HP pops out a patch after dormant keylogging code is found on some laptops

The keylogging type

We’ve got a couple digital security stories for you today. Let’s get started with the news that a researcher looking to control the keyboard backlight on his HP laptop found some interesting bits of code in the machine’s digital attic, including a keylogger program that could be utilized by hackers to sponge up information like passwords, login data and anything you type on the keyboard.

Tech Crunch says the keylogging code was inactive when it was found by the researcher, and that after he contacted H/P about it, the company quickly responded with an update to wipe it from the PC. Check the list of laptops affected, and that list includes the software update from H/P you should run right away if your machine is listed.

Watch your wallet

If you haven’t heard, Bitcoin is going great guns these days, with the price for a single bitcoin topping $17,000. But a popular cryptocurrency management website called MyEtherWallet is fighting against an identically named app on Apple’s app store. Even though the app has nothing to do with the website and has the exact same name as the website, it’s still available for $5 because, so far, it hasn’t been proven to be malicious in any way.

The folks who run the MyEtherWallet website tweeted that they did not create the app or have anything to do with it at all, calling those that did “scamtards.” The app creator does not link out to the website and, in the past, has only created a couple of fighting games that involve pandas. For now, we’d advise bitcoin owners to be extremely careful about how they manage their newfound wealth.

Propelling drone safety

This has be both the scariest, and also sort of fun job in the world: professional drone crash tester. Ok, it’s not really a job as much as some tests being done by a team at Singapore’s Nanyang Technological University, but still, purposefully crashing drones into stuff – included the heads of crash test dummies – sounds like a bit of somewhat dark fun to us. But that’s what they’re doing, and it’s all in the name of safety, of course.

The team has been dropping drones, flying drones, and otherwise doing all the things you shouldn’t do with drones to see how our delicate melons would fare if they got smacked by a medium-sized flying buzzsaw. After seeing crazy drone incidents like the famous ski race near-miss and other not so famous crashes, we think this is worthy research.

DT Daily extras: Take a look at a story from McLaren about the tech inside their insanely fast supercars, more on the new Snapdragon 845 chip and our fun gift guide for the tech lovers in your life. Clock’s tickin’…

We’ve got more news on our Facebook page and YouTube channel, and be sure to tune in to this week’s DT podcasts: Trends with Benefits (general tech shenanigans)  on Thursdays, and Between the Streams (movie and TV topics) every Friday.

Social Media

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Spare a thought for Twitter user John Lewis. When he signed up as @johnlewis soon after the app launched in 2006, little did he know what he was letting himself in for. Clue: There's a U.K. department store called John Lewis.

Apple confirms it’s collecting data on foot to improve its Maps app

Apple has been using cars and satellites to improve its Maps app, and it's now confirmed it's also using tech-laden pedestrians to collect data from the streets in a bid to provide better walking directions.

Four fake cryptocurrency apps were listed on the Google Play Store

It is a dangerous time to be going after crytocurrency on Android. Four bogus cryptocurrency apps were spotted on the Google Play Store this week, according to a report from cybersecurity researcher Lukas Stefanko. 
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