Weekly Digital News Roundup: Nov 26 – Nov 30
VTech says 6.4 million children profiles were caught up in its data breach
- According to The Washington Post, the data breach at toymaker VTech is growing more serious. On Tuesday, the company disclosed that in addition to the 4.9 million parent accounts accessed by hackers, nearly 6.4 million children profiles were also swept up in the breach, one of the largest targeting children.
- The company said that a hacker accessed its “Learning Lodge” app store database, which allows customers to download new software for numerous VTech toys – many of which are aimed at young children. “In total 4,854,209 customer [parent] accounts and 6,368,509 related kid profiles worldwide are affected,” the company said. 2.2 million of the parent accounts and 2.9 million children’s accounts were registered to customers in the United States.
- In this case, the alleged hacker — who contacted Vice’s Motherboard and provided to a reporter information taken from the hack — has said that “nothing” will be done with the information, apart it being used to reveal the company’s weaknesses. “Frankly, it makes me sick that I was able to get all this stuff,” the alleged hacker told Vice reporter Lorenzo Franceschi-Bicchierai. “VTech should have the book thrown at them.”
Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg and Wife Giving Away 99% of Shares
- According to the Wall Street Journal, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg used the occasion of the birth of his first child to announce that over the course of their lives, he and his wife Priscilla Chan will give away 99% of their Facebook shares, currently valued at about $45 billion.
- Zuckerberg and his wife, a doctor, said their daughter is named Max. The couple will make their philanthropic donations through a new entity, Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, LLC. Its initial areas of focus will be “personalized learning, curing disease, connecting people and building strong communities,” Mr. Zuckerberg said in a in a lengthy letter to his daughter posted Tuesday.
- “I will continue to serve as Facebook’s CEO for many, many years to come, but these issues are too important to wait until you or we are older to begin this work,” Mr. Zuckerberg wrote. “By starting at a young age, we hope to see compounding benefits throughout our lives.” Zuckerberg owns about 4 million shares of Class A shares in Facebook and approximately 419 million supervoting shares, Facebook said in a securities filing Tuesday. The vast majority of those shares will be directed toward his philanthropic work. He plans to sell or gift no more than $1 billion of Facebook stock each year for the next three years.
Apple Stores to host free Hour of Code for kids on Dec. 10
- According to the La Times, Apple is doing its part for Computer Science Education Week next week, hosting free coding sessions for kids at all of its retail stores around the world. The Cupertino, Calif., company will hold more than 1,400 Hour of Code workshops in 18 countries. It’s the third year that Apple is participating in the program.
- Sign-ups for the one-hour introduction to the basics of computer programming can be found at apple.com/retail/code.
- Apple will also hold kid friendly events at stores with developers and organizations that support computer science education. On Dec. 9, kids can meet Sofia and Isabella Mandich, 14-year-old twins and co-founders of app development studio Twins Rock Media at the Apple Store on the Third Street Promenade. The sisters will discuss their experience at WWDC 2015 and talk about what inspired them to start developing apps. The event starts at 4 p.m.