ITy Bytes 20 April

Amazon to close its Chinese marketplace

Despite being in the Chinese market since 2004, the name Amazon lacks the commercial awareness to make inroads against Alibaba and other Chinese online marketplaces that have about 82% of the market.

Analysts said that Amazon has failed to capture the Chinese loyalty and cannot compete with local players on price. It will close its local data centre and warehouses and wind up its Prime membership program that has not gained significant membership.

We bet Gerry Harvey is drinking champagne at this news and hopes Amazon’s foray into Australia will end in such an ignominious and inglorious way. There is a growing anti-Amazon movement in Australia where its shopping penetration is less than 10% compared to eBay at 63%, and Google Assistant speakers outsell Amazon Alexa by a three-to-one margin.

ITy Bytes 20 April

It is not just Huawei and ZTE that are forbidden to supply US telco infrastructure

In case you have not heard Chinese companies Huawei and ZTE are unable to supply telco infrastructure to the US amid fears of Chinese spying.

Well, it appears that all Chinese companies are part of a broader net where telecommunications are concerned.

According to Reuters China Mobile is seeking approval to provide services for phone calls between the United States and other countries. It is not seeking approval to provide ‘wireless’ (3/4/5G) services to US consumers.

According to the FCC, China Mobile USA, which filed the application, is indirectly and ultimately owned and controlled by the Chinese government.

“It is clear that China Mobile’s application to provide telecommunications services in our country raises substantial and serious national security and law enforcement risks,” Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission Ajit Pai said.

FCC officials said if successful China Mobile would be able to exploit the US, “telephone network to increase intelligence collection against US government agencies and other sensitive targets that depend on this network.

FCC added, “There is a significant risk that the Chinese government would use the grant of authority to China Mobile USA to conduct activities that would seriously jeopardise the national security and law enforcement interests of the United States.”

ITy Bytes 20 April

Kaspersky says Game of Thrones may be Game of Threats if you pirate it

A new Kaspersky study shows that many torrent (pirate) sites serve video content infected with malware. It detected 33 threat types and 505 different families hiding behind the Game of Thrones.

Malware files disguised as TV show episodes hit an average of 2.23 users in 2018. The top three most popular threat categories were:

  • Trojan – 30%
  • Not-a-virus:Downloader – 21%
  • Not-a-virus:AdWare – 28%.
  • Worms – 8%

The ‘not-a-virus’ type of threats may interfere with users’ sessions causing unwanted actions. AdWare, for instance, can show unsolicited ads, alter search results and collect user data to deliver targeted, contextual advertising.

Also, most Pirate sites will try to use the PC for cryptocurrency mining during downloads.

ITy Bytes 20 April

Google tightens Play Store security

No matter how much Google does to secure Android (and it’s doing lots), it is a constant battle against the bad guys to keep malicious apps out of Google Play.