Aussie Mac Zone ~ Episode 294

Show 294 – July 22, 2019

Run Sheet ~ Zarn & Michael


Aussie Tech Heads Domains


Our Aussie Apple Ramblings

Story 1

Australia watchdog says Vodafone misled customers over digital purchases

Reuters reports ~ Australia’s competition watchdog said here on Tuesday Vodafone (HTA.AX) (VOD.L) had admitted that it misled thousands of customers for five years by charging them for digital content they bought unknowingly from the telecom company’s third-party billing service.

Vodafone, Australia’s third-largest telecom operator, has agreed to refund the wronged customers and accepted that it made misleading claims about its third-party direct carrier billing service, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) said in a statement.

“Through this service, thousands of Vodafone customers ended up being charged for content that they did not want or need, and were completely unaware that they had purchased,” ACCC Chairman Rod Sims said.

The digital content that could be bought with as little as one or two clicks was marketed and provided by third parties who paid Vodafone commissions for sales.

“We accept that some of our customers were provided with Direct Carrier Billing services they did not want and we’ve taken steps to prevent that happening again,” a Vodafone spokesperson said in an emailed statement to Reuters.

The action against Vodafone follows similar moves against the country’s biggest telecom provider, Telstra Corp (TLS.AX), and Singapore Telecommunications’ (STEL.SI) Optus, both of which were fined A$10 million each.

The ACCC did not impose a fine on Vodafone.

MS Why when the others were fined?


Story 2

Twitter says Trump’s racist tweets don’t break its rules

CNN Business reports ~ President Trump’s weekend tweets in which he used racist language to attack four progressive Democratic congresswomen are not against Twitter’s rules, a company spokesperson told CNN Business Monday — a conclusion apparently contradicted by Twitter’s written policies.

The episode represents a tough first test for a new stance Twitter announced less than a month ago, in which it will label and down-rank tweets from Trump and other world leaders that break its rules, rather than removing them.

Trump has repeatedly tested Twitter’s community standards with his regular tirades on the platform. Some of the president’s tweets have run afoul of Twitter’s rules.

On Sunday, referring to the four Democratic congresswomen, Trump tweeted, “Why don’t they go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came. Then come back and show us how…it is done.” All four congresswomen are citizens; three were born in the US.

Twitter’s policy on hateful conduct prohibits “targeting individuals with repeated slurs, tropes or other content that intends to dehumanise, degrade or reinforce negative or harmful stereotypes about a protected category.”

“We are committed to combating abuse motivated by hatred, prejudice or intolerance, particularly abuse that seeks to silence the voices of those who have been historically marginalised,” the policy reads.

Gizmodo was first to report Twitter’s apparent contradiction of its own policies.

Twitter’s new policy of labelling tweets from world leaders that break its rules, rather than removing them, is an effort to preserve tweets that are in the public interest, the company said. It had not removed any of Trump’s tweets that broke its rules.

On Monday, a spokesperson for the company confirmed to CNN Business that Trump’s tweets would not be labeled with a disclaimer. Asked about the apparent contradiction between Trump’s tweet and its policy, the spokesperson declined further comment.


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Story 3 

The 25 Most Influential People on the InternetThe 25 Most Influential People on the Internet

Times tells us ~ For our fifth annual roundup of the most influential people on the Internet, TIME evaluated contenders by looking at their global impact on social media and their overall ability to drive news. Here’s who made this year’s unranked list.

Here are 10 ~ 

Rapper Lil Nas X

US House of Reps Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

President Donald Trump

South Korean supergroup BTS 

Saudi escapee Rahaf Mohammed

Pop Songstress Ariana Grande

Action Group #SchoolStrike4Climate

Social Media Superstar Liza Koshy

GoFundMe record holder Brian Kolfage

Beauty Blogger James Charles

It is interesting reading about most people I have never heard of and how the got on the list.


Story 4

Our Gaming Section  

#  Not your usual Assassin’s Creed game, Assassin’s Creed Rebellion is a strategy role-playing-game that puts you in charge of building up the Order of Assassins to take on the growing Templar menace. Collect heroes and build up your Brotherhood by upgrading equipment and adding rooms. You can also infiltrate Templar Strongholds, and join up with other Assassin Brotherhoods in special time-limited events. It’s a fun game for both Assassin Creed fans and those who’ve never been interested in the main game series.

##  Ever wanted a game that let you punch dinosaurs? Ark: Survival Evolved is one of the biggest survival games on any platform you care to name, and you can now get your fill of the dinosaur-punching action on iOS phones from the iPhone 7 onward. You’ll start your journey by washing up on an unfamiliar shore, your only task to gather whatever materials you can to survive. But from there, you’ll build the tools, clothes, and even houses that allow you to prosper. With time, you might even get to the point where you’re able to tame your very own dinosaur. Access to the game is free, but you can pay for faster progress by purchasing various passes.

Story 5

Update Your Logitech Wireless Mouse Dongle Right Now

Lifehacker tells us ~ A few years ago, hackers discovered that they could remotely take control of a PC by exploiting a vulnerability in Logitech wireless dongles. According to The Verge, dongles that Logitech is shipping today are still vulnerable to the same remote access hack—dubbed “MouseJack.” — a list that includes the manufacturer’s Unifying Receiver and G900 wireless gaming mouse.

While Logitech did roll out patches that fixed the remote access vulnerability for peripherals users owned and used back in 2016, it’s unclear when (or if) those changes were applied to devices in the factory. Some customers may have purchased unpatched devices, and it’s possible even more remain on store shelves.

As a Logitech spokesperson told The Verge:

“Logitech evaluated the risk to businesses and to consumers, and did not initiate a recall of products or components already in the market and supply chain. We made the firmware update available to any customers that were particularly concerned, and implemented changes in products produced later.”

Luckily, you can patch this vulnerability yourself by updating your Logitech device’s firmware:

Download the following files for any Logitech Unifying receivers (Windows / Mac) or Logitech G900 gaming mouse (Windows) peripherals you own.

Once downloaded, run each file and follow the on-screen instructions to apply the patches.

This should fix the loopholes, at least for now. Logitech plans on pushing an additional patcher to fix a related vulnerability in August, and you should install the appropriate Logitech software for your devices and apply any updates it arrives.


Story 6

Apple Investigating Explosion of 11-Year-Old California Girl’s iPhone 6

23ABC through Apple NewsApple is currently investigating the cause of the explosion of an iPhone 6 owned by an 11-year-old California girl. The device is said to have “exploded” while being used to watch YouTube videos. Luckily, the child avoided any serious injury.

23ABC in Bakersfield reports Kayla Ramos was using her iPhone 6 in a sister’s bedroom when the fire took place, she was hold the device when it caught fire. When she saw “sparks flying everywhere” from the iPhone, Ramos threw it onto a nearby blanket.

Raos said that she did burn herself, but the main damage was to the blanket and bed, which received burn marks and holes where the iPhone landed. The iPhone 6 itself now shows the display channel is separated from the main body, with a large number of burn marks on the indise of the device (as seen in the photo at the top of this article).

Mother Maria Adata told 23ABC “My child could have caught on fire and she could have been hurt more and I am glad she’s ok.” Adata added she would no longer sleep with it nearby, suggesting “I know we charge it a lot, maybe that caused it, maybe it overheated.”

Apple is said to have told Adata that there are a few factors that could cause the iPhone to overheat, including the use of unauthorised charging cables and chargers. Such accessories are believed to have caused some of the previously reported iPhone fires.

The Cupertino firm also said unauthorised Apple repairs and external damage to an iPhone can also cause battery failure.

Apple is reported to be investigating the Ramos incident and has requested photographs form her mother. The company says it is willing to send the girl a replacement iPhone once the damaged device has been sent to them for inspection.

iPhone fires are few and far between, but they can happen, as smartphone fires are one of the known risks in using lithium-ion batteries to power the devices. In December 2018, an iPhone XS Max caught fire after overheating on an Ohio man’s pocket.


Story 7

Apple Watch saves life of man stuck ‘hundreds of feet from shore

Cult of Mac through Apple News ~ The Apple Watch’s amazing life-saving abilities continues. This time, the beneficiary is a Chicago-based Apple Watch owner who used the device’s SOS Mode after being knocked off his jet ski.

Phillip Esho was “hundreds of feet from shore” in Lake Michigan when he was hit with a big wave. Having lost his phone, and being knocked about, the Apple Watch came to his rescue.

Esho said his Apple Watch has an emergency call feature which allowed him to reach 9-1-1 but he wasn’t sure if the call worked because he couldn’t understand what the dispatcher was saying. [At one point the call was also disconnected.]

He was able to reconnect with 9-1-1 but by then he says a helicopter and Chicago police and fire boats had already arrived to rescue him.”

Esho says he would have had no way to get help had he not been wearing his Apple Watch.

The life-saving killer app

The life-saving abilities of the Apple Watch have (ironically given the name) become the device’s “killer app.” Barely a week goes by without us hearing about some potentially life-saving incident.

Much of the time, these stories focus on the device’s heart-reading ECG tech. This heart-reading tech has alerted many people to irregular heartbeats and made them visit emergency rooms. In other cases, it’s the “fall detection” abilities that help. Last month, we wrote about an 87-year-old woman who wore an Apple Watch. It called emergency services after she was involved in a car accident.

The SOS mode is, as today’s story shows, another life-saver. It lets you call emergency services, notify a friend, and track your location — all from your wrist.


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Story 8

A Special Goodbye to a good bloke

Today Karen and I went to a memorial service for a nice guy.  I’m not saying that everyone got his humour but we got along like a house on fire.

He was a long time Apple reseller and support person.

It was nice catching up with some old friends from the Apple support world!

So thanks for the memories Warren!


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