Archive for April 3, 2018

New ASUS ROG Product Lineup Announced

Posted in Commentary with tags on April 3, 2018 by itnerd

This morning ASUS ROG announced a whole new gaming system lineup – this includes the new ROG Zephyrus M (GM501), ROG Huracan desktop, an updated ROG Zephyrus, ROG G703, ROG Strix SCAR Edition, ROG Strix Hero Edition, the new ROG Strix GL12, and the H370 and B360 series motherboards.

ROG Zephyrus M (GM501)

  • This is the world’s slimmest gaming laptop featuring both a 8th Gen Intel Core i7 processor and NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 graphics
  • NVIDIA G-SYNC technology for super smooth, seamless visuals.
  • Active Aerodynamic System (AAS) helps keep the laptop cool and quiet without sacrificing performance.

ROG Huracan (G21)

  • Has a magnetic side cover that opens up to increase airflow, while boosting CPU and GPU performance.
  • Features an 8th Generation Intel Core i7 processor and NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 graphics.
  • Has a built-in ESS Sabre DAC and amplifier for a richer, more detailed audio experience.

ROG Zephyrus (GX501GI)

  • The GX501 GI has a profile that tapers from 17.9mm to 16.9mm.
  • Has the latest 8th Generation Intel Core i7 CPU and NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1090 (Max-Q) graphics for best-in-class performance.
  • Comes with an IPS-level panel with a 144Hz refresh rate and 3ms GTG response time for minimal ghosting and motion blur. 

ROG 703

  • Features an 8th Generation Intel Core i9 processor and NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 graphics to rival gaming desktops.
  • The ROG 703 comes with HyperDrive Extreme storage that uses exclusive technology to combine up to three NVMe PCIe 3.0×4, giving it the world’s fastest RAID 0 storage configuration available in a gaming laptop.
  • Handles the latest AAA gaming titles with its 144Hz refresh rate and NVIDIA G-SYNC technology.

ROG Strix SCAR Edition

  • Strix SCAR Edition is now powered by an 8th Generation Intel Core i7 processor, up to 32GB DDR4 memory, and NVIDIA GeForce GTX 10-Series graphics.
  • Has a trapezoid-cut lid that doesn’t interfere with the rear exhaust vents, high performance 12-volt fans that boost airflow to improve cooling efficiency, and a patented Anti-Dust Cooling system.
  • Desktop-style keyboard designed-for-esports that features four gaming hotkeys and customizable RGB backlighting across four zones.

ROG Strix Hero Edition

  • Powered by the latest 8th Generation Intel Core i7-8750H six-core processor and is available with up to 32GB of DDR4 2666MHz dual-channel memory.
  • The ROG Strix Hero Edition comes with trapezoid-cut lid that doesn’t interfere with the rear exhaust vents, high performance 12-volt fans that boost airflow to improve cooling efficiency, and a patented Anti-Dust Cooling system.
  • Desktop-style keyboard designed-for-esports that features four gaming hotkeys and customizable RGB backlighting across four zones.

ROG Strix GL12

  • The ROG Strix GL12 gives you two choices: hide the power with the Iron Grey side panel or unleash the beast with a transparent side panel.
  • Features an esports-ready, hot-swap 2.5″ SSD tray that can be taken out and replaced in seconds, without having to shut down the system.
  • This desktop computer can deliver up to 3x the performance of previous generation graphic cards if fitted with the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080, delivering great visuals and making it VR-ready.

H370 & B360 Series Motherboards

  • These motherboards not only integrate USB 3.1 Gen 2 support for next gen peripherals, but also optional 802.11ac Wi-Fi for wireless networking.
  • Retain support for Intel Optane Memory, which uses ultra-fast flash storage to reduce load times.
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Telus Announces Drive+ Device Promo

Posted in Commentary with tags on April 3, 2018 by itnerd

Telus has seen a lot of interest in Drive+ which is their connected car option powered by Mojio at Telus.

Customers have been taking advantage of the easy to access maintenance info and driving habits, while maintaining their peace of mind with features like virtual geofences and vehicle tracking.

Between April 3 to April 30 we are offering Drive+ with a $0 upfront cost on a 2 year term. Additionally, this $10/month option still includes all of the Drive+ benefits and a bonus 1GB of shareable data to customers’ SharePlus and Your Choice plans.

If you want more info on the device which comes from ZTE and is sold by all three major Canadian carriers, click here.

Panera Bread May Have Leaked Customer Data For MONTHS….. Jinkies!

Posted in Commentary with tags on April 3, 2018 by itnerd

Panera Bread may have leaked at least eight months of online customer orders before it was taken down today according to KrebsOnSecurity. The data that was leaked contains names, birthdays, emails, home addresses and the last four digits of credit card numbers belonging to millions of customers who bought food online through panerabread.com.

What’s worse is that the company was warned about this leakage last August:

KrebsOnSecurity learned about the breach earlier today after being contacted by security researcher Dylan Houlihan, who said he initially notified Panera about customer data leaking from its Web site back on August 2, 2017.

A long message thread that Houlihan shared between himself and Panera indicates that Mike Gustavison, Panera’s director of information security, initially dismissed Houlihan’s report as a likely scam. A week later, however, those messages suggest that the company had validated Houlihan’s findings and was working on a fix.

Fast forward to early this afternoon — exactly eight months to the day after Houlihan first reported the problem — and data shared by Houlihan indicated the site was still leaking customer records in plain text. Worse still, the records could be indexed and crawled by automated tools with very little effort.

Wow. Panera Bread really dropped the ball on this one. Either that or they really didn’t care about the security of user data. The cynic in me is voting for the latter. It’s bad enough when a company gets pwned by hackers. But when you’re as insecure as this, it’s inexcusable. Here’s what’s even more inexcusable. When Brian Krebs who runs KrebsOnSecurity reached out to Panera to get their comments on this, they appear to have quickly yanked the website off line to fix the issue. Which implies they could have fixed this months ago when this was raised to them.

#Fail

The take home message is this. Panera Bread doesn’t take the security of your information seriously. Keep that in mind the next time you want to grab a snack or you want to order lunch for your company.

Review: Hex Brand Transit Tote

Posted in Products with tags on April 3, 2018 by itnerd

By Ms. IT Nerd

I have been on a journey to find the perfect tote ever since this past January when I lost my tote on the transit system. I realized that I like many people carry quite a bit everyday. At a bare minimum I needed a tote to carry my hefty 15” Mac book pro, an umbrella (after all it is spring time), my phone and wallet, one water bottle, my travel mug for coffee and lunch. So I was intrigued when the opportunity came to me to review the Hex Brand Transit Tote.

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It is a well-built laptop tote (dimensions 16.75″L x 16.5″W x 5.5″H) as it strikes a balance between stylist and sturdy. It is well padded yet light. And it’s better looking than what the pictures show. As far as I can tell it comes in only one colour which is black. But the lack of a colour choice doesn’t matter as it looks stylish. I have already had two of my girlfriends ask me where I got this new bag. That tells you everything you need to know right there.

What I also like in this tote is how much it can hold.

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I have found some other totes have a smallish opening that ends up making it hard to slide a laptop in or it is restrictive to sliding a regular Tupperware box in or anything else that you want to carry. The Hex tote is wide enough for all those things. This is the first tote that I feel that I can do away with my purse as it has these nice external snap pockets:

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There are two in the back and one in the front which I like as they are snug to the bag and keeps your stuff secure.

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This Hex tote also contains these well-designed internal organizers that allows for easy access while keeping your stuff secure as it has a large durable zipper. I feel that this tote is lighter than other totes made with leather as it is made of a durable neoprene fabric that is water resistant and has handles for you to carry. The adjustable shoulder strap gives you the option to set it up in a cross-body bag configuration (which is my preference) or a shoulder bag.

The Hex Transit Tote retails for approximately $99 US or $130 CDN. This stylish tote bag hits all the check marks for me and I would highly recommend it to anyone.

Don’t Fall For This Interac Scam That Is Delivered By Text Message

Posted in Commentary with tags on April 3, 2018 by itnerd

Last night I got a text message that got my attention. I snagged a screenshot of it for your viewing pleasure:

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At first glance it looks like an Interac e-Transfer. And it comes from a Ontario area code to make it look legit. Except that when you look closer, specifically under the words “Deposit your INTERAC e-Transfer” you see a domain called frontsolut-1.com. That’s important because Interac has never used that domain. Besides, I am pretty sure that Interac doesn’t use GoDaddy to register their domains. Because when I ran the domain in question through the Whois database on GoDaddy, I found this:

Domain Name: FRONTSOLUT-1.COM
Registry Domain ID: 2247282825_DOMAIN_COM-VRSN
Registrar WHOIS Server: whois.godaddy.com
Registrar URL: http://www.godaddy.com
Update Date: 2018-04-03T01:30:36Z
Creation Date: 2018-04-03T01:30:36Z
Registrar Registration Expiration Date: 2019-04-03T01:30:36Z
Registrar: GoDaddy.com, LLC
Registrar IANA ID: 146
Registrar Abuse Contact Email: abuse@godaddy.com
Registrar Abuse Contact Phone: REDACTED 
Domain Status: clientTransferProhibited http://www.icann.org/epp#clientTransferProhibited
Domain Status: clientUpdateProhibited http://www.icann.org/epp#clientUpdateProhibited
Domain Status: clientRenewProhibited http://www.icann.org/epp#clientRenewProhibited
Domain Status: clientDeleteProhibited http://www.icann.org/epp#clientDeleteProhibited
Registry Registrant ID: 
Registrant Name: Dean Ataman
Registrant Organization: 
Registrant Street: REDACTED
Registrant City: Belle River
Registrant State/Province: Ontario
Registrant Postal Code: REDACTED
Registrant Country: CA
Registrant Phone: REDACTED
Registrant Phone Ext:
Registrant Fax: 
Registrant Fax Ext:
Registrant Email: REDACTED
Registry Admin ID: 
Admin Name: Dean Ataman
Admin Organization: 
Admin Street: REDACTED
Admin City: Belle River
Admin State/Province: Ontario
Admin Postal Code:REDACTED
Admin Country: CA
Admin Phone: REDACTED
Admin Phone Ext:
Admin Fax: 
Admin Fax Ext:
Admin Email: REDACTED
Registry Tech ID: 
Tech Name: Dean Ataman
Tech Organization: 
Tech Street: REDACTED
Tech City: Belle River
Tech State/Province: Ontario
Tech Postal Code: REDACTED
Tech Country: CA
Tech Phone: REDACTED
Tech Phone Ext:
Tech Fax: 
Tech Fax Ext:
Tech Email: REDACTED
Name Server: NS47.DOMAINCONTROL.COM
Name Server: NS48.DOMAINCONTROL.COM
DNSSEC: unsigned
URL of the ICANN WHOIS Data Problem Reporting System: http://wdprs.internic.net/
>>> Last update of WHOIS database: 2018-04-03T12:00:00Z <<< 

Seeing as Interac is not located in Belle River Ontario, this is clearly fake. Thus validating that this is a scam. Even though I redacted some potentially personal information, that info is likely fake as well. Having said that, if Interac or law enforcement are interested in what I found, feel free to contact me and I’ll hook you up.

I decided to dig in a bit deeper to find out what this scammer was up to. So I copied the link to my test iPhone and clicked on it. I got this:

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Oooooo. It looks like I am going to get some money. Well, actually no. If you look at the URL in the browser, it’s the same frontsolut-1.com address that I mentioned above. Clearly what this scam is counting on is that you won’t notice that. In the interest of science, I chose my financial institution and got this:

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Now that’s a very good copy of the Canadian Imperial Bank Of Commerce website. To illustrate that, here’s the real Canadian Imperial Bank Of Commerce website:

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It’s pretty close except that the domain frontsolut-1.com is still present. Again, the scammers are hoping that you won’t notice.

At this point it’s pretty clear what this is all about. This is an attempt to get your username and password to your online banking account so that the scammers can drain it dry. I have to admit that this is pretty crafty as if you’re not paying attention to things like the domain that is in use, you might fall for it. Thus my advice is to pay attention to any Interac e-Transfer that you get. Look for weird looking URLs and anything that doesn’t seem “normal.” If you receive a notification for an Interac e-Transfer that you weren’t expecting, contact the sender through a different communication channel to verify. If the notification comes from someone you don’t know, or you suspect it may be fraudulent, do not respond or click any links. Forward the email or take screenshots and forward those to phishing@interac.ca.

In the meantime, I am reaching out to Interac with all the info that I complied on this scam so that they can hopefully put an end to it. Or at least put it on their radar.