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A Handy Chrome Feature, a Sonos Update Warning, and More News

Source: National Cyber Security – Produced By Gregory Evans Chrome is protecting and Sonos is disconnecting, but first: a cartoon about the new big screen. Here’s the news you need to know, in two minutes or less. Want to receive this two-minute roundup as an email every weekday? Sign up here! Today’s News Don’t ignore […] View full post on AmIHackerProof.com

How Tweets Could Prevent War, an App Store Dilemma, and More News

Source: National Cyber Security – Produced By Gregory Evans Twitter is shocking and Apple is balking, but first: a cartoon about posthumous photo sharing. Here’s the news you need to know, in two minutes or less. Want to receive this two-minute roundup as an email every weekday? Sign up here! Today’s News Did Twitter help […] View full post on AmIHackerProof.com

#deepweb | Autonomy at sea: Ocean drones net hard-to-get data for weather, fishing and more

Source: National Cyber Security – Produced By Gregory Evans The Earth’s oceans cover 70% of its surface. They supply half the oxygen we breath. They influence rainfall all over the world. They can send catastrophic tsunamis on shore in coastal communities. They’re home to the fish that make up 20% of the protein we consume. […] View full post on AmIHackerProof.com

#nationalcybersecuritymonth | Ransomware may have cost the US more than $7.5 billion in 2019

Source: National Cyber Security – Produced By Gregory Evans

It was another big year for ransomware, the extremely profitable style of cyberattack in which computer systems and data are taken over by hackers and held hostage until the victim hands over a payoff.

In 2019, these attacks wreaked havoc around the globe, earned criminals vast sums, and even occasionally provided a weapon for government hackers. This marked the fifth straight year of growth, with national and local governments and public institutions increasingly becoming targets.

The money: The potential cost of ransomware in the United States last year was over $7.5 billion, according to a recent report from the cybersecurity firm Emisoft that attempted to estimate the impact of a very opaque set of incidents. 

The victims: Emisoft tallied up 113 governments and agencies, 764 health-care providers, and up to 1,233 individual schools affected by ransomware in America. Big cities including Baltimore and New Orleans were both struck by ransomware attacks last year.

The why: One root cause, according to an October 2019 report from the State Auditor of Mississippi, is a “disregard for cybersecurity in state government.” Others agree: Research from the University of Maryland published earlier in the year concluded with admirable directness “that most American local governments do a poor job practicing cybersecurity.”

This isn’t a problem just for small towns and their ill-equipped agencies. Last month, a US Coast Guard facility was forced offline for over 30 hours when ransomware hit the base’s cameras, access systems, and critical monitoring systems, the BBC reported.

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5G Is More Secure Than 4G and 3G—Except When It’s Not

Source: National Cyber Security – Produced By Gregory Evans You’ve probably been hearing the hype about lightning-fast 5G for years now. And while the new wireless networks still aren’t ubiquitous in the United States, 5G is slowly cropping up in cities from Boston and Seattle to Dallas and Kansas City. With the faster connection speeds […] View full post on AmIHackerProof.com

#hacking | Accel’s new India fund, Slowing growth of AePS & more, Technology News, ETtech

Source: National Cyber Security – Produced By Gregory Evans Accel’s new India fund What’s the news? Accel India, backer of leading technology startups such as Flipkart, Freshworks and Swiggy, has raised about $550 million for its sixth India fund, taking its assets under management to $1.5 billion. This makes Accel VI among the largest corpuses […] View full post on AmIHackerProof.com

#deepweb | Online shops use ‘dark patterns’ to trick you into buying and signing up for more, study suggests

Source: National Cyber Security – Produced By Gregory Evans

Many online shopping sites use our psychology against us by subverting user decision-making through design choices called “dark patterns,” and oftentimes, this causes shoppers to make decisions they otherwise wouldn’t.

According to a new study that analyzed data from more than 11,000 popular shopping sites, these tactics are more pervasive than most people realize.

Dark patterns coerce, steer or deceive users into making decisions that they might not if they were otherwise fully informed or given an alternative.

This includes things like using a countdown timer to pressure shoppers into “snagging a deal” even though the deal doesn’t end after the timer runs out, generating deceptive notifications in a random fashion (e.g. using a random number generator to tell shoppers how many others are “currently viewing” a product) and “confirmshaming” — when a site’s pop-up urges users to sign up and phrases the “no” option as a shameful choice, e.g., “No thanks, I like paying full price.”

It’s an increasingly common choice to implement dark patterns in the design of online spaces, including social media sites, e-commerce sites, mobile apps and video games, and the research team at Princeton wanted to get a better idea of just how often dark patterns are being used and in what ways.

Out of the 11,000 websites analyzed, researchers found that about 11 percent were using some kind of dark pattern on their user interface, and a total of 183 sites were using deceptive tactics specifically.

According to data, the more popular the site, the more likely it was to be using dark patterns.

“At best, dark patterns annoy and frustrate users,” the study’s authors said, “At worst, they can mislead and deceive users. This includes causing financial loss, tricking users into giving up vast amounts of personal data, or inducing compulsive and addictive behavior in adults and children.”

One worry about digital shops in particular is that they have a much greater ability to manipulate shoppers’ cognitive limitations and biases.

“For example, unlike brick-and-mortar stores, digital marketplaces can capture and retain user behavior information, design and mediate user interaction, and proactively reach out to users,” the study’s authors said. “Other studies have suggested that certain elements in shopping websites can influence impulse buying behavior.”

The elements to which the authors are referring are things such as product reviews and ratings, discounts and quick add-to-cart buttons, which are all meant to impact a shopper’s decision-making.

The term “dark patterns” was coined by UX Specialist Harry Brignull in 2010, and he describes them as “tricks used in websites and apps that make you buy or sign up for things that you didn’t mean to.”

A new study from Princeton University found that many online shops use manipulative tactics, called dark patterns, to trick shoppers into buying and signing up for more. (Neil Godwin/Future Publishing via Getty Images)

While the tactic of using dark patterns has been studied before, those analyses relied on anecdotal data or data collected from user submissions. New research from a team at Princeton University provides the the first large-scale evidence documenting the prevalence of dark patterns.

Researchers developed an automated approach to collecting data about the user experience on shopping sites by creating a web crawler, which simulates a user browsing experience and identifies elements of the design interface. They then extracted all of the user interface designs and inspected the resulting clusters for instances of dark patterns. Finally, they categorized and labeled the dark patterns that they identified.

The research was focused solely on shopping websites for the study, and researchers used the web crawler to visit more than 11,000 of the most popular e-commerce sites worldwide, searching for dark patterns that trick people into signing up for recurring subscriptions or making unwanted purchases that result in financial loss.

They discovered 1,818 instances of dark patterns, which represented 15 dark pattern types across seven broad categories. These instances were found on 1,254 sites out of the more than 11,000 sites included in the data set, which equates to about 11 percent, and 183 sites were found to display deceptive messaging.

Researchers also identified 22 third-party entities that provide e-commerce sites with the ability to create and implement dark patterns on their sites.

The majority of dark patterns were found to be covert, deceptive and information-hiding in nature.

Covert dark patterns steer the user into making specific purchases without their knowledge — such as introducing a decoy to make certain other choices seem more appealing. Deceptive dark patterns induce false beliefs either through affirmative misstatements, misleading statements or omissions, such as a site offering up a discount that seems to be time-limited, when in reality it appears each time the web page is opened or refreshed.

Information-hiding dark tactics obscure or delay the presentation of necessary information to the user, such as when a site doesn’t disclose that additional charges will be added at the very end of checkout.

Researchers also found that most types of dark patterns work by exploiting peoples’ cognitive biases. The researchers cited these cognitive biases as main targets of dark patterns:

  • Anchoring effect: The tendency of an individual to over-rely on an initial piece of information (the “anchor”) in future decisions.
  • Bandwagon effect: The tendency of an individual to want or value something more because other people value it (or at least seem to).
  • Default effect: The tendency of an individual to choose an assigned, default option because it’s easier than seeking out other options.
  • Framing effect: The tendency of an individual to reach different conclusions from the same information when it is presented differently.
  • Scarcity bias: The tendency to place higher value on things that seem scarce.
  • Sunk Cost Fallacy: The tendency of an individual to carry on with an action because they have already invested time and energy into it, even if they might end up worse off overall.

The study’s authors said that users are becoming increasingly more aware of these tactics, but their new data set could be used to build further countermeasures to help consumers make more informed decisions.

“One such countermeasure could be a public-facing website that scores shopping websites based on their use of dark patterns,” the authors said. “Our data set can also enable the development of browser extensions that automatically detect and flag dark patterns.”

The researchers warned that their estimates are likely the lower bound of prevalence due to the limitations of their automated method, which only scraped text data from pages containing products on each site, the site’s cart and the checkout interface.

While this means that dark patterns are probably far more pervasive than the average online shopper realizes, a little awareness can cut down on a lot of subversive manipulation — and hopefully pad your pocketbook in the process.

This story was reported from Los Angeles. 

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#deepweb | Stolen credit card data from Singapore banks worth more on Dark Web, Tech News & Top Stories

Source: National Cyber Security – Produced By Gregory Evans

Stolen credit card data from Singapore banks is valued higher on the Dark Web than that from other countries because of the robust cyber security measures protecting it and the difficulty in obtaining such data, according to new research from cyber security firm Group-IB.

The Singapore-based firm yesterday said that for cards from the United States, the average price for raw payment card data, which includes credit card number, expiration date, cardholder name and CVV number, is between US$8 (S$11) and US$10 on Dark Web shops.

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#deepweb | Top Sony TV Black Friday Deals for 2019: Early Sony 65”, 75”, 85” & More 4K TV Deals Reviewed by Retail Fuse

Source: National Cyber Security – Produced By Gregory Evans

BOSTON–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Here’s a list of the best early Sony TV Black Friday 2019 deals, including instant savings on Sonny 85”, 75”, 55” & more 4K TVs.

Best Sony TV deals:

Black Friday deals run for a limited period of time. For the full range of live deals check out Amazon’s Black Friday deals page and Walmart’s Deal Drop page. Retail Fuse earns commissions from purchases made using the links provided.

Sony continues to shape the 4K TV market with its new offering for products in the 65 inch, 75 inch, and the 85 inch category. The premium flagship products from Sony include the BRAVIA OLED and the Master Series. Both use state-of-the-art technology to provide superb audio and video to users.

Which stores have the best deals on Black Friday? Both Walmart and Amazon run Black Friday sales and are the best retailers for Black Friday and Cyber Monday shoppers in 2019.

Internet Retailer recently reported Amazon.com, Inc. as the number one US web retailer in its 2019 Top 1000, a report that ranks 1,000 top online brands and retailers in the US according to their e-commerce sales. Holiday shoppers should keep an eye on Amazon’s website as the top retailer rolls out new deals daily throughout its Black Friday sales. These are in addition to the deep discounts on thousands of items already offered by the retail giant during the popular shopping period.

According to researchers at Edison Trends, Amazon’s online sales during last year’s Thanksgiving and Black Friday rose by 25% compared to the same period in the previous year, whilst Walmart’s grew by 23%.

About Retail Fuse: Retail Fuse reports the latest retail news. As an Amazon Associate Retail Fuse earns from qualifying purchases.

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#cyberfraud | #cybercriminals | The number of Black Friday scams is increasing and they’re becoming more sophisticated

Source: National Cyber Security – Produced By Gregory Evans With a rise in the number of shops offering Black Friday bargains, security experts say scammers are capitalising on the trend in the hope of conning shoppers. Experts say fraudsters are becoming ‘more sophisticated’ in their attempts to con people out of their hard earned cash, […] View full post on AmIHackerProof.com