by John Manderson
In one hour Matt Honan’s entire digital life was destroyed. First his Google account was hacked and deleted. Then Twitter and then his Apple ID compromised and hackers then managed to remotely erase all the data on his iPhone, iPad and MacBook. While the majority of the story on Wired.com’s site is about the poor security of Apple and Amazon’s security practises and is still worth a read, you still need to turn on two factor authentication if you are a Gmail user and a lot of you probably are.
What is Two Factor Authentication? It means something you know, like your password and something you have such as a cellphone in your possession or a RSA Secure ID key fob. Below is a quick video showing you how it works:

I am currently choosing to have Google send me a Text verification to my mobile phone in Bermuda on the Digicel network. It works fine. I can’t at the moment verify if it works on CellOne but I imagine it should. If you don’t want to use a mobile phone you can download an app onto various devices called Google Authenticator and its available in the App store.
Why you might think its a little overkill to have two forms of authentication, think of how many Google services all tie into that one account. And if you use that same Google password on multiple sites like Amazon, Twitter, Facebook etc, a hacker only need gain access to one to have a go at the others.
It took me less than 2 minutes to set up and I strongly encourage any Google user to do the same.
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With a number of media outlets having received Retina MacBook Pro review units on Monday after the Worldwide Developers Conference keynote and a few early hands-on reports having been published, more extensive reviews are now beginning to appear. To help summarize the overall response to the new machine, we’ve put together this roundup of some of the major reviews, along with some highlights from each of them.


The New York Times – David Pogue

Superfast. Superthin. Superlight. Superlong battery life. Immense storage. Enough memory to keep lots of programs open at once. Stunning screen, comfortable keyboard, terrific sound. Fast start-up, rugged body, gorgeous looks.

And, of course, inexpensive.

The new Apple laptop that went on sale Monday hits an impressive number of those high notes in one radical swoop. As you might guess, the one it misses by the biggest margin is “inexpensive.”

Engadget – Tim Stevens

Is this the best Mac ever? You can’t ignore the Air as an amazing piece of machinery, especially with the new, higher-powered Ivy Bridge processors and faster SSDs tucked inside its wedge profile. But, this new Pro is on another level of performance. With a quad-core processor and up to 16GB of RAM it’s a proper beast — a proper beast that you can throw in your messenger bag and carry around all day without spending all night complaining about an aching back.

That said, this is not exactly a small machine, heavy enough that those happy Air users who’ve been feeling tempted might want to take a swing by their closest Apple Store and lift one themselves. It’s expensive, too.

The Verge – Ross Miller

If you’re in the market for a premium OS X laptop right now, it’s hard not to recommend the new MacBook Pro with Retina display. If, however, power isn’t your ultimate goal, may we suggest shaving a few pounds and specs for the MacBook Air. As for everything in between, those non-Retina “standard” MacBook Pros, well… the writing’s on the wall. And of course, it doesn’t hurt to be even a little bit patient and wait for more apps to push Retina-optimized updates — if you get the MacBook Pro with Retina display now, you’ll be waiting on the world to change.

Time – Harry McCracken

Even for those of us who are unlikely to spend more than two grand on a computer, or who prefer something more ultraportable than a 15? model, the arrival of the Retina MacBook Pro is a meaningful moment in Mac history. It’s the most refined, advanced PC that Apple has produced to date. And it’s a safe bet that the ideas it exhibits will be reflected in future models from the company, including ones with smaller screens and smaller price tags. It’s both a great computer, and a preview of great computers to come.

CNET – Dan Ackerman

I’ve previously called the 15-inch MacBook Pro one of the most universally useful all-around laptops you can buy. This new version adds to that with HDMI, faster ports, and more portability. But it also subtracts from that with its exclusion of an optical drive and Ethernet port, plus its very high starting price. The Pro and Retina Pro are clearly two laptops designed for two different users, and with the exception of all-day commuters who need something closer to a MacBook Air or ultrabook, one of the two branches of the MacBook Pro family tree is still probably the most universally useful laptop you can buy.

(Image from CNET)

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From Apple Insider

Rumor: Apple planning to launch $799 MacBook Air in Q3 2012

By Sam Oliver

Published: 07:39 AM EST (04:39 AM PST)

Apple is rumored to be planning to aggressively combat new “Ultrabook” laptops coming to market by releasing a $799 MacBook Air model in the third quarter of 2012, a price $200 less than the company’s current cheapest model.

The claim came on Monday from the sometimes reliable DigiTimes, which cited sources in Apple’s upstream supply chain. Apple’s plans are reportedly to counter second-generation Ultrabooks, based on Intel’s specifications for thin and light notebooks, which PC makers hope to price around $699.

If PC makers are unable to reach the $699 price point with their second-generation Ultrabooks, Apple could have a significant competitive advantage with an aggressive $799 price point for a new MacBook Air, the report claims.

Currently, Apple’s cheapest notebook option is the 11.6-inch MacBook Air, which is priced at $999 and comes with a 64-gigabyte solid-state hard drive. Apple also offers a stripped-down 13-inch MacBook Air for education buyers only for $999.

Last month, it was said that Intel hopes to see shipments of as many as 30 million Ultrabooks this year. The company designed the Ultrabook specification after Apple found great success with its new MacBook Air, which features only solid-state storage, instant-on capabilities, and super-thin design thanks to the lack of an optical drive.

MacBook Air

Apple is expected to begin revamping its Mac lineup in the coming weeks with Intel’s latest-generation Ivy Bridge processors. The product makeover is expected to begin with new MacBook Pros, starting with a 15-inch model, that will also rely on solid-state storage and lose an optical drive, taking design cues from the MacBook Air.

Prior to Monday’s report, little has been said of a new MacBook Air lineup, with most rumors focusing on Apple’s next MacBook Pros. In fact, one report even suggested that Apple could merge the two product lines, “effectively killing the Pro” and having all of its notebooks like MacBook Airs.

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OS X Lion update accidentally outs user passwords in plain text, stumbles over FileVault

Are you an avid user of OS X’s FileVault encryption and running a recently updated version of Lion? It may be time to consider changing your passwords. According to security researcher David Emry, users who used FileVault prior to upgrading to 10.7.3 may be able to find their password in a system-wide debug log file, stored in plain text outside of the encrypted area. This puts the password at risk of being read by other users or enterprising cyber criminals, Emry explains, and even opens the door for new flaw-specific malware. FileVault 2, on the other hand, seems to be unaffected by the bug. The community doesn’t currently have a way to fight the flaw without disabling FileVault, so users rushing to change their password now may find it being logged as well. Obviously, we’ll let you all know once we hear back from Apple regarding this matter.

From one of our readers Greg, “I think you had an interesting summery of the ZDNet story about the FileVault problems for Apple.  I’m glad I read it, as I was able to go into my MacBook and fix the problem myself! Also, I think you should check out the following Newsy video:

 http://www.newsy.com/videos/filevault-creates-os-x-lion-password-protection-problem/

The above video uses multiple sources to put the FileVault problems into context.  They have tech bloggers explaining exactly what the problems are and how they can be solved.  I hope you’ll embed the above video in your post, as I think it’ll give your readers a good multimedia perspective on the problem.”

Thanks Greg, we chose not to embed, rather give folks the link to check it out themselves. -Admin

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