Tuesday, June 20, 2023

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☕️ Techpresso: Reddit Under Threat, Intel's Massive Investment, and More

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This is your daily dose of ☕️ Techpresso, where you get the latest tech news of the day effortlessly.

Here's the latest tech news from the last 24 hours:

💻 Hackers threaten to leak 80GB of confidential data stolen from Reddit
💸 Intel's massive $32.8 billion chip plant investment in Germany
🔑 ChatGPT and Google Bard can be tricked into supplying Windows 11 keys
📦 Amazon says striking delivery drivers don’t really work for them
🐦 Controversial alt-right propaganda next to family-friendly ads on twitter

💻 Hackers threaten to leak 80GB of confidential data stolen from RedditLINK

  • The BlackCat ransomware gang, also known as ALPHV, has claimed responsibility for a February breach of Reddit's systems, in which they allege to have stolen 80GB of compressed data, and are demanding a $4.5 million ransom.
  • Reddit has confirmed the breach, but maintains there is no evidence of personal user data theft, and has not revealed any further details about the attack or whether it plans to respond to BlackCat’s demands.
  • The ransom demands include not just the payment but also the reversal of Reddit’s controversial new API pricing policy, which has sparked protests from thousands of subreddits and led to the shutdown of the third-party app, Apollo.
  • 💸 Intel's massive $32.8 billion chip plant investment in GermanyLINK

  • The German government and Intel are set to sign a deal concerning Intel's planned factory in Dresden, following months of negotiations over required subsidies for the multi-billion dollar project.
  • Intel has reportedly requested 10 billion euros in subsidies from Germany due to high energy and labor costs, with CEO Pat Gelsinger stating the cost gap was larger than initially estimated.
  • While the exact subsidy amount remains undisclosed, reports suggest that Intel may receive around 9.9 billion euros, an increase from the previously promised 6.8 billion euros, as part of Germany's efforts to attract tech companies and decrease dependence on South Korea and Taiwan for chips.
  • 🔑 ChatGPT and Google Bard can be tricked into supplying Windows 11 keysLINK

  • A YouTuber was able to make ChatGPT generate valid Windows 95 activation codes earlier this year, and a Twitter user recently managed to obtain Windows 10 and 11 keys through a creative request to the bot.
  • The chatbots seem to be providing generic installation keys likely gathered from the internet; these keys allow installation but not activation of the Windows operating system and are not a permanent solution.
  • While the use of such keys lacks moral and legal justification, legal options exist for obtaining free or heavily discounted Windows licenses from other sources.
  • 📦 Amazon says striking delivery drivers don’t really work for themLINK

  • Amazon delivery drivers in Palmdale, California, who are unionized with the Teamsters, have staged the company's first-ever strike, demanding better pay and improved safety conditions.
  • While Amazon claims these drivers are technically employed by "Delivery Service Partner" Battle-Tested Strategies, it exercises significant control over their activities, including appearance, posting online, work schedules, and the acceptance of AI surveillance.
  • The drivers face harsh conditions, including driving without air conditioning in extreme heat, with the union recently securing a tentative deal to install air conditioners in all small package delivery vehicles owned by UPS.
  • 🐦 Controversial alt-right propaganda next to family-friendly ads on twitterLINK

  • Twitter's advertising strategies are being scrutinized as ads from family-friendly brands were seen running alongside clips of an antisemitic film posted by users.
  • Since Elon Musk's takeover and subsequent changes in policies, Twitter's content moderation has been lax, leading to several major advertisers pulling back their ads from the platform, and Twitter's reputation has suffered significantly according to nationwide survey rankings.
  • The resignations of Twitter’s vice president of trust and safety, Ella Irwin, and the company’s head of brand safety and ad quality, A.J. Brown, signal an even lower expectation for user safety and content moderation, while a report suggests Twitter could profit from impressions on reinstated accounts known for spreading hate speech.
  • Other news you might like

    The U.S. State Department offers a reward of up to $10 million for information linking the CL0P Ransomware Gang, or other malicious cyber actors, to foreign governments. LINK

    Generative AI tools, such as ChatGPT, should be developed inclusively and in consultation with the public to mitigate risks, with iterative deployment to allow societal adaptation and user control, says OpenAI's CEO Sam Altman.LINK

    France is investing heavily in AI research and talent to position itself as Europe's AI hub, with ambitions to create global players, despite competition from Germany and the UK.LINK

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