Spencer Platt/Getty Images(SAN FRANCISCO) -- Uber hires two hackers.
After remotely hijacking a Jeep and causing the Fiat Chrysler recall of 1.4 million vehicles, hackers Charlie Miller and Chris Valasek are now working for Uber.
"Looking forward to starting Tuesday with the great team at @Uber Advanced Technology Center," tweeted Miller. "Should be a cool challenge and a lot of fun."
Uber's Advanced Technology Center is where the ride-sharing company experiments with autonomous vehicles and robotics.
"Charlie and Chris are joining the team at Uber’s Advanced Technologies Center, and will also work closely with Chief Security Officer Joe Sullivan and Chief Information Security Officer John Flynn to continue building out a world-class safety and security program at Uber,” said an Uber spokesperson in a statement to WIRED.
Uber is no doubt concerned about the security of its vehicles. In February, the ride-sharing company experienced a security breach that may have exposed the names and license identification numbers of potentially 50,000 Uber drivers.
This photo released by University of Hawai'i's press site on July 29, 2015 shows Kim Binsted at HI-SEAS habitat on Hawai'i Island. University of Hawai'i(NEW YORK) -- Six scientists began their year-long stay in a solar-powered dome to help researchers learn what space travelers would endure while heading to Mars.
The 365-day experiment started Friday on Mauna Loa, a Hawaiian volcano, according to the University of Hawaii. It's the fourth and longest mission run by the Hawaii Space Exploration Analog and Simulation (HI-SEAS).
The experiment focuses on the crew's cohesion and performance to help determine the best way to travel to Mars and back, which is an estimated three-year journey, the University of Hawaii said.
"The longer each mission becomes, the better we can understand the risks of space travel," said Kim Binsted, HI-SEAS principal investigator. “We hope that this upcoming mission will build on our current understanding of the social and psychological factors involved in long duration space exploration."
seewhatmitchsee/iStock Editorial/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Twitter has committed itself to hiring more women in an effort to increase diversity, the company said in a blog post on Friday.
"We want the makeup of our company to reflect the vast range of people who use Twitter," the post read. "Doing so will help us build a product to better serve people around the world." The company hopes to increase its employment of women to 35 percent of its workforce, with other specific figures related to specific areas of business.
Data released by the company last year showed that women represented just 30 percent of its workforce and just 10 percent of its tech employees. By the end of 2016, Twitter says it aims to have those figures up to 35 percent and 16 percent respectively.
Data released Friday, however, shows that much of that jump has already been accomplished, and that women now represent 34 percent of the employees at Twitter and 13 percent of tech jobs.
"As we look ahead," the post continued, "we see opportunity rather than a challenge: an opportunity to build a platform and a company that will better serve the diverse community on Twitter and the increasingly diverse one at Twitter."
iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Small gains and losses, a calm end for Wall Street after five wild days of trading.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 11.76 to finish the session at 16643.01.
The Nasdaq gained 15.62, ending at 4828.32, while the S&P 500 was up 1.21 to finish the week at 1988.87.
When will the Federal Reserve raise interest rates? That's been the big question these past few weeks, but now many are wondering "if" the Fed will raise interest rates. Vice Chairman of the Federal Reserve Stanley Fischer said it was now too early to decide to raise rates, especially after the crazy week for the markets and China's devaluation of its currency.
According to the University of Michigan, consumer confidence has fallen slightly from 93.1 in July to 91.2 in August. However, the change is still nearly 11.5 percent higher than a year ago. University of Michigan Survey of Consumers Chief Economist Richard Curtin says, "The data suggest that real personal consumption expenditures will expand by a still healthy 2.9 percent in 2015, with the pace of growth rising to 3.0 percent in 2016. Needless to say, consumer sentiment must be carefully monitored in the months ahead."
World markets had their own issues this week with volatility and sell-offs, but Asia's markets ended mostly higher with Japan's Nikkei 225 gaining 2.9 percent and the Shanghai composite index up 4.8 percent. Europe's were mixed with London's FTSE 100 up 0.9 percent and Germany's DAX down 0.2 percent.
iStock/Thinkstock(LOS ANGELES) -- Police detained a Los Angeles man this week after he allegedly flew his drone dangerously close to an LAPD helicopter, which was on the hunt for a suspect.
After taking evasive action to avoid the hovering drone, the chopper diverted, tracking the drone operator to a Rite-Aid parking lot, where officers handcuffed him and took him into custody.
“I just got this thing!” the visibly perturbed man told police. “I don’t understand what I did wrong.”
Despite campaigns aimed at educating the public about laws governing the use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), the Federal Aviation Administration has recorded more than 760 pilot drone sightings this year -- around triple what they recorded in all of 2014.
Many UAV operators are “just going up at their leisure, and they think it’s a game -- but every game has consequences,” NYPD aviation unit Lt. Richard Knoeller told ABC News’ David Kerley at a chopper ride-along earlier this month. "It's a very dangerous, dangerous instrument."
If a drone smacked into a helicopter’s tail rotor, “it would send us spinning out of control,” said Knoeller.
“You would have to be very foolish to think you’re not putting people and lives in danger by operating a drone thousands of feet in this congested airspace,” he told Kerley. “If it does enough to shred the blade or damage any of the parts to the tail rotor, the results could be catastrophic.”
When pilots spot UAVs in their airspace, they may be forced to take evasive action. Even at high altitudes, pilots aren’t immune: Drones have been spotted as high as 10,000 feet, according to the FAA.
Of course, operating drones near airports and airplanes is illegal. But hunting down operators flying them illegally isn’t always easy.
Spotting a drone from above is like looking for a needle in a haystack, and because drone batteries only last about 15 or 20 minutes, police generally have to work within a tight time window.
Though the FAA has vowed that violators will face “stiff fines and criminal charges, including possible jail time,” arrests are still relatively rare.
“People think it’s the cool thing to do, and it’s just not,” Knoeller said. “It’s life threatening.”
In New York, where Knoeller works, there have been only two arrests this year – and just four in all of 2014.
But NYPD aviation unit officers are using every tool at their disposal -- including sensors, infrared cameras, and GPS overlays -- to track the drones back to their operator. Airborne officers can then collaborate with teams on the ground to apprehend drone owners.
"It's almost a matter of time, you know, before something drastic happens," said Knoeller. "When all else fails, it's going to be time to prosecute."
As for the man piloting the drone near the LAPD chopper? He was taken into custody, but not arrested or booked.
“Didn’t have anything to arrest him under,” said LAPD public information officer Nuria Vaneges.
Meanwhile, the LAPD plans to turn over its report to the District Attorney to determine whether they have a case – and officers confiscated his drone as evidence.
iStock/Thinkstock(AURORA, Colo.) -- Customers at a McDonald's in Colorado who want to order a Big Mac may be surprised when the restaurant offers them customized options.
A McDonald's location in Aurora, Colorado, is testing the burger chain's fast-casual "Create Your Taste" platform. With the test, customers use touch-screen kiosks to customize their orders, including choosing from 25 ingredients on their sandwiches. Choices include guacamole, parmesan, Sriracha mayo, jalapeños, grilled mushrooms and a buttered, toasted ciabatta or artisan roll. The customer's food is eventually delivered to your table.
Juan Samour, owner-operator of that location and seven others in Colorado, told ABC News that the new menu concept was designed "with the customer experience at the forefront."
"Right now, we're switching people. They're walking in the door, and they want a Big Mac. We have to try to convince them to try this new product," owner-operator of that location Jeff Heidrick told the Denver Post. "It's working, but we want to become a destination."
McDonald's has said it plans to expand "Create Your Taste" to 2,000 locations.
After a customer orders at the Aurora location, a staff member delivers your open-faced sandwich in a metal basket, "basket designed to showcase each quality ingredient," Samour said.
Other options for customers' burgers include Applewood smoked bacon, crisp red onion, caramelized grilled onions, chili lime tortilla strips and crinkle cut pickles, Samour said.
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images(SAN FRANCISCO) — Apple's special Sept. 9 event will be live-streamed online — and this time, Windows 10 users will also be able to join in the excitement.
A website for the event — where it's widely expected Apple will show off a new iPhone 6S — says Apple will support live streaming for Windows 10 devices using the new Edge browser, in addition to the usual line-up of Apple devices.
The event is scheduled to start at 1 pm. ET/10 a.m. PT and will be held at the Bill Graham Civic Auditorium in San Francisco.
Apple is remaining tight-lipped about the agenda for the event and in a characteristically coy invitation teased, "Hey Siri, give us a hint."
For those who take the invitation literally, Apple is even having a little fun with Siri. Ask the virtual personal assistant "Siri, give me a hint," and she will fire back: "Why don't you check a rumors blog? That's what I do."
Among the biggest updates expected for the possible new iPhone release are an even sharper camera, faster processor and force-touch technology, allowing users to press parts of the screen the same way they would a button, according to reports.
Andrew Burton/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — While investors panicked across global markets in the last week, stock exchange officials in the U.S. used a little-known rule to try to smooth trading.
For three straight days this week, the New York Stock Exchange put into action "Rule 48," which can essentially speed up the opening of trading to prevent a panicky sell-off all at once.
Here's more about "Rule 48" and other procedures that stock exchanges can use in emergencies: 1. Rule 48
When "extreme market volatility" is expected, the New York Stock Exchange can invoke Rule 48, which was approved in December 2007 by the Securities and Exchange Commission. The rule allows exchange officials to temporarily suspend the need for designated market makers to announce price indications before the bell, so it's easier to open stocks, or re-open stocks in the case that trading has been halted.
Part of the text of Rule 48 states, "An extreme market volatility condition may only be declared before the scheduled opening or reopening following a market-wide halt of securities at the Exchange."
The rule was particularly useful when investors were fidgety about a recession. 2. Circuit Breakers
The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority proposed circuit-breaker rules in response to volatile trading from the "Flash Crash" of May 6, 2010. That's when the major stock indices, already down, dropped 5 to 6 percent in minutes before rebounding quickly. The British trader accused of contributing to the crash has a hearing scheduled for next month.
Through the years, the rules have been revised to now say that trading can be temporarily halted or the markets can close in "extreme circumstances."
3. How Extreme Is Extreme?
The SEC has even designated thresholds of severity by which a decrease in the S&P 500 merits a market-wide circuit breaker. This can be measured by a single-day decrease in the S&P 500 Index, based on the prior day's closing price.
Level 1: 7 percent Level 2: 13 percent Level 3: 20 percent 4. What Times to Halt Trading
The "level" will depend on the time of the trading day, according to the SEC.
Before 3:25 p.m.: A market decline that triggers Level 1 or Level 2 circuit breaker will halt market-wide trading for 15 minutes.
At or after 3:25 p.m.: Market-wide trading will not be halted.
At any time: A Level 3 circuit breaker will halt market-wide trading for the rest of the day.
Founder of Facebook Mark Zuckerberg, right, and Dustin Moscovitz, co-founder have their photo taken at Harvard Yard in 2004 in Cambridge, Mass. (Justine Hunt/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)(MENLO PARK, Calif.) — When Mark Zuckerberg launched Facebook from his Harvard dorm room in 2004, his audience was college students.
Eleven years later, the Facebook CEO celebrated a milestone: One billion people — that's 1 in 7 people on Earth — logged onto the site in a single day this week.
"When we talk about our financials, we use average numbers, but this is different. This was the first time we reached this milestone, and it's just the beginning of connecting the whole world," Zuckerberg wrote in a Facebook post on Thursday. He said the record moment happened on Monday.
Starting out with an ambitious vision, even Zuckerberg didn't foresee the force Facebook would become in connecting the world.
"People often ask if I always knew that Facebook would become what it is today. No way," he reflected on Facebook's 10th anniversary on Feb. 4, 2014. "I remember getting pizza with my friends one night in college shortly after opening Facebook. I told them I was excited to help connect our school community, but one day someone needed to connect the whole world."
And he was the one who did. Here's a look at some of the key moments and milestones that helped Facebook build its user base.
2004: The site was intended as a directory of Harvard students only, but within months, thousands of students from elite colleges across the country had joined the network.
2006: Open registration launches, letting anyone who wants to make a profile join the social network. The newsfeed feature also launched this year, letting people stay more engaged to their friends' updates -- and kept them coming back for more.
2008: The Facebook app makes its debut, giving users even quicker access to checking in on their friends' updates.
2012: Facebook goes public with a $5 billion IPO. 2015: Facebook continues to innovate with new ways for people to engage with the world. Among them are video calling in the Messenger app, easy-to-read instant articles and a live-streaming feature giving users a front row seat to the latest happenings from their favorite celebrities and news makers.
Carl Court/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Noel Biderman, the CEO of Avid Life Media, is stepping down from the company in the wake of an unprecedented hack that left 37 million customers exposed.
"This change is in the best interest of the company and allows us to continue to provide support to our members and dedicated employees. We are steadfast in our commitment to our customer base," a statement posted on Avid Life Media's website said. "We are actively adjusting to the attack on our business and members' privacy by criminals."
Avid Life Media plans to continue to operate its dating websites and will be led by its senior management team until a new CEO is appointed, the statement said. The company also reiterated its commitment to protecting its customer base while also working with law enforcement to find the person or group responsible for the massive data breach.
A 500,000 Canadian dollar reward (approximately $376,000) is being offered for information leading to the identification, arrest and prosecution of the perpetrators.
Personal data believed to have been stolen from the adultery website Ashley Madison was posted on the dark Web a little more than a week ago, apparently exposing names, email addresses and phone numbers for some of the website's 37 million members, among other information.
The data dump came one month after Avid Life Media confirmed a "criminal intrusion" into its system.
Going by the name "The Impact Team," the hacker or hackers said the breach was spurred by a disagreement with Avid Life Media's business practices, specifically a "full delete" feature. For $19, the company allows repentant cheaters to scrub their information from the website.
"Full Delete netted ALM $1.7mm in revenue in 2014. It’s also a complete lie," the Impact Team wrote after the hack last month. "Users almost always pay with credit card; their purchase details are not removed as promised, and include real name and address, which is of course the most important information the users want removed."
Business practices aside, the hacker or hackers also had another message:
"Too bad for those men, they’re cheating dirtbags and deserve no such discretion...Too bad for ALM, you promised secrecy but didn't deliver."
iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- There were mass losses earlier this week? All gains for Wall Street on Thursday.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average up 369.26 to finish the session at 16654.77. Its biggest two-day gain since December 2008.
The Nasdaq also jumped 115.17, ending at 4812.71, while the S&P 500 climbed 47.15 to 1987.66.
Crude oil also rose 10 percent for its biggest one-day gain since October 2008.
Although there's hardly a sign of the plunging stock scare earlier this week, the S&P 500 may be headed toward a "Death Cross" according to Business Insider due to the technical damage. This happens when a stock or index's 50-day moving average "falls below its 200-day moving average and is often seen as a reversal in the prevailing long-term trend for a security," said Business Insider.
The second quarter estimate of the U.S. GDP beat expectations expanding at 3.7 percent when an estimate last month by the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis had it at a 2.3 percent pace. The BEA believes the reason is because of an increase in exports.
McDonald's and Tyson have cut ties with a Tennessee poultry farm after a video surfaced showing workers stabbing, clubbing, and crushing chickens. The video was released by animal rights group Mercy for Animals and also reveals "disgusting" living conditions of the factory chickens at T&S Farms.
Daniel Aguilar/Getty Images(BENTONVILLE, Ark.) -- The calendar may still say summer but retail giant Walmart is encouraging consumers to get in the Christmas spirit now.
With Labor Day more than a week away, the world's largest retailer is scheduled to launch its holiday season layaway plan four months before Dec. 25.
"Toy Week and the kick-off of our layaway program is about being there for those customers who are starting to think about and plan their holiday shopping -- we know not everybody is there yet, but for those who are, we want to make sure they have everything they need," Walmart said in a statement to ABC News.
Starting Friday, two weeks earlier than it did last season, Walmart will allow customers to pay for nearly 40,000 items in installments. Shoppers will have 90 days to pay for their items. Merchandise will need to cost at least $10 and the total of items under layaway must reach $50, according to the company.
"Retailers want to get customers as soon as possible and Walmart's jumping the gun," said Business Insider's Ashley Lutz. "They're saying, 'Spend all of your money here in August. Then you won't have money to spend in other places."
Customers will also get a sneak peek at the season's top toys before the competition. According to market research company NPD Group, toy sales this year are projected to climb 6.2 percent to nearly $20 billion, thanks in large part to the new "Star Wars" movie due out in December.
Star Wars: The Force Awakens is produced by Walt Disney Pictures. Walt Disney is the parent company of ABC News.
Starting Sept. 4, Walmart will stock its shelves with 500 "Star Wars" items, according to the company. It's also hosting 24-hour "Force Friday" events at 2,900 locations. Toys "R" Us also plans to join in the action with its own "Star Wars" midnight events.
In the retailer's case, it's hoping the Force will indeed be with it.
"Customers, fans, collectors and even wookies from across the galaxy are counting on us to bring them the hottest toys at the best prices and we won't let them down," Walmart said.
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- For the first time ever, one billion people have logged onto Facebook in a single day, meaning 1 in 7 people in the world accessed their profiles, according to the company's co-founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg.
The milestone moment happened on Monday but was shared on Thursday in a Facebook post on Zuckerberg's wall.
"When we talk about our financials, we use average numbers, but this is different. This was the first time we reached this milestone, and it's just the beginning of connecting the whole world," Zuckerberg wrote.
"I'm so proud of our community for the progress we've made. Our community stands for giving every person a voice, for promoting understanding and for including everyone in the opportunities of our modern world."
Facebook revealed in its last earnings report the social network has 1.49 billion monthly active users.
iStock/Thinkstock(LOS ANGELES) — Some of the world’s biggest automakers should have recalled millions of vehicles with keyless ignitions because the cars, which don’t shut off automatically if the driver fails to press the start/stop button, could be a deadly carbon monoxide risk, according to a new lawsuit.
According to the suit, filed in Los Angeles Federal Court on behalf of keyless car drivers Wednesday, there have been at least 13 deaths -- and a number of close calls -- from carbon monoxide poisoning after consumers failed to manually shut off their engines. The suit claims, “Reasonable drivers mistakenly believe that removing the Keyless Fob from the vehicle turns off the engine.”
Keyless cars allow drivers to start their engines without inserting a key into the ignition switch, but instead pressing a start/stop button. To shut off the car, they must manually press the button again.
The lawsuit claims the defendants -- Toyota, Ford, Nissan, Honda, GM, BMW, Volkswagen, Bentley, Mercedes-Benz, Hyundai and Kia -- knew or should have known of these risks. Yet according to the suit, they allegedly sold keyless fobs “without instituting adequate safeguards, warnings, or other safety features,” including a relatively inexpensive auto-off feature that automatically switches the engine off if the car is left unattended.
Some of the cars were equipped with audible alerts, which sounded when drivers exited the vehicle with the engine still on.
The lawsuit claims that, “for years the Automakers have known about the deadly consequences that can result when a driver exits a vehicle with our without the keyless fob and without having depressed the Start/Stop button. Nevertheless, even though an Auto-Off feature can be implemented without significant effort or cost, the Automakers have refused to act.”
Several consumers complained to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration about the lack of the auto-off feature, and in 2007, Ford and General Motors even filed patents to address the issue -- supposedly demonstrating, according to the lawsuit, that automakers (who read one another’s patents) allegedly “recognized the dangerous consequences associated with keyless fobs.”
Though some of the car companies installed auto-off in later models, they allegedly failed to recall the earlier model cars, or provide reasonable auto-off software updates.
While there have been lawsuits brought by victims of carbon monoxide poisoning (or their families), some of which have settled, the lawyers bringing this lawsuit are seeking class action status to represent all owners of the models of cars with keyless entry named in the lawsuit.
The car makers also allegedly failed to include warnings in car manuals or sales brochures and allegedly “continue to conceal” the safety risk from the public at large. Meanwhile, they profited from sales of keyless fobs, which are often part of a costly upgrade package.
Most car companies declined comment to ABC News, but Ford said, "Ford takes the safety of our customers very seriously; the keyless ignition system has proven to be a safe and reliable innovative feature that has been well-received by customers. Ford vehicles equipped with keyless ignition alert drivers when the driver’s door is open and the vehicle’s engine is running.”
Volkswagen said, “Volkswagen Group of America and its brands consider the safety and satisfaction of its consumers and passengers as a top priority. All brands within the Volkswagen Group are engineered to meet or exceed all government regulations.”