Jonny Evans

About the Author Jonny Evans


Apple and Cisco just improved security in the iOS enterprise

Apple and Cisco have struck yet another blow for enterprise IT. They know that iOS is the most secure mobile solution, but that’s not everything because mobile threats are incredibly complex these days.

The enigma code

Here’s a scenario: You work in an enterprise with perhaps 1,000 other employees. One morning, perhaps fifty of you woke to find an authentic-seeming email in your in-box that requested you click on a link to update some system related to the work you do. While many employees remembered not to click on that link, a small number did click. No one thought too much of the email – spam is frequent and most just thought the mail was aimed at them.

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How iPhone X changes things

It should be clear by now that Apple’s big bet on the iPhone X is working out just fine. Millions of people appear to be picking them up, but what does the new device tell us about the next decade of smartphones?

Face, the obvious

Biometric ID has come of age.

From Touch ID fingerprint sensors to face recognition systems and whatever comes beyond. It’s not impossible to speculate that one day our solutions will even be able to recognise us through a combination of biometric signals: fingerprint, face, pulse, even by blood type as mobile sensor development accelerates.

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How Apple’s Safari browser can save your Christmas

While I see online ads as a necessary evil if you want to keep websites in business, I’m so annoyed at the way the latest ads services seem so focused on ruining everybody’s Christmas surprise.

The ads Grinch stole Christmas

This is what happens: Ads sites track where you go online; retailers track you too and all this information is shared. Look at an item online, see an ad for it on the next page you go to. Not only is this behavioural retargeting vastly creepy, but when it comes to Christmas these things make it impossible to keep secrets, particularly on a shared Mac. Been looking at [insert name of hot new obsessive teenage-focused product here] with a view to buying one to gift your child? Don’t be too upset if said child gets onto your computer to check their Bitcoin investment only to find themselves staring at ads for the object of their desire. Kids aren’t stupid – they know how ads work online (even if we don’t). What’s happened? Your Christmas surprise is spoiled and your teenager won’t believe in Santa Claus any more, even if they are looking for a flat Earth shadow during the next eclipse.

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Apple makes Macs great again with iMac Pro

In what may turn out to be this year’s most significant news for Mac users, Apple managed to squeeze one more product release into the year this side of Christmas, confirming that its iMac Pro will be “available to order” from December 14.

An iMac – with superpowers

On first glance, the new iMac Pro looks like any other iMac, apart from its distinctive grey (Apple calls this ‘Space Grey’) chassis.

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10 reasons why Apple should acquire Shazam

TechCrunch claims Apple will purchase leading music recognition service, Shazam. Apple has now confirmed the deal. Here are just ten reasons such a deal makes sense:

Shazam’s Apple story

Founded in 1999, Shazam first came to prominence on Apple’s platforms as a great tool for iPod users. Years later it became one of the first apps to appear on the App Store, and was one of the first available iPad apps too.

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Apple’s HomeKit security blunder exposes the risk of smart homes

The expression “safe as houses” will become a thing of the past if tech firms don’t get connected home security right, and the need to be incredibly watchful was visible in Apple’s latest security blunder this week.

Not so ideal home

The latest iOS 11.2 update held a zero-day vulnerability attackers could exploit to control smart home devices, including connected locks, 9to5Mac explains. While the vulnerability was difficult to exploit, and Apple has acted very swiftly to close this security gap, its existence exposes the risk of smart homes.

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Apple’s HomeKit security blunder exposes the risk of smart homes

The expression “safe as houses” will become a thing of the past if tech firms don’t get connected home security right, and the need to be incredibly watchful was visible in Apple’s latest security blunder this week.

Not so ideal home

The latest iOS 11.2 update held a zero-day vulnerability attackers could exploit to control smart home devices, including connected locks, 9to5Mac explains. While the vulnerability was difficult to exploit, and Apple has acted very swiftly to close this security gap, its existence exposes the risk of smart homes.

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3 top reasons people dump Android for iPhone

As it stands the market battle between Android and iPhone seems set to continue forever, but you can’t ignore that the majority of users who do switch are abandoning Google for Apple. What follows are three of the biggest reasons for doing so identified by Creative Strategies as Apple’s iPhone sales threaten to spike.

Reason #1: Security

I think most people are growing more aware of the need to maintain device security and to keep a fairly steady eye on data security.  Apple seems to agree – notice how its Android attack line videos (two included below for reference) are focused around similar reasons?

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Sometimes it’s hard to be Apple’s Siri

It’s hard to be Apple’s virtual assistant because lots of people complain about what you do, even when you’re actually quite good at lots of things, recent data shows.

Speak to the future

Virtual assistants are destined to do much more than send memos, capture shopping lists, or tell cheesy jokes – they will become one of the primary ways we interact with the ambient AI that will surround every part of our lives in the not too distant future.

That’s what Apple’s Steve Jobs saw in these technologies way back when he relentlessly pursued the purchase of Siri. He saw the potential of the interface to enable new platforms.

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iPhone X drives Apple’s ‘best ever’ year for smartphone sales

Apple has just begun its best ever year for iPhones, setting new records over the holiday quarter, according to IHS Markit analyst, Ian Fogg.

A new iPhones record

Fogg is incredibly bullish on Apple’s performance, writing:

“We expect Apple will enjoy its best ever year for iPhone,” anticipating 88.8 million iPhone sales in the current quarter and year-on-year increases in each subsequent quarter in contrast to the same time last year.

(Don’t forget, on launch, Apple sold around 3 million iPhone X units in just 20 minutes, around 150,000 phones per minute and 2,500 iPhone X sales per second.)

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Apple’s iPhone users are running to Bitcoin

A string of breathless media headlines reporting Bitcoin’s new highs and lows means the cryptocurrency has captured popular imagination, the appearance of the Coinbase iOS app within the top 40 lists at the App Store helps confirm the notion.

Bite of the Bitcoin

Apple co-founder, Steve Wozniak, recently said he thinks Bitcoin is a better standard of financial value than gold or the dollar.

While we have to accept that the inherent value of the digital currency is hard to understand, it’s clear that millions of people do believe in it and that consensus has driven the digital estate to new highs.

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Apple apologizes, issues Mac login security patch

With great apology, Apple has rushed to respond to the appalling macOS High Sierra security flaw, issuing a software update that has been made immediately available for download and will be automatically installed in existing Macs.

‘We greatly regret’

Apple has shared the following statement:

“Security is a top priority for every Apple product, and regrettably we stumbled with this release of macOS.

“When our security engineers became aware of the issue Tuesday afternoon, we immediately began working on an update that closes the security hole. This morning, as of 8:00 a.m., the update is available for download, and starting later today it will be automatically installed on all systems running the latest version (10.13.1) of macOS High Sierra. 

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What to do about Apple’s shameful Mac security flaw

Complacency and incompetence are the biggest computer security threats, and Apple’s latest Mac security flaw seems to combine both of these. The flaw means anyone with physical access to your Mac can get inside the machine and tinker with it.

UPDATE (29 November  9:30am PDT): Apple has issued an apology and a patch to rectify this problem, more details here.

What’s the problem with macOS High Sierra?

The problem (which first got disclosed here) was first revealed in a Tweet by Lemi Orhan Ergin, who wrote:

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What to do about Apple’s shameful Mac security flaw

Complacency and incompetence are the biggest computer security threats, and Apple’s latest Mac security flaw seems to combine both of these. The flaw means anyone with physical access to your Mac can get inside the machine and tinker with it.

What’s the problem?

The problem (which first got disclosed here) was first revealed in a Tweet by Lemi Orhan Ergin, who wrote:

Dear @AppleSupport, we noticed a *HUGE* security issue at MacOS High Sierra. Anyone can login as “root” with empty password after clicking on login button several times. Are you aware of it @Apple?

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What to do about Apple’s shameful Mac security flaw (updated)

Complacency and incompetence are the biggest computer security threats, and Apple’s latest Mac security flaw seems to combine both of these. The flaw means anyone with physical access to your Mac can get inside the machine and tinker with it.

UPDATE (29 November  9:30am PDT): Apple has issued an apology and a patch to rectify this problem, more details here.

What’s the problem with macOS High Sierra?

The problem (which first got disclosed here) was first revealed in a Tweet by Lemi Orhan Ergin, who wrote:

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10 (more) iPhone X gesture tips

Apple has launched its own YouTube channel of iOS tips, meanwhile iPhone X is attracting massive interest and changing how we use the device. Here are ten more usability tips to help you turn yourself into an iPhone X pro.

Make Face ID gaze again

If Face ID fails to recognize you for some reason you can make it try again by dragging the home indicator bar up a tiny bit and then down.

[Also read: Life after the Home button: The iPhone X gestures guide]

Get the battery percentage

You used to be able to set iOS up to provide a percentile figure to show you how much battery power you had left (Settings>Battery). The iPhone X doesn’t let you do this any – but you can still check what percentage battery you have by swiping down on the right side of the notch to invoke Control Center, where you’ll then find the percentage top right.

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The new Apple iPhone X troubleshooting guide

Apple’s new iPhone isn’t having too many problems, but everybody needs to know what to do if a problem strikes. The disappearance of the Home button means some traditional troubleshooting techniques need to change.

Force restart iPhone X

In many cases a force restart of an iPhone X will solve any problems you may meet, but because iPhone X lacks a Home button, you need to follow these steps to make this happen:

  • Press and quickly release the Volume Up button
  • Press and quickly release the Volume Down button
  • Press and hold the Side button until the Apple logo appears.

Whatever problem you encounter, always try a force restart first.

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Google puts a little of Apple’s Swift in its future OS

The never-ending Apple/Google story takes a new turn on claims the Android maker wants to put a little Apple inside its new OS, albeit the Open Source Swift language.

Google’s secret Swift plan

On what appears to be a quest to dump Linux, Google is allegedly developing a new mobile OS called “Fuchsia”. We don’t know much about the OS. We don’t know if it will replace Android, Chrome, or turn out to be some other kind of animal. We have been told it could potentially run computers as well as smartphones.

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Apple once again confirms it wants to iPimp your ride

Who dies? What happens when an autonomous car needs to make a decision between crashing into another car, or that child crossing the street? How long will it have to take that decision? Who dies?

Making cars is really complicated

While iPhones are pretty complicated, cars are both complex and life-threatening.

A software glitch in a smartphone is annoying, but poor car code could threaten lives. That’s what makes Apple’s recently published autonomous vehicle research paper very interesting.

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8 great gifts for Apple MacBook/MacBook Pro users

We’ve already looked at gifts for iPhone users. It seems appropriate to also grab a glance at a few great gift ideas for notebook Macs.

A home hub: Elgato Thunderbolt 3 Dock

MacBook Pro users will want an Elgato Thunderbolt 3 dock (c.$300). Not only does the powered dock recharge any devices even when you take your Mac away, but it provides a seamless and efficient way to continue to use all those old USB devices – all through a single port. Not only this, but you can run an external monitor and recharge your iPhone. Using just one cable from your Mac. You can run external storage, connect using the HDMI port and plug your Ethernet into the dock.

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10 great gifts for Apple iPhone users

What better for a slow news day than a quick and easy guide to some of the best iPhone-related accessories you can get for the Apple user in your life this season?  

A Bluetooth speaker: JBL Flip 4

If you want a Bluetooth speaker system that’s high on audio quality and connection stability, take a look at this relatively affordable system from JBL. Not only is it highly portable, but it’s waterproof enough to be thrown into three feet of water for up to half an hour and still work fine. (The manufacturer’s claim.) You can even purchase two of these systems and twin them together as stereo speakers.

There’s also a built-in mic so you can use it as a speaker phone or even to ask Siri questions, such as: “Why is HomePod delayed?” It picked up four stars from sister site, TechHive.

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Strong and stable: The iOS security guide

Apple’s smartphones are highly secure, but if your private or enterprise data matters to you, it’s essential to ensure your iPhone (or iPad) is as secure as possible.

Why security matters

Just because almost all mobile malware targets Android doesn’t mean iPhone users can be complacent.

Quite the reverse:

We need to be even more alert in case attackers use complacency against us. What follows are a few simple tips to help you secure your iPhone (and iPad).

There’s no way to deny that iPhones are in the ascendant, particularly in enterprise IT. Beyond business, you’ll see them used by educators, doctors, police and politicians and in each one of those cases the information on those smartphones is confidential and must not be abused.

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7 things you’ll want to try first with your Apple Watch

Black Friday is coming and lots of Apple fans will probably search for cut price deals on the popular Apple Watch and its vast medley of straps. Here are some of the first things you’ll want to do with the Apple wearable (other than set it up, of course).

Use Apple Pay

Apple Pay on the watch is one of those things that may not sound like much, but the simple convenience of being able to wriggle your wrist to pay public transit charges, buy groceries, or make other small payments quickly becomes something you don’t want to be without. Not only is it safer to use than pulling out your card or iPhone in a crowded place, but you are far less likely to accidentally leave it behind.

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Lock it down: The macOS security guide

Apple’s systems are highly secure, but if your private or enterprise data matters to you it’s essential to ensure your Mac is as highly secured as possible. This quick guide should help you do just that.

Keep it zippy

Malware is everywhere and Macs are not immune. You can ignore the potential threat if you choose, but if you are an enterprise user holding confidential data, an educator in possession of private data, or even a Bitcoin collector who maybe clicked a few too many links on one of those dodgy faucet websites, you should know to get your Mac secured.

Common sense first

Before we get into some of the security technology inside your Mac (including a wide range of security improvements in High Sierra) it is also important to point out that the biggest threat your computer faces is the person using it. Cyberattackers are highly sophisticated and can piece together lots of information about you, or companies associated with you by simply getting a little more data a little at a time. Make it hard for those people by following simple tips, including:

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