Week Ending: April 27th - A Roundup in I.T. & Tech News

Back to Blog

This week is an exciting one for us as it we’ve officially moved Claritas HQ to our new offices in Wetherby. While it’s been very busy for us internally it appears that the I.T and tech news agenda has been jam-packed too. Let’s take a look at some of the top stories as we move toward the end of April.

Legal age for WhatsApp usage in the EU to be raised to 16

WhatsApp has made the decision to raise its legal age to 16 this week for all those using it in the European Union. The Facebook-owned popular messaging service is changing its rules in light of new EU data privacy regulations coming in May and users will be prompted to confirm their age and agree to new terms over the coming weeks.

The news comes after the much documented Cambridge Analytica data scandal and is likely to mean a change in its user demographic, if implemented effectively (and that’s a big if). According to a 2017 report by Ofcom, approximately a third of all UK-based 12- to 15-year-olds active on social media use WhatsApp.

Tech giants are feeling increased pressure mounted upon them to ensure safety online and WhatsApp has been no stranger to scrutiny for its data sharing practices in the past. A spokesperson said the platform’s move would help it meet the "new high standards of transparency" in the EU. You can read more on this story via The BBC.

‘Master key’ allows hackers to open vulnerable doors worldwide

Researchers say they have found a flaw in the software of millions of electronic hotel doors, essentially meaning a master key could be used to open doors on every continent.

Finnish cybersecurity company, F-Secure, identified the flaw and was able to spoof master keys capable of opening multiple doors. The company began its research after a colleague’s laptop was stolen from a room without a trace of unauthorised access by the thief. Thousands of hours later and the company had found a way to hack into hotel rooms.

Fear not however as F-Secure has confirmed that it is working with the locks’ maker to create a solution to the problem. The locks in question are also slightly outdated, meaning many hotels have already moved on from this technology and will avoid the problem.

TSB’s tough week

TSB has had a week to forget or perhaps remember and improve upon. The bank conceded that an update to its systems had led to huge problems for customers since the weekend, with its internet banking down and users unable to get into their accounts for days.

By Wednesday TSB CEO, Paul Pester, had announced that the mobile app was back up and running, only to then backtrack admitting further problems later in the day. TSB customers naturally kicked up quite a fuss on social media over the major inconvenience but, more worryingly, the bank is facing a potentially multi-million pound compensation bill and regulatory fines for the crisis. Read more in depth via The Guardian.

Those were some of this week’s top stories but if you want more content, follow us across our four social media channels.