Weekly Wrap 232: Malware, mobiles and misery

Darling Harbour at duskMy week of Monday 10 to Sunday 16 November 2014 was very, very busy. I had very little sleep, and I’m exhausted.

Apart from all the events and media activity you see listed here, I ended up doing the long commute, almost two hours from Wentworth Falls to Sydney and two hours back, every day from Tuesday to Friday.

Normally I’d have stayed in Sydney, but hotels were largely booked out. Apart from the usual November conference season, there was also the massive World Parks Congress and many refugees escaping the G20 lockdown in Brisbane.

There was literally nothing available in my price range — well, apart from backpacker accommodation, but that’s not a good fit with having to get up early and concentrate on media work. There’s only so much enjoyment one can wring out of listening to drunken unkempt foreigners porking each other all night.




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Media Appearances


Corporate Largesse

  • On Tuesday, I went to a briefing on govCMS by Acquia and the Australian government’s chief technical officer, John Sheridan, at Prime Restaurant in Sydney, where of course they paid for the food and drink. It was this briefing that led to the ZDNet story.
  • Also on Tuesday, I went to the launch of the Huawei Ascend Mate7 smartphone at The Star casino. Food, drink etc. That led to the Crikey story. I now have a Mate7 evaluation unit which, we were told, doesn’t need to be returned, on a Vodafone SIM, as well as a t-shirt.
  • Also on Tuesday, I went to the launch of Audible’s “#ListenUp, Australia” campaign, a promotion which allows you to get three free audio books by Australian authors, at Luxe Studios in Darlinghurst. Food, drink etc, and also a card telling me how I can get a free Audible service membership.
  • On Wednesday, I had coffee with the good people from Recognition PR. They paid for the coffee.
  • From Wednesday evening through to Friday, I was covering the aforementioned AVAR conference at the Sheraton on the Park in Sydney. Food, drink etc. Media objects have yet to be extruded.

The Week Ahead

It’s another busy one…

On Monday I’m heading to Sydney to cover the International Association of Privacy Professionals ANZ (iappANZ) annual summit, and on Tuesday I’ll be writing about same.

The rest of the week includes a TV spot on ABC News24 at 1615 AEDT on Thursday, as well as my usual ZDNet Australia column, plus initial work on a ZDNet feature, a Crikey story and some other bits and pieces.

The weekend is once again unplanned.

[Photo: Darling Harbour at dusk, with the rapidly-rising Barangaroo development on the right, photographed on 11 November 2014.]

Talking the eBay data breach on ABC Gold Coast

ABC logoOnline marketplace eBay has suffered a massive data breach. Their official statement outlines what we know so far. This conversation on ABC Gold Coast from earlier this morning was the first of several media spots I’m doing today.

As I explained to presenter Nicole Dyer, if all 150 million or so user records were stolen, this makes it one of the Top 5 biggest data breaches by volume of all time.

eBay users should change their passwords immediately, and if they use the same password anywhere else, they should change the password there too — and invest in password management software so they can start using different random, complex passwords for every online service.

Also worth listening to is Will Ockenden’s report on ABC Radio’s AM this morning. It features security researcher Graham Cluley.

The audio here is of course ©2014 Australian Broadcasting Corporation.