What is Google Now?

Google Now is Google’s answer to Apple’s Siri and Microsoft’s Cortana. It’s an intelligent personal assistant, which is equipped with Automatic Speech Recognition (ASR) and Text to Speech (TTS), enabling the user to instruct it with their voice. You can use Google Now by downloading it from your App Store. It comes with a range … Continued

What is a Secure Element?

Body copy A Secure Element (SE) is a microprocessor chip which can store sensitive data and run secure apps such as payment. It acts as a vault, protecting what’s inside the SE (applications and data) from malware attacks that are typical in the host (i.e. the device operating system). Secure Elements handle all sorts of … Continued

How do smart meters work?

We’re used to the gas or electricity man knocking on the door and checking the meter, but a new technology is revolutionizing the way we engage with energy companies. They’re called smart meters. Wondering whether to upgrade to a smart meter, but not sure what exactly they do? Read on for a quick guide to … Continued

What is two-factor authentication, or 2FA, and how does it work?

Two-factor authentication, also known as 2FA, is an additional piece of information that is used to log into a service. Normally people just input a username and password. But if the password is easy to guess, or has been stolen, the entire account could be compromised. Two-factor authentication is increasingly popular as it helps add … Continued

What is malvertising, and how can I protect myself?

Malvertising is the combination of the words ‘malware’ (itself a blend of malicious and software) and ‘advertising’. It is a very sneaky attack whereby criminals have taken control of the adverts that you see when you browse online. The danger comes as most websites allow others to run their advertising for them, and if a … Continued

What is encryption?

Encryption has become an essential part of our online lives and you probably use it every day without knowing it. At the most basic level, encryption protects the text and data you send and receive online so it is protected. The idea is that no one can read your usernames, passwords, credit card details or … Continued

How my trip to the U.K. left me with a chip on my shoulder!

Are we really heading back to traveler’s checks or cash? Americans traveling to Europe are experiencing trouble with their magnetic swipe credit and debit cards when traveling abroad. New kiosks in London and Paris for bicycles and parking do not accept our American cards. Rural stores with few tourists are unaccustomed to the old swipe … Continued

What is a DRM and how does it work on mobile device?

DRM stands for “Digital Rights Management.” It is the technology that controls your access to copyrighted works such as movies, music, literature and software. The product files are encrypted so that you can only use them on authorized devices. For example, if you have downloaded music onto your PC, and want to access it with … Continued

What is pharming and how should I protect myself?

Pharming is a Web attack where criminals are interested in obtaining your username and password from an e-commerce site or bank. Pharming can occur when you click a valid and correct link to a Web site or even when you have typed the URL of the Web site yourself. In a pharming attack, the criminal … Continued

What is Chip and PIN?

Chip-and-PIN refers to the use of a chip-based bankcards and a mandatory PIN entry for credit and debit card payments. The term was was coined in the United Kingdom and is the government-backed initiative to implement the EMV standard for secure payments in the UK. Though people commonly call it chip-and-PIN, the technical term is … Continued