How do hackers spend the Independence Day holiday weekend? Why, hacking, of course. Well, some of them do anyway. Anonymous, the group behind several high-profile hacking incidents this year, posted a document online Sunday allegedly containing a small number of usernames and passwords for access to one of Apple’s servers. The hacker collective announced the breach via its Twitter feed as part of its Anti Security, or “AntiSec”, campaign, warning that the gadget maker could be targeted in further attacks. ZDNet wonders whether Apple is a sort of “Holy Grail” for malicious hackers given the massive amounts of customer data stored on the company’s iTunes and iCloud servers.
In a separate incident, hackers temporarily hijacked a Twitter feed operated by Fox News and posted several false messages early on Monday morning claiming that President Barack Obama had been shot and killed in Iowa. The ScriptKiddies, a group that may be loosely connected to Anonymous, claimed responsibility for the prank. FoxNews.com later regained control of the feed and removed the tweets. The president is actually at the White House enjoying the July 4 Independence Day festivities with his family. A Secret Service investigation is underway.
Coming soon: English-language search on Baidu. Thanks to a new pact Microsoft has signed with China’s most popular search engine, Baidu will no longer be just for Chinese users. Under the alliance, English searches on Baidu will be powered using Microsoft’s Bing search, which will then deliver results back to Baidu’s Web pages. The new alliance should prove to be a win-win for both companies by helping Microsoft increase its puny presence in China and Baidu extend further beyond China’s borders.
One of the most-talked about features of Google’s new social network Google+ is its video conferencing capabilities, something that Facebook has yet to offer. That could change this week, though. According to a report on TechCrunch, Facebook will use a much-hyped press event this week to launch a new in-browser video chat service powered by Skype.
Sony will finally restore the remainder of its Sony PlayStation Network in Japan this week, months after a massive security breach by hackers forced them to shut the videogame service down globally. Restoration of the service in Japan, which accounts for less than 10 percent of the network’s users, will mark the full resumption of the network globally.