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DOJ takes down global ransomware group

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The Division of Justice disrupted a world ransomware gang, often called Hive, for allegedly extorting greater than $100 million in ransom funds from greater than 1,500 victims world wide.  

In the meantime, BuzzFeed stated this week that it plans to make use of synthetic intelligence (AI) to create content material.  

That is Hillicon Valley, detailing all you should learn about tech and cyber information from Capitol Hill to Silicon Valley. Ship tricks to The Hill’s Rebecca Klar and Ines Kagubare

DOJ dismantles ransomware gang

The Division of Justice introduced on Thursday that it dismantled an international ransomware group chargeable for extorting greater than $100 million in funds from organizations based mostly within the U.S. and world wide. 

The ransomware group, often called Hive, has focused greater than 1,500 victims world wide since its operation started in June 2021, the division stated. 

At a press convention, Lawyer Normal Merrick Garland stated the group has focused vital sectors together with hospitals and colleges. 

He famous a 2021 incident the place Hive hackers deployed ransomware on computer systems of a hospital based mostly within the Midwest.  

  • “At a time when COVID-19 was surging in communities world wide, the Hive ransomware assault prevented the hospital from accepting any new sufferers,” Garland stated. 
  • “The hospital was compelled to depend on paper copies of affected person data [and] was solely capable of get well its information after it paid a ransom,” he added. 

Read more here

BuzzFeed to make use of AI for content material creation

Information, quiz and video games web site BuzzFeed plans to use artificial intelligence (AI) within the coming months to create content material, the corporate’s prime government stated this week. 

In a memo despatched to employees, BuzzFeed Chief Govt Jonah Peretti stated the corporate shall be aiming to “lead the way forward for AI-powered content material” and “maximize the creativity of our writers, producers, and creators and our enterprise.” 

“If the previous 15 years of the web have been outlined by algorithmic feeds that curate and suggest content material, the following 15 years shall be outlined by AI and information serving to create, personalize, and animate the content material itself,” Peretti stated within the memo, which was reviewed by The Hill on Thursday.

“Our trade will increase past AI-powered curation (feeds), to AI-powered creation (content material). AI opens up a brand new period of creativity, the place inventive people like us play a key position offering the concepts, cultural foreign money, impressed prompts, IP, and codecs that come to life utilizing the most recent applied sciences.” 

Read more here.

Breaking down the DOJ’s newest Google lawsuiT

The Division of Justice (DOJ) filed its second lawsuit in opposition to Google this week, highlighting the continued bipartisan angst from regulators and lawmakers in opposition to tech giants. 

The Biden administration’s case, joined by a handful of states, seeks to interrupt up Google to untangle what the antitrust enforcers say is an anticompetitive dominance within the digital advert market. 

Google denied the allegations and argued they’re much like ones made in a separate Texas-led case. The federal government faces a tricky highway forward in its problem. However it provides to the rising courtroom battles dealing with Google and illustrates how federal and state antitrust enforcers are plowing forward with plans to crack down on tech giants’ dominance. 

Read more here about what to know about the lawsuit

Google lays off therapeutic massage therapists

Greater than two dozen in-house therapeutic massage therapists have been a part of the latest round of layoffs that occurred at Google final week.  

In keeping with filings reported by CNBC on Tuesday, 27 in-house therapeutic massage therapists have been among the many 1,845 staff to lose their jobs with the corporate within the state of California. 

Twenty-four of the therapeutic massage therapists who misplaced their jobs had been based mostly on the firm’s headquarters in Mountain View, Calif., whereas three extra therapeutic massage therapists employed by the corporate and based mostly on the Los Angeles and Irvine, Calif. campuses have been additionally let go. 

Google is considered one of a number of tech corporations which have laid off 1000’s of staff in latest weeks. 

Read more here

Bits & items

An op-ed to chew on: US can’t afford to dawdle on investing in space-based solar power 

Notable hyperlinks from across the net:  

TikTok’s New Defense in Washington: Occurring the Offense (The New York Occasions / Cecilia Kang, Sapna Maheshwari and David McCabe) 

What Fb and Trump have in common (The Washington Submit / Will Oremus) 

Jobless claims down regardless of tech layoffs 

New first-time purposes for jobless benefits fell final week, at the same time as main know-how and media corporations introduced thousands of layoffs, based on information launched Thursday by the Labor Division. 

Within the week ending Jan. 21, preliminary claims for unemployment insurance coverage totaled 186,000 after seasonal changes, down 6,000 from the earlier week’s whole of 190,000. Roughly 197,500 Individuals filed to start new cycles of jobless advantages every week over the previous month, nonetheless properly under pre-pandemic averages. 

New weekly jobless claims should not essentially an ideal reflection of layoffs, as some Individuals who’ve misplaced their jobs might not have utilized but for unemployment advantages. The 1000’s of layoffs introduced by corporations resembling Microsoft, Alphabet and Amazon are additionally comparatively small in proportion to the pure churn of tens of millions of layoffs and new hirings annually. 

Read more here.  

That’s it for immediately, thanks for studying. Take a look at The Hill’s Technology and Cybersecurity pages for the most recent information and protection. We’ll see you tomorrow.

Supply: thehill.com

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