Tag Archives: globe

Microsoft study: Teens are better than adults at finding help with online issues – Microsoft on the Issues

It’s World Kindness Day – and we’re calling on teens across the globe to assist adults with online issues. That’s because, according to our latest research conducted in 25 countries, teens are considerably better than adults at tracking down useful resources to help resolve digital difficulties.

Both demographic groups say risk is a significant problem when it comes to life online. Both also admit that finding help can be hard. Some 74% of teens and 73% of adults say online risks are a “big problem,” while 65% of teens say they know where to find useful resources, compared to just 39% of adults. Both percentages are up from last year when 60% of teens and 37% of adults said they knew where to turn for assistance. In addition, 41% of teenagers and 44% of grown-ups said tracking down resources to assist with online risks can be “somewhat to extremely” difficult.

The findings are from Microsoft’s latest research into aspects of digital civility – encouraging safer, healthier and more respectful online interactions among all people. The study, “Civility, Safety and Interaction Online – 2019,” polled teens aged 13-17 and adults aged 18-74 about their exposure to 21[1] different online risks. This latest research builds on similar studies we’ve undertaken each year for the last three years. Previous projects polled the same demographic groups in 14, 22 and 23 countries, respectively. A total of 12,520 individuals participated in this year’s study, and we’ve surveyed more than 44,000 people on these topics since 2016. Full results of this latest poll will be released in conjunction with international Safer Internet Day 2020 on February 11.

Confidence in facing online risks

While two-thirds of teens say they know where to find help with online risks, their self-assuredness in managing online risk exposure is slightly lower than that of adults. Just under half of the teens surveyed (48%) said they were confident in handling online risks versus just over half of the adults (52%). To help build those confidence levels, check out our resources guide, which offers primary and secondary sources for all 21 risks covered in our survey. Additional information about a wide  range of online activities and potential risks and harm can be found on the resources page of our website.

A lack of confidence in knowing where to find help can contribute to concerns about online risks in general. Additionally, as survey results have shown for the past few years, consequences and pain from online risk exposure are real. According to our latest findings, 71% of teens and 65% of adults are “somewhat to extremely” worried about encountering online risks, while even higher percentages of both groups have faced consequences from digital risk exposure: three quarters of teens (75%) and 77% of adults. Consequences range from declining to participate in social media and heightened stress levels, to losing trust in others online or offline, losing sleep and even contemplating suicide. This year, 14% of respondents said they had thoughts of suicide following an online issue, double the percentage from two years ago.

Chart showing online safety

Microsoft’s Digital Civility Challenge

We’re making this preliminary research available on World Kindness Day to again call attention to Microsoft’s Digital Civility Challenge – four basic tenets for life online to encourage kinder, more empathetic and more respectful interactions. We’d never want to thwart debate, discussion or the free flow of ideas; it’s just important that those interactions take place free of name-calling and abuse. Specifically, we’re encouraging people to:

  • Live the “Golden Rule” and treat others as you would like to be treated by leading with empathy, compassion and kindness, and affording everyone respect and dignity both online and off.
  • Respect differences by honoring diverse opinions and perspectives and, when disagreements surface, engage thoughtfully by avoiding name-calling and abuse.
  • Pause before replying to comments or posts you disagree with and refrain from posting or sending anything that could hurt someone, damage a reputation or threaten someone’s safety.
  • Stand up for yourself and others if it’s safe and prudent to do so; report illegal and abusive content and behavior, and preserve evidence.

As we approach the close of 2019 and prepare for Safer Internet Day 2020, we’ll be ushering in not only a new year, but a new decade. We’ll kick off 2020 with a series of predictions from teens and adults about various aspects of online life over the next ten years. By embracing the Digital Civility Challenge and other common-sense habits and practices, we can help make the 2020s the safest and most respectful decade yet.

To learn more about digital civility and how you can help advance these practical ideals for online interaction, visit www.microsoft.com/digitalcivility. For more on digital safety generally, visit our website, “like” us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

[1] The 21 risks span four broad categories: behavioral, sexual, reputational and personal/intrusive.

Tags: ,

Go to Original Article
Author: Microsoft News Center

Global cryptomining attacks use NSA exploits to earn Monero

A new threat group has launched cryptomining attacks around the globe and is using exploits from the National Security Agency to spread its malware.

The threat group, dubbed ‘Panda,’ was revealed this week in a new report from Cisco Talos. Christopher Evans and Dave Liebenberg, threat researcher and head of strategic intelligence, respectively, at Cisco Talos, wrote that although the group is “far from the most sophisticated” it has been very active and willing to “update their infrastructure and exploits on the fly as security researchers publicize indicators of compromises and proof of concepts.”

“Panda’s willingness to persistently exploit vulnerable web applications worldwide, their tools allowing them to traverse throughout networks, and their use of RATs, means that organizations worldwide are at risk of having their system resources misused for mining purposes or worse, such as exfiltration of valuable information,” Evans and Liebenberg wrote in a blog post. “Our threat traps show that Panda uses exploits previously used by Shadow Brokers and Mimikatz, an open-source credential-dumping program.”

The NSA exploits include EternalBlue, which attacks a vulnerability in Microsoft’s Server Message Block (SMB) protocol. The researchers first became aware of Panda’s cryptomining attacks in the summer of 2018 and told SearchSecurity that over the past year they’ve seen daily activity in the organization’s honeypots.

“We see them in several of our honeypots nearly every day, which tells me they’re targeting a large portion of the internet,” Evans said. “Our honeypots are deployed throughout the world, and I’ve never seen a geographic focus of their attacks in the data. The applications they target are widely deployed, and without patching are easy targets.”

Since January, the researchers saw Panda’s cryptomining attacks changing by targeting different vulnerabilities — first a ThinkPHP web framework issue, then an Oracle WebLogic flaw — and using new infrastructure both in March and again over the past month.

“They also frequently update their targeting, using a variety of exploits to target multiple vulnerabilities, and [are] quick to start exploiting known vulnerabilities shortly after public POCs become available, becoming a menace to anyone slow to patch,” the researchers wrote. “And, if a cryptocurrency miner is able to infect your system, that means another actor could use the same infection vector to deliver other malware.”

Liebenberg told SearchSecurity, “It appears that instead of employing good OpSec they focus on volume. That’s one reason why they’ll keep using old, burned infrastructure while still deploying new ones.” 

Evans and Liebenberg said in their research that the Panda group has made approximately 1,215 Monero (a cryptocurrency that emphasizes privacy), which equates to almost $100,000 today. One Monero is currently equal to $78, but the value of Monero has fluctuated — beginning the year around $50 and peaking over $110 in June.

The researchers have confirmed Panda cryptomining attacks against organizations in the banking, healthcare, transportation, telecommunications and IT services industries. Evans and Liebenberg also told SearchSecurity that the best way for organizations to detect if they have been attacked would be to “look for prolonged high system utilization, connections to mining pools using common mining ports (3333, 4444), watching for common malware persistence mechanisms, watching for DNS traffic to known mining pools and enabling the appropriate rules in your IDS.”

Go to Original Article
Author:

What’s New in EDU: Live from ISTE 2018 |

Educators from across the globe are bringing their passions, experiences and big-change ideas together again for the 2018 ISTE Conference and Expo, kicking off this week in Chicago, Illinois. And if forward-thinking teachers and time-saving tech advancements are going to be there, that means What’s New in EDU is going to be there too.

We’re debuting brand new episodes of What’s New in EDU, our round-up of the latest efforts and products from Microsoft Education, throughout the week of ISTE. You can tune in to each episode live, even if you’re #notatISTE, so keep an eye on the schedule below:

What’s New in EDU: Live from ISTE on Monday: 5:00 PM CDT on Facebook Live

What’s New in EDU: Live from ISTE on Tuesday: 5:00 PM CDT on Facebook Live

What’s New in EDU: Live from ISTE on Wednesday: 5:00 PM CDT on Facebook Live

There’s a lot of exciting news to cover this week, including our announcement of Minecraft: Education Edition’s Update Aquatic and our partnership with BBC Learning on new, cost-effective STEM lesson plans. We also have an update on free workshops coming to Microsoft Store locations that help educators attain Microsoft Innovative Educator (MIE) certification.

If you’re an educator:

Office 365 Education helps create engaging learning experiences for today’s classrooms. Using the products you already know and love like Word, OneNote, and PowerPoint, reach students with features that help you create personalized learning experiences.

  • Dictation: This simple yet transformative tool helps students write freely and conquer the blank page using their voice. Dictation is now available for Word and PowerPoint on Win32 as well as OneNote for Windows 10.

New OneNote Sticker Packs: Have you ever been to the bottom of the Mariana Trench, the deepest canyon in the world? Did you know that an octopus can collect shells to make armor to fight off sharks? We’ve created four new sticker packs that explore the ocean and the marine life that call it home! We take a look at coral reefs, tide pools, the deepest parts of the ocean, and those larger species that need a little more space in the open ocean.

Learning Tools:  13,000,000 people round the globe regularly use Learning Tools to help them achieve more in school and at home. As part of Learning Tools, Immersive Reader implements proven techniques to improve reading for learners regardless of their age or ability.

  • Parts of Speech symbols: Teachers and students have the option to enable symbols for nouns, verbs, and adjectives over the highlighted part of speech. This is especially useful for readers who are color blind.
  • Adverbs: The Immersive Reader has had the ability to highlight important parts of speech, including nouns, verbs, and adjectives. We listened to valuable feedback from teachers that adverbs are also an important part of speech that should be highlighted and now adverbs are available in over 10 languages.

 

Microsoft Teams is the digital hub that brings conversations, content, assignments, and apps together in one place. Educators can create collaborative classrooms, connect in professional learning communities, and communicate with school staff – all from a single experience in Office 365 Education.

This month, Teams celebrates its first-year anniversary! Read more about the news, including new educator stories – and discover free teacher training materials.

  • Rubrics Grading: Utilize rubric grading and skills-based grading of your assignments making it easier to deliver feedback to your students. Students will also be able to see how they’ll be assessed upfront, before they start working on the assignment. Teachers can save a lot of time with a grading tool that’s easily applied to multiple assignments at once.

  • Forms in Assignments: In Assignments, you’ll be able to add a Form to a new assignment for your students to fill out and return. Leverage features of Forms reporting functionality, like auto-grading, feedback, and scores, directly in the Assignments grade book and keep track of scores across many Forms-powered quizzes.

  • Join Codes: Create a simple code for members to join your Class, PLC, or Staff team. This makes it easy for many people to join your team all at once. Display the code in ‘projector mode’ so that everyone in the classroom can see it and join the team.
  • Reusing a team as a template: Teachers can reuse an existing team as a template when creating a new team, then customize what they want to copy over: channels, team setting, apps, and even users.
  • Mute all students: There’s a time for conversation, and there’s a time for focus. You can now pause students from posting in the conversation tab.
  • Page locking in OneNote assignments – For teachers creating OneNote assignments, the pages of the student will now automatically “lock” as read only when the due date/time passes. The teacher can still edit and annotate these OneNote assignment pages with feedback.
  • Archive teams: Safely store your Class, PLC, or Staff team content in read-only mode. Easily reference archived teams while you are setting up your Teams experience for the next school year.

Open Up Resources:  Open Up Resources is a nonprofit working to develop the highest quality full-course Open Educational Resources (OER) curricula, standards-aligned, and provided for free to promote instructional equity. This curriculum was developed by Illustrative Mathematics, and currently covers 6th – 8th Grade Math. Recently, EdReports gave this curriculum their highest rating ever.

 OneNote empowers teachers and students to capture information and stay organized in their digital notebook.  OneNote allows students to organize their notes, ideate with others, and sync their notes seamlessly via the cloud.

  • Math Assistant Understanding the steps of a complex math problem is key to finding a solution. Math Assistant in OneNote Online helps this process by showing solution steps, as well as providing a graph for easier visualization. Read more about Math Assistant in OneNote online here.

OneNote Class Notebooks helps teachers capture and organize class content, create and deliver interactive lessons, provide feedback, and collaborate. Teachers can create a personal workspace for every student, a content library for handouts, and a collaboration space for lessons and creative activities. This school year, 25,000,000 student notebooks have been created!

  • Page Locking: Page locking allows teachers to prevent unwanted editing by students. Teachers can lock pages as read-only after giving feedback to the student but can still edit the locked pages themselves. Read more about Page locking in OneNote Class Notebooks here.
  • Teacher Transfer: This highly requested tool allows school IT professional to help transfer Class Notebooks from one teacher to another or to different schools when teachers change positions, saving valuable time and information.

Page Locking in OneNote for Windows 10

Microsoft Forms helps teachers quickly create polls, quizzes, and assessments, and see results as they come in. Microsoft Forms is simple to use, works on any browser and device, and lets you assign points for automatic grading.

  • Math Quiz: With additional tools to create math questions and worksheets, teachers can broaden the type of questions they ask in Forms to better assess Math skills. Read more about Math Quiz in Microsoft Forms here.

Microsoft Sway helps teachers and students easily create immersive, interactive presentations with images, text, videos, and other multimedia.

  • Refreshed iOS app: Updates to the iOS app include new commands that make it a breeze to add and organize content on-the-go.  Students and teachers will be able to easily incorporate their mobile captures, use drag-and-drop, tap to resize content, and instantly work together by using Sways Near Me.  Read more about the updates in our latest blog post.

Microsoft MakeCode brings computer science to life for all students with fun projects, immediate results, and both block and text editors for learners at different levels. MakeCode takes a unique approach to Computing Education by combining the magic of Making with the power of Code as a way to make learning about computers and technology more accessible, and interesting to a wider audience of students.

  • MakeCode for LEGO MINDSTORMS: Microsoft MakeCode provides a very easy on-ramp into robotics with LEGO MINDSTORMS EV3 by providing students with both a block-based, and text-based coding environment.  And because it’s browser-based, schools can use MakeCode for MINDSTORMS on any computer. For more details view this blog post.

 

 The Microsoft Photos app features a built-in video editor, making it easy for you and your students to create movies using photos, video clips, music, 3D models, and Hollywood-style special effects. Whether it’s a group history project, a lab report, or a music video just for fun, you can quickly sequence your project, add titles, drop in music, and enhance your story with special effects.

  • Timeline scrollbar: The new timeline scrollbar makes it easy to jump to a specific month or year to see the photos and videos you captured on a that date. The scrollbar is tailored to your collection, showing you at a glance where your biggest capture sessions have been and how your photos and videos are distributed over time.

Change the date on a photo or video: Have you ever taken pictures on a camera that didn’t have the date and time set correctly? Now it’s easy to get that media showing up correctly in your collection. Just right-click on an image or video to change the date.

Microsoft Store locations in the U.S. are offering free MIE workshops:

You might already be familiar with the Microsoft Innovative Educator (MIE) program, which teaches educators of all levels how to integrate technology and Microsoft tools into the classroom to improve their students’ learning experience. This program was previously only offered online, but now for the first time ever, Microsoft Store locations in the U.S. are offering free MIE workshops for educators who prefer an in-person learning experience.

Workshops are taught by associates who are certified MIE Experts, and just like the online MIE training programs, educators earn credit to become a certified MIE. To learn more, educators are invited to stop in anytime at their local Microsoft Store and speak with the Community Development Specialist.

If you focus on IT:

Intune for Education makes it easy to set up and manage Windows 10 devices in just a few steps, including deploying apps or settings to users, and managing shared devices.

  • User and Device Details Pages: At a basic level, administrators want to be sure that everything is working as expected so that the in-classroom experience is focused on learning. The basic question we hear from these admins is: “When student ‘X’ signed in to device ‘Y’, what should have been applied and what was actually applied?”  To help resolve this requirement, we have added a key feature for admins: Once they find the user/device in the management console, they can now see which settings and apps should be applied plus the deployment status for a user/device.

School Data Sync (SDS) simplifies class creation and management in Office 365. SDS reads from your Student Information Systems (SIS) and creates classes and groups for Microsoft Teams, OneNote Class Notebooks, Intune for Education, and third-party applications. Best of all, it’s free!

  • Education Security Groups: SDS creates new Education Security Groups by default. The new groups will include the All Teachers, All Students, Teachers of School, and Students of School. These groups can be used for Intune for Education device policy, Group Based Licensing, Conditional Access Policy, and several other O365 security management features.
  • Expired Class Management: SDS provides options to rename expired classes, remove student access from expired classes. This new experience simplifies class management for term transition and back-to-school cycles.

To learn more about Microsoft Education and our tools and technology that help foster inclusion and support personalizing learning for every student, click here.