Microsoft sharpens AI focus with new research group

(Reuters) – Microsoft Corp said on Thursday it created a new artificial intelligence unit, as the company pushes deeper into the fast-growing field. Silicon Valley is diving into artificial intelligence (AI)and machine learning research, an industry estimated to zoom to $70 billion by 2020 from just $8.2 billion in 2013, according to a Bank of America report that cited IDC research. On Wednesday, Microsoft teamed up with four other big technology companies – Amazon.com Inc, Alphabet unit Google, Facebook Inc and IBM – to create a non-profit organization to advance public understanding of AI technologies.

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Microsoft sharpens AI focus with new research group

Tesla’s Musk: No more discounts on new cars

Electric carmaker Tesla Motors Inc. Chief Executive Elon Musk told employees in an email to follow company policy of not offering discounts on new cars, responding to some investors' concerns about the practice. In a Twitter message, Musk said “corrective action” had been taken on discounting of new vehicles, which “seems to be limited to a small number of cases.” Musk's email to employees was included on Wednesday in a response to comments on a Reddit posting of someone questioning the discount policy. The Tesla boss said, “It is absolutely vital that we adhere to the no negotiation and no discount policy that has been true since we first started taking orders 10 years ago.” Musk said there could be discounts to floor models, vehicles that had been used for testing or those that were damaged in delivery.

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Tesla’s Musk: No more discounts on new cars

At your service: cyber criminals for hire to militants, EU says

Cybercriminals offering contract services for hire offer militant groups the means to attack Europe but such groups have yet to employ such techniques in major attacks, EU police agency Europol said on Wednesday. “There is currently little evidence to suggest that their cyber-attack capability extends beyond common website defacement,” it said in its annual cybercrime threat assessment in a year marked by Islamic State violence in Europe. “Europol is concerned about how an expanding cybercriminal community has been able to further exploit our increasing dependence on technology and the internet,” its director, Rob Wainwright, said in a statement.

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At your service: cyber criminals for hire to militants, EU says

SWIFT says bank hacks set to increase

By Tom Bergin GENEVA (Reuters) – SWIFT, whose messaging network is used by banks to send payment instructions worth trillions of dollars each day, said three clients were hacked over the summer and cyber attacks on banks are set to increase. The theft of $81 million in February from Bangladesh's central bank using SWIFT messages rocked faith in the system whose messages had, until then, been accepted at face value. SWIFT Chief Executive Gottfried Leibbrandt told the Sibos conference in Geneva on Monday that hackers breached the systems of two banks over the summer and a third bank repelled an attack before fraudulent SWIFT messages could be sent.

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SWIFT says bank hacks set to increase

Senator Warner seeks SEC probe of Yahoo disclosure on hacking

By Dustin Volz WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Democratic Senator Mark Warner on Monday asked the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission to investigate whether Yahoo and its senior executives fulfilled obligations to inform investors and the public about a hacking attack affecting 500 million user accounts. “Disclosure is the foundation of federal securities laws, and public companies are required to disclose material events that shareholders should know about,” Warner said in a letter to SEC Chairwoman Mary Jo White. Yahoo has faced pointed questions about exactly when it knew about the cyber attack announced last week that exposed the email credentials of half a billion accounts, a critical issue for the company as it seeks to prevent the breach from affecting a pending takeover of its core business by Verizon Inc .

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Senator Warner seeks SEC probe of Yahoo disclosure on hacking

Snapchat to offer camera-equipped sunglasses in first hardware push

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Snap Inc, the newly renamed parent company of messaging app Snapchat, plans to start selling camera-equipped sunglasses starting this fall, Chief Executive Evan Spiegel told the Wall Street Journal in an interview. The sunglasses, dubbed Spectacles, will be sold via limited distribution for about $130, said Spiegel, who described the device as a toy. The first hardware to be sold by Snap, the sunglasses will record video from the user's perspective in 10-second increments that can be synched with his or her smart-phone. …

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Snapchat to offer camera-equipped sunglasses in first hardware push

Some Yahoo users close accounts amid fears breach could have ripple effects

Many Yahoo users rushed on Friday to close their accounts and change passwords as experts warned that the fallout from one of the largest cyber breaches in history could spill beyond the internet company's services. After Yahoo disclosed on Thursday that hackers had stolen the encrypted passwords and personal details of more than 500 million accounts in 2014, thousands of users took to social media to express anger that it had taken the company two years to uncover the data breach. “We're probably just going to dump Yahoo altogether,” said Rick Hollister, 56, who owns a private investigation firm in Tallahassee, Florida.

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Some Yahoo users close accounts amid fears breach could have ripple effects

Exclusive: Japan’s antitrust watchdog considers action against Apple, carriers – sources

By Yoshiyasu Shida TOKYO (Reuters) – Japanese regulators are considering taking action against Apple Inc over possible antitrust violations that may have helped it dominate the nation's smartphone sales, government sources said, a move that could hit the company's profit margins in one of its most profitable markets. In a report published last month, Japan's Fair Trade Commission (FTC) said that NTT Docomo, KDDI Corp and Softbank Group were refusing to sell older surplus iPhone models to third party retailers, thereby hobbling smaller competitors. Apple was not named in that report, but two senior government sources told Reuters that regulators were also focusing on Apple's supply agreements with all three carriers.

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Exclusive: Japan’s antitrust watchdog considers action against Apple, carriers – sources

Yahoo says hackers stole data from 500 million accounts in 2014

The attack on Yahoo was unprecedented in size, more than triple other large attacks on sites such as eBay Inc , and it comes to light at a difficult time for Yahoo. Chief Executive Officer Marissa Mayer is under pressure to shore up the flagging fortunes of the site founded in 1994, and the company in July agreed to a $4.83 billion cash sale of its internet business to Verizon Communications Inc . “This is the biggest data breach ever,” said well-known cryptologist Bruce Schneier, adding that the impact on Yahoo and its users remained unclear because many questions remain, including the identity of the state-sponsored hackers behind it.

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Yahoo says hackers stole data from 500 million accounts in 2014