Archive For 2019年1月26日
Prime Minister Tony Abbott says Australia should brace themselves for painful weeks ahead as world leaders push for an independent investigation of the downing of Malaysia Airlines flight MH17.
Mr Abbott said his thoughts were with the families of the 28 Australian victims who were among the almost 300 people on board flight MH17 when it was shot down over eastern Ukraine.
“Yesterday we saw the smouldering wreckage on our screens, today we have seen some of the faces of the dead,” he told reporters on Saturday.
“I don’t believe any Australian, any human being, could fail to be moved by what we’ve seen.
“I have to say that as a nation we need to prepare ourselves for difficult and painful weeks ahead as we strive to find out precisely what has happened and who was responsible.”
Mr Abbott said the priority was for an independent investigation into the crash and for experts to gain access to the site where MH17 came down in a rebel-held area near the Russian boarder in eastern Ukraine.
“Right now for all we know because this site is controlled by Russian-backed rebels, right now for all we know bodies remain strewn over the fields of the eastern Ukraine and armed rebels are trampling the site,” he said.
“So it is absolutely vital that an independent, international investigation begin as a soon as possible so that we can identify and recover the remains of all the Australians on board.”
Mr Abbott said he had spoken with several heads of state since the disaster, including US President Barack Obama.
All had expressed shock and indignation at what had happened and were determined that an independent investigation be carried out, he said.
Mr Abbott said a monitoring mission for the Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe did gain temporary access to the site of the crash overnight, but was driven off by gunfire.
“Presumably from the Russian-backed rebels,” he said.
“This does highlight, though, the difficulty and the danger of this situation.”
Foreign Minister Julie Bishop will be heading to the US to champion Australia’s campaign at the UN Security Council for an independent comprehensive international investigation with access to the site, debris, black box and any possible witnesses.
The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade have deployed six officers to Kiev and more are on their way, including a five-member emergency response team, the prime minister said.
Australian Federal Police investigators are also on their way, and more are ready to be deployed as the situation develops.
Contingency arrangements have been put in place to repatriate the bodies, he added.
“Although I must caution this is likely to be weeks, rather than days ahead.”
Australia will do whatever it can to ensure the incident was thoroughly investigated and the perpetrators brought to justice.
Ms Bishop said she had been reaching out to her foreign minister counterparts.
The Ukraine government had said it would give Australia all the support it needed to access the site to retrieve bodies and protect evidence.
Australia’s calls for a binding resolution for a UN-backed, independent, impartial, investigation into the incident would be debated at the United Nations in New York next week.
Ms Bishop noted that for the investigation to proceed, a cease fire around the crash site would be required.
From New York she will head to Washington to meet intelligence experts to ensure Australia was fully briefed.
DFAT was in contact with the victims’ families, who don’t want the names of their loved ones to be officially released, although Ms Bishop recognised some family members had already gone public by speaking to the media.
When the time came, the government would support families who wanted to travel to the crash site and Ms Bishop said she had already spoken to Qantas and Virgin Australia about this.
Ms Bishop also said she had been trying to contact the Russian foreign minister.
Mr Abbott said he would be meeting Russia’s trade minister, who’s in Sydney for a G20-related trade ministers gathering, on Saturday to convey Australia’s position on the shooting down of the plane and other concerns.
“It’s clear that all the evidence at this stage suggests the aircraft was shot down,” he said.
Australia is very concerned about the crash site being contaminated by local militia or other people in the area.
Mr Abbott said Foreign Minister Julie Bishop had been unsuccessful in contacting her Russian counterpart so far.
But later on Saturday the prime minister will convey Australia’s concerns directly to Russian trade minister Alexey Ulyukaev, who is in Sydney for the G20 trade ministers’ conference.
Mr Abbott has not spoken to Russian President Vladimir Putin since the plane was shot down.
He also defended comments he made about suspected Russian involvement in the disaster, saying they were “very much in line” with a statement by US President Barack Obama.
He repeated that all the evidence at hand suggested that the aircraft was shot down from territory controlled by Russian-backed separatists, most likely with weaponry supplied by the Russians.
“Australia takes a very dim view of countries which facilitate the killing of Australians, as you’d expect.
“The idea that Russia can wash its hands of responsibility because this happened in Ukrainian air space just does not stand serious scrutiny.”
As president of the G20 this year, Australia could refuse to invite Mr Putin to the final meeting of the international forum in Brisbane in November.
Mr Abbott said Australia would wait and see Russia’s next moves before making its decision.
“Australia is a self respecting country,” he said.
“We want to ensure that visitors to this country have goodwill to this country. Visitors to this country are people who have done the right thing by this country.
Ms Bishop said Australia and other countries wanted the United Nations Security Council to provide a binding resolution for an independent investigation into the disaster.
However they would not wait for a resolution before beginning preparations for an investigation.
“Our first priority is to ensure that the site is secured and that the investigation can commence and to also ensure that those who have expertise in identifying and repatriating bodies have unfettered access to the site,” she said.
“So we will not be waiting for a UN Security Council resolution, but we will be pursuing one as soon as possible.”
Ms Bishop said countries including Australia hoped the UN would give the go-ahead for the International Civil Aviation Organisation to lead the investigation.
Justin Gatlin stormed to the fastest 200m of the year at the Monaco Diamond League meeting on Friday as the American recorded the eighth fastest time ever in the distance.
The 32-year-old won in a time of 19.68sec, just two weeks after he clocked a season-leading 9.80sec in the 100m at Lausanne. Only six men have run faster in the blue riband event.
Gatlin was the 2004 Olympic gold medallist in the 100m and 200m world champion in 2005 before he served a four-year doping ban.
But in the injury-enforced absence of world record holder Usain Bolt this season, the American veteran has seized his opportunity to dominate global sprinting in 2014.
Gatlin finished ahead of Jamaica’s Nickel Ashmeade (19.99sec) and Christophe Lemaitre of France (20.08).
Friday’s performance was the eighth fastest of all time although Bolt remains the king of the sport with his world record 19.19sec.
America’s Tyson Gay, who only returned to action recently after a doping ban, was fourth.
“I started like it was a 100m race and I continued to push off the bend. I am surprised because it was my first time under 20 seconds,” said Gatlin.
In perfect conditions in Monaco, there were a host of other season bests.
In the men’s 800m, Botswana’s Nijel Amos, the Olympic silver medallist, won in 1min 42.45sec, improving the previous best mark of the year of Kenya’s Asbel Kiprop by over a second.
Olympic champion and world-record holder David Rudisha, who won last time out in the Glasgow Diamond League meet, was fifth despite leading early on.
Kenya’s Silas Kiplagat took victory in the 1500m, winning in 3min 27.64sec, the fourth quickest in history, although Hicham El Guerrouj’s world record of 3min 26.00sec, set 16 years ago, remained safely intact.
Kiprop, who had been expected to attack the Moroccan’s long-standing record, was second Friday in 3:28.45 with Ronald Kwemoi, another Kenyan, in third in 3:28.81.
France’s Pascal Martinot-Lagarde won his fourth 110m hurdles of the year in 12.95sec but Olympic champion and world record holder Aries Merritt of the United States was only seventh in 13.47.
In the men’s 400m, world champion Lashawn Merritt won in 44.30sec.
Tori Bowie of the United States set the world’s best women’s 100m time of 10.80sec, finishing ahead of Jamaica’s Veronica Campbell-Brown (10.96sec) and Ivory Coast’s Murielle Ahoure (10.97).
Olympic champion Alysson Felix was down in fifth while 100m world and Olympic champion Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce was a poor sixth place finisher.
Colombia’s Caterine Ibarguen recorded a season best in the women’s triple jump with 15.31m.
The world champion and Olympic silver medallist succeded with her sixth and final attempt improving her personal best of 14.99m.
It was the fifth best performance of all time in the event.
Iran and world powers have given themselves four more months to negotiate a historic nuclear deal after failing to close major gaps in marathon talks in Vienna.
“While we have made tangible progress on some of the issues and have worked together on a text (for a deal) … there are still significant gaps on some core issues,” lead negotiator and EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton said on Saturday, adding the talks would continue until November 24.
As part of the deal, the US said it would unblock some $US2.8 billion ($A3.03 billion) in frozen funds, in return for Iran converting a quarter of its 20 per cent enriched uranium stocks – which can be used to make a bomb – into fuel.
American officials will leave Vienna over the weekend with the aim of resuming talks, perhaps at expert level, in August. The UN general assembly in September is also expected to provide a “fulcrum” for the next phase of negotiations, one US administration official said.
In a statement repeated in Farsi by Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, Ashton said the parties would “reconvene in the coming weeks … with the clear determination to reach agreement … at the earliest possible moment”.
In November last year, Iran and the five permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany agreed on an interim deal under which the Islamic republic froze certain nuclear activities for six months in return for some sanctions relief.
This expires on July 20, but the parties had given themselves the option to push back this deadline if they failed during the six months to transform the interim deal into a lasting accord.
US Secretary of State John Kerry, who this week spent two days in Vienna trying to broker a breakthrough, said on Friday the “short extension” was “warranted by the progress we’ve made and the path forward we can envision.
“To turn our back prematurely on diplomatic efforts when significant progress has been made would deny ourselves the ability to achieve our objectives peacefully,” he said.
The deal would ease fears that despite its denials Iran is seeking to develop nuclear weapons after a decade of atomic expansion.
The deal under negotiation is highly ambitious and fiendishly complex.
The six powers want Iran to dramatically reduce its nuclear program for a lengthy period of time and agree to more intrusive UN inspections.
This would expand the time needed for Tehran to develop a nuclear weapon, while giving the world ample warning of any such “breakout” push.
The two sides are believed to have narrowed their positions in recent weeks on a few issues such as the Arak reactor, which could give Iran weapons-grade plutonium, and enhanced inspections.
But they remain far apart on the key issue of Iran’s capacities to enrich uranium, a process which can produce fuel for reactors but also the core of a nuclear bomb.
A messaging app that allows users to send the word “Yo” to friends has discovered newfound fame and fortune.
San Francisco-based start-up Yo, which got its start in Tel Aviv and moved to California after becoming a hit in Israel, boasted new backers on Friday as reports estimated its value as high as $US10 million ($AUS10.6 million).
Yo raised $US1.5 million in an initial round of funding that included backing from Betaworks and Mashable founder Pete Cashmore, according to co-founder and chief executive Or Arbel.
“The value of this round goes far beyond the dollar amount that we received,” Arbel said in a release.
“Bringing such incredibly smart, talented, and experienced people into the Yo team at this stage is an incredible advantage that will allow us to accelerate the growth and provide more and better value to our users.”
Betaworks explained in an online post that it was pumping cash into Yo due, in part, to a fascination with the potential of simple tools for single-word smartphone notifications such as “yes” or “no.”
The Yo app has been woven into communications at Betaworks, according to founder and chief executive John Borthwick.
“We Yo with co-workers alerting them that a meeting is starting; I Yo with my wife as a ‘hi’ during a busy day,” Borthwick said in an online post announcing the investment.
“I Yo with friends, without any more expectation or need than a Yo back.”
US media reports indicated that backers included founders of China-based Tencent, but Yo did not disclose the entire list of investors.
The app lets users say “Yo” to their friends, sending them a text notification accompanied by a recorded voice shouting the greeting. Arbel has insisted the deceptively simple app has a lot of potential.
“People think it’s just an app that says ‘Yo’. But it’s really not,” Arbel told The New York Times.
“We like to call it context-based messaging. You understand by the context what is being said.”
Convinced his app has big prospects in line, he left his job as chief technology officer of stock trading platform Stox, which he helped launch last year, and moved from Tel Aviv to San Francisco to focus on Yo.
Arbel said the app could allow newspapers and blogs to notify subscribers that a new article has been published or posted, using a Yo.
Yo took advantage of World Cup frenzy by letting users sign up to get Yo notifications when goals were scored.
Reviews on Apple’s App Store were positive, but some veered into sarcasm.
“Yo cured my cancer! Yo ended world hunger, Yo also helped me find the women of my dreams because when I yo’d her for the first time she asked me if I wanted to mate and produce spawns, yo is the reason I live and the reason I wake up in the morning,” read a review featured along with a description at the App Store on Friday.
Applications available free for iOS or Android powered devices have reportedly been downloaded more than two million times and are used to fire off “yo” a similar number of times daily.
“Yo has been pushing forward at a rapid pace, focusing both on user acquisition and developing an API for businesses, brands and other apps,” Arbel said.
A new way of pinpointing and identifying any location on earth has been launched by mapping service TomTom, potentially spelling the end of the postcode.
TomTom said Mapcodes are four to seven character codes that are unique to any and every location, making them easy to remember. This new system, it says, will enable users to identify any location on the planet accurately, within metres.
Pieter Geelen, co-founder of Mapcode said: “The idea of Mapcode came about when we saw that millions of locations around the world do not have a recognisable address and were hard to find. Introducing a Mapcode system means everyone is empowered with the ability to identify any location on earth, regardless of the country or its infrastructure.”
The new system works in a similar way to postcodes, but does not require a database to maintain a record of existing addresses. Instead, Mapcode uses a piece of free software that anyone can download. Then, by entering a location’s latitude and longitude, a Mapcode is generated for that location and then saved.
Harold Goddijn, CEO of TomTom, said: “Mapcode is an important development in creating a new global standard that makes it easy for anyone to pinpoint any location. The technology will be supported by TomTom, and we hope to see other organisations adopting it in the near future.”
This new process could be attractive to countries like the UK where businesses have to pay to access the Royal Mail’s Postcode Address File in order to see full postal addresses and postcodes. Using Mapcode, users of the software need only type in a location or scroll over the map like you do in Google Maps and drop a pin in order to see a location’s Mapcode.
The software was developed by the founders of TomTom, but has been donated to the Mapcode Foundation to ensure it is readily available.
Colombia, who are in the last 16 for the first time since 1990 and had never before won three matches at the finals, went ahead with an early Juan Cuadrado penalty at the Pantanal arena.
Martinez struck twice in the second half from passes by halftime substitute Rodriguez and Colombia could even afford to bring on 43-year-old back-up goalkeeper Faryd Mondragon who became the oldest player to take the field at a World Cup.
Rodriguez, one of eight players rested from the starting lineup by coach Jose Pekerman after the 2-1 win over Ivory Coast that secured Colombia’s second-round berth, wrapped up the win with a delightful fourth goal.
“I think what James has done today simply demonstrates what we expected from him. From the beginning he has shown he is very well physically and very fit and we can expect a lot from him,” Pekerman told reporters.
Japan equalised just before halftime with Shinji Okazaki’s fine diving header but fell apart near the end of the match.
“It was a difficult first half, we had lots of opportunities to score but found that their strong defence did a lot of damage,” Martinez said.
“In the second half, we were a lot better and were able to show the kind of play we had in previous games,” added Martinez, playing in place of Teofilo Gutierrez.
Greece beat the Ivory Coast 2-1 in the other game in the section to set up a last 16 clash with Costa Rica while Japan finished bottom of the group with one point.
The Japanese suffered their worst defeat at a World Cup since they lost by the same score against Brazil in 2006 in Germany but still contributed to an entertaining and exciting last match at the Cuiaba venue.
Colombia took the lead after 17 minutes when Adrian Ramos was brought down by centre back Yasuyuki Konno as he raced into the box on the left and Cuadrado calmly converted from the spot at the Pantanal arena.
Japan got a brilliant and well deserved equaliser on the stroke of halftime after enjoying more of the possession in the first half and constantly probing Colombia’s reserve central defensive pairing of Carlos Valdes and Eder Alvarez Balanta.
Keisuke Honda sent a low, left footed cross in from the right corner of the box and Okazaki got in front of Valdes to steer a diving header past goalkeeper David Ospina just inside the near post.
With Colombia’s main marksman Radamel Falcao missing the tournament through injury and Teofilo Gutierrez rested, Martinez underlined Colombia’s depth of striking talent when he put them ahead again 10 minutes into the second half.
Right back Santiago Arias cut inside and passed to Rodriguez who laid the ball off to his left from where Martinez shot home across the diving Eiji Kawashima.
With Rodriguez dictating the pace of Colombia’s counter-attacks, Martinez scored his second eight minutes from time as Japan threw bodies forward looking for an equaliser.
Rodriguez, fed by Martinez, then scored with a darting run and chip over Kawashima to complete the rout with his third goal of the tournament in the dying minutes.
Asked about facing Uruguay, Martinez said: “It’s going to be a really tough game, a fight, and we just have to maintain our focus and continue to work like we have.”
Japan should have scored a second equaliser in the 66th minute but striker Yoshito Okubo blasted right back Atsuto Uchida’s cross over the bar from right in front of goal with Ospina at his mercy.
The Japanese enjoyed more possession but were overcome by the power of the counter-attacks unleashed by Colombia who missed several other chances.
“I have always thought and said that Japan were a really good team and we saw that when they played the Asian qualifiers,” Pekerman said.
“Often today they played a very good game, they didn’t get the results they expected. They were facing a good Colombian team.”
Pekerman sent Mondragon on for the final five minutes, allowing the veteran of the 1994 and 1998 finals to make a last mark on the event as the oldest man to play in a World Cup.
Mondragon surpassed Cameroon’s Roger Milla, who played at the age of 42 in the 1994 World Cup in the United States, and made a fine block in stoppage time to keep out a point-blank effort by Japan substitute Yoichiro Kakitani.
The match ended with fans that packed the stadium chanting the names of their heroes Martinez, Rodriguez and Mondragon.
(Additional reporting by Mary Milliken; Editing by Ken Ferris)
Coulson was found guilty on Tuesday of plotting to hack phones while he was editor of the News of the World.
An Old Bailey jury is still considering allegations that Coulson, 46, conspired with former royal editor Clive Goodman 56, to commit misconduct in a public office by agreeing to pay police officers for two royal directories. They both deny the two charges.
Coulson, who was forced to resign as Cameron’s director of communications over the scandal, faces up to two years in jail for hacking following the high-profile trial.
The jury of eight women and three men found him guilty of conspiring to hack phones, but cleared ex-News International chief executive Rebekah Brooks of all charges.
Questions surround phone hacking at News of the World
Married father-of-three Coulson was recruited by Chancellor George Osborne to head up the Tory media operation within months of resigning as News of the World editor in January 2007.
When Cameron entered Downing Street, the former journalist took on duties heading up the Number 10 spin operation, quitting shortly before he was arrested over the phone-hacking scandal.
It is expected that Cameron will be asked about Coulson at Prime Minister’s Questions on Wednesday.
Following the verdict on Tuesday, Cameron said: “I take full responsibility for employing Andy Coulson. I did so on the basis of undertakings I was given by him about phone hacking and those turned out not to be the case.
“I always said that if they turned out to be wrong, I would make a full and frank apology and I do that today. I am extremely sorry that I employed him. It was the wrong decision and I am very clear about that.”
Osborne said: “We gave him a second chance but, knowing what we now know, it’s clear that we made the wrong decision.”
Tuesday’s partial verdicts were delivered on the jury’s eighth day of deliberations and the 138th day of the trial.
Brooks, 46, was cleared of hacking, misconduct in a public office for allegedly signing off payments to a Sun journalist’s “number one military contact” between 2004 and 2012, conspiracy to pervert the course of justice and perverting the course of justice.
The jury will resume deliberations from 11am local time on Wednesday.
Rupert Murdoch to be interviewed over phone-hacking scandal
Meanwhile, Media mogul Rupert Murdoch could soon be interviewed by British police over the phone-hacking scandal.
The Guardian newspaper says detectives first contacted Murdoch last year to question him over allegations of crime at his British newspapers.
But they agreed to a request from his lawyers to wait until the long-running phone-hacking trial was finished.
A Metropolitan police spokesman would not discuss the prospect of Murdoch being questioned.
FIFA is investigating the incident which has become a worldwide talking point, and Suarez, twice previously banned for biting, looks likely to be hit with another lengthy suspension despite escaping punishment during the match.
“We are awaiting the official match reports and will gather all the necessary elements in order to evaluate the matter,” a FIFA spokesperson said.
Suarez and Chiellini clashed in the Italian penalty area 10 minutes from the end of the match which sealed Uruguay’s progression and Italy’s elimination from the tournament.
Chiellini furiously pulled open his shirt to show the mark to the referee.
Reuters photographs show what appeared to be bite marks on his shoulder and pictures also showed Suarez sitting on the ground holding his teeth immediately after the incident.
The Italians were still complaining about it when Uruguay’s Diego Godin scored with an 81st-minute header to secure the win.
“It was ridiculous not to send Suarez off,” Chiellini told Rai TV. “It is clear, clear-cut and then there was the obvious dive afterwards because he knew very well that he did something that he shouldn’t have done.”
Suarez contested that version of events, however.
“Those are situations that happen on the pitch. We were both just there inside the area. He shoved me with his shoulder, and my eye got left like that also,” he said in reference to Chiellini’s mark.
Uruguay coach Oscar Tabarez said he did not see the incident, and complained that the forward was being persecuted.
“It seems there is this animosity toward him and he is being persecuted by past events,” a visibly agitated Tabarez said when repeatedly being asked about the alleged bite. “There are people hiding behind the tree waiting for something to happen.”
Liverpool’s Suarez was banned for 10 games last year after biting Chelsea’s Branislav Ivanovic in a Premier League match and in 2010 he was suspended for seven games for biting PSV Eindhoven’s Otman Bakkal while playing for Ajax Amsterdam.
He missed Uruguay’s World Cup semi-final against the Netherlands four years ago after being sent off for a handball on the line that denied Ghana what would have been a match-winning goal in the final minute of extra time in a quarter-final match.
Although he was not cautioned by the referee on Tuesday, FIFA’s rules allow the use of video or “any other evidence” to retrospectively punish players.
FIFA’s disciplinary code sets a maximum ban of 24 matches or two years, but the longest suspension FIFA has imposed for an offence in the World Cup was eight games for Italy’s Mauro Tassotti for breaking Spain’s Luis Enrique’s nose in 1994 with an elbow.
Uruguay could potentially play four more games in the tournament and it would be a surprise if Suarez were to be given a ban of a shorter duration.
“I have watched the incident several times on television,”
FIFA executive committee member Jim Boyce told Reuters.
“There is no doubt Luis Suarez is a fantastic footballer but once again his actions have left him open to severe criticism.
“FIFA must investigate the incident seriously and take whatever disciplinary action is deemed necessary.” Another FIFA executive committee member, Michel D’Hooghe of Belgium, who is also the head of FIFA’s medical committee, told reporters he had not seen the incident.
“We would await a medical report if it was deemed necessary given the nature of the incident,” he said. “But whatever, it is very, very sad for everybody who loves football.”
SUPPORT AT HOME
Opinion in Uruguay, a country of around three million people sandwiched between soccer powerhouses Argentina and Brazil, was divided over Suarez’s latest antics.
The 27-year-old is regarded as something of a hero at home, having grown up in a poor family in the northwestern city of Salto where he looked after parked cars to help support his siblings after his parents split up.
“We needed to win, so if you have to hit you hit, if you have to bite you bite,” said Barbara Giordano, a 26-year-old law student in Montevideo.
Some Uruguayans, however, were furious.
“This kid can’t control his biting and attacking issues,” said Luis Lara, a 52-year-old shopkeeper. “That makes all of us Uruguayans look bad.”
Suarez’s indiscretion sent the world’s social media into meltdown and within minutes of the match ending #Suarez was one of the top-trending hash tags on Twitter.
A tweet from former Liverpool striker Michael Owen was typical of a wave of reaction from former players and pundits: “Tell me I’m seeing things. Surely Suarez didn’t bite someone again?,” he wrote.
“I’m genuinely gutted. I love watching him play more than any other player but he obviously can’t control himself.”
Suarez, England’s Footballer of the Year, scored both goals in Uruguay’s 2-1 victory over England having missed the opening match against Costa Rica as he recovered from knee surgery, and until the incident had kept control of his temper during a bruising game.
Italy, who needed only a draw to progress, looked comfortable until they had Claudio Marchisio sent off for a foul on Egidio Arevalo Rios after an hour.
(Writing by Mike Collett-White; editing by Justin Palmer)
Malicious software is increasingly making its way into mobile phones through “cloned” versions of popular apps, and software weaknesses in legitimate ones, security researchers say.
McAfee Labs said in its quarterly threat assessment that weaknesses in app security is becoming a growing problem for owners of mobile devices.
In some cases, cybercriminals can take advantage of the popularity of an app by creating a clone, which can extract personal data or even allow an attack to gain control of the device.
This was the case with Flappy Birds, a mobile game which saw a meteoric rise but was later withdrawn by its creator.
McAfee Labs sampled 300 Flappy Bird clones and found that almost 80 per cent contained malware.
“Some of the behaviour we found includes making calls without the user’s permission; sending, recording, and receiving SMS messages; extracting contact data; and tracking geolocation. In the worst cases, the malware gained root access, which allows uninhibited control of anything on the mobile device including confidential business information,” the report said.
The McAfee report said some legitimate apps have security flaws which can be exploited by hackers.
The researchers said they discovered an Android trojan “which exploits an encryption method weakness in the popular messaging app WhatsApp” and then steals conversations and pictures stored on the device.
“Although this vulnerability has now been fixed, we can easily imagine cybercriminals continuing to look for other flaws in this well-known app,” the report said.
The researchers also said they identified malware can steal money from a digital wallet.
One of the malware programs identified “is disguised as an update for Adobe Flash Player or another legitimate utility app,” and can take over a digital wallet to send a money transfer to the attacker’s server.
“Mobile malware has recently started to use legitimate apps and services, in addition to a platform’s standard features, to circumvent conventional surveillance by app stores and security products,” the McAfee report said.
“Consequently, protecting only the underlying platform is no longer sufficient. We believe that developers need to protect their apps and services from unauthorised and malicious use.”
McAfee’s Vincent Weafer said people may be lulled into a false sense of security about mobile apps.
“We tend to trust the names we know on the internet,” Weafer said.
“The year 2014 has already given us ample evidence that mobile malware developers are playing on these inclinations, to manipulate the familiar, legitimate features in the mobile apps and services we recognise and trust.”
Former foreign minister Alexander Downer, who recently replaced Mike Rann as Canberra’s man in the UK, urged expats to vote Yes in any upcoming referendum.
“The first people of our country have for many years in our country been treated as second-class citizens,” the high commissioner said at Australia House.
“We need as a country to raise their status to reflect the incredibly important role they played in the original formation of human civilisation in Australia.”
Mr Downer said Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, since European settlement, “had what you might, politely, call a hard time”.
Changing the constitution would be a unifying moment, he said.
Australia House is the largest polling booth each federal election with around 15,000 expats usually casting a ballot there.
Prime Minister Tony Abbott in January promised to finalise by September a draft form of words for changing Australia’s foundation document.
Any changes would have to be put to a referendum, which requires a majority of votes in a majority of states to be successful.
The Recognise campaign is raising awareness about the push to include indigenous people in the constitution and remove sections that discriminate on the basis of race.
Director Tanya Hosch was a guest at the high commission in London on Tuesday. She’s also encouraging expats to support the campaign.
“There is a chance of failure here, so we have to actually act,” Ms Hosch said.
“Despite that strong political and community support no one can take this for granted.”
Ms Hosch said some people would seek, sadly, to derail the campaign.
“But we know there will be a great and terrible cost if we don’t achieve this for our nation.
“The price we will pay is to condemn Australia, for another generation, to formal separation between indigenous and non-indigenous Australians.”
Ms Hosch said constitutional recognition would enhance Australia’s international reputation for fairness and justice.
British Prime Minister David Cameron’s chief spin doctor, Australian Lynton Crosby, attended Tuesday night’s event.
The former Liberal party strategist’s research company, Crosby Textor, is advising the Recognise campaign.