Techmeme
January 3, 2021, 1:50 AM

Top News

New York Times:
Sources: investigators are checking if SolarWinds was hacked via its offices in Czechia, Poland, and Belarus, where the company moved much of its engineering  —  Those behind the widespread intrusion into government and corporate networks exploited seams in U.S. defenses and gave away nothing to American monitoring of their systems.
Nicole Perlroth / New York Times:
Microsoft says SolarWinds hackers were able to view some of its source code by hacking into an employee account but were unable to modify code or access emails  —  The hackers gained more access than the company previously revealed, though the attackers were unable to modify code or access emails.
William C. Gustafson / GitHub:
Developer of Amphetamine says Apple agreed to let the Mac app stay up with its current name and logo, after previously threatening to remove it due to its name  —  Amphetamine is a free app that helps keep your Mac awake.  Amphetamine has been on the Mac App Store since 2014 and it's been downloaded over 432,800 times.
Catalin Cimpanu / ZDNet:
Researchers: more than 100K Zyxel firewalls and VPN gateways have a hardcoded admin-level backdoor that can grant attackers root access to devices  —  The username and password (zyfwp/PrOw!aN_fXp) were visible in one of the Zyxel firmware binaries.  —  More than 100,000 Zyxel firewalls …
Wall Street Journal:
An overview of tech to expect in 2021: better webcams, portable UV sanitizers, “assisted reality” glasses, more subscription services attached to hardware  —  New ways to work, exercise, see the doctor, watch movies and sanitize every surface in sight will continue to proliferate.
Katie Paul / Reuters:
Rob Leathern, Facebook's chief of advertising integrity who handled ad products around sensitive subjects, says he left the company on December 30  —  (Reuters) - Facebook Inc's chief of advertising integrity, who handled the company's ad products around sensitive subjects such as politics …
About Facebook:
Facebook says there were 1.4B+ voice and video calls on WhatsApp on NYE 2020 globally, up 50%+ YoY, and 55M+ live streams across Facebook and Instagram  —  Like all of 2020, last night's New Year's Eve was different.  There were fewer crowds celebrating in the streets around the world.
Alice Gledhill / Bloomberg:
Bitcoin crosses $30K to reach an all-time high, after growing almost 50% in December  —  Bitcoin, the world's largest cryptocurrency, topped $30,000 for the first time, just weeks after passing another major milestone.  —  The currency gained almost 6% on Saturday to reach nearly $31,000 …
Karlene Lukovitz / MediaPost:
Parks Associates: 20% of US broadband households currently use ad-supported streaming services and 15% use a freemium service, like Peacock  —  Twenty percent of U.S. broadband households currently use an ad-supported OTT service, and 15% use a “freemium” service, according to Parks Associates research.
Adam Clark / Wall Street Journal:
Under pressure, Deliveroo, Uber, and others in Europe are looking to reach labor agreements that offer some benefits without making workers full employees  —  Food-delivery platforms in Europe are offering couriers extra benefits in the hope of averting costly legislation on employment rights
Kevin Roose / New York Times:
A look at the tech companies and people that helped with issues from COVID-19 to wildfires to Black Lives Matter in 2020  —  This year, technology firms big and small stepped up to help with the Covid-19 pandemic and other thorny challenges.  —  Some years, I have to dig deep to come …
T.C. Sottek / The Verge:

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Earlier Picks

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Ben Lovejoy / 9to5Mac: