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December 2014

Beware of fake Pirate Bay copycat sites

If you are a user of the infamous torrent indexing website The Pirate Bay you may have noticed that it has been offline the last couple of days.

According to various sources, a data center hosting equipment to run the site has been raided by Swedish police. The police seems to have seized the equipment and the site is currently not accessible on the Internet.

Nokia Here now available on Google Play: offline maps and more

Nokia Here is a mapping service that has been available for select Android platforms for some time now. Nokia launched it on Google Play today where all Android users who run Android 4.1 or higher devices can download and install it.

When you click on install you will notice that it requires lots of permissions of which at least some seem to be unnecessary for the mapping functionality but required for other functionality it makes available. It supports a feature to inform others by SMS or email about your current location which explains why it requires SMS permissions.

Goodbye Download Squad! Content no longer accessible

The Download Squad, up until its shut down in April 2011, was one of the go-to blogs for tech enthusiasts. It concentrated on software reviews and news but also other things that the majority of popular tech sites out there don't cover anymore or only occasionally.

Up until its shut down it was one of the few sites that I visited regularly for "real" tech news and it was almost certain that I discovered something new or interesting.

Google Chrome supports reactive prefetching on Google Search now on Android

Prefetching refers to the downloading of contents based on the action that a user is most likely to make next. The idea behind it is to offer access to resources faster if the user happens to access one of the preloaded contents in the browser.

One primary example is Google Search where the majority of users click on one of the first results. If a browser would preload these resources, they could be accessed faster and benefit most users as they do access these resources.

LastPass and Dashlane announce automatic password changers

If you ever had your computer compromised by a computer virus, hacker or other malicious software running on it you know that you are done after you remove the threat from it or format it.

Depending on what happened, you may also need to change passwords online. The same is true if a service got hacked on the Internet that you have been a member of, and things get even worse if you happen to use the same password and email address at a lot of sites.

Microsoft Security Bulletins For December 2014

This article offers detailed information about all security and non-security patches that Microsoft released in December 2014.

The company changed the way the information are provided last month. While it releases information about each bulletin just like before, it stopped the release of videos that go over each month's security bulletins.

In addition, it stopped creating sheets detailing the deployment priority of bulletins. The sheets have been replaced with a simple priority listing.

Infinit: send and receive files of any size

Things have gotten better in recent years when it comes to sending files to others. While it is still possible to store files on ftp servers or web servers, options such as cloud storage have become available as well.

Services like Dropbox, OneDrive or Google Drive offer storage space on the Internet that users can fill with data. Most services come with options to share files with other users as well.

How to turn off tabs in Mozilla Thunderbird

Mozilla Thunderbird is my desktop email client of choice. It has been my primary go-to program for all things email for years and even though it is not very high up on Mozilla's priority list anymore, it is an excellent program for that.

When Mozilla developed Firefox and Thunderbird in sync, some features of Firefox found its way in to Thunderbird as well. This includes tabbed browsing among others.

Use Symantec VIP Access for extra protection on eBay, PayPal and other sites

Symantec VIP, the VIP stands for Validation & IP Protection, is one of the technologies that the company got when it acquired VeriSign.

I started using a VeriSign Identity Protection Device back in 2008 to add another layer of security to the PayPal login process.

How to undo the removal of downloads in Chrome

Whenever you download a file using the Google Chrome web browser it is added to the Downloads history automatically which you can access by loading chrome://downloads/ in the address bar. It is also saved to the local storage location you have selected provided that it has not been flagged as malicious prior to that.

All downloads on the page are sorted in chronological order and each download is listed with its file name, location it was downloaded from and icon.

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