Technology Stories Making Headlines

April 2019

American Airlines Extends Boeing 737 Flight Cancellations

In a move to "provide confidence", American airlines is extending the cancellation of its Boeing 737 Max 8 flights from June until mid-August. Following worldwide fatal crashes, 737 Max aircraft were grounded as Boeing develop new anti-stall system software which came under scrutiny since the crashes. Senior officials at Boeing said they were "confident" that the upgrade would be approved by US aviation regulators before mid August, despite having grounded 24 planes until then. 

Telstra, TPG, Vocus and Optus Hit Back

Telcos such as Telstra, TPG, Optus & Vocus have said that their services are not a bottleneck to the NBN user experience, and that any bottleneck sits with NBN Co itself. In a proposal to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, the four telcos have requested a data collection exercise on the industry which would require industry players to submit detailed data regularly on connections they maintained to NBN points of Interconnect.In embarking on the data collection exercise, the ACCC is hoping to understand if it needs to intervene in the wholesale aggregation or dark fibre markets. 

Cyber attack diverts almost $500,000

After a suspected foreign cyber attack of the human resources management application, nearly $500,000 was diverted out of the city of Tallahassee's employee payroll. Officials are currently working to determine the hack's origins but have said the employees have all been paid. The city is working with its bank to recover the money and has already been successful in recouping 25% of the missing fund, they have also engaged the services of its insurance company and law enforcement to pursue criminal charges. 

McDonalds affected by Card Fraud

Dodgy payments cards have become an issue for fast food chain McDonalds, in a bid to reduce the fraud losses, McDonalds have resorted to asking customers for identification. Privacy advocates and payment industry insiders are questioning how random requests for ID would actually curtail fraud losses and how McDonalds intends to use the information it collects. McDonalds have not yet responded as to how requesting ID would mitigate fraud. 

Huawei: Why are Western Governments worried about China?

A growing number of companies, governments and academic institutions have called into question Huawei's close links to the Chinese state as espionage fears grow. Research grants at Oxford University have been suspended whilst the Germon Chancellor administration is looking at ways to exclude Huawei from the country's 5G networks. The company had denied that it's technology is used for spying by Beijing but its public statements have done little to quell fears. 

SMS-borne Malware attacks 189 Australian Financial Institutions

Cisco's Talos security business has detected what is being described as a "new Android-based campaign targeting Australian financial institutions." Detecting an advertisement that offers malware called "Gustuff" that claims it can attack Australian institutions, Talos has said it found 189 sets of logos for Australian banks and cryptocurrency exchanges in the malware. The malware goes to great lengths to stop anti-virus software running on Android devices and also tries to avoid being placed into sandboxes that would make it harder it touch other apps and Android processes. 

Labor's NBN Policy calls for re-wiring of 750,000 homes

In a new NBN policy, the Australian Labor Party had pledged to re-wire 750,000 homes using fibre-to-the-node connections which will "improve speeds and reliability" whilst also being at no cost to households. Not accompanied by costings, or other elements of the plan, this "plan" is little more than a press release. However, the re-wiring is a retreat of sorts as it blames home cabling for the NBN's woes rather than asserting that Fibre to the Node is substandard. It is also likely to be a very expensive promise with no source of funding being announced. 

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About the Author

Geoff Stewart is a highly experienced and skilled IT Challenger at Surety IT. His knowledge is based on years of industry experience having created customised, stable, well performing systems both for multi-national companies in the UK and Australia and Surety IT customers.

Surety IT’s mission is to address and overcome the 4 biggest problems businesses have with their IT systems and support which are: poorly performing systems, unreliable systems, unresponsive IT support and poor IT related advice. 

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