Amazon addresses security exploit after journalist hack

When tech reporters get hacked, it seems like tech companies pay attention.

Wired reporter Mat Honan's entire online life was compromised by a hacker named Phobia four days ago. Phobia used Honan's AppleCare and Amazon IDs, along with his billing address and last four digits of his credit card to get into his various online accounts. Apple responded yesterday saying that it was looking into how users can reset their account passwords to ensure data protection; and Amazon responded today.

"We have investigated the reported exploit, and can confirm that the exploit has been closed as of … Read more

Apple responds to journalist's iCloud hack

After former Gizmodo reporter Mat Honan's entire digital presence was hacked via a loophole in AppleCare, Apple now says it is looking into how users can reset their account passwords to ensure that their data is protected.

It all began when Honan took to his Tumblr blog on Friday, detailing the events that led to his online life being sabotaged -- with his Google and Twitter accounts being deleted and his MacBook, iPad, and iPhone being wiped clean. He blamed an AppleCare technician for allowing his accounts to be hacked, as well as the tech blog's official feed.… Read more

Apple loses appeal in Italian AppleCare issue

Apple today lost part of its appeal in Italy involving the sale and promotion of its AppleCare service in the country.

Per Italian news site (via The Next Web), Apple today lost part of its appeal, and must make changes to its localized AppleCare Web site as a result.

In December, Apple was hit with a 900,000 Euros ($1.2 million) fine for allegedly encouraging customers to purchase AppleCare, its technical support and extended warranty service. Under Italian law, the country requires companies to offer two years of technical support to product buyers, which is the same … Read more

The 404 918: Where a phone by any other name would smell as sweet (podcast)

The band is back together again, just in time for the release of the Apple iPhone 4S. Like everyone else in the first world, we have our share of complaints, but to whine about its aesthetics is to downplay the exciting changes to iOS 5, so we'll try to keep it posi without coming off as fanboiz.

We'll review CNET's First Take of the iPhone 4S at the start of the episode, beginning with a pedestrian explanation of its network connectivity options, and go over some of the more exciting features about iOS 5, things like Newsstand, iCloud with Find My Friends, Cards, and a new AppleCare+ accidental protection package.

And just to explore the playful side of yesterday's announcements, we'll tell you why Japanese customers are chuckling at the name Siri and show you a Steve Jobs Soundboard that could offer useful buying suggestions for potential upgraders.

After the first bathroom break, we'll move onto the general tech stories of the day, including a money dispute that could finally kill "The Simpsons" after 23 seasons, Google's first adult daycare center, a batch of rereleased Disney movies in 3D, and NASA seeking applicants for its next astronaut class in 2013.

The 404 Digest for Episode 918

CNET's complete coverage of the Apple iPhone 4S. Get $200 back for your iPhone 4. Money dispute may end 'Simpsons' Google opens first retail store for Chromebooks. Seriously, Apple? In Japan, Siri fans bottom jokes.

Are Disney's 3D rereleases helping people change their minds about 3D? NASA seeking applicants for next astronaut candidate class. Bathroom break 1: Nancy Grace might have farted on last night's Dancing With the Stars. Bathroom break 2: The Museum of Obselete Objects Presents: The Fax Machine.

Episode 918 Subscribe in iTunes (audio) | Subscribe in iTunes (video) | Subscribe in RSS Audio | Subscribe in RSS VideoRead more

Apple offers MacBook Repair Extension Program for hard drive issues

Apple is now offering the MacBook Repair Extension Program for hard-drive issues on machines purchased roughly between May 2006 and December 2007. Customers experiencing hard-drive issues should take their machines to an Apple Store or Apple Authorized Reseller to have it diagnosed.… Read more

Just bought a Mac? Be sure to get AppleCare with that

If your Mac is less than a year old and you have yet to purchase AppleCare, be sure to get your hands on Apple's version of an extended warranty before that year is up. Though there are many views on whether any extended protection plan is worth the purchase, my experience tells me AppleCare is money well spent.… Read more

Buzz Out Loud Podcast 1112: Rupert Murdoch battles infinity

Microsoft is apparently willing to pay Rupert Murdoch to block Google from indexing any of his company's Web sites. Are we headed toward a world where the search engine you use determines what news you get? Probably not. We explain why Murdoch may be thinking in an old fashioned limited way rather than in the current infinite Internet way. We also declare the patent office baroque, and ask it to lose weight.

Subscribe with iTunes (audio) Subscribe with iTunes (video) Subscribe with RSS (audio) Subscribe with RSS (video) EPISODE 1,112

Microsoft offers to pay News Corp. to “de-list” … Read more

How smoking can ruin your Mac

I have nothing against smoking, save for the difficult odor that emanates from every part, breath, and piece of clothing belonging to a smoker. I could no more live with a smoker than I could live with a third ear perched off the end of my nose.

However, I am embalmed in a curious sympathy after reading a report from The Consumerist concerning two Mac users whose AppleCare warranties appear to have been voided due to the presence of cigarette smoke in their homes.

One, named Derek, recounts the tale of his overheating black MacBook. He took it into the Apple store in Jordan Creek, West Des Moines.

He told The Consumerist: "Today, April, 28, 2008, the Apple store called and informed me that due to the computer having been used in a house where there was smoking, that has voided the warranty and they refuse to work on the machine, due to 'health risks of secondhand smoke.'"

He continued: "Nowhere in your AppleCare terms of service can I find anything mentioning being used in a smoking environment as voiding the warranty."

Derek's resulting appeal to the office of Steve Jobs bore him no joy, so he resorted to blowing some compressed air at the machine, leading it to restart its wondrous functions.

Then along came Ruth, who took her son's iMac to an authorized repair center. After five days, they apparently told her they couldn't work on it because it was contaminated with cigarette smoke and was therefore a bio-hazard.… Read more

AppleCare warning: Overheating battery in 1st generation iPod nanos

Apple has released a knowledge base article describing battery overheating issues in 1st generation iPod nanos, suggesting users contact AppleCare immediately if they experience the problem or have concerns about their iPod nano. Symptoms include overheating, discoloration, or deformity of the battery or case around the battery.… Read more