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Telegram Messenger is an instant messaging app that uses phone numbers (or optionally usernames) to connect users. With Telegram, users can send messages, pictures, videos, audios and any other type of file. The instant messenger app category is a hotly contested field, and some of Telegram’s competitors include WhatsApp, Google’s Hangout, BBM, WeChat, Facebook’s Messenger and LINE (among many others).About Telegram Messenger
Telegram Messenger launched in 2013, created and backed financially by Russian billionaire brothers Pavel and Nikolai Durov, the founders of Russian social networking site VKontakte who wanted to build a communications system that couldn’t be accessed by the Russian security agencies.
It is built on the open source MTProto protocol. Telegram boasts of being fast, reliable and available on (and accessible from) multiple devices at the same time. It also uses a distributed server architecture with multiple data centres spread out in different jurisdictions around the world.
Telegram is available for Android, iPhone, Windows Phone, Linux, Windows, OSX and via the web.Features
To begin using Telegram, you must register with a phone number. The phone number then becomes the your identity on Telegram. In addition, you can set a username through which other users can connect and chat without having access to the phone number tied to the username. Usernames are optional and can be deleted at anytime by simply saving an empty username.
In addition to text messages, users can send files of any type up to 1.5 GB. Telegram messages also indicate the status of messages sent. One check signifies the message has been delivered to Telegram cloud, and the recipient has been sent a notification, while two checks indicate the recipient has read the message.
Messages sent with Telegram are encrypted by default, between the user device and telegram servers, which guards against man-in-the-middle attacks. In addition, the messages and files are stored encrypted on Telegram servers, while the decryption keys are stored in Data Centres in other jurisdictions. This way, neither Telegram staff nor government agencies with subpoenas can get to user data.
For the truly paranoid, Telegram has Secret Chats which are conversations between users that make use of end-to-end encryption. That is the chat is visible only to the two parties involved in the discussion, and even Telegram servers cannot view the contents of the chat. When a secret chat is set up between two devices, Telegram helpfully generates a picture visualization of the encryption key for the chat, which both users can compare, and if the image matches, then the chat is secure.
For secret chats, a self destruct timer can also be set on messages. This has to be set before the message is sent. The timer begins when the recipient views the message, and when it runs out the message is deleted from both devices. Photos sent with a timer less than one minute can only be viewed while holding a finger on them, and helpfully Telegram notifies the sender if a screenshot is taken.
Users can create groups containing as many as 200 users and can send broadcast messages to as many as 100 contacts. The difference between groups and broadcasts is that in a broadcast message recipients don’t know about each other, while in a group all participants see all other participants.Conclusion
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What is MRSA?
Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, often known as S. aureus or MRSA, is a staph bacterium resistant to the standard antibiotics used to treat staph infections. This makes it harder to cure because fewer medications are available to eradicate the germs. MRSA infections come in two varieties: healthcare-associated (sometimes referred to as HA-MRSA) and community-associated (CA-MRSA). S. aureus is generally believed to be a typical component of skin flora and is frequently found in people’s nasal passages and on their skin, for example.What symptoms indicate MRSA?
Fever and a red
Filled lump on the skin.
HA-MRSA can develop in the heart, lungs, circulation, or around a recent surgical site.How does an MRSA rash appear?
A little lump or boil that resembles a spider bite indicates infection for the first time. The bulge and the skin around it might swell, turn red, hurt, and inflame (cellulitis). Additionally, the bump could be heated to the touch and ooze pus.Treatment options for MRSA
Medical professionals can drain the abscess as part of MRSA treatment, and oral or intravenous antibiotics are other options. Avoid attempting to remove an abscess on your own. To prevent the infection from getting worse, it is crucial that the surgery be carried out professionally and with sterile instruments. You should seek medical attention if the abscess does not discharge by itself after administering a hot pack to the region if it is tiny.
The most common MRSA type, HA-MRSA, affects persons who have recently visited a hospital, nursing home, or dialysis facility.
CA-MRSA can spread through close skin contact or crowded areas. Athletes in high school and college, as well as those living in dorms, jails, and military barracks, are more likely to get this type of MRSA infection.The spread of MRSA How?
MRSA can spread by touching an infected lesion or exchanging personal objects like towels and razors that have come into contact with an infected skin. There is a higher chance of contracting MRSA in crowded places or situations where there is skin-to-skin contact, such as in sports, the military, or some school and daycare settings.
Healthcare-associated MRSA (HA-MRSA) infection risk factors differ from those that apply to community-based MRSA infections (CA-MRSA).
HA-MRSA risk factors include −
Implantable Medical Devices: MRSA may enter your body through medical tubings, such as IV lines and urine catheters.
Long-Term Care Facility Residences: In nursing facilities, where MRSA is widespread, the infection can spread from carriers to people with compromised immune systems.
Following are some CA-MRSA risk factors −
Sports Involving Contact: In sports like wrestling, football, and others where there are wounds or abrasions on the skin, MRSA can spread quickly through skin-to-skin contact.
Having a Cluttered or Unsanitary Environment: MRSA poses a significant risk to jails, daycare facilities, student residence halls, and military training facilities.
Sexual Activity Among Men: Males who have sex with another man are much more prone to develop Pathogens.
Injecting illicit substances: MRSA may enter your body through shared or recycled needles.
Having a Tattoo: Tattoo needles may get MRSA into your body if not handled correctly.
Surgery or recent illness: Your body is more vulnerable to MRSA infection if you recently had the disease or underwent surgery.
Recent use of antibiotics: If you’ve recently used an antibiotic, your chance of contracting MRSA may be higher.
Contact or Infection with MRSA in the Past: If you have had MRSA infection in the past or are in close contact with someone who has, your risk of disease is higher.
Make an appointment with your doctor immediately if you get skin signs associated with MRSA or a fever. Keep the wound bandaged in the interim, and wash your hands often. Avoid attempting to pop or squeeze pus from your injury. This might exacerbate the illness.
Compared to a typical CA-MRSA skin infection, HA-MRSA symptoms are typically more severe. Your circulation, heart, lungs, other organs, or the site of a recent operation may get infected with MRSA after being exposed to it in a hospital environment.
Some signs of HA-MRSA include −
Rash Injury that Isn’t Healing
Like other staph infections, MRSA infections usually are identified using a bacterial culture. Your doctor will take a sample from your skin rash or sore using a cotton swab and from other places, including your nasal secretions.
After being submitted to a lab, this sample is put on a plate with ingredients that promote bacterial growth. The bacteria are then examined and classified after this. If MRSA is proven to be the source of your illness, further testing will identify the appropriate drugs that may be used to treat it. A novel, quicker test that finds staph DNA may be used as an alternative to a bacterial culture.
Depending on the infection’s type and location, MRSA treatment may vary. The abscess may need to be drained by your doctor if you have an MRSA skin infection. You might require this therapy.
Avoid attempting to puncture or drain an abscess on your own. The process must be carried out appropriately with sterile instruments to prevent the infection from worsening or spreading to other persons.
Taken in conjunction with other treatments, using certain antibiotics, such as −
Minocycline (Minocin) (Zyvox)
Your doctor will give you an antibiotic if you have HA-MRSA (acquired in a healthcare environment). Your infection’s location and the results of your blood tests will determine the medication you receive.
Depending on where and how severe your illness is, your doctor will recommend either an intravenous (IV) or oral antibiotic. MRSA infections can spread if they are not treated or the antibiotics used to treat them are ineffective. A life-threatening illness like that might develop.Avoiding MRSA
Medical staff must adhere to protocols to control any infection to stop the spread of MRSA in healthcare institutions. These practices might involve −
Putting on protective clothing
Adhering to stringent hand hygiene guidelines
Cleaning up polluted areas
Washing contaminated laundry properly
There are several actions you may take to lessen your chance of contracting MRSA in your neighborhood (CA-MRSA) −
When you’ve been around other people, wash your hands thoroughly.
Any bites, wounds, or sores should be bandaged and kept clean.
Avoid touching anybody else’s bandages, wounds, or cuts.
Share your towels, razors, clothes, and cosmetics with no one.
Athletes should take extra precautions to prevent MRSA, including −
Shower right after working out.
Shower at home if a public shower is unclean.
Prior to and following athletics, wash your hands.
Before utilizing communal workout equipment, disinfect it with an antibacterial solution.
Use a towel to shield your skin from the shared workout equipment.
Never reuse or share braces or splints.
Read more: Best streaming services
Here’s what you need to know about Allblk and whether or not you should check it out for yourself. You can sign up for the service at the link below:
ALLBLK is a streaming service from AMC Networks that offers movies and TV shows made for African American audiences.
See price at ALLBLKWhat is Allblk?
Allblk is a premium streaming service made primarily for an African-American audience. It was originally launched in 2014 as the Urban Movie Channel by RLJ Entertainment and was founded by Robert L. Johnson, who previously created the BET cable channel. In 2023, AMC Networks acquired RLJ Entertainment, including the Urban Movie Channel. In January 2023, the name of the service was changed to Allblk.Where is Allblk available?
At the moment, Allblk is available in the US as a standalone online service and as an add-on for several cable, satellite, and online services. Allblk also available in Canada as an add-on channel via Apple TV and Amazon Prime Video.
Allblk costs $4.99 a month, or you can also purchase an annual subscription for $49.99
Yes, Allblk offers a seven-day free trial where you can access all of its content with no restrictions. You can cancel your trial before the end of the seven days to avoid being charged.
African-American audiences will find a lot to watch on the service. From recent drama and action movies to documentaries, to filmed stage plays and more, there should be something for every taste. The fact that Allblk’s price is very low at just $4.99 a month should be a big incentive to watch the content. Allblk is growing its original content with a number of exclusive TV dramas, comedies, and reality series. The only thing this service lacks is content made for younger kids.
Read more: BET Plus: Everything we know about the streaming service
What can I watch on the service?
Allblk not only features hundreds of recent movies and TV shows from a variety of studios, it’s also the home for a growing number of exclusive original movies and shows only available on the streaming service. Here’s a look at some of the exclusive shows available on Allblk.Allblk – Exclusive original TV shows
A House Divided – A soap opera about the rich Sanders family dealing with lots of secrets, betrayal, and more. You can watch three seasons of the show, and a fourth is in the works.
Double Cross – A drama with a brother and sister who fight crime as vigilantes known as the “Wonder Twins”. Two seasons are available now, and a third is coming in 2023.
For the Love of Jason – A dramedy that focuses on the title character Jason and his dating life.
Covenant – An anthology series that reimagines classic stories from the Bible in the modern-day world.
Lace – A legal drama about a female lawyer who defends rich clients in LA.
Beyond Ed Buck – A docuseries about the deaths of two gay black men in Hollywood, California at the hands of Ed Buck, a white businessman who had major Democratic political ties.
The service will also be adding some more original shows in the coming months, including:
À La Carte – A woman falls in love with a married man in this dramedy.
Send Help – An actor who is riding high on the success of his TV show has to deal with a family tragedy.
Snap – An anthology-style genre show about a supernatural being that affects the life of a different person in each episode.
There are a couple of streaming services that offer programming similar to Allblk. Let’s check them out now:
The recent streaming service from Paramount and Tyler Perry Studios, with both classic and original movies and TV shows.
See price at BET Plus
Netflix has been adding a number of original series and movies tailored for Black audiences. That includes the acclaimed Spike Lee film Da 5 Bloods, along with more recent films like The Harder They Fall, and the Colin Kaepernick docudrama limited series Colin in Black and White.
Netflix is still the leading premium streaming service, with over 200 million worldwide subscribers. It offers thousands of movies and TV shows to binge watch, including its always growing list of original films and series, including Stranger Things, The Witcher, Bridgerton, and many more.
See price at Netflix
That’s everything you need to know about Allblk. We’ll update this post as more information about this streaming service is announced.
Our verdict: Xiaomi Mi Band 5 review
Also read: The best fitness trackers you can buy
The Mi Band 5 also gets several new sports modes, bringing the total up to 11 in all. In contrast, the Mi Band 4 offered a total of six sports modes. It’s nice to see more indoor activity features on the Mi Band 5. Check out all the new sports modes below.
Rowing machine (New)
Jump rope (New)
Indoor cycling (New)
Besides the added sports modes, the Mi Band 5 gets many new tracking features and improvements.Improved sleep tracking
The Mi Band 5 now has improved sleep monitoring, with continuous heart rate tracking as you snooze. Xiaomi claims this will help identify sleep problems such as irregular and sporadic sleep patterns and rapid eye movement. Based on the data collected, the app will give you suggestions on how to improve your sleep quality.Blood oxygen tracking
The Chinese Mi Band 5 also gets a built-in SpO2 or blood oxygen tracker. This was absent from the Mi Band 4. The tracker can apparently detect your blood oxygen saturation levels every second for eight hours in a row. That’s a total of 28,800 readings in a span of eight hours. This continuous SpO2 monitoring is also aimed at improving sleep quality. It will work in tandem with the Mi Band 5’s sleep tracking function to provide more comprehensive sleep quality feedback.Women’s health and PAI scoring system
Other new features include menstruation cycle tracking, breath training, remote control for your smartphone camera, and a new PAI Vitality Index. PAI stands for Personal Activity Intelligence and is a feature borrowed from Huami’s Amazfit wearables. It essentially gamifies health tracking by giving you a score between 1-100 based on your daily activity and heart rate.
Jimmy Westenberg / Android Authority
Apart from the new sports modes and tracking features, the Mi Band 5 also brings a major design tweak. Traditionally, all Mi Bands have had to be popped out of their silicone straps for charging. The new Mi Band 5 does away with that hassle and brings all-new magnetic charging onboard.
The band has a 100mAh battery which, Xiaomi claims, can keep the lights on for up to 14 days on a full charge.
See also: Does the Xiaomi Mi Band 5 work with Xiaomi Mi Band 4 straps?NFC and voice assistants
In China, the Mi Band 5 includes support for NFC and the XiaoAI voice assistant. The Russian variant of the Mi Band 5 launched with NFC, but the global model lacks this option. In fact, it lacks NFC, SpO2 tracking, and a voice assistant.
Now that you know all that’s new with the Mi Band 5, here’s a quick table summarizing the specs.
Fitbit Inspire 2: The Inspire 2 is the best gateway Fitbit thanks to its included year-long Fitbit Premium trial for new users. It is much pricier than the Mi Band 5, though.
HUAWEI Band 6: HUAWEI’s surprise fitness tracking hit of 2023 packs an SpO2 sensor, a large, bright smartwatch-like screen, and excellent battery life. The Band 6 is relatively cheap, too.
Amazfit Band 5: If you’re looking for a near carbon copy of the Mi Band 5, the Amazfit Band 5 is that product. It’s effectively an upgraded Mi Band 5 that’s also available in the US. It includes an SpO2 sensor and a two week battery life.
Xiaomi Mi Band 5: Price and availability
Jimmy Westenberg / Android Authority
The Xiaomi Mi Band 5 launched with the same affordable price tag as its predecessor. In China, the regular variant of the Mi Band 5 without NFC debuted at 189 yuan (~$29). Meanwhile, the version with NFC landed at 229 yuan (~$36).
Bear in mind that these were launch prices, so expect the Mi Band 5 to cost a lot less now that it has been around for more than a year.
The Mi Band 5 is also available in Europe and the UK as the Mi Smart Band 5 (albeit without NFC, SpO2 tracking, and voice assistance). You can buy the global Mi Band 5 for $39 on Amazon. Meanwhile, you can pick up the Xiaomi Mi Band 5 in India for Rs 2,999 (~$40).
Xiaomi Mi Band 5
A bit older, but also a bit cheaper
Xiaomi makes great cheap fitness trackers, and the Mi Band 5 is no exception. For well under $50, you get a bigger display, more trackable sport modes, 24-hour heart rate monitoring, improved sleep tracking, and PAI integration.
See price at Amazon
See price at Amazon
See price at Amazon
A: Yes. It features a 5ATM rating.
There are many reasons why people execute such attacks, but a recent trend has emerged in which attackers are now asking for remuneration with the promise that the attacks will stop once the payment is made. To better understand how to stop ransom web attacks, we will need to dive into the minds of the attackers and understand how they differentiate themselves.How Ransom Web Attacks Work
Think of a ransom DDoS attack as a kidnapping. The perpetrator has taken something of value from the victim and asks for compensation, promising restitution of what was lost. In this case it’s not a human being kidnapped but the ability for a web service to operate. Attacks often happen on websites, but they could also bring down any other service that uses the Internet. Some of the worst attacks could take down a service, even if the port attacked is closed simply because the infrastructure becomes overloaded by an excessive amount of incoming traffic. Lighter attacks may be more effective on an open port (i.e. a port that is actively “listening” for traffic because a service runs on it, such as port 80 for HTTP).
Unlike ransomware, which kidnaps your computer from you, a ransom attack robs you of your ability to provide services over the Internet. If your computer (as opposed to a remote server) is the target of the attack, you also lose the entire ability to communicate or browse on the Web. For major companies this may create losses that amount to more capital than what they would spend paying the ransom, which is why they may give in to the demands.What Motivates Attackers to Demand Ransom?
A ransom attack, as opposed to hacktivism, does not have any ulterior motive other than short-term profit. While hacktivists may be attacking a server for a cause (such as the October 2023 attacks on allegedly racist websites), ransom attackers will be satisfied only by a lump sum of cash. Hacktivism can be more severe in most cases since the duration of their attacks can be much longer. Despite the distinction I have outlined, the two groups may overlap. Hacktivists can sometimes ask for ransom, although the “reward” may not be in the form of monetary gain but a change in policy or some sort of other measure. Such was the case when Canadian intelligence services were threatened by Anonymous in mid-July 2023.How Service Providers Can Combat Ransom Attacks
As I mentioned earlier, ransom attacks can cause significant losses during the outages. The longer the attack lasts, the more tempting it is for the target to pay the ransom to cut their losses. This is a flawed way to do things and puts the victim at a more vulnerable position considering there is no guarantee that the attackers will keep their word. Such was the case in November 2023 when a Swiss firm called Protonmail that provided encrypted email services paid the ransom and the attacks continued. The payment simply motivates the attackers to press harder and try their luck again by adding more demands to the table.
The best way to solve the issue is to wait until the attackers move onto another target (which usually happens after they realize they’re not going to get what they asked for). If this is unacceptable, perhaps you should be running your web services on a load balancing infrastructure which will help maintain traffic flow while the main server is attacked. You could use a service like CloudFlare or Incapsula to make sure that addresses are filtered and no attacker knows your website’s actual IP address.
Miguel has been a business growth and technology expert for more than a decade and has written software for even longer. From his little castle in Romania, he presents cold and analytical perspectives to things that affect the tech world.
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Last Monday Google announced the launch of their basic call tracking solution for AdWords. Since then, my company has received hundreds of questions about Google call tracking from media, clients, prospects, competitors, and random people on Twitter. Google is calling their version of AdWords call tracking ”Website Call Conversions”.
In this post, we’ll answer a few of the questions we’ve received and explain who should use Google’s call tracking, and who shouldn’t.What did Google Just Release?
Google will now display unique phone numbers on AdWords landing pages dependent on the visitor’s session. In other words, every visitor will see a different phone number on the AdWords landing page. Google is essentially offering session-based call tracking for AdWords only. It is free and, again, it is only for AdWords.
It does not work for Google organic search.
It does not work for the Google Display Network.
It does not work for any lead source anywhere on the web, except AdWords.
From the Google AdWords blog:What are the Pros of Google’s AdWords Call Tracking Service?
It’s free. Free is free is free.
It works perfectly with AdWords. It is automatically integrated with AdWords and UA.
It is relatively easy to set up…not necessarily easier than a third-party call tracking number, but simple.
Keyword level call tracking for AdWords
Phone number appearance can be formatted to match the website designWhat are the Cons of Google’s AdWords Call Tracking Service?
Again, this list of cons comes from agency blogs, industry experts, and the limitations of Google’s AdWords call tracking platform:
It only works for AdWords. Most marketers use AdWords as only a part of their broader marketing mix. If calls result from a Google organic search, Google’s display network or ANY other source, Google call tracking simply won’t track that call.
No call recording.
No in-depth call analytics. This is the big one for our company. Basic call tracking is not powerful. Deep call analytics—conversation analysis—are extremely powerful. That’s where the power of phone calls truly lies.
No local numbers, only toll-free numbers are available. This is a problem for small businesses and enterprises with a local presence.
No telephone features like call routing, scheduled routing, IVR, and geo-routing. These features matter to businesses.Are Call Tracking Providers in Trouble?
No. Call tracking providers who provide more data than merely basic call tracking are going to be just fine.
Analyzing call conversations is and always has been far more powerful than simply telling you if someone called a phone number or not. That’s rather rudimentary stuff.
Will there be some small prospects or agencies that decide to use Google’s AdWords call tracking? Absolutely. But, will they simply ignore the call data generated by their other marketing efforts? Certainly not.
To quote a prominent marketer I had an email exchange with:Who Should Use Google’s AdWords Call Tracking?
If I was a small business spending $800/month on AdWords, and that was my only marketing spend, I would recommend using AdWords call tracking. It’s free. My call tracking vendor brethren might disagree with that statement. But, why wouldn’t you use it for that limited amount of data?
Google provides basic call tracking for free for AdWords. If I’m a small business owner I likely don’t need all of the deep data, recordings, IVR, and routing capabilities provided by LogMyCalls and some other call tracking companies. Instead, I just need to know if a call was made.
Small businesses—if they’re marketing exclusively on AdWords—should use Google’s call tracking platform.Who Shouldn’t Use Google’s AdWords Call Tracking?
In the days since Google’s call tracking release a consensus has started to build, marketers with a small AdWords budget could significantly benefit from Google’s AdWords call tracking. Agencies our company works with—and the blogs of agencies we don’t work with—are saying they will encourage their smaller clients to use Google’s AdWords call tracking. The data is basic, the information is simple, it is relatively easy to implement.
But, for medium-sized clients and enterprises, agencies will encourage them to remain with a third-party call tracking provider. As one agency exec told me last week:
“The data Google’s call tracking provides is just so basic. Sophisticated marketers want more data than that.”
Perhaps Acquisio’s blog says it best:
“Thanks to Google’s call tracking limitations, current call tracking vendors can rest easy. The limited scope of Google’s call tracking solution (Adwords only) means that multi-publisher and multi-channel call tracking will continue to thrive. In fact, call tracking vendors will even work with Google to generate phone numbers, so it seems Google’s release is more of a friendly pairing than an industry disturbing rival for call tracking providers.”
So, specifically, what types of companies should not use Google’s call tracking solution for AdWords?
Agencies: Agencies that want to use Google call tracking for small clients and a third-party call tracking provider for larger clients are going to find themselves in a mess of data, reports, and analytics. Don’t use two platforms when you can only use one. It makes life harder.
SMBs Doing More Than AdWords: Earlier we used the example of a small business spending $800 on AdWords as someone who should use Google’s call tracking tool. That is true – if that small business is ONLY spending money on AdWords.
Because Google can’t provide call tracking for any of those sources. Their tool ONLY works for AdWords.
Enterprises: Obviously sophisticated marketers at enterprises need more data than Google is providing on AdWords. Every enterprise exec we’ve talked to knows this.
Basically, any company that wants deep analytics or even basic telephony features simply shouldn’t use Google call tracking.What Does All This Mean for Marketers?
Calls are now mainstream for marketers. If Google cares about something, everybody cares about that something.
Google’s foray into call tracking validates the call analytics world. Google now believes that calls matter. The rest of the marketing world will follow Google’s lead and start caring about calls too. Call data and call intelligence are mission-critical for leading businesses. The exciting thing for the call tracking industry is that now, with the entrance of Google, there is a known entity that cares about phone calls. Google cares about calls!
In short: Google might take a piece of the call tracking pie, but they will also increase the size of the pie dramatically. More pie is always good for everyone.
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