US Implements Sanctions Against LockBit Members in Wake of Ransomware Takedown

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The U.S. government has sanctioned two key members of LockBit, the Russian-speaking hacking and extortion gang accused of launching ransomware attacks against victims across the U.S. and internationally. The U.S. sanctions announced Tuesday are the latest round of actions targeting the hackers behind LockBit and other prolific ransomware gangs. In 2022, Russian-Canadian dual national Mikhail Vasiliev was arrested on allegations of launching multiple LockBit ransomware attacks. A third suspect, Russian national Mikhail Pavlovich Matveev, was accused of involvement in several ransomware operations, including LockBit. Security researchers say that ransomware victims who pay a ransom are more likely to experience subsequent ransomware attacks.

The Academic Exodus of Artificial Intelligence Mindsets

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According to Stanford’s 2021 Artificial Intelligence Index Report, the number of new AI Ph.D. graduates in North America entering the AI industry post-graduation grew from 44.4% in 2010 to around 48% in 2019. By contrast, the share of new AI Ph.D.s entering academia dropped by 44% from 42.1% in 2010 to 23.7% in 2019. Private industry’s willingness to pay top dollar for AI talent is likely a contributing factor. While AI graduates are no doubt welcoming the trend — who wouldn’t kill for a starting salary that high? Between 2004 and 2019, Carnegie Mellon alone saw 16 AI faculty members depart, and the Georgia Institute of Technology and University of Washington lost roughly a dozen each, the study found.

“Diem: Empowering Women and Non-Binary Individuals through Social Search”

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A startup called Diem wants to tackle the problem of “search engine gender bias,” where results can produce default male information, making many women feel unsatisfied by the answers they receive to taboo or personal questions online. Diem also recently partnered with verified content providers so users can get information from trusted sources. The first four companies are experts in the reproductive health space, including hormone health startup Aavia, sexual telehealth clinic Hey Jane, vaginal health startup Evvy, and female health brand Stix. In the future, users will be able to nominate community members who already have a Diem account. Six spaces are available, run by community members and inspired by popular posts on the platform.

Apple to Pay $25 Million in Settlement for Family Sharing Lawsuit

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Apple has agreed to pay out $25 million to settle a class action lawsuit over its Family Sharing feature, which lets users and up to five of their family members share access to apps, music, movies, TV shows, and books that they purchase. The lawsuit, which was first filed in 2019, alleged that “Apple misrepresented the ability to use its Family Sharing feature to share subscriptions to apps.”The news was first reported by MacRumors. Court documents from the lawsuit allege that Apple advertised Family Sharing on as an option on apps that did not support Family Sharing. “The vast majority of subscription-based Apps, which is a growing percentage of Apple Apps, cannot be shared with designated family members,” the court document reads. All or virtually all of these Apps, however, included the statement that they support Family Sharing on their landing pages through January 30, 2019.”The lawsuit alleges that Apple was aware that the subscription-based apps did not support Family Sharing, but still placed an ad for Family Sharing on them.