ECONOMY

Monthly Archives: AUGUST 2016


Android bug fear in 900 million phones
08.08.16 - TEAM PT
Android bug fear in 900 million phones



A new Android flaw has been reported by security researchers that is claimed to affect roughly 900 million Android devices. Check Point mobile research team first reported the issue and claims that it affects all devices using Qualcomm chipsets.

Found in devices running Qualcomm processors, QuadRooter includes four vulnerabilities, any of which can be used by hackers to take control of a smartphone. "If exploited, QuadRooter vulnerabilities can give attackers complete control of devices and unrestricted access to sensitive personal and enterprise data on them. Access could also provide an attacker with capabilities such as keylogging, GPS tracking, and recording video and audio," says Check Point in a blog post.

Hackers can trigger any of these four vulnerabilities using a malicious app. "Such an app would require no special permissions to take advantage of these vulnerabilities, alleviating any suspicion users may have when installing," adds the post.

However, there is no evidence of the vulnerabilities currently being used in attacks by cyber thieves.

"I'm pretty sure you will see these vulnerabilities being used in the next three to four months," said Michael Shaulov, head of mobility product management at Checkpoint.

"It's always a race as to who finds the bug first, whether it's the good guys or the bad."

Checkpoint has created a free app called QuadRooter Scanner that can be used to check if a phone is vulnerable to any of the bugs, by looking to see if the patches for them have been downloaded and installed.

Check Point also recommended users to download and install the latest Android updates as soon as they become available, avoid side-loading apk files, read app permission requests carefully while installing apps and more.




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Mercedes-Benz asks SC to lift ban on diesel cars
08.08.16 - TEAM PT
Mercedes-Benz asks SC to lift ban on diesel cars



Automobile giant Mercedes-Benz has moved the Supreme Court asking for the ban on diesel vehicles to be lifted. The German car manufacturing firm said it was ready to pay the environmental cess of 1% levied on the sale of diesel cars.

This move by Mercedes comes as a bid to get the ban on registration of cars with engines bigger than 2000cc lifted.

The apex court will hear the matter on Friday.

In December 2015, the NGT had banned the registration of all new diesel vehicles with over 2,000cc engine or diesel cars with more than 10 years plying on roads, in order to curb the rising pollution in Delhi-NCR. Mercedes-Benz was affected significantly by this ruling as most diesel vehicles in its portfolio are powered by engines larger than 2,000 cc.

As an impact of the diesel cars bans, Mercedes-Benz India registered low sales last month. The car manufacturer has also decided to hold its investment plan in wake of the diesel ban and the policy uncertainty around diesel in the future.
 
Recently, the company also announced that it'll soon add petrol variants to all its models on sale in the country. This should help the company offset some of the loss of sales due to the ban on its diesel vehicles in certain parts of the country.

Besides Mercedes-Benz India, car manufacturers like Toyota, Mahindra and Mahindra are also hit by the diesel cars ban orders. Mahindra had responded to the ban by downsizing its diesel engines to under 2,000 cc, allowing it to sell vehicles. 

Meanwhile, the Environment Pollution (Prevention and Control) Authority (EPCA) for the National Capital Region (NCR) has recommended a green cess of 20-22% on diesel vehicles.

The appeal by Mercedes on Monday is seen as a response to the environment panel’s steep cess recommendation.




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