Wednesday Newsbytes: Group Asks Microsoft to Extend Windows 10; New Windows Malware; Latest Windows 11 Update Problems; Does Candy Corn Kill 1000s? New Consumer Reports App Gets Mixed Reviews… and more!
Every day we scan the tech world for interesting news in the world of technology and sometimes from outside the world of technology. Every Wednesday, we feature news articles that grabbed our attention over the past week. We hope you find this week’s ‘Wednesday Newsbytes’ informative and interesting!
Citing concerns about making millions of Windows 10 PCs unsupported and obsolete, the Public Interest Research Group (PIRG) is calling on Microsoft to extend support for the operating system. Environmental concerns are also highlighted.
Windows 10 is set to be dropped from Microsoft’s support list in 2025, meaning there will be no more security updates for the millions of people still using this version of Windows. PIRG points out that many PCs simply cannot be upgraded to Window 11, and large numbers of people cannot afford to upgrade their hardware. This is why the network of organizations is petitioning Microsoft to rethink its decision.
The PIRG is worried not just about the financial impact for many Windows 10 users if they are forced to buy a new Windows 11 compatible system, but also about the environment. The group points to statistics that suggest large proportions of these unsupported Windows 10 systems will end up in landfill sites…
Hackers are using novel techniques to drop GHOSTPULSE on Windows PCs
Cybersecurity researchers have observed hackers abusing MSIX Windows app package files to distribute malware.
MSIX is a relatively new, unified packaging format, which developers can utilize to create secure and high-performing applications across platforms.
According to experts from Elastic Security Labs, someone’s been distributing MSIX files pretending to be popular software platforms such as Google Chrome, Microsoft Edge, Brave, Grammarly, and Cisco Webex. The distribution channels haven’t been confirmed, but researchers believe it’s the usual mix of compromised websites, SEO poisoning, malvertising, social media, and phishing.
Being a loader, the malware itself has one job, and that is to drop one of the following final payloads: SectopRAT, Rhadamanthys, Vidar, Lumma, or NetSupport RAT. While these have different features, the common denominators are remote access, the ability to execute arbitrary code, and data exfiltration.
Users who fall for the scam and execute the file will see a prompt with an Install button. Pressing the button will drop the GHOSTPULSE malware loader onto their endpoint…
The latest Windows 11 update won’t install for some users, and tanks gaming performance even if it does
Here we go again…
Windows 11 users are experiencing issues with the update KB5031455, with some systems not installing the update, others encountering installation problems and some seeing error messages as well as gaming issues if the update does install successfully.
According to Windows Latest, several users have complained to the site about the Windows 11 update, stating the installation would “run and fail, then reboot, run and fail again.”
Another user commented on problems with gaming performance after the update, saying that the build “broke a few games.” According to the user, some games available from Epic Games Store, such as Fortnite and Horizon Zero Dawn, crashed and refused to start. More comments like these have been left on the Windows Latest site.
This is not the first time a string of issues has been presented due to preview updates. KB5030310, a preview update for those using Windows 11 22H2, caused issues with File Explorer that led to buggy behaviour and slower run times.
If you’ve yet to install the KB5031455 update, we recommend you hold off…
I turned to the internet – American’s No. 1 source for information that confirms their own biases – to retrieve evidence that will change the minds of stalwart candy corn enthusiasts.
If there’s one thing all Americans can agree on it’s that candy corn is disgusting and deadly and should be banned like asbestos.
OK, maybe we can’t actually agree on that, but I really want us to, so I turned to the internet – the average American’s No. 1 source for information that confirms their own biases – to retrieve evidence that will change the minds of even the most stalwart candy corn enthusiast.
What I found might shock you. (I certainly hope it does, as that was the intention.) Candy corn is responsible for thousands of deaths, according to the internet
Did you know 500,000 Americans per year die from eating candy corn? I know this is true because I read it on the social media site X, formerly known as Twitter, which is run by always-honest billionaire Elon Musk, who surely has all Americans’ best interests in mind.
The post read: “Did you know 500,000 Americans per year die from eating candy corn?” It may have also included “I made that up, but it’s now true because it’s on the internet. Pls share.” And it may have been posted by me, but I’m not going to tell you that because I’m trying to prove a point here.
Candy corn is LITERALLY killing hundreds of thousands of people every year…
Microsoft is officially launching Windows 11 version 23H2 today, including two new features in addition to many more recent additions.
It’s been about a month since Microsoft began rolling out most of the features associated with Windows 11 version 23H2, but today, the update is finally officially available. Windows 11 version 23H2 comes with a couple of new features on top of all the additions Microsoft announced in late September.
Essentially, Microsoft decided to release this update’s features early using a recent addition to Windows Update, a toggle in the Settings app that lets you receive new features as soon as they’re available. If you enabled that toggle, most of the features would be available to you through an optional update, but officially, you’d still be on version 22H2. Those features were then expanded to more users earlier this month, though they were still an optional update.
So, that leaves the official Windows 11 version 23H2 update with just a couple of new features and changes….
If we can’t trust a venerated nonprofit organization that has championed consumer rights since 1936, whom can we trust?
That’s what I think as I dive into a pool of comments criticizing Consumer Reports recently launched Permission Slip by CR.
The free app launched to the public earlier this month to help people see how much personal data companies collect and then act on consumers’ behalf to clamp it down.
“What we’re trying to do from a mission perspective is shine a light on how every app and every service collects data and for what purpose, and then give people the tools they need to exercise these new rights to opt out,” Ben Moskowitz, vice president of Consumer Reports Innovation Lab, tells me over the phone.
I love it. It’s a Sasquatch-sized first step to educate people on the kinds of information companies routinely collect, share and sell for their own gain…
Purists might argue that an initialism formed by the words “artificial” and “intelligence” should be disqualified for Collins’ most notable word of 2023. But if nothing else, it confirms that society is at the peak of inflated expectations in the hype cycle before the eventual plunge into the trough of disillusionment.
Thanks for reading this week’s Wednesday Newbytes. We hope these articles were informative, interesting, fun, and helpful. Darcy & TC