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An edited collection of advanced computing news from Communications of the ACM, ACM TechNews, other ACM resources, and news sites around the Web.


U.S. Taps Tech Giants to Help Fight Ransomware, Cyberattacks
From ACM News

U.S. Taps Tech Giants to Help Fight Ransomware, Cyberattacks

The Department of Homeland Security enlists Amazon, Microsoft, Google and others to help combat cyberthreats.

Robocalls Are Out of Control. But That Could All Change Now
From ACM TechNews

Robocalls Are Out of Control. But That Could All Change Now

As of June 30, all major voice providers in the U.S., including AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile, and Comcast, are required to implement technology to minimize illegal robocalls...

Amazon Sidewalk: What to Know before Sharing Your Home's Bandwidth
From ACM News

Amazon Sidewalk: What to Know before Sharing Your Home's Bandwidth

Live now and enabled by default, Sidewalk keeps other people's devices near your home connected by passing their signals through your Echo and Ring devices.

Face Masks are Thwarting Even the Best Facial Recognition Algorithms, Study Finds
From ACM News

Face Masks are Thwarting Even the Best Facial Recognition Algorithms, Study Finds

Researchers from the U.S. National Institute of Scence and Technology found that face masks are causing facial recognition algorithms to fail as much as 50% of...

Encrypted Messaging App Signal Adds Facial Recognition Protection for Protesters
From ACM TechNews

Encrypted Messaging App Signal Adds Facial Recognition Protection for Protesters

The Signal encrypted messaging app is introducing a blur tool to hide faces in photos before sharing them.

Google Inks Deal with Defense Department to Help Respond to Cyberthreats
From ACM News

Google Inks Deal with Defense Department to Help Respond to Cyberthreats

The contract is for "seven figures," Google says.

Hospital Devices Exposed to Hacking with Unsupported Operating Systems
From ACM TechNews

Hospital Devices Exposed to Hacking with Unsupported Operating Systems

Cybersecurity firm Palo Alto Networks found that 83% of Internet-linked imaging devices in hospitals use outdated software containing known bugs that hackers can...

This App Lets You See IoT Devices Around You and What Data They're Taking
From ACM TechNews

This App Lets You See IoT Devices Around You and What Data They're Taking

Researchers have developed an app that will let users know what IoT technologies are operating in the immediate vicinity and what data they are collecting. 

New Study Shows Just How Bad Vehicle Hacking Has Gotten
From ACM TechNews

New Study Shows Just How Bad Vehicle Hacking Has Gotten

A report from Israeli security firm Upstream paints a grim picture of the state of vehicular cybersecurity.

Google Assistant on Android Devices Could Be Tricked Into Taking Photos, Videos
From ACM TechNews

Google Assistant on Android Devices Could Be Tricked Into Taking Photos, Videos

Researchers at cybersecurity company Checkmarx reported flaws in the Google Assistant on Android devices that would allow hackers to take photos and videos without...

FBI Head Christopher Wray: We Can't Let Criminals Hide Behind Encryption
From ACM Opinion

FBI Head Christopher Wray: We Can't Let Criminals Hide Behind Encryption

Encryption should have limits. That's the message FBI Director Christopher Wray had for cybersecurity experts Tuesday.

5G Is Still a Little Magic, a Little Smoke and Mirrors
From ACM News

5G Is Still a Little Magic, a Little Smoke and Mirrors

The scene on the big display in front of me looks like something from Grey's Anatomy.

Flaws in 4G, 5G Allow Snooping on Calls, Pinpointing Device Location
From ACM TechNews

Flaws in 4G, 5G Allow Snooping on Calls, Pinpointing Device Location

An academic research team has found security flaws in the 4G and 5G cellular networks that can be exploited to spy on phone calls and localize mobile devices.

Google Looks to Leave Passwords Behind for a Billion Android Devices
From ACM TechNews

Google Looks to Leave Passwords Behind for a Billion Android Devices

Google and the Fast Identity Online Alliance have announced that Android is now FIDO2-certified.

Huawei Founder Says ­S Treats 5G Like 'Military' Tech
From ACM News

Huawei Founder Says ­S Treats 5G Like 'Military' Tech

Huawei boss Ren Zhengfei is downplaying the idea that there's danger in his company's taking a lead role as 5G networks become a widespread reality.

These Android Apps Have Been Tracking You, Even When You Say Stop
From ACM TechNews

These Android Apps Have Been Tracking You, Even When You Say Stop

International Computer Science Institute researchers estimated that about 17,000 Android apps collect identifying information.

B-Secur HeartKey Tech ­nlocks Your Car with ­nique Rhythm of Your Heartbeat
From ACM TechNews

B-Secur HeartKey Tech ­nlocks Your Car with ­nique Rhythm of Your Heartbeat

B-Secur's HeartKey technology allows users to unlock and start their cars via the unique beating pattern of their heart.

Europe's Influence Over ­.S. Tech Was More Formidable Than Ever in 2018
From ACM News

Europe's Influence Over ­.S. Tech Was More Formidable Than Ever in 2018

The influence of the biggest US tech companies is as powerful in Europe as anywhere else in the world. But what sets Europe apart is that the relationship is, to...

Electronic Voting Was Going to Be the Future. Now Paper's Making a Comeback
From ACM News

Electronic Voting Was Going to Be the Future. Now Paper's Making a Comeback

You could call it buyer's remorse. Five US states went all in on electronic voting machines, and four of those states are poised to get out.

Hackers, Trolls and the Fight Over Your Vote in the 2018 Midterm Elections
From ACM News

Hackers, Trolls and the Fight Over Your Vote in the 2018 Midterm Elections

The election interference that came to define the 2016 presidential race hasn't stopped.
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