All posts on April, 2017


Social Networks

Instagram Snaps Up Rivals’ Users

Instagram has reached a milestone of 700 million members while enjoying the fastest-ever growth rate in its history. The network has grown by more than 100 million members in the last four months. Its burgeoning growth can be credited to new features like Stories, live video and disappearing messages, the company said. User engagement with Stories has grown to more than 200 million people per day.

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Network management vulnerability exposes cable modems to hacking

Hundreds of thousands of internet gateway devices around the world, primarily residential cable modems, are vulnerable to hacking because of a serious weakness in their Simple Network Management Protocol implementation.

SNMP is used for automated network device identification, monitoring and remote configuration. It is supported and enabled by default in many devices, including servers, printers, networking hubs, switches and routers.

Independent researchers Ezequiel Fernandez and Bertin Bervis recently found a way to bypass SNMP authentication on 78 models of cable modems that ISPs from around the world have provided to their customers.

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Business and financeFree exchange

America’s economic growth slows to 0.7%

THE news that America’s GDP growth slowed to 0.7% on an annualised basis in the first quarter of 2017 is no real surprise, for two reasons. First, although consumer and small business confidence have soared since Donald Trump won the presidential election, most measures of actual economic activity have failed to display the same vim (see article). Second, it is often the case that growth sags in the first quarter of the year, despite recent efforts by statisticians to purge the economic data of seasonality. Since 2010, excluding today’s release, first-quarter GDP growth has averaged just 1.1%, compared with 2.5% at other times in the year. Judged against that benchmark, the latest data are only a little disappointing.

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