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Flame Malware Hits Middle East; More Facebook Phone Rumors; GameStop Adds Tablets
Topping tech headlines over the weekend: a sophisticated piece of malware is hitting computers in the Middle East, Facebook could be building its own smartphone, and GameStop is increasing its Android tablet lineup.
Too busy to check the tech headlines over the weekend? Here’s what you missed: Researchers at Kaspersky Lab uncovered a massive cyber threat, dubbed Flame, that is targeting “sensitive” information across the Middle East.
The malware, Kaspersky said, “might be the most sophisticated cyber weapon yet unleashed.” Once deployed, Flame can sniff network traffic, take screenshots, record audio conversations, intercept a keyboard, and more. All of this data is then available via Flame’s command-and-control servers.
Meanwhile, according to a New York Times report, a number of anonymous sources maintain that Facebook is working to build its own smartphone. This would be the company’s third attempt at bringing a living, breathing smartphone into its core business: Initial rumors in 2010 put smartphones on Facebook’s map, but the company allegedly veered away from mobile development after realizing just how difficult it is to build mobile hardware.
In other mobile news, Motorola released a series of videos that show off exactly what Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich is going to look like on its two Razr phone — Motorola Razr and Razr Maxx. Spoiler: It’s going to be pretty.
And gamers, take note: GameStop is expanding its Android tablet lineup, adding the devices to more than 1,600 stores nationwide. The gaming retailer is now selling tablets like the Asus Transformer Prime, the Samsung Galaxy Tab, and the Acer Iconia. GameStop promised that tablets sold through its stores will come equipped with “valuable extras,” such as free games like Sonic CD and Riptide.
Also making headlines over the weekend:
- Internet Defense League Crafts ‘Bat Signal’ for the Web: Several Internet groups are gearing up to battle SOPA-like legislation via the Internet Defense League, a new organization intended to protect the open Web.
- Report: Amazon to Sell Prepaid Internet Access in Japan: In the tech industry it’s a well-established fact that major U.S. companies will sometimes test a service in other, international markets before introducing it to domestic customers.
- Father’s Day Deal: Roku, Hulu Bundle, 35 Percent Off: Father’s Day may be spent at the ballpark, but Hulu hopes dads will spend that evening in front of the television, with a discounted Roku and Hulu package.
- Steve Jobs 1974 Atari Memo on Auction Block: More Steve Jobs memorabilia is up for auction, and this time it’s a hand-written note from the late Apple co-founder’s days at Atari.
- Video: Inside The Manufacturing Line At Apple Contractor Foxconn: A new video has popped up from the Chinese site iFeng that shows off one reporter’s trip to the iPhone production line.
- Looking to Cut Costs? Ditch XP for Windows 7: Microsoft continued to push for the demise of Windows XP, arguing that it is more expensive for businesses to remain on the aging OS than it is to upgrade to Windows 7.
- Strike Three for 38 Studios: Employees on the Hook for Second Mortgages: But if losing one’s job out of the blue isn’t one of the absolute worst feelings to experience, the story allegedly gets a bit worse.
By Angela Moscaritolo, PCMag