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The Weekly Roundup 1.1 Edition

by Cassie December 23, 2015

Target Halts Hoverboard Sales

Borrowing its name from the mode of transportation made popular by the Back to the Future movie franchise, the hoverboard has become massively popular in the last year. The two wheeled toy that responds to the leaning of its rider has been featured all over social media and has found its way into various aspects of pop culture. Unfortunately, there have been a myriad of safety issues surrounding the product that are certainly cause for concern for both retailers and consumers. Following reports of up to 10 hoverboards catching fire, Target has pulled the popular hoverboard brand, Swagway, from its shelves. Amazon has also removed the popular holiday gift item from its site. If you received a hoverboard over the holidays, or gave one as a gift, it is important to look into safety precautions to make sure that you, or the person you gifted the toy to, are not in danger.

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Cities Unprepared for Driverless Cars

Driverless cars are certainly the automobile trend of the future, and have been championed by prominent companies like Google and Tesla. While these companies are prepping their vehicles and improving their autonomous-driving technology, it seems that cities are not getting prepared to handle these new vehicles. In fact, a study conducted by the National League of Cities revealed that 94 percent of the world’s cities have not made plans to accommodate these new cars. Audi has promised driverless cars for consumers by 2016, but it seems their plans may be stagnated by ill prepared cities that lack the necessary infrastructure to make driverless cars plausible. Hopefully, cities will eventually realize the need to make adjustments for these vehicles. The study also showed that the vast majority of cities’ planning also did not acknowledge driving services such as Uber that account for a significant amount of transportation.

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Vulnerability Found in Popular Antivirus Softwares

The popular antivirus softwares AVG, Kaspersky and McAfee have all been found, by a cyber security start-up, to contain the same weakness. The coding issue, when exposed, allows hackers to gain access to a person’s Windows system and potentially steal personal information or infect the computer with malware. The biggest issue with this recently exposed flaw is the fact that hackers would be able to actually use the antivirus software as a tool to access the computer. Additionally, researchers believe that this vulnerability is not only present in antivirus software and could be in other software and applications that access a large amount of your computer’s information. Since the hack was exposed, the antivirus companies have taken steps to patch the hole in their system and protect customers from potential future attacks.

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Online Shopping Safety Tips

The holiday season may be coming to a close, but plenty of people are still shopping online and taking advantage of post-holiday discounts. Keep your personal and financial information protected with these e-commerce safety tips:

  • Use a credit card instead of a debit card for online purchases
  • Choose trusted retailers to buy from
  • Only buy from encrypted sites
  • Delete any old retail accounts that you no longer use
  • Utilize strong passwords that contain letters, numbers and symbols
  • Avoid using the same password more than once
  • Refrain from clicking on ads, as they could be malvertisements

With these tips you can ensure a safer online shopping experience.

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