 free on the App Store]

MLB Tap Sports Baseball 2017

Tap Sports Baseball 2017 now features the official MLB Teams and MLBPA Players

Play Major League Baseball 24/7

  • Play with official teams and players from Major League Baseball
  • Tap to swing with easy one-touch controls, anytime and anywhere
  • Enhanced graphics brings the Major League Baseball experience to life

Manage Your Team, Compete to Win

  • Build and level up your MLB roster to climb up the leaderboards
  • Compete for the greatest baseball legends in daily events and challenges
  • Swing for the fences in Home Run Battles mode

Play with Friends, Join Clubs and Tournaments

  • Compete against multiple friends in action-packed gameplay sessions
  • Play in weekly events and prove who possesses the ultimate team in head-to-head competitions
  • Join a Club or create your own to compete in exclusive events for top prizes

[Download MLB Tap Sports Baseball 2017 free on the App Store]

Source : bgr.com

Panaji: With 1.3 billion connected devices and Internet of Things (IoT) devices expected to populate homes in India by 2021, home networks can become easy targets for cyber criminals, said global cyber security agency Fortinet.

Personal, financial and medical information, as well as work assets are all at risk from increasingly sophisticated malware and financially-motivated cybercriminals, Fortinet said in a report.

"Faster and more affordable internet connections are driving more home users in India to deploy internet-connected devices at home. Recent IoT-based attacks have revealed the sheer volume and ease by which billions of connected devices can be weaponized and used to disrupt the digital economies of entire countries and millions of users. These issues are compounded by the lack of basic security features and management capabilities in many IoT devices," said Fortinet regional vice-president for India and SAARC Rajesh Maurya.

Connected devices on the home network range from smart TVs, entertainment and gaming systems, smart refrigerators, to online home security systems. All of these devices are connected to the internet through a home WiFi system.

In order to secure home networks, Fortinet recommends that users identify devices that connect to the Internet through the WiFi network and to restrict and monitor the traffic generated by the devices.

"Home networks and devices tend to become infected because security is notoriously lax. Set up a separate connection for work, only connect through a VPN tunnel, and consider encrypting sensitive data travelling back and forth between home and corporate networks," Maurya suggests

According to a NASSCOM report, India will account for 5% of the global IoT market valued at 15 billion USD by 2020. Experts predict an average of 4.3 internet-connected devices for every man, woman and child on this planet by 2020.

Author : tnn

Source : timesofindia.indiatimes.com



Tuesday, 28 March 2017 16:53

Best free iPhone apps 2017

There are now hundreds of thousands of apps available for your iPhone 7 or iPhone 6S and, surprisingly, many of the best are free.

What's the best phone of 2016?

The following list showcases our pick of the best free iPhone apps, and includes iPhone applications for social networking, travel, news, photography, productivity and more. Most of these apps are also compatible with the iPod touch.

New this week: Instapaper



It’s so easy to click links you plan to get to later, and at the end of the day realize you’re left with dozens of unread tabs. With Instapaper, such problems vanish.The app is effectively time-shifting for the web. You load articles and it saves them for later.
Even better, it strips cruft, leaving only the content in a mobile-optimized view ideal for iPhone. The standard theme is very smart, but can be tweaked, and there’s text-to-speech when you need to delve into your articles eyes-free.Should you end up with a large archive, articles can be filtered or organized into folders. Want to find something specific? Full-text search has you covered. It’s all great – and none of it costs a penny.

Adobe Photoshop Fix

Although creative giant Adobe doesn’t seem keen on bringing its desktop software to iPhone in one piece, we’re nonetheless getting chunks of its power reimagined as smaller, more focused apps. The idea behind Adobe Photoshop Fix is to enable you to rapidly retouch and restore photos on your iPhone – using the power of Photoshop.
Some of the features aren’t anything outside of the ordinary: you get commonplace tools for cropping, rotation, and adjustments. But Photoshop Fix has some serious power within its straightforward interface, too, as evidenced by excellent vignette, defocus, and color tools.The best bit, though, is Liquify. Using this feature, you can mash a photo to bits or make really subtle changes, depending on the subject matter. And if you’re facing a portrait, you can specifically fiddle with features, in a manner usually associated with high-end PC software.


Unsurprisingly, Wikipedia is an app for browsing Wikipedia, the massive online encyclopedia that makes all paper-based equivalents green with envy. It’s the official app by Wikipedia and is easily the best free option, and only rivaled by one paid alternative we’re aware of (the rather fine V for Wikipedia).
Wikipedia gets the basics right: an efficient, readable layout; fast access to your browsing history; a home page full of relevant and potentially new articles. But it’s all the small things that really count.
Save an article for later and it’s also stored offline. Finding the text a bit small? You can resize it in two taps.Also, if you’ve a fairly new iPhone, 3D Touch is well-supported: home screen quick actions provide speedy access to search and random articles; and when reading in the app, the Peek gesture previews a link, and an upwards swipe displays a button you can tap to save it for later.

White Noise+

If you need some ambient noise around you, White Noise+ proves an excellent app for blocking out distractions. The free version offers a small selection of sounds to soothe your soul – white noise, rain, wind, thunder, and wind chimes.To create some ambience, you simply drag one or more noise icons to an on-screen grid;the items towards the top play at a higher volume, and those towards the right become more complex in nature.
Happen upon an especially pleasing combination and you’re able to save your mix for later use.The app smartly includes built-in mixes to provide a little inspiration – and to showcase a wider range of sounds that’s available via IAP.
A single $2.99/£2.99/AU$4.49 purchase also removes the ad bar, unlocks a sleep timer, alarm, and dark mode, and allows you to fiddle with the 15 additional sounds – in both the bundled mixes and also your own creations.But whether you pay or not, the combination of excellent sounds and a modern, usable interface make White Noise+ a best-in-class product on the iPhone.


Many apps attempt to emulate film stock, but most go for an over-saturated, larger-than-life take on old-school photography. By contrast, Filmborn is all about realism, arming you with tools to make you a better photographer.
The icon-heavy interface takes some getting used to; but once you know where everything is, Filmborn quickly replaces the stock camera app – or any other app you had previously favored.
Much of this is down to features such as manual controls and a superb blown highlights preview, which covers problematic areas of your potential snap in red.But it’s the filters that will most wow anyone keen on real-world stock.
They’re few in number but extremely realistic, and Filmborn also assists regarding when to use them, thereby adding educational clout.Beyond that, there’s an editor for making post-capture adjustments, and some pro-oriented features you can unlock using IAP, such as curves and multiple set-up slots. But even in its free incarnation, Filmborn is an essential download.
Read more: techradar.com 

A NEW online property search engine will help businesses find premises in Stafford Borough.

People wanting premises for a new workshop, offices for a growing business, or retail outlets, for example can use http://stafford.pps.tractivity.co.uk/ which has the most up to date listings of available property.

Stafford Borough Council said the free search facility has been introduced following a growing number of enquiries from businesses wanting to relocate to the area - as well as others that are looking to expand.

You can search for the type and size of property you are looking for and the results will give you a picture, cost and the local agents details to contact direct.

Councillor Frances Beatty, Cabinet Member for Planning and Regeneration, said: "We have more than £1.2 billion of investment delivered recently, or coming, to our Borough and the interest in our area is well known.

"We are always available to offer advice and support where possible to potential, new, and established businesses but want to make it as easy as we can for investors to find what they are looking for. And this new search facility is a good example of our proactive approach to bringing businesses to the borough."

For more information about investment opportunities www.staffordbc.gov.uk/invest-in-stafford-borough.

Author : kirsty_james

Source : staffordshirenewsletter.co.uk

Organisations including the Food Standards Agency and the Department for Work and Pensions will be able to see UK citizens’ entire internet browsing history within weeks.

The Investigatory Powers Bill, which was all but passed into law this week, forces internet providers to keep a full list of internet connection records (ICRs) for a year and to make them available to the Government if asked. Those ICRs in effect serve as a full list of every website that people have visited, rather than collecting which specific pages are visited or what's done on them.

ICRs will be made available to a wide range of government bodies. Those include expected law enforcement organisations such as the police, the military and the secret service, but also includes bodies such as the Food Standards Agency, the Gambling Commission, councils and the Welsh Ambulance Services National Health Service Trust.

The full list of agencies that can now ask for UK citizens’ browsing history, which is laid out in Schedule 4 of the Bill and was collected by Chris Yiu, is below:

  • Metropolitan Police Service
  • City of London Police
  • Police forces maintained under section 2 of the Police Act 1996
  • Police Service of Scotland
  • Police Service of Northern Ireland
  • British Transport Police
  • Ministry of Defence Police
  • Royal Navy Police
  • Royal Military Police
  • Royal Air Force Police
  • Security Service
  • Secret Intelligence Service
  • GCHQ
  • Ministry of Defence
  • Department of Health
  • Home Office
  • Ministry of Justice
  • National Crime Agency
  • HM Revenue & Customs
  • Department for Transport
  • Department for Work and Pensions
  • NHS trusts and foundation trusts in England that provide ambulance services
  • Common Services Agency for the Scottish Health Service
  • Competition and Markets Authority
  • Criminal Cases Review Commission
  • Department for Communities in Northern Ireland
  • Department for the Economy in Northern Ireland
  • Department of Justice in Northern Ireland
  • Financial Conduct Authority
  • Fire and rescue authorities under the Fire and Rescue Services Act 2004
  • Food Standards Agency
  • Food Standards Scotland
  • Gambling Commission
  • Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority
  • Health and Safety Executive
  • Independent Police Complaints Commissioner
  • Information Commissioner
  • NHS Business Services Authority
  • Northern Ireland Ambulance Service Health and Social Care Trust
  • Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue Service Board
  • Northern Ireland Health and Social Care Regional Business Services Organisation
  • Office of Communications
  • Office of the Police Ombudsman for Northern Ireland
  • Police Investigations and Review Commissioner
  • Scottish Ambulance Service Board
  • Scottish Criminal Cases Review Commission
  • Serious Fraud Office
  • Welsh Ambulance Services National Health Service Trust

Author : Andrew Griffin

Source : http://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/gadgets-and-tech/news/investigatory-powers-bill-act-snoopers-charter-browsing-history-what-does-it-mean-a7436251.html

Introduction :

Cyber law is the law governing cyberspace. Cyberspace jurisprudence is evolving rapidly with various technological developments. Due to immense increase in the use of computers and other communication devices, there has been increase in cyber crimes worldwide. It has also given rise to various challenges dealing with the legal aspects of cyber law to the governments across the world.

The unprecedented rate of technological change has cropped up many challenges and problems, especially the problem of governance, formulation of new laws and amendments of the existing ones from time to time. Cyberspace has no limitations as to geographical boundaries which has given rise to many transnational crimes, which may affect any country across the globe.

It is likely that various challenges might arise in future due to such rapid increase in the information technology. There is a need for nations to enter into multi-lateral international agreements to establish new and uniform rules applicable to cyberspace. Also there is a need for creating an international organization to deal with problems relating to cyberspace.

Emerging global trends and developments in Cyber Law :

Globally, Various trends and challenges are likely to arise with the development and evolution of cyber law jurisprudence. Following are few of the Trends and challenges in cyberspace which has emerged in last few years and needs a serious attention of the governments across the world.

Trends in Mobile Laws :

The increased usage of mobile devices, cell phones, smart phones, personal digital assistants and all other kinds of communication devices in different parts of the world are becoming an integral part of day –to-day existence in life. This has widened the scope of Mobile Ecosystem and is likely to give rise to various complex legal issues and challenges across the world

In countries like India and China, wherein the usage of mobile devices is exceedingly high, the area of mobile law is emerging and different complicated legal, regulatory and policy challenges concerning the usage of mobile devices and  communication devices are coming to the forefront ,and it is expected that these countries would contribute towards the growth and development of Mobile law.

Also the increased usage of mobile devices is likely to give rise to more mobile related crimes. It is need of an hour for the governments to adopt direct legislations pertaining to mobile law as the existing laws, regulations and rules in different countries which have an impact on legal issues pertaining to mobile laws are applicable in an indirect manner.

It is expected that with increased usage of mobile devices across the world, mobile law would emerge as an distinct area of jurisprudence. There is a need for appropriate enabling frameworks for the governments across the world that will help, protect and preserve the rule of law in mobile ecosystem.

The growth of mobile law jurisprudence has led to the legal issues connected with it. Mobile crime is likely to increase leaps and bounds in the coming years. Increased usage of mobile apps, which majorly consists of an individuals private and personal information, are likely to bring up various legal issues which will need appropriate consideration in order to ensure mobile protection and privacy .With more and more mobile apps emerging the personal information of the user needs to be protected.

Social Media and Challenges :

One of the biggest problem cyber law is encountering is related to development of jurisprudence relating to social networking. Increased adoption and usage of social media are likely to bring various legal, policy and regulatory issues. Social media crimes are increasingly gaining attention of relevant stake holders. Misuse of information, other criminal and unwanted activities on social networking platforms and social media are raising significant legal issues and challenges. There is a need for the countries across the world to ensure that rule of law prevails on social media. Social media legal issues continues to be significant. In order to avoid social media crimes and protect the privacy related to social media, it is a challenge for cyber law makers across the world to not only provide appropriate legislative and regulatory mechanisms but also provide for effective remedies for redressal to the victims of various unauthorized, unwanted criminal activities done in cyber space and social media.

Cyber security and related issues :

With the growing activities of cyber crime across the world, there is a need for enacting a appropriate legislative, regulatory and policy framework pertaining to cyber security. The International Conference on Cyber law, Cyber crime and Cyber security which took place in November 2014 in India highlighted significant issues affecting cyber security and came up with various recommendations for international stakeholders. It is likely that countries of the world have to deal with issues pertaining to attacks and intrusions into computer systems and networks from location outside the territorial boundaries of the country. It has the potential of prejudicially impacting the sovereignty, integrity and security of the country. Thus there is a need for the nations across the world to amend their existing IT legislations which would help the protection, preservation and promotion of cyber security in the use of computers and communication devices.

Cloud Computing and Challenges:

Another important challenge in cyber space is the evolution and development of legal responses to the complicated legal challenges poised and raised by cloud computing and virtualization. Cloud computing being a popular phenomenon among corporate is likely to bring forth issues like data protection and data confidentiality. The relevant stakeholders including lawmakers and governments across the globe need to provide appropriate legal, policy and regulatory framework pertaining to legal aspects concerning cloud computing.

Spam Laws :

In the initial years, spam seemed to be targeted at computers but has now also targeted mobile phones. Email spam is the most common form of spamming, Mobile phone spam and instant messaging spam also exist. In majority of the countries there is no such anti spam law, which has led to the further growth of spam. There is an increased need for the countries to come up with regulatory and legal framework for spam as many countries have already become hotspots for generating spam.


The aforesaid are some of the more significant and important cyber law trends which will have bearing on the growth and further evolution of international Cyber law ecosystem. The aforesaid list is only illustrative in nature and by no means exhaustive. With the tremendous growth in information technology worldwide, the society being more and more dependant on technology,  crimes related to computer, computer systems and electronic devices are bound to increase and the law makers have to go the extra mile to maintain the rule of law in the cyberspace ecosystem. What may happen in the future no one can predict due to the fast pace of technological growth. There lies a duty not only on lawmakers and governments, but also on the users at large, to understand their responsibility towards ensuring a safe and healthy technological development and that it is used for legal and ethical purposes to the utmost benefit of mankind.

Author : Sonia Tulse

Source : https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/emerging-global-trends-developments-cyber-law-growing-sonia-tulse

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