Archive for April, 2023

Elon Musk’s Latest Attempt To Get Twitter To Make Money Exposes Him As A Hypocrite

Posted in Commentary with tags on April 30, 2023 by itnerd

I really get the sense that Elon Musk is just trying anything he can to get Twitter to make money. And I truly mean anything. Here’s his latest gambit: Publishers will be able to charge you to read articles on Twitter:

So what he’s doing is he’s allowing publishers to create paywalls to their content. Which is fine I guess as newspapers have been doing that for some time. The thing is, I was under the impression that Elon was anti paywall based on this:

That Tweet didn’t age well, seeing as it was posted a year ago. But it’s clear that Elon’s anti-paywall until he needs Twitter to make money. Then it’s paywall all the things.

What a hypocrite.

And I haven’t even mentioned the elephant in the room. Which is if anyone will actually pay for this. I don’t think so, but as always I am free to be surprised. Though when it comes to Twitter, the only thing that surprises me is how badly Elon has failed at running Twitter.

Twitter Is Now Limiting The Ability To Search To Users With A Twitter Account

Posted in Commentary with tags on April 29, 2023 by itnerd

Elon Musk has come up with a new way to boost Twitter’s user count, while at the same time screwing over people who are not on Twitter. According to Mashable, Twitter’s search functionality is now limited to people who have a Twitter account:

Twitter used to offer a search field even to unregistered users, but this is no longer so (via 9to5Mac). Now, visiting the site without being logged in will only let you scroll through the Explore tab, which offers a curated list of tweets. The search field is gone, and will only reappear after you’ve signed in.

The search field does reappear after you click on a tweet, but trying to use it will merely bring up a login prompt.

This forces users to create an account (even if it’s just a throwaway one) to find something on the site, which might be another one of Musk’s tactical moves to increase user count on Twitter.

I guess the only good news is that you don’t have to pay him $8 a month ($11 on iOS) to search. But mark my words, given Elon’s past behaviour, this will be made a paid feature. This is pretty underhanded if you ask me. But I guess I shouldn’t be surprised as this is Elon Musk we are talking about.

Microsoft Will No Longer Put Out Major Windows 10 Updates

Posted in Commentary with tags on April 28, 2023 by itnerd

Microsoft has posted a blog post that Windows 10 22H2 will be the final major updates to Windows 10, and going forward Microsoft will not put out major updates for Windows 10:

As documented on the Windows 10 Enterprise and Education and Windows 10 Home and Pro lifecycle pages, Windows 10 will reach end of support on October 14, 2025. The current version, 22H2, will be the final version of Windows 10, and all editions will remain in support with monthly security update releases through that date. Existing LTSC releases will continue to receive updates beyond that date based on their specific lifecycles.


  • We highly encourage you to transition to Windows 11 now as there won’t be any additional Windows 10 feature updates.
  • If you and/or your organization must remain on Windows 10 for now, please update to Windows 10, version 22H2 to continue receiving monthly security update releases through October 14, 2025. See how you can quickly do this via a servicing enablement package in How to get the Windows 10 2022 Update.

The final end of support date for Windows 10 does not change with this announcement; these dates can be found on the Windows 10 Lifecycle page.

Seeing as Windows 11 has been out for more than a year and a half, it’s not a shock that Microsoft is starting to wind things down for Windows 10 which first launched in 2015. Thus they are starting to force users towards Windows 11. And now with a defined path to killing Windows 10, it’s clear that the end is in sight for Windows 10.

Canadian Employers Must Prioritize Seamless Digital Experiences to Attract Top Talent: Study

Posted in Commentary with tags on April 28, 2023 by itnerd

Research published today by Cisco AppDynamics reveals the importance that job seekers and employees are attaching to digital experiences as the search for talent is intensifying in many industries. 

95% of Canadians state it is important that the applications they use to find and apply for jobs provide a fast and seamless experience, without any delays or disruption. And 65% claim that if these applications fail to perform, it puts them off working for the employer in question. 

Job seekers are relying on applications to find their next role 

The average person now uses a total of six applications or digital services when looking for or applying for a new job – and this increases to eight in the U.S and nine in India. 

The most heavily used digital services are job sites, social media platforms, employer websites and employer review sites. And most people looking for a job use at least one of these services daily. 

Expectations for digital experiences have soared over the past few years as people across the world have increasingly relied on the convenience and flexibility that applications and digital services provide in almost every aspect of their lives. At the same time, reactions when people encounter issues with these applications have strengthened.  

71% of Canadians admit that if the applications they were using to find and apply for a new job didn’t perform properly, it would leave them feeling anxious and angry. Job seekers have zero tolerance for poorly performing applications and digital services – in fact, as many as 42% state that potential employers have only one shot to impress them with their digital services. 

In an intensely competitive labor market, there are no second chances for employers – the first sign of a problem when using an application or digital services and many job seekers will immediately walk away.  

Digital experience is now the foundation for a strong employer brand 

The research, conducted among more than 12,000 consumers in 12 countries, highlights how digital experience has become a key consideration for people when they’re investigating new job opportunities. 76% of Canadians report they want to work for an employer that provides seamless digital experiences throughout the recruitment process. 

Significantly, the research reveals huge upsides for employers that can deliver high performing applications and digital services to both existing and potential employees. 48% of Canadians claim they’re more likely to choose an employer who provides great and seamless digital experiences, 38% report they’re more likely to talk positively about the employer and 32% state they’re more likely to stay with that employer. 

Evidently, employers need to ensure that they are providing prospective employees with a fast and seamless experience when they are engaging with their brand through all digital channels – whether that is a recruitment section on their websites or through email and messaging tools that follow the process. This is now a fundamental aspect of building an attractive employer brand.  

Employers need unified observability solutions to drive digital experience and get ahead in the search for talent 

Currently however, many organizations are struggling to optimize application availability and performance, largely due to soaring complexity in the IT department. The shift to multi-cloud and hybrid environments has left technologists trying to manage an increasingly dynamic and fragmented IT estate, without unified visibility into applications running across on-premises and cloud native environments. 

The consequences of this are severe, with constant firefighting in the IT department as technologists find themselves on the back foot trying to understand and resolve issues before they impact end users. Ultimately, this lack of visibility and insight is leading to an increased risk of disruption and downtime, and potential damage to customer experience, reputation and revenue. 

IT teams therefore need an observability solution which provides flexibility to span across both cloud native and on-premises environments – with telemetry data from cloud native environments and agent-based entities within legacy applications being ingested into the same platform.  

In addition, IT teams need to monitor the health of key business transactions distributed across their entire technology landscape. With real-time insights from the business transaction’s telemetry data, technologists can swiftly pinpoint the root cause of issues and expedite resolution, so that applications are always operating at peak performance.  

With talent issues continuing to present a huge strategic challenge for business leaders in all sectors, employers must not overlook the critical importance of getting digital experience right across the employee lifecycle. By ensuring their IT teams have the tools and insights to keep applications and digital services performing at optimal level at all times, employers can provide prospective employees with the brilliant digital experiences they now value so highly.  

Crowdstrike Encourages The Use Of AI To Target Malwareless Attacks 

Posted in Commentary with tags on April 27, 2023 by itnerd

At this year’s RSA Conference, CrowdStrike’s Joshua Shaprio said this:

In short, Crowstrike has been dealing with about one malwareless cyber issue a week during the last couple quarters reaffirming data reported earlier this year that 71% of cyberattacks were carried out without malware and highlighting the challenges cybersecurity teams face trying to combat such compromises.
Using a case study, the two illustrated the “layer A problem” involving the bad actor’s in-depth reconnaissance and use of dedicated machines to hide identities and avoid detection resulting in the threat actors set up with their own users on the network, free to exfiltrate data, compromise the cloud, and add themselves as a SQL server admin.

During their RSA keynote, both CrowdStrike CEO George Kurtz and President Michael Sentonas used a case study to illustrate the “layer A problem” involving the bad actor’s in-depth reconnaissance and use of dedicated machines to hide identities and avoid detection resulting in the threat actors set up with their own users on the network, free to exfiltrate data, compromise the cloud, and add themselves as a SQL server admin. More on that in a moment.

From an Akamai report on that attack:
    “The attack starts with a password brute-force on the MySQL service. Once successful, the attacker runs a sequence of queries in the database, gathering data on existing tables and users. By the end of execution, the victim’s data is gone – it’s archived in a zipped file which is sent to the attackers’ servers and then deleted from the database. A ransom note is left in a table named WARNING, demanding a ransom payment of up to 0.08 BTC.”

During their RSA keynote both Kurtz and Sentonas highlighted that without the standard malicious code to detect, companies need to consider strategies with robust telemetry gathering activities from the endpoint to the cloud, and to manage identity data with greater granularity, and, with the use of AI and machine learning, find anomalous activity among that data.

CrowdStrike CEO George Kurtz spoke about this to Bloomberg:

Dave Ratner, CEO, HYAS:

   “Increasing an organization’s visibility into the real-time activities inside the network is quickly becoming critical for business resiliency against modern attacks. The ability to identify anomalous outbound communications from both the IT and OT networks can dramatically reduce the elapsed time from infection to detection and remediation and may be the only signal that allows organizations to get ahead of an attack before data exfiltration, encryption, and other actions that impact business continuity.”

Clearly the use of AI by those who defend against attacks is growing. Just look at Google and the announcement that they made at RSA. This is something that defenders need to consider in order to keep our digital assets safe.

Report Finds Massive Increase in Seed Funding Despite Economic Downturns

Posted in Commentary with tags on April 27, 2023 by itnerd

Today DataTribe released the firm’s Q1 2023 Insights report, which assesses how the cybersecurity funding market compares to other tech, as well as how cyber funding compares to prior years.

John Funge, Managing Director at DataTribe provided this commentary:

Big picture, while the slowdown is painful in some cases, we see it as an overall healthy thing. The investing pace and valuations in cyber over the last few years have been overheated. With the economic headwinds, we are seeing a flight to quality where fewer funding transactions are happening with a higher bar for startups to meet. 

For enterprises, there are a number of potential implications that the market headwinds will have:

  • Financial strength of vendors becomes a more prominent consideration:  The balance sheet of vendors may be more of a consideration in looking at existing and new relationships. If a vendor that is burning cash has difficulty raising a next round of financing,  that risk can flow onto customers. 
  • Consolidation and M&A activity:  Larger cybersecurity companies will likely take advantage of the market environment to make acquisitions as valuations come down. There will likely also be consolidation through weaker companies not surviving — as well as less compelling product ideas not getting funded. The medium to long term benefit of this will be some rationalization of the highly-fragmented tech stacks that enterprises depend on. A potential drawback is that beloved products may end up in the hands of larger vendors that are less agile, harder to deal with, and not aligned with the enterprise vendor’s strategy.
  • New products will promise to do the work of multiple current products:  In an environment where cyber spending is more closely scrutinized, startups will adapt and align value propositions to focus on cost reduction. Security leaders can expect new products promising to replace multiple current products.
  • Marketing budgets in cyber will pull back:  CISOs and security leaders are the focus of a torrent of enterprise marketing firepower. Marketing budgets are often one of the first areas to be trimmed in a cost cutting environment. For enterprise security leaders, this may bring a welcome reduction in the intensity of cyber marketing. However, there’s some much marketing activity aimed at enterprise cyber leaders, it may not be easy to notice.

Currently, seed stage cybersecurity is largely buffered from the broadened economic forces. Entrepreneurs will continue to innovate, and we are seeing a continuous flow of great founders and ideas at the seed stage. As is often said, some of the greatest companies are born during the worst economies. We don’t see it any differently this time around.

You can find the live DataTribe Insights Q123 report here:

More Browser Extensions To Block Twitter Blue Subscribers Are Out For Firefox And Chrome Users

Posted in Commentary with tags on April 27, 2023 by itnerd

Earlier this week I posted a story about a Chrome extension that blocks Twitter Blue subscribers from your Twitter feed. The logic for blocking Twitter Blue subscribers is as follows:

The reason behind this is that twitter will deboost your account if too many people who pay Elon $8 a month ($11 on iOS) block you. That gives you a massive incentive to block them before they can block you. 

I’ve been expecting more extensions to appear as what has become known as #BlockTheBlue has gained momentum from non Twitter Blue subscribers who aren’t happy with Twitter Blue and what it represents. Today Malware Tech has released extensions for both Chrome and Firefox that will block Twitter Blue users, and they have the rather clever name of BlueLiteBlocker. You can find them via Malware Tech’s GitHub page or you can get the Chrome extension here, and the Firefox extension here. Here’s the elevator pitch as to what these extensions do:

This extension allows you to hide Tweets from Twitter Blue users you don’t follow, if they have less than a set number of followers. You can customize the follower threshold and choose between collapsing or removing Tweets.

This will be useful to filter out the noise from those who foolishly paid Elon Musk $8 a month ($11 on iOS) to get a status symbol that doesn’t mean anything anymore. Though I will be interested to see what happens when these sorts of extensions start to get used at scale and make Twitter Blue even more meaningless that it already is.

Guest Post: Governments blocked Twitter and Facebook the most in 2022

Posted in Commentary with tags on April 27, 2023 by itnerd

In today’s digital age, social media has become a powerful tool for communication, activism, and information dissemination.

According to the data presented by the Atlas VPN team, Twitter and Facebook, two highly influential social media platforms, have been targeted by governments worldwide for their role in facilitating communication and mobilization. Protests and active conflicts were the primary triggers of the internet shutdowns.

Governments restricted access to Twitter 13 times in 2022. As of February 2022, Twitter has been inaccessible in China, Iran, Myanmar, North Korea, Russia, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan due to government restrictions.

Last year, Facebook’s access was also limited by governments on 13 occasions. Besides the usual suspects who blocked Twitter, Uganda’s president banned Facebook in January 2021.

Governments enforced limitations on Instagram’s and WhatsApp’s accessibility, blocking each social media app 10 times. VPN usage in Russia skyrocketed by 10,000% following the Instagram ban in March.

Google Services were blocked 9 times by governments last year. Furthermore, governments imposed restrictions on Telegram 8 times. Signal experienced governmental restrictions on access 5 times, while TikTok faced 4 instances of such limitations.

​​Cybersecurity writer at Atlas VPN, Vilius Kardelis, shares his thoughts on government censorship on the internet:

“Government internet shutdowns and social media blocks during protests or conflicts are short-term solutions that stifle freedom of expression and access to information. Governments should explore proportionate measures that respect human rights and uphold communication principles.”

Internet shutdown triggers

Internet shutdowns have become a control tool for some governments by limiting access to information and communication during critical moments.

The primary leading cause for internet shutdowns was protests, leading to 62 cutoffs from the web. After demonstrations in Jordan, India, Iran, and other countries, their governments restricted internet access to prevent the further spread of information.

Active conflicts were the reason for 33 internet shutdowns in 2022. Russia’s war on Ukraine caused a few of these cutoffs, and so did the conflict in Yemen.

Governments shut down the internet 8 times to prevent cheating in exams. In addition, 5 cutoffs from the internet were tied to elections.

To read the second part and the full article, head over to:


Here’s The 2023 Uber Lost & Found Index

Posted in Commentary with tags on April 27, 2023 by itnerd

Did you lose a picture of 2Pac when riding with Uber? Because somebody did…

As Mercury goes into Retrograde – which astrologists say influences forgetfulness – Uber is back with the seventh annual Uber Lost & Found Index, revealing the most surprising and most popular items left behind by riders over the past year. 

Clothing, bags, and phones topped the list once again of the most commonly forgotten items, but as we well know, riders aren’t just leaving the usuals behind – they’re forgetting everything from frozen burgers to teeth sets to ping pong tables – and that’s just to name a few. 

Below is Uber’s full 2023 Lost & Found Index, along with easy instructions on how you can retrieve lost items:

Top 10 most forgetful cities across Canada:

  1. Montreal
  2. Hamilton
  3. Vancouver
  4. Edmonton
  5. Kitchener-Waterloo
  6. Winnipeg
  7. Calgary
  8. Toronto
  9. Ottawa
  10. London

Top 10 most commonly forgotten items across Canada:

  1. Article of clothing
  2. Backpack or bag
  3. Phone 
  4. Headphones 
  5. Jewelry 
  6. Wallet or purse
  7. Vape or e-cig
  8. Laptop
  9. Watch
  10. Umbrella

The most forgetful day and time in Canada: 

  • Sundays at 6PM 

The most forgetful day in Canada in the last 12 months: 

  • January 1, 2023 

The 10 most unique items lost across Canada: 

  • Mattress cover, Saskatoon
  • Purple sparkly leopard print high heel that has pointy end, Kitchener-Waterloo
  • Stove, Winnipeg
  • A picture of 2Pac, Montreal
  • Possible a pack of frozen burgers, Ottawa
  • Star Wars Yoda blanket, Hamilton
  • Projector, Calgary
  • Teeth set, Calgary
  • Ping pong table, Toronto
  • A pizza, Halifax 

If you’re one of those people who left something behind, look no further than this help page, which outlines the simple steps you can take the next time you leave something behind when riding with Uber. 

The best way to retrieve a lost item is to call the driver – but if you leave your phone itself in your car, you can login to your account on a computer. Please note there is a $20 fee to get your items returned, and that fee goes entirely to the driver because of the inconvenience of returning the item.

Here’s what to do:

  1. Tap “Your Trips” and select the trip where you left something
  2. Scroll down and tap “Find lost item”
  3. Tap “Contact driver about a lost item”
  4. Scroll down and enter the phone number you would like to be contacted at. Tap submit.
  5. If you lost your personal phone, enter a friend’s phone number instead (you can do this by logging into your account on a computer, or using a friend’s phone).
  6. Your phone will ring and connect you directly with your driver’s mobile number.
  7. If your driver picks up and confirms that your item has been found, coordinate a mutually convenient time and place to meet for its return to you.
  8. If your driver doesn’t pick up, leave a detailed voicemail describing your item and the best way to contact you.

Geotab “Greening the Fleet” Survey Reveals The Key Benefits Of Investing In Sustainability 

Posted in Commentary with tags on April 27, 2023 by itnerd

Geotab Inc., a global leader in connected transportation solutions — has released the results of its 2023 survey of U.S. fleet professionals. The study, conducted with Bobit Research Group, explores how organizations in the transportation sector are progressing on their sustainability plans, amid increasing pressure to address climate change. More than half of those surveyed anticipate their customers will demand an increase in fleet sustainability initiatives in order to continue to do business with them over the next 1-3 years. Quality data has become critical to tracking and assessing progress on sustainability goals, enabling organizations to make smarter decisions, improve regulatory reporting, and address “greenwashing” risk, along with transformation to electrification. 

Sustainability benefits the bottom line

When citing key hesitations to starting sustainability actions, the top three reasons included overall cost, lack of data, and differing priorities. However, 69% of fleet managers executing sustainability plans reported that fleet sustainability data helped reduce operating costs in the past year, highlighting how those that take action see bottom-line benefits within a short period. 

The majority of fleets plan to invest more in sustainability 

In a recent global survey of 3,000 CEOs, more than 80% expect investments in sustainability to deliver higher business results over the next five years. Geotab’s “Greening the Fleet” survey revealed the same confidence, with 66% of fleet managers responding they plan to invest more in sustainability initiatives over the next three years to meet customer and organization requirements, while only 3% plan to invest less. Without investing in sustainability, organizations risk being left behind.

Reliable data is critical for regulatory reporting

Globally, 51% of CEOs consider sustainability a top challenge, as they face increasing pressure from boards and investors to take action. As companies look to achieve their climate targets, having reliable sources of data for decision-making and reporting is critical. Currently, 73% of fleet professionals surveyed use a fleet management solution and telematics data insights to track and manage the sustainability of their fleet, but only 24% of fleet professionals are leveraging telematics data to support regulatory reporting. With increasing regulatory pressure for accelerating action in carbon reduction, there is a clear opportunity to leverage data insights for transparent reporting, while reducing the risk of “greenwashing” challenges.

The fleet EV transition is well underway
Fleet electrification is increasing at a rapid pace. S&P Global Platts Analytics has noted light-duty electric vehicle sales reached a record high of 6.3M units in 2021 up 102% year-over-year. Of the fleet professionals surveyed by Geotab, 54% have electric vehicles already in their fleet or on order. The survey also revealed that fleets that have started on their sustainability journey are already seeing environmental and social benefits, including reduced fuel use, CO2 emissions, and idling. As they continue to follow data-driven sustainable fleet practices and electrify, they may gain increasing ROI. 

“Greening the Fleet” is a survey of 110 fleet professionals across the U.S. View the full survey findings:

For more information on how Geotab helps power the sustainability journey, visit: