Entries with tag Twitter.

Venezuela Asks Twitter to Block Access to Black-Market Currency Information

Venezuelan officials have asked Twitter to block accounts offering links to websites publishing black-market currency-exchange rates. The government claims publication of such information damages the country’s economy by derailing government-enforced currency controls. The government has also asked ISPs in the country to block pages with black market exchange information. The official exchange rate is 6.3 bolivars per dollar, but with dollars scarce in the country, the black-market rate has been as high as 50 bolivars per dollar. Some people use Twitter to publicize websites offering the higher rate, to circumvent government controls. Venezuelan officials claim that shopkeepers are inflating prices based on the black-market rate and that this contributes to the nation’s annual inflation rate of about 55 percent. (Reuters)(Business News Americas)
 

Problems Continue for Sites Hacked by Syrian Electronic Army

The New York Times and Twitter were among the sites hacked Tuesday by the Syrian Electronic Army (SEA), causing problems that are persisting in what is reportedly the group’s most damaging attack to date. The group of hackers—aligned with Syrian president Bashar al-Assad in his two-year civil war -- altered numerous websites’ domain-name-system information, which resides on the same third-party site. The SEA gained access to Melbourne IT, the domain registrar’s, database, then edited the DNS information so that it would direct unsuspecting Web surfers to sites hosted by the hackers, who publicized their attacks using social media. This is the second time this month that the New York Times site has gone offline. The first was reportedly the result of an unspecified internal issue. (BBC)(TIME) 

Dictionary Breaks Own Rules, Adds the Word “Tweet”

The popularity of Twitter has prompted the Oxford English Dictionary to break its own rules for inclusion, adding “tweet” to its pages. The OED online now lists the word as both a noun and a verb related to social networking. The dictionary formerly defined the word only as “a brief high-pitched sound.” The OED typically requires words to have been used for at least 10 years before being listed. Twitter has existed for only seven years. Other technology-related terms that the OED added include “flash mob,” “crowdsourcing,” “live blog,” “3D printer,”and “search engine optimization.” The dictionary is updated quarterly. (Computerworld)(Reuters)(The Daily Mail) 

Twitter Launches Two-Factor Authentication for SMS

Twitter announced the launch of two-factor authentication via short-message service, designed to improve users’ account security. Two-factor authentication works by providing users with a second, one-time login by text message they use with their password. This makes it more difficult to access an account with only a password. Twitter users may now voluntarily implement the security feature, which several major technology providers such as Facebook and Google already offer. In recent months, hackers have targeted Twitter by using stolen passwords to access high-profile organizations’ accounts and posting false messages. For example, attackers compromised the Associated Press’ Twitter account and posted that the White House was under attack. This caused the Dow Jones to plummet briefly, until it was announced that the posting was false. Security experts say the additional Twitter security is helpful but won’t prevent all possible hacks, including man-in-the-middle or phishing-based attacks. (Tech Crunch)(The New York Times)(InformationWeek)(Twitter)

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