Apr 25, 2015 - 10:57 AM - by garyopa
First foreign hacker ever to be sentenced in the USA
David Pokora, 22, of Ontario, Canada was sentenced to 18 months in prison in a Delaware federal court. The sentence, a first of its kind, comes as the U.S.A. tries to grapple with major cyber threats.
We reported before on the fall-out from the hackers like SuperDAE and SonicISO that were trading early info on the Xbox One while it was in development stages back, and finally one of the so-called 'ring-leaders' an Canadian one has become the first ever hacker from another country to spend the next couple of years in a USA prison for his role in the operation.
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The first foreign hacker ever convicted of stealing trade secrets in the United States was sentenced in federal court in Delaware on Thursday.
David Pokora, 22, of Ontario, Canada, was sentenced to 18 months in prison, followed by three years of supervised release.
The sentence, a first of its kind, comes as the United States grapples with major cyber threats, such as last year's attack on Sony that delayed a movie release and countless other breaches where customer data was stolen from stores including Target, Home Depot and Staples.
"[Pokora's sentence] is a message that will be heard around the world," Assistant U.S. Attorney Edward McAndrew said. "This is a very significant case for the United States government."
The hacker group that Pokora appeared to lead mostly targeted the gaming world, including stealing information from Microsoft that allowed the group to build its own Xbox One game system before it was released and to secure prerelease versions of video games, including "Gears of War 3" and "Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3."
Pokora pleaded guilty in October to one count of conspiracy to commit fraud and related activity using a computer.
Others in the group - Sanadodeh Nesheiwat, 28, of Washington, New Jersey; Austin Alcala, 19, of McCordsville, Indiana; and Nathan Leroux, 20, of Bowie, Maryland - also have pleaded guilty and are awaiting sentencing this spring.
The group was responsible for stealing over $100 million worth of intellectual property from major technology companies, including Microsoft, EA Games, Activision/Blizzard, Zombie Studios and Valve Corp.
The hackers broke into companies' networks in a simple way - by obtaining the usernames and passwords of employees. Once in the network, they were able to steal trade secrets.
The group of avid gamers often would use the information for themselves, but also constructed and sold at least one Microsoft Xbox One before it went on the market in November 2013.
The group, through a breach of Zombie Studios, gained access to the U.S. Army's computer network and training software that was being developed for the Apache helicopter.
U.S. District Judge Gregory M. Sleet hinted Thursday that some of the targeted companies wrote to him about the impact of the cyber thefts. However, Sleet did not elaborate in open court because the letters and other court documents have been sealed.
McAndrew would not say why the documents have been sealed.
Pokora, who was a computer science major at the University of Toronto, told Sleet he is remorseful and understands the significance of his crimes.
"I hurt a lot of people, including the companies that I valued and looked up to," Pokora said. "They work really hard on innovating, and they don't deserve to have their hard work [stolen] like that."
His sisters, who were present in court, both said Pokora is intelligent and has grown up since being arrested in March 2014.
"This has been a very big wake-up call for Dave," Jessica Pokora said.
Pokora's attorney, Solomon L. Wisenberg, asked the judge to not sentence Pokora to any additional prison time. McAndrew requested two years in prison.
Sleet found a middle ground and said he weighed the need to deter other international hackers against Pokora's own remorse and likelihood of a bright future, possibly even working to protect one of the companies he had targeted.
Prosecutors first learned of the hacking group in 2011 when FBI agents in Delaware got a tip. None of the hackers are from Delaware, but the case was prosecuted here because of the initial tip and because some of the targeted companies are incorporated in Delaware.
Apr 24, 2015 - 8:15 PM - by garyopa
One-click buying from Amazon, plus a tiny smartwatch screen, leads to unintended consequences.
On the first day of the Apple Watch's official availability, CNET decided to demo some of the leading apps for the smartwatch via Twitter's Periscope app in a loose, improvised session.
Today the world of connected cool looking nerds got their Apple Watch, and the first thing many did, was hop onto Twitch and start showing it off their friends, well this live demo went quickly wrong as the proud new Apple Watch owner was soon an Xbox One owner.
Lucky for him there was old-school thing called a 'Laptop' nearby and he was able to login and cancel the order the old-fashion way!
Taking questions from the viewers of our livestreaming video, broadcast from the CNET kitchen in New York, we demoed a couple of Apple Watch apps, including Fandango and Amazon, and also discovered one of the shortcomings of app interaction on such a tiny screen.
During a demo of the Amazon app on the Apple Watch, Scott used voice commands to search for a couple of items, getting the best result when he searched for an Xbox One gaming console. He saved the item to a wish list, while specifically warning against tapping the very large one-click ordering button that took up most of the screen. A second later, while waving his finger to emphasise that point, he accidentally touched the Apple Watch screen and an Xbox One console was immediately ordered in his name, thanks to the single-step one-click ordering process.
The reaction was priceless, with plenty of "lol" comments from the live viewers on Periscope. Unfortunately, our exported Periscope video doesn't include the social media interactions, but our shock and amazement at how easy it was to order a $300-plus game console makes this short 2:30 video worth a viewing.
NEWS SOURCE: Accidentally order an Xbox One through your Apple Watch (via) CNET
Apr 22, 2015 - 7:42 PM - by garyopa
Invites are going out to those who signed up for the beta which starts tomorrow and ends on the 27th
The Elder Scrolls Online: Tamriel Unlimited for PS4 and Xbox One will begin a limited beta test beginning tomorrow, Zenimax Online has announced.
If you been waiting everyday to be able to finally enjoy some Elder Scrolls on your nex-gen console, you are in luck as the beta starts tomorrow, but sadly if you didn't sign-up in advance, tough luck, and also not everyone going to get an invite either, plus even more sad the Beta only runs until April 27th which is just days away, and if you on slow internet be warned it is will be a huge download!
So there you go all the good and bad news. -- Are you going to be one of lucky ones to try it out? -- And what you think of the fact the game does not fit on blu-ray disc, is that the signs in the near future that alot of next-gen games will need connected systems after you purchased your physical disc to be able to grab the rest of missing bits & bytes they could not include along with already the large day 1 normal bug fixes we have already seen on other games these days.
The limited public beta will only be open to those who receive an invite, and you'll need to have previously signed up to take part. This will be the only beta for the console game, with the full launch set for June 9. Not everyone who signed up to take part will receive an invite.
Those who do get an invite will be able to begin tomorrow and play through until next Monday, April 27. The beta will feature the full console version, not a slimmed down edition just for the test.
Zenimax Online also confirmed that players should be prepared for a massive day one download when the full game arrives at retail.
"With the console beta just around the corner, we're sure everyone is interested to know the size of the game client in order to get your hard drives ready,"
explains the blog post. "ESOTU is an incredibly massive game, both in terms of sheer scope and the data required to bring you this truly enormous experience. At the moment, the client will exceed a 50GB Blu-ray disc which means there will also be a large day-one patch that is somewhere in the region of 15GB."
NEWS SOURCE: The Elder Scrolls Online: Tamriel Unlimited console beta begins tomorrow (via) VideoGamer
Apr 21, 2015 - 5:50 PM - by garyopa
Go behind the scenes with FreeStyleGames to learn more about the making of Guitar Hero Live.
See how the Live-action elements have been created with real bands and crowds who react to what you play. Learn more about GHTV, the world’s first playable music video network.
Just when you thought the living room was safe from your pop teens or young adult wannabe country artists, or aging not-dead-yet rockers, think again because even tho last year when next-gen consoles were announced they all said that things like Guitar Hero and Rock Band were gone forever, well if you been living under a rock the last month, we got to break the sad news to those that don't want to see themselves or their drunk friends acting like idiots air guitar'ing if front of their big screen tv, that it is all coming back next-gen style of course, and today we been informed by studio behind the return of Guitar Hero a nice behind the scenes look of their progress.
All sounds good, until you read the words 'GHTV, The World's First Playable Music Video Network', so personally to me that sounds like besides buying your new fancy six-button controller, you going to have to be online 24/7 and paying a monthly fee for their 'network'.
Apr 20, 2015 - 6:18 PM - by garyopa
'This year's E3 might feel different from past E3s but I like focusing on our games,' Phil Spencer
Xbox boss Phil Spencer has started to tease his fans on Twitter, with what they can expect from this year's E3 event, like the fact Microsoft is going to focus more on 'first-party' games and new IPs.
With now less then two months before E3 2015 starts this summer in June, Microsoft has started their final planning, and their Xbox boss has decided to tease his followers with little hints on how this year's E3 event will be shaping up for all the next-gen console fans.
One major change is this year will be more focus on Microsoft's growing library of first-party games, and he also dropped hints that they have some new exclusive IPs in the pipeline for this year's event, that we had not even heard of name drop of what it could be yet.
Well now that their 'internal' (April 20th) planning stage meeting is over today, I am sure we will see 'possible' fake rumors posted on various Xbox fanboy sites, and even on some mainstream media sites, but what if any of these upcoming E3 rumors will become true.
Spencer revealed the news on Twitter in a back-and-forth with fans who asked about what Microsoft may have up its sleeve for E3 2015. He started off by teasing that Microsoft "should have new exclusive IP at E3," adding that he is "trying to make this E3 more about first-party than past E3s."
This doesn't mean third-party games will be missing at Microsoft's E3 showing this summer, Spencer stressed in a follow-up tweet. "And to be clear we will have third-party deals, it's just, [in my opinion], important to focus on and support our first-party," he said.
Among other franchises, Activision's Call of Duty series is one of the biggest third-party games that historically gets stage time at Microsoft's annual E3 event. This is, of course, likely due to Microsoft's long-standing exclusivity arrangement with Activision for Call of Duty DLC.
Spencer went on to say that he's aware that Microsoft's new first-party E3 focus means this year's show might "feel different from past E3s." However, "I like focusing on our games," he explained.
Some of Microsoft's first-party game announcements from last year's E3 included Scalebound, and new entries in the Crackdown and Phantom Dust franchises. Looking to this year, Microsoft has already said it plans to talk more about Halo 5: Guardians, Forza Motorsport 6, and something new in the Gears of War franchise at E3. Other first-party possibilities include Rare's new game and Quantum Break (recently delayed to 2016), while there are always surprises kept under wraps until the big show.
Spencer and the rest of the Xbox planning team are scheduled to hold an internal meeting today, April 20, to discuss what Microsoft will show during its E3 presentation. He said Microsoft will hold a "full-day content review for E3" on Monday, in an effort to look at "everything we might show." He went on to say that days like today are "some of the best work days; inspiring."
NEWS SOURCE: Xbox E3 Will Focus More on First-Party This Year (via) GameSpot
Apr 19, 2015 - 11:18 AM - by garyopa
Firmwares from the XB1 controller have been dumped via the Beagle 480
Recently, some progress has been made in the slow-moving Xbox One scene, with finally a successful dump has been made of Beagle 480 talking to the Xbox One controller during a firmware update.
It been months since we heard of anything happening in the Xbox One scene, and suddenly out of nowhere, GodzIvan has decided to drop by EurAsia, and upload some dumps that he was able to take using his Beagle 480 when the console was talking to its Xbox One controller for a firmware update.
Modrobert from EurAsia reports this:
It sure nice to know that secretly people are working on cracking open the next-gen Xbox One, and willing to share their results with others, hopefully by looking thru these dumps, more info can be figured out in regard to how XB1 OS is handling USB encryption.
"GodzIvan has uploaded a dump of the Xbox One controller USB traffic during firmware update using the Beagle 480 USB protocol analyzer."
For more info, updates and download links, please visit the news source site of EurAsia.
NEWS SOURCE: Xbox One controller firmware update dumped (via) EurAsia
Apr 18, 2015 - 10:36 AM - by garyopa
The weight and large size of the Xbox One makes for a good choice of weapon for your violent attacks
An Austin woman is behind bars after police said she beat her boyfriend with an Xbox video gaming system on Saturday.
Whom says playing video games makes you violent? -- Well in this case it was gamer getting slammed to the ground and bleeding by his very own Xbox he was moments before playing on, before a fight broke out between himself and his girlfriend.
No reports if the man when back to playing on his Xbox afterwards, that is if the XB1 was able to survive the violent assault to his face.
An Austin woman is behind bars after police said she beat her boyfriend with an Xbox video gaming system on Saturday. Court documents state the couple had gotten into a heated argument and began throwing things.
An Austin police officer was called to the 9900 block of Bilbrook Place at 12:22 p.m. Documents indicate Ashleigh Harris, 30, threatened to break one of her boyfriend's Xbox systems before then throwing the Xbox at his face. The man received a cut to his chin that was still bleeding when APD arrived.
Harris was arrested and charged with assault with injury. Bond was set at $3,000.
NEWS SOURCE: Austin woman attacks boyfriend with Xbox (via) KXAN
Apr 17, 2015 - 10:33 AM - by garyopa
Developer says to expect plenty of bugs and physics issues; they're only fixing the major ones.
Following its release last year for PC, wacky be-a-goat game Goat Simulator is now available for XB1. The game - developed by Double Eleven and original creator Coffee Stain Studios - launched Friday.
Back in the day, you could not even get a game published if it had bugs or glitches in it.....
But these days, no big deal, just launch it anyway, and we will patch it later for you...
But even more amazing, the developers behind 'Goat Simulator' think the 'millions of bugs' left in game is all part of actual CHARM of the game itself, so they only going to patch some of major ones, leaving you with tons of broken physics and effects and other bugs.
"You no longer have to fantasize about being a goat, your dreams have finally come true," reads a line from the game's official description.
Maybe the line should read, "You no longer have to produce a finished game, as our dreams of raking in money will still happen".
The good thing it currently only takes up 800megs of HDD space, and only costs $10 bucks, but what you think about the developer's statement about the many glitches and problems (you can see some of them via gallery in news source link) are all part of charm?
In terms of gameplay, Goat Simulator has players causing as much mayhem and destruction as possible while playing as a goat. It uses a scoring system that bears a resemblance to the Tony Hawk skateboarding series. But, "instead of being a skater, you're a goat, and instead of doing tricks, you wreck stuff."
Double Eleven also warns that Goat Simulator for Xbox One contains "MILLIONS OF BUGS!" and other physics issues. The studio only plans to fix the major, game-breaking bugs--which makes sense, given that the bugs and oddities are part of the charm.
NEWS SOURCE: Goat Simulator Hits Xbox One With 'Millions of Bugs' (via) GameSpot
Apr 16, 2015 - 8:19 AM - by garyopa
Check out the trailer just released, with expansion pack coming on May 19th for PS4/PS3 and XB1/X360
Expand your Destiny adventure with House of Wolves. Only the bravest Guardians will hunt down the rising Fallen threat and lay claim to the mysterious treasures of The Reef.
For the all the Destiny fans out there (is there anyone left playing?), well if there is, you be glad to know that next big expansion pack is finally coming on May 19th for all your next-gen and previous-gen gaming consoles.Expand your Destiny adventure with House of Wolves. Only the bravest Guardians will hunt down the rising Fallen threat and lay claim to the mysterious treasures of The Reef.
So there you go, enjoy the short teaser and get your pre-orders in, and next month you will be enjoying the new 'House of Wolves'.
Apr 11, 2015 - 9:28 AM - by garyopa
A system glitch reportedly released Happy Wars on Xbox One prematurely, but PLEASE DON'T INSTALL IT!
Because of this, the Xbox 360 version of the multiplayer action game has been rendered temporarily unavailable for those who have played the prematurely-released version, so don't touch it, delete it!
Since the big announcement at E3 last year, everyone been waiting for Happy Wars to appear for digital download on their Xbox One, as it was very popular indie game on the Xbox 360, but sadly when due to system glitch it appeared for few hours on Xbox Live store, it turns out grabbing it caused your 360 one version to commit suicide, leaving you not happy at all over having the new XB1 version.
So be warned, if you still see it in your download queue, remove it right now and wait for the actual real release at some point in the near future, and if you are one of those unhappy ones that grabbed it, stay tuned for another announcement when a patch will be out.
The Happy Wars team on Facebook asks players to hold off on installing or running Happy Wars on the Xbox One, since it will be released sometime in the near future.
As for the currently unplayable 360 version, the team assures it will be restored in Happy Wars' next update on Xbox 360. They will announce when this update and the Xbox One version of Happy Wars is coming soon, and will also be issuing directions to those who already downloaded it on Xbox One.
NEWS SOURCE: Happy Wars Mistakenly Released Early on Xbox One (via) IGN