Newsletter New Electricity Hogging Cyber Weapon & Snapchat Ar Spectacles

Newsletter: New Electricity Hogging Cyber Weapon & Snapchat AR Spectacles

QUOTE OF THE DAY

“Science, it must work to advance all of humanity. Are weapons not part of that? Protecting people from conquer and ruin?” ~ Edward Steam (Steamboy)

INDUSTRY TARGETING CYBERWEAPON ‘INDUSTROYER’ WILL MAKE STUXNET FEEL LIKE A RELIC

THE STORY

2016 Kiev power outage analysis reveal shocking cyberweapon that targets only industrial systems and power grids.

WHAT HAPPENED IN KIEV?

Several of you informed readers might already be aware of the massive power outage that enveloped the Ukrainian capital in December 2016. Although authorities already pointed at the involvement of cybercriminals in this incident, recent analysis shows something far more devastating than anyone could’ve imagined.

According to analysts, a special type of malware named ‘Industroyer’ (also nicknamed as Crash Override) was used in this cyberattack. This malware is designed specifically to cause power outages as it can easily control and disrupt substation switches and circuit breakers. To make  that it can also be used to obstruct and sabotage other infrastructures such as water systems and gas lines.

HOW DOES IT WORK?

The aptly named ‘Industroyer’ uses commonly used protocols that are indispensable part of systems that control infrastructures such as electricity, transportation, power and water etc. Since these protocols were built decades ago, their shoddy security becomes a gateway for this malware to deploy its payload. Slovakian based IT Security provider ESET also said “Industroyer is the biggest threat to industrial control systems since Stuxnet”. This statement alone is enough to prove how devastating this malware can be if deployed on a larger scale.

WHAT MAKES IT MORE THREATENING THAN STUXNET?

Stuxnet was surely a monster in its own league. But since it was only designed to sabotage nuclear programs, its effects aren’t as crippling. Industroyer on other hand, is far more versatile and can bring entire nations to a detrimental standstill.

A malware researcher from ESET, Mr. Anton Cherepanov also commented on the malware’s abilities, “Thanks to its ability to persist in the system and provide valuable information for tuning-up the highly configurable payloads, attackers could adapt the malware to any environment, which makes it extremely dangerous”.


SNAPCHAT OPENS UP TO AR, BUT IN STYLE

THE STORY

Snapchat’s new patent could point towards an Augmented Reality powered Spectacles 2.0

IS THERE ANY FACT BEHIND THIS SPECULATION?

Augmented  reality is sure the new shizz alongside VR in the digital entertainment industry. While most big brands have their own way of adapting this new technology, Snapchat is bringing AR to their famed video shooting peripherals ‘Snapchat Spectacles’.

Although there hasn’t been an official announcement yet, but Snapchat recently applied for a new patent for ‘Image Based Tracking in Augmented Reality Systems. The patent also includes a new design for Snapchat Spectacles that included two display devices placed on the top. If speculations are correct than these are sensors that map the wearer’s surroundings and project AR content.

WHAT COULD THIS BRING?

Although we’ve already had a taste of AR through games such as Pokemon Go, the technology included in spectacles will certainly be fun. It also seems like a natural progression for Snapchat as the ability to project 3D images across user’s view. This could open up a whole new world of possibilities for digital entertainment and information as it could be used in highly innovative ways.

POSSIBLE PRICE AND RELEASE DATES?

Like mentioned above, there has been no official announcement by the company regarding new Spectacles. Hence we cannot say anything about its possible release dates or price. Since the previous generation Snapchat Spectacles were offered at $129.99, we can expect a mild price hike as it includes AR capabilities. However, let’s keep our fingers crossed still Snapchat finally breaks the silence regarding their new glasses.

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Akshay Peter

Akshay Luke Peters is a writer and blogger for Systweak Software. He likes to write about off-beat topics and technological awareness. He is also part musician who likes to explore the future of technology in entertainment and popular media.

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