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This Week in Technology: Cyber Attack, Google, and More

cyber attack

UK Conservative Party Hit By Another Cyber Attack

Another cyber attack hit the UK’s Conservative Party ahead of their election. The attack tried to force its website offline. It began shortly before 1600 GMT and lasted for less than an hour. In addition, it didn’t take down any party websites.

A Conservative Party spokeswoman had no immediate comment and said she was unaware of the cyber attack. A source said the attackers seemed to be different from the two attacks on its main opposition Labour Party earlier.

Google Gets Access To Trove Of Patient Data

Google gained access to a large amount of US patient data due to a deal with a major health firm. In addition, Google doesn’t have to notify said patients. The deal, named Project Nightingale, was planned with Ascension. They hope to develop artificial intelligence tools for doctors. In it, Google can access health records, names, and addresses without telling patients.

Reports say that Google began accessing data last year. Over the summer, however, they widened access and gained more data. “To be clear… patient data cannot and will not be combined with any Google consumer data,” Google said. In addition, Google said their partnership will follow all industry-wide regulations.

Apple To Launch AR Headset And Glasses

Apple plans to launch an augmented-reality headset in 2022. And, they play to use a sleeker pair of AR glasses by 2023. The company discussed the plan in October in an internal presentation to employees at a meeting. However, Apple declined to comment. In addition to Apple, Google, Microsoft, and Facebook are all experimenting with AR.

Chrome To Label Slow Websites

Google Chrome could start labeling websites with poor code and slow load times. This includes simple text warnings as well as more subtle signs that show a site is slow. Currently, no launch date has been given for the warnings. Google said it started the project to “to help users understand when a site may load slowly, while rewarding sites delivering fast experiences”.

Facebook Bans Content Claiming To Name Whistleblower

Facebook is taking down any content that claims to name the anonymous whistleblower who started President Trump’s impeachment inquiry. “Any mention of the potential whistleblower’s name violates our coordinating harm policy, which prohibits content ‘outing of witness, informant, or activist,’” the company said in a statement. “We are removing any and all mentions of the potential whistleblower’s name and will revisit this decision should their name be widely published in the media or used by public figures in debate.”