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Ex-Microsoft engineer convicted of stealing millions in digital currency for lavish purchases

A former Microsoft employee was convicted Tuesday of wire fraud and other charges for stealing millions in gift cards and digital currency from the company then reselling the items to fund a $1.7 million lakefront home and a $160,000 Tesla vehicle.

Volodymyr Kvashuk, a 25-year-old Ukrainian citizen, helped test Microsoft’s online retail sales platform, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Seattle.

Westlake Legal Group Microsoft-Headquarters Ex-Microsoft engineer convicted of stealing millions in digital currency for lavish purchases fox-news/us/us-regions/west/washington fox-news/us/crime fox-news/tech/companies/microsoft fox news fnc/tech fnc e8b6e08c-9969-5c5e-9f84-adffbb98d8a1 Bradford Betz article

The Microsoft headquarters campus in Redmond, Wash.  (Shutterstock)

He was accused of stealing digital currency such as gift cards that could be redeemed for Microsoft products, then reselling them on the Internet. He then used the proceeds to buy a $160,000 Tesla vehicle and a $1.7 million lakefront home.

Microsoft confronted Kvashuk about the incidents after the scheme came to light and fired him in June 2018.

“Kvashuk, a knowledgeable software developer, attempted to mask digital evidence that would trace the fraud and the Internet sales back to him,” prosecutors said. “He used a bitcoin ‘mixing’ service in an attempt to hide the source of the funds ultimately passing into his bank account. In all, over the seven months of Kvashuk’s illegal activity, approximately $2.8 million was transferred to his bank accounts.”

GOOGLE PROJECT MANAGER ARRESTED ON MURDER CHARGE AFTER WIFE DISAPPEARS IN HAWAII, BODY FOUND

Following a five-day trial in federal court, Kvashuk was convicted of wire fraud, money laundering, and aggravated identity theft, among other offenses.

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

He faces up to 20 years in prison when he is sentenced by U.S. District Judge James L. Robart in June.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Westlake Legal Group Microsoft-Headquarters Ex-Microsoft engineer convicted of stealing millions in digital currency for lavish purchases fox-news/us/us-regions/west/washington fox-news/us/crime fox-news/tech/companies/microsoft fox news fnc/tech fnc e8b6e08c-9969-5c5e-9f84-adffbb98d8a1 Bradford Betz article   Westlake Legal Group Microsoft-Headquarters Ex-Microsoft engineer convicted of stealing millions in digital currency for lavish purchases fox-news/us/us-regions/west/washington fox-news/us/crime fox-news/tech/companies/microsoft fox news fnc/tech fnc e8b6e08c-9969-5c5e-9f84-adffbb98d8a1 Bradford Betz article

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Cloud over Mt. Shasta appears ‘out of this world’

Westlake Legal Group 86493347_2604300783135298_6096232870060228608_o Cloud over Mt. Shasta appears 'out of this world' Julia Musto fox-news/us/us-regions/west/california fox-news/us/us-regions/southwest/new-mexico fox-news/us/environment fox-news/us/crime/police-and-law-enforcement fox-news/topic/aliens fox-news/tech/companies/facebook fox-news/science/air-and-space/ufos fox-news/science fox news fnc/tech fnc article 14d036f4-636d-5e55-b652-4205a552b252

Are human beings alone in the universe? It’s the question of a lifetime and no one has really been able to answer whether another intelligent life exists.

Aliens have been so present in pop culture over the years, that they make us believe. Which, perhaps, is why residents of Siskiyou County, Calif., wanted to believe a lenticular cloud hovering near Mt. Shasta on February 12 was an unidentified flying object.

Police officer Paul Zerr, the Shasta-McCloud Management Unit Fire Management Officer, took the photo of the supposed “UFO” cloud at around 7 a.m. PST on Feb. 12. It was captured just north of Exit 747 on the southbound side of the Cascade Wonderland Highway near Weed, [Calif.] Store, a souvenir shop that bears the name of the town.

AMERICANS OVERWHELMINGLY WANT UFO ‘X-FILES’ TO BE MADE PUBLIC

The U.S. Forest Service posted the photo on its Shasta-Trinity National Forest Facebook page, saying that it was nothing more than an unusual weather formation known as a lenticular cloud.

Lenticular clouds — also known as Altocumulus Standing Lenticular — are stationary clouds that are shaped like a lens and normally develop on the downwind side of a mountain or mountain range. They get their odd shape from moisture in the air and are most common during the winter months.

When there is sufficient moisture present above the top level of the mountain, the clouds develop within the crest of the mountain waves where the air is rising.

Mount Shasta, a 14,180-foot-high potentially-active stratovolcano, is one of the places to spot them in the state, said the Shasta-Trinity National Forest Service.

Forecasters said the clouds are most often seen in the winter or spring when winds aloft are typically the strongest.

Because of their saucer-like shape, the clouds are frequently mistaken for UFOs —  especially by people who spend much of their time searching for UFOs.

Much like the famed Roswell, N.M., Mount Shasta has become an attraction for extraterrestrial-life enthusiasts and conspiracy theorists. The nearby town of McCloud will be hosting a “Meet the Venusians — We Are in Contact” conference later this year.

CLICK HERE FOR THE FOX NEWS APP

“There’s that Flying Saucer again,” one person quipped on Facebook.

“It’s the Enterprise,” one person wrote, “I knew they were space ships this just proves it.”

Westlake Legal Group 86493347_2604300783135298_6096232870060228608_o Cloud over Mt. Shasta appears 'out of this world' Julia Musto fox-news/us/us-regions/west/california fox-news/us/us-regions/southwest/new-mexico fox-news/us/environment fox-news/us/crime/police-and-law-enforcement fox-news/topic/aliens fox-news/tech/companies/facebook fox-news/science/air-and-space/ufos fox-news/science fox news fnc/tech fnc article 14d036f4-636d-5e55-b652-4205a552b252   Westlake Legal Group 86493347_2604300783135298_6096232870060228608_o Cloud over Mt. Shasta appears 'out of this world' Julia Musto fox-news/us/us-regions/west/california fox-news/us/us-regions/southwest/new-mexico fox-news/us/environment fox-news/us/crime/police-and-law-enforcement fox-news/topic/aliens fox-news/tech/companies/facebook fox-news/science/air-and-space/ufos fox-news/science fox news fnc/tech fnc article 14d036f4-636d-5e55-b652-4205a552b252

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Cloud over Mt. Shasta appears ‘out of this world’

Westlake Legal Group 86493347_2604300783135298_6096232870060228608_o Cloud over Mt. Shasta appears 'out of this world' Julia Musto fox-news/us/us-regions/west/california fox-news/us/us-regions/southwest/new-mexico fox-news/us/environment fox-news/us/crime/police-and-law-enforcement fox-news/topic/aliens fox-news/tech/companies/facebook fox-news/science/air-and-space/ufos fox-news/science fox news fnc/tech fnc article 14d036f4-636d-5e55-b652-4205a552b252

Are human beings alone in the universe? It’s the question of a lifetime and no one has really been able to answer whether another intelligent life exists.

Aliens have been so present in pop culture over the years, that they make us believe. Which, perhaps, is why residents of Siskiyou County, Calif., wanted to believe a lenticular cloud hovering near Mt. Shasta on February 12 was an unidentified flying object.

Police officer Paul Zerr, the Shasta-McCloud Management Unit Fire Management Officer, took the photo of the supposed “UFO” cloud at around 7 a.m. PST on Feb. 12. It was captured just north of Exit 747 on the southbound side of the Cascade Wonderland Highway near Weed, [Calif.] Store, a souvenir shop that bears the name of the town.

AMERICANS OVERWHELMINGLY WANT UFO ‘X-FILES’ TO BE MADE PUBLIC

The U.S. Forest Service posted the photo on its Shasta-Trinity National Forest Facebook page, saying that it was nothing more than an unusual weather formation known as a lenticular cloud.

Lenticular clouds — also known as Altocumulus Standing Lenticular — are stationary clouds that are shaped like a lens and normally develop on the downwind side of a mountain or mountain range. They get their odd shape from moisture in the air and are most common during the winter months.

When there is sufficient moisture present above the top level of the mountain, the clouds develop within the crest of the mountain waves where the air is rising.

Mount Shasta, a 14,180-foot-high potentially-active stratovolcano, is one of the places to spot them in the state, said the Shasta-Trinity National Forest Service.

Forecasters said the clouds are most often seen in the winter or spring when winds aloft are typically the strongest.

Because of their saucer-like shape, the clouds are frequently mistaken for UFOs —  especially by people who spend much of their time searching for UFOs.

Much like the famed Roswell, N.M., Mount Shasta has become an attraction for extraterrestrial-life enthusiasts and conspiracy theorists. The nearby town of McCloud will be hosting a “Meet the Venusians — We Are in Contact” conference later this year.

CLICK HERE FOR THE FOX NEWS APP

“There’s that Flying Saucer again,” one person quipped on Facebook.

“It’s the Enterprise,” one person wrote, “I knew they were space ships this just proves it.”

Westlake Legal Group 86493347_2604300783135298_6096232870060228608_o Cloud over Mt. Shasta appears 'out of this world' Julia Musto fox-news/us/us-regions/west/california fox-news/us/us-regions/southwest/new-mexico fox-news/us/environment fox-news/us/crime/police-and-law-enforcement fox-news/topic/aliens fox-news/tech/companies/facebook fox-news/science/air-and-space/ufos fox-news/science fox news fnc/tech fnc article 14d036f4-636d-5e55-b652-4205a552b252   Westlake Legal Group 86493347_2604300783135298_6096232870060228608_o Cloud over Mt. Shasta appears 'out of this world' Julia Musto fox-news/us/us-regions/west/california fox-news/us/us-regions/southwest/new-mexico fox-news/us/environment fox-news/us/crime/police-and-law-enforcement fox-news/topic/aliens fox-news/tech/companies/facebook fox-news/science/air-and-space/ufos fox-news/science fox news fnc/tech fnc article 14d036f4-636d-5e55-b652-4205a552b252

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Chinese hacking: 5 major cases of Beijing-linked cyber intrusion

Amid the growing political and economic influence of China, attention has turned to Beijing’s concerted efforts to collect data on Americans and steal scientific research.

In 2015, Chinese President Xi Jinping promised then-President Barack Obama that his country would stop such practices. But, China has continued its intrusion into U.S. cybersecurity unabated.

Here are five major cyberattacks linked to China:

Equifax

Earlier this month, the Justice Department charged four members of the Chinese military with breaking into the computer networks of the credit-reporting agency Equifax and stealing the personal information of millions of Americans.

The four defendants, all members of the People’s Liberation Army,  also stood accused of stealing Equifax’s trade secrets.

Experts monitoring the dark web said they saw no evidence of data stolen in the Equifax hack being sold to common criminals for ID theft and credit card fraud, suggesting Beijing’s motive was more about espionage than stealing trade secrets.

U.S. Office of Personnel Management

In June 2015, the U.S. Office of Personnel Management announced that it had been targeted in a cyberattack that compromised the personal data of over 21 million current, former and prospective federal employees.

Westlake Legal Group USOPM Chinese hacking: 5 major cases of Beijing-linked cyber intrusion fox-news/world/world-regions/china fox-news/tech/topics/cybercrime fox news fnc/tech fnc Bradford Betz article 7802df48-16f9-5542-b8c5-4e53535309e9

The U.S. Office of Personnel Management announced it was the victim of a massive cyberattack in 2015. (Facebook/@USOPM)

Although the first hacker was detected in March 2014, a second intruder went undetected until April 2015, by which time data on security clearances, background checks, and fingerprint records had been extracted, investigators said. A House inquiry found the hack likely was the work of “Deep Panda,” a group linked to the Chinese military.

Marriott International

Marriott International announced in November 2018 that it had suffered a security breach on a massive scale, with the personal details of approximately 500 million guests having been exposed.

As early as 2014, hackers began extracting data, including credit and passport numbers, birth dates, phone numbers, and hotel arrival and departure dates on Marriott’s guests. The breach went undetected for four years and affected hotels in the Starwood chain that Marriott acquired in 2016, officials said.

Analysts noted that information from hotels – common venues for extramarital affairs and corporate espionage – could be used for blackmail and counterespionage. Attorney General William Barr has blamed the hack on Chinese agents.

Anthem  

Between 2014 and 2015, hackers stole personal data on nearly 80 million current and former customers and employees of Anthem, an Indiana-based health insurer. Stolen data included Social Security numbers, birth dates, employment details, incomes and street addresses.

Officials with Symantec, a cybersecurity firm, said the hack was believed to be the work of a well-resourced Chinese group called Black Vine that had been conducting cyber espionage against aerospace, energy and health care industries.

OREGON WIDEROWER, 80, SCAMMED OUT OF $200G IN ONLINE DATING SCAM, OFFICIALS WARN: ‘DON’T GET CATFISHED’

U.S. Universities

In March 2019, iDefense, a cybersecurity intelligence unit of Accenture Security, reported that several American universities had been targeted by Chinese hackers looking to steal maritime military technology and secrets.

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

The cybersecurity unit had identified the targeted universities by observing that their networks were pinging servers located in China that were suspected to be controlled by a Chinese hacking group known interchangeably as TEMP.Persicope, Leviathan, or Mudcarp, according to reporting from The Wall Street Journal.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Westlake Legal Group 854081161001_6131394205001_6131388300001-vs Chinese hacking: 5 major cases of Beijing-linked cyber intrusion fox-news/world/world-regions/china fox-news/tech/topics/cybercrime fox news fnc/tech fnc Bradford Betz article 7802df48-16f9-5542-b8c5-4e53535309e9   Westlake Legal Group 854081161001_6131394205001_6131388300001-vs Chinese hacking: 5 major cases of Beijing-linked cyber intrusion fox-news/world/world-regions/china fox-news/tech/topics/cybercrime fox news fnc/tech fnc Bradford Betz article 7802df48-16f9-5542-b8c5-4e53535309e9

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Sue robocallers, photograph Amazon deliveries, VR after death and more: Tech Q&A

Each week, I receive tons of questions from my listeners about tech concerns, new products and all things digital.

Sometimes, choosing the most interesting questions to highlight is the best part of my job. This week, I received questions about robocall counterpunches, virtual reality for survivors, communicating with your Amazon delivery driver and more.

Do you have a question you’d like to ask me? I’d like to help you.

Tap or click here to email me directly.

Amazon delivery woes

Q: Is it possible to get pictures of where the Amazon driver leaves my boxes? Sometimes the boxes are by the front door and other times I have to hunt to find them.

A: Yes, Amazon is a fast and all-encompassing service, but drivers don’t always know exactly where to leave your parcel. This means customers sometimes have to root around their front yards to find them.

You are on the right track, though: Amazon drivers do take pictures of your package delivery. You will almost always have access to these photos. So, if you’re not exactly sure where the package is located, the image should assist you in tracking it down.

This is just one of the many perks of Amazon delivery, especially if you are a Prime member. Meanwhile, keep an eye out for drone delivery which is likely to become a reality in the near future. Tap or click here for the top 20 Amazon perks.

VR séance

Q: I saw the story about a mother who used virtual reality to talk to her deceased daughter. Can you tell me more about this technology? I cried watching this part of your show.

A: This may be one of the most remarkable uses of virtual reality so far — something that is not merely entertaining or impressive, but truly meaningful to a mother who lost her beloved child. The South Korean company in charge of this groundbreaking technology enables users to interact with, and even physically touch, their late loved ones.

Such VR experiments are still being developed, and they will remain controversial for a good long while as regular people start to wonder whether they can commune with the deceased. In the end, this reality remains virtual. It can never replace a flesh-and-blood human.

Tap or click here to see a mother interact with a virtual version of her deceased daughter.

Sue spammers

Q: I am so tired of robocallers. Can I sue them? They are using the phone line that I pay for to harass me!

A: If you really want to get someone’s attention, file a lawsuit. For years, robocallers have hidden behind the first amendment but recipients are starting to fight back, as are carriers, government agencies and third-party companies.

Far more powerful than a “do not call” registry, Robo Revenge is an app that is specifically designed to threaten callers with legal action. The app uses a fake credit card number to mislead robocallers and then identify them, allowing plaintiffs to sue for up to $3,000 per call.

This may seem too good to be true, but a federal law enables you to sue relentless callers. Tap or click here to learn more about this app that lets you sue robocallers.

Windows 10 advice

Q: I just upgraded to Windows 10. Do you have a list of downloads you recommend?

A: Each new version of Windows brings a new set of tools. The vast majority of functions will be familiar to regular users and, for the most part, a new update is easy to learn.

New features help you stay on task, organize your desktop, connect to your phone and remove those heaps of extraneous cookies and background tasks. One of my favorite little touches is Pixlr, a free photo-editing program that enables you to both edit images and draw over them.

Tap or click here for 10 Windows essentials you need to download.

Stream my show

Q: Your TV show is great. You present tech topics that are entertaining and informative. Can I watch it online instead of on my cable channels?

A: I am so glad to hear that. The best part of producing this show, aside from having so much fun, is connecting with my audience. There are many ways to watch or listen to my show, including my weekly podcast.

Go to GetKim.com and use promo code “Kim” to get a free seven-day trial; however, many fans are unaware they can also find multimedia content on my YouTube channel. There, you can play a variety of video segments, including features and explainers. They are often funny and always engaging.

While I love radio and have made a whole career in the sound booth, seeing a certain type of technology in use is often more helpful than listening to a description of it.

Tap or click here to access my show segments and DIY videos on my YouTube channel.

What digital lifestyle questions do you have? Call Kim’s national radio show and tap or click here to find it on your local radio station. You can listen to or watch The Kim Komando Show on your phone, tablet, television or computer. Or tap or click here for Kim’s free podcasts.

Copyright 2020, WestStar Multimedia Entertainment. All rights reserved.

Learn about all the latest technology on the Kim Komando Show, the nation’s largest weekend radio talk show. Kim takes calls and dispenses advice on today’s digital lifestyle, from smartphones and tablets to online privacy and data hacks. For her daily tips, free newsletters and more, visit her website at Komando.com.

Westlake Legal Group robocall Sue robocallers, photograph Amazon deliveries, VR after death and more: Tech Q&A The Kim Komando Show fox-news/tech/topics/privacy fox-news/tech/companies/amazon fox-news/tech fnc/tech fnc article 5c1408c2-35d5-50ad-8272-d9615fea5535   Westlake Legal Group robocall Sue robocallers, photograph Amazon deliveries, VR after death and more: Tech Q&A The Kim Komando Show fox-news/tech/topics/privacy fox-news/tech/companies/amazon fox-news/tech fnc/tech fnc article 5c1408c2-35d5-50ad-8272-d9615fea5535

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

10 sites to watch movies for free

What should I watch? This question plagues us, no matter how we watch TV. Once we’ve binged our favorite series, seen all the recommended shows and movies, and browsed every genre we could find, we still hit a wall. What’s left? we think, as we impatiently await the third season of “Westworld.”

You may even be tempted to cancel a service that seems barren. Tap or click here for five things to know before canceling.

While some streaming services aren’t as popular as Netflix or Hulu, their archives are vast – and better yet, they’re free. These platforms are often robust and full of surprises, sort of like rummaging through a secondhand store.

Because they’re streaming, they’re about as easy to access as anything on the internet, although some may require a little extra gear, like a Roku or Amazon Fire TV stick. If you have a Fire TV Stick or Cube, tap or click for 10 features you might not know about using your Amazon streaming gadgets.

Here are 10 of the best sites for watching movies free. Make sure to bookmark your favorites so nights at home can be just as amazing as going out to the movies. Just remember, like all streaming services, content changes periodically.

1. Kanopy

If you love art house or classic movies, Kanopy is the best site for free streaming. With entries from the Criterion Collection as well as contemporary indies, Kanopy shows high-quality and critically acclaimed cinema, all at no cost to its users.

To use Kanopy, your local library, university or college needs to be connected to it. With a library card or your college email login, you can access Kanopy’s catalog at any time. Tap or click here to check if your library is connected.

Movies playing now: “Ladybird,” “Moonlight,” Fritz Lang’s “Metropolis.”

2. Popcornflix

For those who prefer more mainstream movies, Popcornflix perfectly fits its name. The ad-supported service accesses tons of movies and TV shows. You can stream through the web, but you can also download the app on Roku, Apple TV, Google Play, Amazon and Xbox if you’d like to watch on a TV screen.

We’ve recommended Popcornflix before, and we stand by that recommendation now. Tap or click here to test it out on your smartphone.

Movies playing now: “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles,” “The Firm,” “Roman Holiday.”

3. Vimeo

Vimeo is a video platform like YouTube, allowing users to upload their own movies and clips to share in HD quality. You have to pay to watch some movies on the site, but many are free — particularly short films.

Bonus: It’s a great alternative if you’re not into the idea of Google knowing what you’re watching. Tap or click here for other Google alternatives for just about everything you do on the web.

Vimeo exists as a website and as an iOS and Android app. You can watch movies by streaming directly or downloading them for when you’re not on Wi-Fi.

Movies playing now: “Staff Pick Premieres,” a channel of “the best short films on the internet.”

4. Internet Archive

Do you love classic movies? Many golden age films are now live at Internet Archive, a site that captures all public domain media. Most copyright-free titles date back to the 1920s and 1930s. For classic movie buffs, it’s a treasure trove.

I interviewed Internet Archive founder Brewster Kahle about digital time travel. Tap or click here to listen to our fascinating conversation.

Movies playing now: “Plan 9 from Outer Space,” “The Three Stooges,” the Charlie Chaplin collection.

5. Sony Crackle

Sony Crackle, formerly known as Crackle, is another great site that supports itself with ads. If you really like action and thriller movies, and some older TV shows that are hard to find on other platforms, Sony Crackle is worth the occasional interruptions.

Movies playing now: “Black Mass,” “Concussion,” the “Friday the 13th” series.

6. Vudu

Though primarily a platform for buying movies and TV episodes, Vudu also has free content – once again, thanks to ads. Vudu has a diverse catalog and reports how long movies will remain free.

You can get Vudu on your computer, game consoles, streaming devices, smart TVs, Blu-ray players, phones and tablets. You just have to sign up for a free Vudu account to use the apps and site.

Movies playing now: “La La Land,” Nick & Norah’s Infinite Playlist,” “Batman Forever.”

7. IMDb

Working through IMDb.com or Amazon Fire products, IMDb TV is a way to watch critically acclaimed films free from the comfort of your home. Like most of these streaming sites, this one is ad-supported, but if you have Amazon Prime, you can watch movies free through Prime on IMDb TV without ads.

Fun fact: Amazon owns IMDb. Tap or click for a full list of companies you didn’t know the tech giant owns.

To watch movies, you need an IMDb or an Amazon account, and you can watch to your heart’s content. IMDb TV isn’t the easiest to navigate or search through, but their “Top Rated” category allows you to find movies other users love.

Movies playing now: “A Few Good Men,” “Memento,” “My So-Called Life.”

8. hoopla

Libraries offer tons of amazing services; just tap or click here to see a list of the freebies offered by your local library. Your library card can get you access to hoopla as well. hoopla is the digital service of Midwest Tape, a company that provides media products and services like DVDs, CDs and audio books to libraries.

Just sign up for hoopla with your email and library card, and you’ll have access to tons of movies and TV show seasons, plus the ability to use the hoopla app on your phone, tablet, Amazon Fire device, Roku, Chromecast, Apple TV and Android TV devices.

hoopla doesn’t work with every library system, so make sure to ask the next time you’re at the library.

Movies playing now: Varies by local library systems.

9. The Roku Channel

If you have a Roku, you have access to The Roku Channel, which gets you free movie and TV content. You can stream live shows on the Roku channel, as well as watch an ever-changing catalog of movies and TV shows, all at no cost.

If you use a Roku at home, it’s time to go beyond the instruction manual. Tap or click here for 8 pro tricks.

You can add your premium subscriptions to the Roku Channel, so you can watch things like HBO and Showtime all on your Roku — but free content is available even without them, though you may find similar options on Popcornflix, FilmRise, Vidmark, American Classics and YuYu.

Movies playing now: “The Joy Luck Club,” “Tombstone,” “Indecent Proposal.”

10. Good Old YouTube

YouTube has its share of feature-length films uploaded illegally, and those tend to disappear quickly thanks to YouTube’s algorithms. But the service also has a good number of licensed films you can watch for free.

To see what’s available, just go to the Movies & Shows channel, available from the YouTube homepage, and click “View All” next to the “Free to watch” category. Quality varies, but there are a few gems, plus tons of kid-friendly content.

What digital lifestyle questions do you have? Call Kim’s national radio show and tap or click here to find it on your local radio station. You can listen to or watch The Kim Komando Show on your phone, tablet, television or computer. Or tap or click here for Kim’s free podcasts.

Copyright 2020, WestStar Multimedia Entertainment. All rights reserved.

Learn about all the latest technology on the Kim Komando Show, the nation’s largest weekend radio talk show. Kim takes calls and dispenses advice on today’s digital lifestyle, from smartphones and tablets to online privacy and data hacks. For her daily tips, free newsletters and more, visit her website at Komando.com.

Westlake Legal Group roku 10 sites to watch movies for free The Kim Komando Show fox-news/tech fnc/tech fnc article 4cbb73f5-4944-5d78-984a-50987050a308   Westlake Legal Group roku 10 sites to watch movies for free The Kim Komando Show fox-news/tech fnc/tech fnc article 4cbb73f5-4944-5d78-984a-50987050a308

Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

What does Apple have up its sleeve in 2020?

Apple is expected to have at least two big product launches in 2020 with the first round coming possibly as early as March. The focus of the second, in the fall, will likely be a 5G iPhone.

Apple typically rolls out new products in the early spring but the launch this year is a bit different than usual because of guidance from the company on Feb. 17 that the “worldwide iPhone supply will be temporarily constrained” due to the public health response in China to coronavirus, or COVID-19.

COULD CORONAVIRUS PRODUCE IPHONE SHORTAGES IN THE US?

Westlake Legal Group AppleiPhone11ProGetty2019 What does Apple have up its sleeve in 2020? fox-news/tech/technologies/mac fox-news/tech/technologies/iphone fox-news/tech/technologies/ipad fox-news/tech/companies/apple fox-news/tech fox news fnc/tech fnc Brooke Crothers article 5cc8ab43-6cd5-5904-b16c-fbf0a0a27af1

Phil Schiller, senior vice president of worldwide marketing at Apple Inc., speaks about iPhone Pro during an event at the Steve Jobs Theater in Cupertino, California, U.S., on Tuesday, Sept. 10, 2019. (Photographer: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

Here’s what to expect based on reports.

–iPhone SE 2 or iPhone 9: While final product names are never a sure thing until Apple actually announces, the “iPhone SE 2,” aka “iPhone 9,” is expected to be Apple’s second stab at a low-cost iPhone following the original iPhone SE that was released in March 2016. The new phone could be priced around $400 – cheap for an iPhone – and be based on the iPhone 8 but with upgraded internal components. Bloomberg recently reported that the low-cost iPhone is still on track for March though plans are “fluid” because of the slowdown in China.

–Updated iPad Pro: iPads often get some kind of update in the early spring. This year Apple is expected to focus on a new camera system with a triple-lens rear camera and 3D sensing that supports immersive augmented reality, according to various reports, including Apple rumor site MacRumors.

6 SECURITY SETTINGS IPHONE AND IPAD USERS NEED TO CHANGE RIGHT NOW

–MacBook Pro, MacBook Air: Following the October launch of the 16-inch MacBook Pro, which features a design overhaul of the previous 15.4-inch MacBook Pro, Apple is expected to update its more popular, and cheaper, 13-inch MacBook Pro. The updated 13-inch laptop is rumored to include upgraded Intel processors and a so-called “scissor-switch” keyboard that is expected to be an improvement over the much-maligned “Butterfly” keyboard on the current MacBook Pro and MacBook Air, according to MacRumors. The MacBook Air could also see an upgrade to internal components. The launch date could be March or this summer.

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iPhone 12 with 5G: A bevy of rumors are suggesting that there will be four iPhones coming out in the fall with screen sizes of 5.4, 6.1, 6.7 inches. All will come with organic light-emitting diode (OLED) displays, according to reports. The 5.4-inch model would be a new size and the 6.7-inch model would be Apple’s largest iPhone to date. At least one of the models is expected to get a design makeover. Rumors also suggest a chassis like the iPhone 4. The current physical iPhone design, with a notch at the top of the display that houses the selfie camera, has changed little since 2017 when the iPhone X was launched. Other expected features include a new processor, called the A14, and an upgraded camera. But the marquee feature will be 5G. Samsung, Apple’s chief rival, has already announced 5G Galaxy phones but 5G coverage in the U.S. is still spotty. Apple appears to be timing its 5G rollout to wider availability of 5G.

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5 Internet crimes you need to pay attention to

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A new FBI report on Internet crime highlights the most devastating cybercrime with reported losses exceeding $3.5 billion in 2019.

The FBI based its report on 467,000 complaints by the public to the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) in 2019.

SIM swapping is an emerging high-profile crime, the FBI cited in the report. In a SIM swap, a wireless carrier is tricked into switching the SIM linked to the subscriber to the criminal’s SIM. In one case based in San Francisco, the arrest of a SIM swapping group leader led to the seizure of over $18 million, five vehicles, a $900,000 home, and hundreds of thousands of dollars in jewelry, the FBI said in March 2019.

5 WAYS TO SAVE YOUR IPHONE BATTERY LIFE

Here are the five Internet crimes the FBI is focusing on.

PHISHING 

This spans many categories of crimes. Victims of phishing and related crimes totaled 114,702 victims, by far the largest number, with losses totaling almost $58 million last year. Phishing is defined by the FBI as unsolicited email, text messages, and telephone calls purportedly from a legitimate company requesting personal, financial, and/or login credentials.

“For criminals, phishing is cheap, easy, difficult to trace, and often effective. It frequently leads to other types of attacks, including ransomware, data breaches, identity theft, and email account compromise,” Paul Bischoff, researcher and privacy advocate with Comparitech, which provides services for data security and privacy, told Fox News.

EMAIL COMPROMISE

In 2019, there were 23,775 business email compromise and email account compromise complaints with adjusted losses of over $1.7 billion. The aim of the crime is to transfer funds from a business or individual to the bad guy. This is done by compromising legitimate email accounts through social engineering or hacking.

The FBI cited specific crimes such as spoofed lawyer email accounts and fraudulent requests for W-2 information.

YOUR SMARTPHONE IS REALLY DIRTY: 5 DISGUSTING HABITS TO AVOID

RANSOMWARE

In a ransomware attack, critical data and files are encrypted and locked, blocking access, until a ransom is paid. In 2019, the IC3 received 2,047 complaints identified as ransomware with adjusted losses of over $8.9 million. “Paying a ransom does not guarantee an organization will regain access to its data,” the FBI said, adding that organizations are often never provided with decryption keys after having paid a ransom.

The FBI did not cite one of the worst ransomware trends in 2019, the so-called Maze ransomware family. In this act, criminals typically threaten to publicize stolen data if victims do not pay the ransom

TECH SUPPORT FRAUD

In 2019, the IC3 received 13,633 complaints related to Tech Support Fraud. The losses amounted to over $54 million, jumping 40 percent over 2018. The majority of victims were over 60 years of age.

In one case cited by the FBI, a North Carolina man stole more than $3 million from hundreds of victims, duping them into paying for purported “technical support” services to resolve the issue.

ELDER FRAUD

This financial fraud targets those over the age of 60. In 2019, the IC3 received 68,013 complaints from victims with adjusted losses in excess of $835 million. The most common crimes include investment fraud, romance scams, tech support scams, government impersonation scams, and family/caregiver scams.

If you’re a victim of any of these crimes, you can report a crime directly to the FBI here.

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What happens to your social media accounts when you die?

None of us are getting out of this alive. With the advent of consumer tech and the internet, you can now make your wishes known in a myriad of ways. For starters, if you’re wondering where’s the best place to make sure your loved ones follow your will directives and have access to your passwords, you can do this online.

Specialty sites can store all your important documents from wills, trusts and passwords to your funeral preferences. While most sites are subscription-based, there is a free option that is HIPPA-compliant with secured bank-level encryption. Tap or click here for pay and free sites to help you organize your end-of-life planning.

Speaking of death, virtual reality recently let a grief-stricken mother talk and play with her deceased daughter in a park they used to go to together. The story is fascinating on so many levels that you have to see. Tap or click here for the heartbreaking story and videos that will show you what happened.

You can control what happens to your social media accounts when the inevitable happens. Here’s how to do it.

Facebook’s Legacy feature

Before you dive in, do a solid check of your Facebook privacy settings. Tap or click here my list of privacy essentials for any Facebook account.

On Facebook, you can designate a legacy contact to manage your account after you’re gone. They can do things like writing a pinned post for your profile as a farewell message or letting your friends know the details of a memorial service.

Your designated person can also respond to friend requests, update your profile and cover photos, decide who can see your feed and who can post tributes, among other things.

There are limits to protect your privacy. He or she won’t be able to read your messages, log into your account or delete friends.

Here’s how to set up your Legacy Contact:

  • Go to your general account Settings and choose Memorialization Settings.
  • Click Edit and you can choose a legacy contact.
  • Use the “Choose a friend” box to add your legacy contact.

That person will receive an email explaining how the process works. Just be sure you give your chosen friend or family member a heads up first and make sure they’re willing to handle the responsibility.

Once you have your legacy contact set, look through the Memorialization Settings. On this page, you can decide whether your legacy contact can download a copy of what you’ve shared on your feed, including posts, photos, videos, and profile information.

TECH ADVICE YOU CAN TRUST: Get breaking tech news as it happens with free email alerts from my desk to your inbox. Tap or click here to sign up.

Once a year, you will receive a reminder about your legacy contact. If you’re certain your person won’t change, or that you’ll remember to change them if need be, you can click “stop annual reminders” in the Annual Reminder section.

If you’d rather have your account deleted after you pass away, go to the Memorialization Settings page and scroll down. Right above the Close button, there is an option you can click that says, “Request that your account be deleted after you pass away.”

You’ll still need to enlist the help of a trusted loved one. After he or she lets Facebook know you’ve died, your account will be completely deleted.

SPEED UP YOUR SMARTPHONE: If your phone is sluggish, apps are closing and your memory is full, a cleaner app could be the answer. There are tons of shady downloads out there, though. Tap or click for 5 apps you can trust.

What about Instagram?

Instagram, owned by Facebook, has similar features and procedures when it comes to memorializing accounts. Like Facebook, your family can request the deletion of your account or have it memorialized.

Instagram doesn’t allow you to choose a legacy contact. You’ll have to leave detailed instructions to your loved ones to have your account deleted or memorialized.

To do so, he or she needs to submit proof of your passing and proof of authority under local law that the person who is attempting to delete your account is a lawful representative of you or your estate.

If you need to delete an Instagram account for someone who is deceased, tap or click here to fill out the report. If you choose to memorialize an account, it can’t be changed or altered in any way. This includes any previous likes, followers, tags, posts and comments.

Twitter is a bit more limited

Twitter recently announced it would be deleting inactive accounts. However, the backlash was so great, the company was forced to redact their statement and find a happy medium for its users. Tap or click here for the full backstory.

In the end, Twitter decided not to delete inactive accounts until there’s an appropriate method of memorializing those belonging to people who have died.

Twitter has not yet created memorialized or legacy accounts, but they will remove a deceased user’s account if requested by a verified immediate family member who can provide the appropriate details. Tap or click here to learn more about Twitter’s deletion policies.

BONUS TIP FOR EXTRA KNOW-HOW: PC vs. Mac: 10 of the biggest differences explained

Mac versus Windows: The debate that’s raged since the 1980s. Whole commercial campaigns were put together around this very concept, claiming one was better than the other.

But what are the true, bias-free differences between Mac computers and Windows ones? What sets each one apart? Let’s start with their price tags.

Tap or click here to see Apple and Microsoft battle it out.

What digital lifestyle questions do you have? Call Kim’s national radio show and tap or click here to find it on your local radio station. You can listen to or watch the Kim Komando Show on your phone, tablet, television or computer. Or tap or click here for Kim’s free podcasts.

Copyright 2020, WestStar Multimedia Entertainment. All rights reserved.

Learn about all the latest technology on The Kim Komando Show, the nation’s largest weekend radio talk show. Kim takes calls and dispenses advice on today’s digital lifestyle, from smartphones and tablets to online privacy and data hacks. For her daily tips, free newsletters and more, visit her website at Komando.com.

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Loch Ness monster: A history of the legendary beast

There’s no reason to think that the Loch Ness monster – colloquially known as “Nessie” – exists. However, the legendary dinosaur-like creature makes headlines every year.

One of Scotland’s oldest myths, reports that a creature was living in the Loch Ness lake date as far back as the 6th century.

The first written account was recorded in 565 A.D. in a biography of St. Columba. According to the text, the creature bit a swimmer and was prepared to attack another man when Columba intervened. He ordered the beast to “go back” and it obeyed.

IS THIS CHINA’S ‘LOCH NESS MONSTER?’ FOOTAGE GOES VIRAL

Hundreds of years later, the legend started to grow. After the construction of a road adjacent to Loch Ness was finished in 1933, giving onlookers an unobstructed view of the lake, a couple allegedly saw an enormous animal they compared to a “dragon or prehistoric monster” cross in front of their car and disappear into the water. The incident was reported in a Scottish newspaper and numerous sightings followed.

Later that same year, the Daily Mail commissioned Marmaduke Wetherell, a big-game hunter, to track and find the sea serpent. Wetherell reported back that he had found large footprints along the lake’s shores which he believed belonged to “a very powerful soft-footed animal about 20 feet long.” However, upon closer inspection, zoologists at the Natural History Museum determined that the supposed tracks were identical and likely made with an umbrella stand or ashtray that had a hippopotamus leg as a base.

Westlake Legal Group sci-loch-ness-monster Loch Ness monster: A history of the legendary beast Julia Musto fox-news/tech/topics/viral fox-news/science/archaeology/dinosaurs fox news fnc/tech fnc article 46aec1d5-8f5c-5d45-9ee8-2e3c5b4c4bd1

The infamous surgeon’s photograph that some people believed was a photo of the Loch Ness monster in Scotland. It was later proven to be a hoax. (AP Photo, File)

But the hunt was not over. By 1934, English physician Robert Kenneth Wilson took the iconic image known as the “surgeon’s photograph.”  The photograph appeared to show Nessie’s head and neck and The Daily Mail printed the photograph, later proven to be a hoax.

In a shocking development, in the spring of 1938, South African tourist G. E. Taylor filmed something in the lake for three minutes on 16 mm color film. The film was then obtained by popular science writer Maurice Burton. A single frame of Taylor’s film was later published in Burton’s 1961 book. However, Burton’s analysis concluded it was a floating object.

In July 1955, Peter MacNab took a photograph that depicted two long black humps in the water. But researchers suspected the humps could be a wave effect resulting from three fishing boats traveling closely together.

In 1960, aeronautical engineer Tim Dinsdale filmed a hump that left a wake crossing Loch Ness. Many said that the hump in Dinsdale’s 40 feet of film was a boat after contrast was increased in the photo. But in 1993, Discovery Communications produced a documentary, “Loch Ness Discovered,” with a digital enhancement of the Dinsdale film. A person who enhanced the film noticed a shadow in the negative which was not obvious in the developed film. By enhancing and overlaying frames, he found what appeared to be the rear body of a creature.

Later on in the mid-1960s, the so-called Loch Ness Investigation Bureau conducted a 10-year observational survey recording an average of 20 sightings per year and in the 1970s underwater photographs of what appeared to be a “flipper” were made public.

Additionally, several sonar explorations, most notably in 1987 and 2003, were undertaken to find the elusive beast — to no avail.

Westlake Legal Group lochness1 Loch Ness monster: A history of the legendary beast Julia Musto fox-news/tech/topics/viral fox-news/science/archaeology/dinosaurs fox news fnc/tech fnc article 46aec1d5-8f5c-5d45-9ee8-2e3c5b4c4bd1

A video dating back to 2009 may provide new evidence of the existence of an Alaskan Loch Ness Monster, Discovery News reported. (DiscoveryNews)

Over the years, more photographs have been taken, but most were discredited as fakes. In 1994, it was revealed that Wilson’s “surgeon photograph” was a hoax masterminded by the revenge-seeking Wetherell. Wilson’s monster was actually a plastic-and-wooden head attached to a toy submarine.

In 2007, lab technician Gordon Holmes claimed to videotape the Loch Ness monster, but a marine biologist said that while the tape was among “the best footage [he had] ever seen,” it was likely an otter, seal, or water bird.

In the summer of 2011, Loch Ness boat captain Marcus Atkinson photographed a sonar image of a 4.9 foot-wide unidentified object that seemed to follow his boat for two minutes. However, in April 2012 a scientist from the National Oceanography Centre said that the image is of a bloom of algae.

Several others have emerged over the years, including a photograph in 2012, a five-minute video of a “mysterious wave” in the lake in 2013 and a debunked Apple Maps photograph in 2014.

But these hoaxes have still not halted the search. More recently in May 2018, researchers announced they would investigate the waters of Loch Ness and use environmental DNA sampling of the waters to try and identify everything that swims in it.

In April 2019, their study suggested that the fabled monster could have been a giant eel and disproved a common rumor that a plesiosaur had somehow managed to survive the mass extinction event that killed off the dinosaurs 65 million years ago.

“We can’t find any evidence of a creature that’s remotely related to that in our environmental-DNA sequence data,” New Zeland geneticist Neil Gemmels later told BBC. “So, sorry, I don’t think the plesiosaur idea holds up based on the data that we have obtained.”

“There is a very significant amount of eel DNA,” he continued. “Eels are very plentiful in Loch Ness, with eel DNA found at pretty much every location sampled – there are a lot of them. So, are they giant eels? Well, our data doesn’t reveal their size, but the sheer quantity of the material says that we can’t discount the possibility that there may be giant eels in Loch Ness.”

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“Therefore we can’t discount the possibility that what people see and believe is the Loch Ness monster might be a giant eel,” Gemmels concluded.

Despite the lack of any tangible evidence, the Loch Ness monster has remained popular — and profitable. In the early 21st century, it was thought that it contributed nearly $80 million annually to Scotland’s economy by way of monster merchandise and tours for fans.

Never mind that the question as to whether Nessie ever really existed in the first place remains to this day.

Fox News’ Chris Ciaccia and James Rogers, Scientific American, Encyclopedia Britannica, Visit Inverness, the History Channel, The Telegraph, The Daily Telegraph, The Daily Mail, Alaska Dispatch, The Inverness Courier, The Independent, NOVA, A&E, The Smithsonian, Maurice Burton, The Museum of Hoaxes, Discovery Communications, BBC, the National Oceanography Centre, Apple Maps, Google Streetview, The Daily Maverick, the Loch Ness Investigation Bureau, and DNA Survey contributed to this report.

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