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WhatsApp and Telegram Group Links Leaked Online

A security researcher recently discovered that a lot of WhatsApp and Telegram Group invite links that may not be up for public viewing ...

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Making Self-driven Vehicles a Reality!


To make self-driving vehicles a reality and to bring them on roads, they need to be able to safely and flawlessly navigate traffic without collisions or jams. Northwestern University researchers have made this possible by developing the first decentralized algorithm with a collision-free guarantee.

The algorithm was tested in a simulation of 1,024 robots and in a throng of 100 real robots by the researchers in the laboratory. The robots carefully and efficiently followed to form a command shape.

 “If you have many autonomous vehicles on the road, you don’t want them to collide with one another or get stuck in a deadlock,” said Northwestern’s Michael Rubenstein, who led the study. 

“By understanding how to control our swarm robots to form shapes, we can understand how to control fleets of autonomous vehicles as they interact with each other.” Rubenstein, the professor who led the study is the Lisa Wissner-Slivka and Benjamin Slivka Professor in Computer Science and Mechanical Engineering in Northwestern’s McCormick School of Engineering and a member of Northwestern’s Center for Robotics and Biosystems. The paper will be published in the journal IEEE Transactions on Robotics later this month.

Rubenstein algorithm is decentralized and not centralized which makes it foolproof and safer. “If the system is centralized and a robot stops working, then the entire system fails,” Rubenstein said. “In a decentralized system, there is no leader telling all the other robots what to do. Each robot makes its own decisions. If one robot fails in a swarm, the swarm can still accomplish the task.”

But still, to move effortlessly, the robots need to communicate with each other so as not to collide and for this, the algorithm divides the ground below in grids and by using a GPS type technology the robot knows where to go - where the grid is empty and no other robot is moving to that spot.

 “The robots refuse to move to a spot until that spot is free and until they know that no other robots are moving to that same spot,” Rubenstein said. “They are careful and reserve a space ahead of time.”  
These robots interact locally to make decisions and hence do not need a central command body. This system according to Rubenstein can be very effective in driver-less cars as well as in warehouses with many robots working at the same time.

Hackers made $82 Million through Bug Bounties in 2019


Hacking as a profession has now become a viable option for the hackers out there. Yes, you've heard it right, ethical hackers have made more than $82 Million in Bug Bounties held at HackerOne. To top that, the ethical hacking community on HackerOne has now reached over 600,000, with around 850 new hackers joining every day. According to a '2020 Hacker Report' published by HackerOne, a Bug Bounty platform in San Francisco, around 18% of the members are full-time hackers, whose job is to find vulnerabilities and assure that internet becomes a safe place for everyone.


On the HackerOne platform, hackers from across the world, 170 countries to be accurate, which includes India too, are working every day to ensure the cybersecurity of 1700 organizations, which include Zomato and OnePlus also. The US tops the 2109 list in the earnings made by hackers through Bug Bounty with 19%, India comes second with 10%, Russia has 8%, China a 7%, Germany 5%, and at last Canada with 4%. These countries are the top 6 highest earning ones on the list.

According to Luke Tucker, who is the Senior Director of Global Hacker Community, Hackers are a global power working for a good cause to ensure the safety the connected society on the internet. The motivations for hacking may differ, but it is good to see that global organizations are embracing this new change and providing hackers a new platform to compete and grow as a community, making the internet a safe place for everyone, all together. Hackers from various countries earned a lot more than compared to what they did last year.

Hackers from Switzerland and Austria made more than 950% earnings than last year. Similarly, hackers belonging to Singapore, China, and other Asian countries made more than 250% compared to their earnings of 2018. Competitions like these Bug Bounty programs have helped Hackers land into respectful expert knowledge, as 80% of the hackers use this experience to explore a better career or jobs. According to the reports, these hackers spent over 20 hours every week to find vulnerabilities.

Reserve Bank of India Experiences a Technical Glitch; NEFT and RTGS Go Down for Half a Day!


Electronic money transfer is something that has changed the way people used to transact. It has offered a way more convenient method that goes along the lines of modernity and the need of recent times.

The most widely used and popular mediums of transferring money between bank accounts in India are NEFT and RTGS. While NEFT has neither minimum nor maximum limits, RTGS is designed for heavier sums of money with 2 lac being the minimum amount and 10 lac being the maximum per day.

Per reports, National Electronic Funds Transfer (NEFT) and Real-Time Gross Settlement (RTGS) were disrupted for more than half a day. The signs of this started to show from Monday midnight.

Sources mention that this happened because of a technical glitch in the systems of the Reserve Bank of India. Nevertheless, NEFT and RTGS have been reinstated after inactivity of 12 hours.

Several reports reveal that the main issue allegedly was grappled by the Indian Financial Technology and Allied Services (IFTAS), which is an RBI affiliated branch when the “disaster recovery site” was being moved from locale A to B.

Sources impart that the NEFT transactions have as of now been brought back. The “end-of-day” RTGS transactions of the previous day are being worked on to get them to reach completion but the “start-of-day” for RTGS hasn’t ensued yet. Still, the restoration of RTGS is expected soon.

The setup for NEFT was established and supported by the Institute for Development and Research in Banking Technology. People will now be able to use this medium for online transferring of funds and money 24x7. Meaning that holidays or weekends would never come in the way of money transfers and funds would be transferred any day and at any time at all.

NEFT and RTGS are the most commonly used routes for online transfer of funds.

The former medium facilitates a provision for limitless one-to-one transfer of money from and to individuals and corporates with an account in any bank branch in the country. The latter, however, has the aforementioned limits and is a continuous and real-time settlements of fund transfers.

Russians were given ways to protect themselves from surveillance via a smartphone


Experts noted that most often smartphone owners are inattentive and infect their devices with spyware. Such programs can collect personal data and place it in the public domain, listen to conversations, and monitor the actions of the owner.

Sergey Nikitin, Deputy of the Group-IB Computer Forensics Laboratory, said that more than 90 percent of cases are not vulnerabilities, but user actions. According to him, the main source of infection is applications downloaded through the browser.

"The search engine, first, gives not an official site, but contextual advertising. Often, scammers buy it, and by clicking on the link from your phone, you download a malicious APK file," said Nikitin.
Nikitin gave an example of the GetContact app, which shows how a person is named in his friends' contact list. According to him, the user provides access to contacts that can leak to the network. He noted that such cases have already occurred. The expert advised not to download applications for remote management, for tracking the user. According to him, it is also not necessary to download the first available antivirus from the search engine, since an unknown program may be a program with a Trojan virus.

Kaspersky Lab expert Viktor Chebyshev also said that popular apps can be malicious. According to him, hackers often fake malicious programs for popular applications. "For example, we recently discovered more than a thousand malware that pretended to be a popular dating application. In General, in 2019, most often Trojans pretended to be photo-processing applications,” informed Chebyshev.

Another loophole for fraudsters is called remote control applications that allow to see the device's screen.

"An attacker can ask you to install the program and then conduct a financial transaction on your behalf. Many banks now show a one-time code in push notifications, so it is not a problem to see it on the screen," said the representative of Group-IB.
Experts also added that fake apps can be found even in official stores. You should be wary if the application requests administrative functions.