HPE Partners With Star Trek to Create the Future


Motivated by Star Trek’s theme to “boldly go where no man has gone before,” Hewlett Packard Enterprise partnered with Paramount Pictures to envision robotic technology 250 years into the future.

The HPE designers and researchers designed and created along with the Star Trek Beyond team to imagine three technological concepts of the future: the quarantine, the diagnostic wrap, and the book. To watch this technology come to life, view the exclusive, behind-the-scenes video.

HP Ushers in Device as a Service

hp-daas-710x434HP  has inaugurated a new service that offers its customers entrée into HP’s leading-edge PC technology, augments device management and maximizes valuable IT time and resources. HP Device as a Service (DaaS) was created to alleviate the stress from acquiring, deploying and managing business technology.

Leveraging a single contract across both devices and services, with no upfront investment, HP DaaS provides fixed annual costs and allows IT staff the ability to plan accordingly so they can then allocate funding to other projects as needed. The program was designed with global scalability in mind and adaptability to changing technology and workforces.  It also motivates businesses to provide their staffs across the globe access to the latest PCs for greater productivity, collaboration and innovation.

“HP DaaS allows businesses to lean on our technology and expertise to keep their PC infrastructure running while they focus resources on driving their businesses forward,” said Bill Avey, general manager & global head, PS Services, HP Inc. “Our new offering removes the complexity around device management and gives customers a simpler way to access and implement needed technology and support.”

HP DaaS gives customers the ability to pay one price per seat for their PCs on a monthly basis over a multi-year period. Within that subscription, they can receive the latest technology and customized services and support from HP, including PC configuration and installation, data migration, onsite support and technology recycling.

IT buyers are drawn to HP DaaS, because they can plan for a fixed and manageable cost  during uncertain or financially challenging times. In a recent study, over 40% of participating IT decision makers revealed that they engaged in or were considering subscribing to a PC as a Service model in the future.

Pricing

The HP Device as a Service offering subscription is currently available through your channel partner. The offering is expected to roll out more broadly via HP Inc.’s Partner First Program later this year. Pricing will vary based on individual subscriptions.

The Ultra-thin Spectre Debuts

T-HPSpectre13--C-tcm245-2210158--CT-tcm245-1085601-32The thinnest laptop in the world recently debuted from HP—the .41 inch beautifully designed Spectre. That’s about the size of a pencil for a quick reference.

“The HP Spectre is the thinnest notebook in the world, and unlike the majority of other super thin PCs on the market, this laptop doesn’t compromise power or features,” said Kevin Frost, vice president and general manager, consumer personal systems, HP Inc. “A beautiful Full HD edge-to-edge display, Intel® Core i processors coupled with Bang & Olufsen sound and a sexy and thin design, HP amazing engineers set a new standard with the all new Spectre.”

The Spectre challenges the laptop status quo with a re-imagination of every element to ensure the best user experience coupled with maximum performance. The result is a premium notebook PC that does not force users to compromise on style, function or performance with features such as:

Features:

  • Part precision cut aluminum (screen and body) and part carbon fiber (underbelly) creating a thin profile that is both rugged and lightweight weighing in at only 2.45 lbs.
  • Groundbreaking piston hinges (typically found in high-end furniture) create the illusion of a floating top.
  • A high-gloss polished copper finish adds an elegant feel to the design.
  • Stereo Speakers by Bang and Olafsen with HP Audio Boost technology
  • Full HD IPS edge-to-edge display featuring Corning® Gorilla® delivers a superb viewing experience for editing photos, perfecting a presentation, or watching a movie.
  • 6th generation Intel Core i5 and i7 processors and a super-fast PCIe SSD with storage up to 512 GB with up to 8 GB of memory for maximum performance. Integration of Intel hyperbaric cooling system keeps the machine running cool even with powerful processors in a small package.
  • Windows 10 and Microsoft Edge
  • A Hybrid battery split into two thinner pieces delivers a battery Life of 9+ hours.
  • A Bright Sharp display Screen features a Full HD (1920 x 1080) panel
  • 3 USB-C ports all capable of charging the laptop of which two ports are Thunderbolt 3 to provide a fast, versatile I/O connection
  • 3.5 mm headphone jack

Pricing and Availability:

  • Sixth-Gen Intel Core i5 ($1169.99)
  • I7 ($1299.99)
  • 8GB RAM, 512GB PCIe SSD ($1499)

Russian Ransomware Web Growing

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In Russia, it pays to be an internet thug.

The average Russian ransomware boss makes $90,000 (US dollars) a year–or 13 times the average income of honest citizens in the country who stick to the “straight and narrow,” reports a recent Flashpoint study.

So what is the job description for a ransomware Mafioso? Generally speaking, the job consists of supporting and maintaining the malware.

“The software has to be constantly updated so that antivirus systems won’t recognize it as malware,” explained Vitali Kremez, a cybercrime intelligence analyst with Flashpoint.

“It’s not a situation where you provide the malware and sit back on a couch waiting for your payments. You have to work on it on a daily basis,” he told TechNewsWorld. “The boss controls the source code for the malware

A Service vs A Commodity

The malware model is evolving, suggests the Flashpoint study, which focuses on the Russian ransomware scene.

“A new form of ransomware has been developed that is in effect ‘Ransomware as a Service’ (RaaS),” highlights the report. It “enables ‘affiliates’ to obtain a piece of ransomware from a crime boss and distribute it to victims as these affiliates wish.”

That’s a shift from the past, when ransomware was accessible only to criminals who paid a hefty deposit upfront for the malware—up to $2,000 to rent or $5,000 to buy. But last November the malware scene shifted Kremez noted.

“We started to see developers considering giving their malware free of charge to criminals and keeping 40 to 50 percent of each ransomware payment made,” he said.

The new business model has drastically lowered the barriers to getting into the online crime business. It is surprisingly easy to start spreading ransomware. Relatively unskilled criminals can attack corporations and individuals through botnet installs, email and social media phishing campaigns, compromised dedicated servers and file-sharing websites.

“It used to be a one-on-one business,” Kremez said. “At this stage, it’s all automated. We see marketplaces. We see services on the dark web where you deposit your money and buy what you have to buy without any direct communication with the seller.”

Ransomware Web Growing

Infoblox’s latest quarterly report reveals more bad news on the rapid spread of global malicious infrastructure. To accurately determine the scope of activity worldwide, Infoblox created a threat index. In the first quarter of 2013, when Infoblox launched, the threat index was 76. This quarters current level:137.  It’s the highest reading to date.

“While exploit kits remain a major threat, this latest jump was driven in large part by a 35X increase in creation of domains for ransomware over the previous quarter, which in turn drove an increase of 290 percent in the overall malware category,” the report states.

The expanding production of malware kits is also attractive to criminals. Kits are designed to infect devices with a variety of malware programs.

“A number of exploit kits and threat actor gangs behind them have started adding ransomware to their repertoire over the last few months,” said Sean Tierney, director of cyber intelligence at Infoblox.

“These are gangs that were using their kits to deliver other kinds of malware,” he told TechNewsWorld, that “have either started including or switched entirely to ransomware.”

It’s likely that the ransomware market will level off as security software makers get better at detecting it and consumers get smarter about avoiding it, suggested Tierney.

“Then the market will become saturated,” he said, “and the return won’t be able to support the amount of activity going on.”

Shared Storage an Easy Target for Malware

Cloud-StorageMost corporate employees find that shared storage on collaborative work efforts makes work a little easier. Unfortunately, shared cloud storage is also an easy target for malware infection. New research indicates that up 1 in 10 corporate shared folders carries a malware infestation.

As companies move from on-site and secured central servers to a hybrid BYOD environment—security and risk are growing fast. The cloud security company–Netskope discovered rates of malware infection have doubled since they conducted the same study only last quarter. It’s a gigantic red flag for corporate America, suggesting that as companies continue to expand their sharing and cloud usage, best practice security efforts for shared storage are falling short.

*Just to clarify, Netskope’s research comes from millions of users over the three full months of the second quarter.

Netskope uncovered a variety of malware in the study, from, spyware, adware, JavaScript exploits and nefarious macros found buried in documents. It also found smartphones targeting malware, according to Ars. The research suggests that users are risking infection on multiple hardware platforms when accessing the cloud services.

Fortunately, the study also found that only about a quarter of the files and folders hiding malware had actually been shared between different people and companies, so the infections, although growing, are containable.

It’s a strong reminder of how important cloud security is and the critical factor of best practices among corporate users when sharing sensitive data.

Tips to keep your corporate cloud clean:

  1. Keep anti-virus and anti-malware software up to date
  2. Make sure employees know how to spot phishing links and dodgy website
  3. Encourage employees to remember best practices at home as smartphones can easily spread malware around.

The HP OMEN-A Laptop for Gamers

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For the serious gamers among us, HP has introduced the new OMEN, built exclusively for gamers looking for the latest in PC innovation, with increased power and performance to dominate the competition.

OMEN laptops deliver a highly immersive experience to compliment the laptops’ smooth performance. The 15.6” and 17.3” diagonal OMEN laptops are available in Full HD and 4K IPS display options to enhance gameplay with stunning true-to-life visuals. Sound effects by Bang & Olufsen and HP Audio boost the OMEN’s appeal with added depth on dual speakers.

“We created OMEN by HP for gamers who need their PC to deliver a great experience while also allowing them the flexibility to choose the level of performance and design that fits their needs,” said Kevin Frost, vice president and general manager, consumer personal systems, HP Inc. “The new OMEN platform offers the features gamers rely on – power for battling on the go, graphics for smooth gameplay and advanced thermal cooling to tackle the latest AAA games. The OMEN by HP delivers gamers what they need to strike first, and last.”

The OMEN is equipped with powerful hardware and crisp 4K displays—offered in both the 15.6” and 17.3” diagonal gaming laptops.

The laptops feature a dragon red backlit keyboard with OMEN branding on the keyboard deck and on the black shadow mesh laptop lid.  With a dual fan design to maintain top performance, the laptops run nice and cool. The 62 watt battery sits flat and towards the front of the machine to allow more cooling surface area and airflow for thermal management without sacrificing performance. NVIDIA GTX graphics power up to 965M and the 6th Generation Intel Core i7 quad-core processors equip gamers for any challenge or challenger.

Other features include:

  • Wide Vision HD Camera or optional Intel® RealSenseTM Camera for 3D experiences and to enable gesture control apps to interact with the PC when gaming.
  • Up to 16GB of memory and up to 512GB PCIe SSD or up to 2TB for single storage options or dual storage options with up to 4TB HDD and 128GB SSHD on select models.
  • HP Fast Charge and up to 10 hours of battery life on select models.

The 15.6” diagonal OMEN Laptop is planned to be available on HP.com on July 10 with a starting price at $899.99.

Meet Rowe-Microsoft’s Beneficial Bot

Screen+Shot+2016-05-24+at+10.51.48+AM.jpgWe’ve all heard of bad “bots”—malware programs that simulate human users, often used for spamming or other malicious purposes. But despite the bad rap, not all bots are bad, bots can also be your friend. Simply put, a bot is a computer program that performs automated tasks, usually in response to requests from users. When you put them to work for you to pull info off of the internet, bots can be a great asset for research compilation and news.

Microsoft has jumped in to the good bot arena with a new bot named Rowe. You can find it inside the News Pro app from Microsoft Garage, Rowe accumulates articles that might interest you based on your preferences and then makes a recommendation. Another fun feature: the bot will dish up news for you or for people who look like you when you send it a selfie. Hello evil twin? You can even upload images and Rowe will search for stories based on the content of the photo.

News Pro offers some pretty cool reader features as well. By logging in with Facebook or LinkedIn, the app is able to “personalize” the links it pulls in. There’s a Highlights feed that breaks down articles based on your interests or those related to your job. You can also add friends and group them so that you’re sharing with similar like-minded peeps or colleagues from your office. If you’re looking for another way to stay up to date on news, the latest version of the News Pro app is available for iOS devices via the iTunes App Store.