Protect your child in the era of Blue Whale

The answer to this big question on our minds can be simple if we want it to be. As a mother of two boys still in their pre-teen years, it is a big concern shifting my heart every day, with everything that they do.It is estimated that so far the game has claimed 130 lives across Russia and other central Asian countries where it has gained notoriety. That should give us a clue into the disturbing implications of this game.

What is Blue Whale?

Generated online, this game comprises ‘guides’ and ‘participants’. This guide gives 50 sinister tasks to the participant such as watching a horror film at wee hours of the morning or writing something on their arm with a sharp knife. The participant then comes back with proof—generally in the form of photographs—that they have completed the task. The 50th and the final task is to commit suicide by jumping off a high building.

The Central government of India has already directed internet companies like Facebook, Google, WhatsApp and Yahoo to remove all links to the challenge and take off material that is connected to the challenge.The creator of this game, I don’t wish to name him and make him a hero, is a Russian who is now behind bars.

What gives me hope is that this phenomenon is not as pervasive as is being perceived in media reports.First thing’s first, the news that these kids indeed committed suicide following a Blue Whale Challenge is not corroborated yet. Let’s take the case of the boy from Calcutta, who is believed to have taken this challenge. Bharati Ghosh, superintendent of police in West Midnapore has said: “Ankan Dey did not take the Blue Whale Challenge… The boy did not have a smart phone. He surfed the internet quite often from a computer in his father’s shop. We have examined all his online interactions and reached the conclusion that he did not take any such challenge.”

Many reports that mistook this for a death related to Blue Whale based it on statements from some friends, who said that he was fond of video games. Ghosh said that many friends told the police that he was fond of video games but they hadn’t even heard of the Blue Whale Challenge.

At the same time, there is no denying that some cases—particularly of the boy from Mumbai who committed suicide by jumping from the terrace of a 7-floor building in Andheri and of the Class 7 student from Indore in Madhya Pradesh who was rescued by a teacher—seem to have a connection with the Blue Whale Challenge. It has been reported the survivor confessed to his principal that he tried to jump off the building to complete the challenge.Note that these claims are not completely verified by the individuals or the authorities as well.

What you need to know

Whether this game is on or not, it is always important to maintain some security for your children when they are accessing content online. We’ll take you through a quick guide on how to do that.

Parental controls on gadgets and regular emotional contact with children can help you to keep away from a menace like the Blue Whale Challenge. All browsers, apps, websites and internet service providers these days have parental controls. Make sure to use them. They help you to disable access to harmful content for your children.

Let’s see this QuickHeal antivirus I have downloaded on my child’s computer.

Quick heal

  1. Go to Parental Control

Parental Control

 

  1. Select All Users for a child’s computer. If you want your child to use your computer, set it for Specific Users
  2. Click on Not Configured

Quick heal parental control

 

4. This will give you options of what you want to control.

Quick heal parental control

  1. For Internet Browsing, you can control access to some categories

Quick heal

 

Mark Deny for categories you don’t want to provide access to. Mark Allow for categories you want to allow access. Select ok.

6. You can also control access to particular websites:

Quick heal

 

  1. Select ok.

Most anti-virus software and applications follow a similar format.

Remember, apart from launching such controls, there are many other things parents can do to help their child stay physically and mentally healthy. Firstly, it is a good idea to limit the screen time for your children.Monitor their online activities from time to time so you know what they are watching.

Paying attention to your child should become a habit. Give them your complete attention at least 1 hour in the day.And most importantly, give them unconditional love.

Have some ideas on how to provide security to your children while they surf? Tell us in the comments below.

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The New Red iPhone7 is Here For A Good Cause

iphone7 red causeThe latest iPhone 7 in red is here and comes for a good cause. Apple has associated itself with (RED) to support an AIDS fundraising campaign. Every time someone buys the red iPhone7, contributes from the sale will go towards the Global Fund to support HIV/AIDS programs.

Speaking to the media, Apple CEO Tim Cook said, “The introduction of this special edition iPhone in a gorgeous red finish is our biggest (PRODUCT)RED offering to date in celebration of our partnership with (RED), and we can’t wait to get it into customers’ hands.” Available in 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch display versions, this is the first time Apple has chosen such a bright color for its phone. Price of the phone starts from $749.

Red iPhone 7 features

  • Earpods with lightning connector
  • Lightning to USB cable
  • Lightning to 3.5mm headphone jack adapter

iPhone 7 features

  •  Screen size of 4.70
  • Touchscreen
  • Display resolution of 750×1334 pixels
  • Apple A10 Fusion quad-core processor
  • 12MP rear camera, 7MP front camera

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Jaguar Land Rover to Test over 100 Self-Driven Cars in Britain

British car manufacturer Jaguar Land Rover plans to deploy autonomous Jaguar Land Rover vehicles later this year. JLR has decided to create a fleet of over 100 cars for the development and testing of numerous “Connected and Autonomous Vehicle (CAV) Technologies”. It is expected to begin with the first stage later this year. The first stage will see one of these vehicles being driven on a 41-mile long route on British motorways and urban roads in Solihull and Coventry.

Features of JLR’s Autonomous Car Technology

With a systematic step by step approach, Jaguar has started working on the technologies of “vehicle-to-vehicle and vehicle-to-infrastructure communications”. This is being considered as a crucial part of the later development of self-driving vehicles. The carmaker believes that sharing data between cars is important for increasing their safety in a lot of dangerous situations.

JLR is promoting a major technology, “Over the horizon warning”,  to enable cars to receive accurate information about different dangers like road works, badly parked vehicles, potholes, etc. long before the driver sees them. It is expected to work for the autonomous vehicles as well as the driver driving the car on a coarse road where visibility is greatly affected.  

Yet another striking feature that the team is working upon is the “Roadwork assist.” With the technology of forward-facing stereo camera, the car can generate a 3D vision of the path ahead and recognize any barriers, potholes or cones.

To prevent low-speed accidental car crashes, JLR has brought another crucial feature, “Safe pull away” function. “Our connected and automated technology could help improve traffic flow, cut congestion and reduce the potential for accidents,” said Tony Harper, head of research at JLR.

While the popular car maker is a bit late to come up with the autonomous technology for the vehicles, it is still a great way to improve driving experiences and avoid or prevent critical situations on the roads.… Read the rest

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iPhone SE or iPhone7 – Are You Ready?

iPhone SE or iPhone7Apple fans always have a lot of expectations from their flagship iPhone the company’s ball game is really shaking things up in 2016. The company is about to launch its 4in iPhone called the iPhone SE and has added another iPad Pro range, the iPad Pro 9.7. Here are a few things we have gathered for you to decide which iPhone you would want to prefer in your pocket.

Apple iPhone SE Smartphone releasing early next month and is already creating a wave of amazing features in its kitty. The device weighs 113 grams and run on iOS 9.3. It measures 123.80mm x 58.60mm x 7.66, and is powered by A9 chip. The all new iPhone SE features a stunning four-inch Retina display, advanced 64-bit with M9 motion co-processor. Good battery life, 12-megapixel iSight camera with True Tone flash and 1.2 megapixel front-facing camera for selfie lovers. It is available in color options such as space gray, gold and silver. And if you are planning for mind- blowing picture experience the all new iPhone SE offers you Live Photos, an amazing 4k Video experience, faster LTE,WiFi and Touch ID with Apple Pay. So if you love a smaller phone then this phone might be just the one you are looking for yourself.

Rumor mills filled with gossips of the new Apple iPhone 7 are leaving people baffled about its looks and features. According to reports the iPhone 7 is slated to release this September. The main features doing the round are waterproof capabilities, dual-lens camera that Apple acquired through Israeli camera Technology Company and stereo speakers. It is also said the new iPhone 7 is built in a curved glass made from liquid metal which is scratch resistant and tough. The iPhone 7 will also be featuring single iSight rear-facing camera. However, it is believed that the new device will not have a headphone jack. iPhone 7 will be power-driven by iOS 10 and it will exhibit all the new characteristics that will be included in the next generation iOS platform

Apple gearing up to lunch its significant models, it goes without saying that 2016 might be the busiest year for Apple and its purchasers. Since it has never released its Smartphone’s in such a short span of time it is yet to be seen which iPhone surpasses people expectations and to what extent.

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Why Twitter Decided to Stick to Brevity

Why Twitter Decided to Stick to Brevity There was this one eventful day in January 2016 when Twitter announced its bomb — it was going to expand its famous 140 character-limit to up to 10,000 because the Twitteratti was finding new ways to make the most of every tweet. Users were creating ‘tweet storms’ where they strung a series of tweets together in numeric succession to make a loud, long statement. There were also some other ingenious users who would attach screenshots of longer texts in an attempt to circumvent the character restriction. This led to the co-founder and CEO of Twitter, Jack Dorsey, to tweet a screenshot of text that had 1,317 characters, explaining his thinking behind wanting to expand the character limit. He said “We’ve spent a lot of time observing what people are doing on Twitter, and we see them taking screenshots of text and tweeting it, instead, what if that text…was actually text? Text that could be searched.  Text that could be highlighted. That’s more utility and power.” “Twitter will never lose that feeling of speed, creativity and brevity,” he added.

After much public debilitation and twittering, the verdict is out – the 140 character-limit is here to stay. Jack Dorsey stated that this limit was too big a part of Twitter’s identity to let go. “It allows for of-the moment brevity”, he commented. Expanding the character limit might have helped expanding Twitter’s audience, but it also could have potentially undermined the real-time, quick and free-flowing culture of the network.
The month of March marks Twitter’s 10th Anniversary. On March 21, 2006, Dorsey tweeted the network’s first tweet, “Just setting up my twttr.”

“Twitter’s always been about controls, people can follow whoever they want. And it’s our job to make sure they see the most important things and the things that matter to them,” Dorsey said. “There are tweets that promote violence, which is against our terms of service, so people have controls to block and people have controls to mute.”

There is a never-ending goal to get more and more people to sign up on Twitter. The biggest challenge the site faces is to maintain a culture of free speech while curbing harassment and infringement of Twitter’s policies by external groups. New features such as the digest-like ‘Moments’, which helps stream line the constant flow of information and a recently added option to use algorithms to choose the order of tweets in user timelines aim to make Twitter easier to use.… Read the rest

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Samsung Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge: Everything you need to know

Samsung Galaxy S7After being in the news for months, Samsung Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge are finally here and much to our expectations, slowly racing toward popularity.

For Indian Samsung lovers, the phones come with an added advantage–the Samsung Gear VR handset for free–if pre-booked till March 17. Here are a few things you need to know while picking the best Samsung gadget for yourself.

Captivating design

Both the smartphones come from same family but they are sized differently. The Galaxy S7 has a 5.1-inch QHD super AMOLED display, while the Galaxy S7 Edge has a 5.5-inch QHD super AMOLED display. Both phones win aesthetically by getting rid of sharper edges and having a curve rear around the body. Resolutions on both these phones are the same as the earlier phones at 2560 x 1440.

Galaxy S7 and S7 Specifications

In India, these smartphones come with Octa-core Exynos 8890 SoC as an alternative to quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 chipset seen worldwide. Other specifications of the Galaxy S7 and S7 edge include a 4GB RAM, 12-megapixel ‘Dual Pixel’ rear camera with an f/1.7 aperture and stylish OIS characteristic, as well as a 5-megapixel front camera with f/1.7 aperture .

Imperative for low light photography, having dual pixel technology found usually in DSLRs, the autofocus of Samsung Galaxy S7 and S7 edge is quirkier and speedy than previous Samsung Smartphones.

Easy Storage

Models with 32GB and 64GB storage have introduced the capacity to augment storage by using a microSD card of up to 200GB. The most welcome change from Galaxy S7 and S7 edge predecessors is the addition of a hybrid microSD slot, which means you can either expand your storage up to 200GB or use it as the second SIM slot.​

Android 6.0 Marshmallow 

Samsung Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge run on the Android 6.0 Marshmallow and have an IP68 rating for dust and water resistance. The Galaxy S7 groups a 3000mAh battery, while the Galaxy S7 Edge includes a 3600mAh battery. This is good news for game lovers as Samsung has launched the prominent new Game Launcher, which gives more space for games without any disturbance while taking calls.

The Samsung Galaxy S7 has been priced in India at Rs. 48,900, whereas the Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge is available at Rs. 56,900 -both priced for the 32GB variant. However, the price for the 64GB alternative has not been announced yet. … Read the rest

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Velmenni Tests Li-fi- Harold Hass’ Technology To Become Reality Soon

Li-fi, the term, which was first heard four years back in a Ted Talk may soon replace the much used Wi-Fi technology. Discovered by Professor Harald Hass of the Edinburgh University the new technology claims to transfer data at a speed of 1Gbps, which is hundred times faster than the present Wi-Fi technology. Though it was initially considered to be just another big idea that will hardly come to fruition, the news of its testing by an Estonian startup company, Velmenni has raised the hope of its becoming a reality in the coming years.

Li-fi is tested at Velmenni

Chief Executive of Velmenni, Deepak Solanki confirmed the news of Li-fi testing to the Velmenni Tests Li-fi- Harold Hass' Technology To Become Reality SoonInternational Business Times and said that consumers can expect to use the technology in the coming three or four years. To test the new technology, the company used a light bulb enabled with li-fi technology and found it to offer a data transfer rate as high as 224 Gbps. As the technology uses light bulb, workers not only transferred their data at a lightning speed but also experienced a smart lighting solution.

Advantages and disadvantages

Apart from the high speed and the smart lighting solution, li-fi offers a host of other advantages as well. As it uses light technology and does not make any kind of interference with the radio signals, it can keep people connected in flights or other places where interference is a problem. The spectrum of light is 10,000 times higher than radio waves. Thus, it will not run out very soon. Yet, like everything, Li-fi too has some shortcomings. Though it does not interfere with radio signals, it intervenes with light signal and cannot be deployed at outdoors under sunlight. The technology also does not have the ability to travel through walls. However, the shortcomings are expected to be recovered once it is released for commercial use. … Read the rest

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New Year, New Sales But Same Old Problems

Flipkart Big Billion SaleJust as history repeats itself, the Flipkart and Snapdeal big sales have disappointed several online shoppers yet again. As soon as the sale started on Tuesday midnight, both Flipkart’s website and app struggled to cope with the huge traffic coming their way.

Irked customers took to Twitter to vent their feelings. While Shubham Luthra @Shubham_096 tweeted “The app is showing error after every search !!! Not showing the results !” (sic), Asad Khan @Asad96Khan tweeted, “How do you’ll expect us to shop when the app doesn’t open a single thing @Flipkart?”

Even when we tried to access the website, we got the message “503 service unavailable”. It is only after refreshing the page for quite a few times, it loaded fine.

It is to be noted that Flipkart Big Billion Day Sale 2015 is app-only. Users can browse through the site but to avail discounts, it is mandatory to download the app.

Ricky @vohrarohit tweeted, “Big billion days are back on #Flipkart! Anything you click gets out of stock! Flipkart should stop this flop show.”

Some even taunted the owners Sachin and Binny Bansal by asking them to start writing an apology email again, just like last year.

Flipkart Big Billion Sale started just after Snapdeal’s big Monday sale that had some amazing deals and the latter seemed to have handled everything just fine with just a few raised eyebrows about certain offers. However, it is noticeable that Snapdeal does seem to have a lesser inventory for their sales.

Amazon is also holding the Great Indian Festive Sale during the same time period as Flipkart i.e. from 13th October to 17th October. With another couple of days remaining, it is now to be seen who will be able to deal the deals with élan.

 

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WinRAR Vulnerability Exposed; Could Hurt Many Windows Users

WinRAR, the conventional choice for compressing and archiving files is under threat! The news has baffled millions of Windows users across the world as the security vulnerability issue found with the application can affect a computer within a few seconds. Iranian researcher Mohammad Reza Espargham first spoke of this vulnerability on the forum for security information Full Disclosure. He said, “The vulnerability allows unauthorized remote attackers to execute system specific code to compromise a target system.”

WinRAR security vulnerability exposedAll WinRAR SFX files under threat

These reports of a security threat have also been confirmed by security firm MalwareBytes, which stated that the remote attacker is so powerful that it can affect any version of WinRAR SFX.

The reports also confirm that this vulnerability allows remote attackers to operate different malicious codes in the computer when the user tries to unzip an archived SFX file. In its reports, the security firm stated, “Basically, the attack uses the option to write HTML code in the text display window when creating a SFX archive.”

Noticing the vulnerability found in WinRAR files, its developer RAR Labs said that the “executable files are potentially dangerous by design”. Hence, it is always wise to run them only when it comes from genuine sources. It also said that the rule should not be followed for SFX files only but also for any .exe files.

While news that the malware can affect the system as well as network is alarming for users, there is something even worse. At present, there is no patch for this threat, which means anyone using the application can be affected with a single interaction.

As of now, users need to be extremely cautious while operating SFX archive files and avoid ones coming from unreliable sources. Yet, that does not assure the safety of the device as the malware is quite strong this time.

Windows users worry

The news of vulnerability issues is WinRAR files has not only raised eyebrows of experts but is also a cause of concern for laymen using computers. Delhi-based student Devansh Sharma, who uses a computer for his college projects said, “This is quite a threat for the computer as I often download WinRAR files from different sources just out of curiosity.”

Neel Agasti sounded the same way, “I have to download different WinRAR files for my work and some come from unknown sources as well. So, my computer is at risk.”

This worry is common among Windows users all over the world and we expect Microsoft to come up with a fix soon. … Read the rest

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