Hacker threatens to release Season 5 of ‘Orange Is the New Black’

A hacker is threatening to release more of the fifth season of 'Orange Is the New Black.'
Image: netflix

Pay up or the show gets plastered.

The next season of Orange Is the New Black may soon be floating around the internet after a hacker claiming to have pilfered the first 10 episodes of the new season threatened to release it unless Netflix forks over cash.

A hacker reportedly released the first episode of Season 5 of Orange Is the New Black early Saturday after demanding ransom from Netflix. In a letter, the hacker, called The Dark Overlord, said they’d next release episodes two through 10 of the season. The hacker stole the episodes from a third party working with Netflix earlier this year, before the final three installments of the 13-episode season were available.

We are aware of the situation. A production vendor used by several major TV studios had its security compromised and the appropriate law enforcement authorities are involved, Netflix said in a statement to Variety. Netflix didn’t respond to a request for comment from Mashable.

The hacker claimed to have properties from studios besides Netflix, including ABC, National Geographic, Fox, and IFC.

According to the Associated Press, a deal proposed earlier this year demanded “tens of thousands of dollars in electronic currency” in exchange for deleting the stolen material.

Orange Is the New Black‘s season five is scheduled to be released June 9.

UPDATE: April 29, 2017, 12:01 p.m. EDT

According to news reports, the hacker followed through on their threat and uploaded the first 10 episodes of Orange Is the New Black Season 5 to Pirate Bay on Saturday.

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Read more: http://mashable.com/2017/04/29/oitnb-netflix-season-5-hacker/

Green heating system accused of causing ‘fuel poverty’ – BBC News

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption District heating is seen as a new cleaner, cheaper way to keep homes warm, but some residents say its not working as well as it should.

A heating system meant to reduce bills is leaving people in fuel poverty, according to campaigners and residents.

The government wants millions of us to get heat and hot water from “district heating networks” to help meet carbon reduction targets.

But residents on some networks say they are more expensive than traditional heating and have been beset with problems.

Providers are working to tackle issues and say some schemes work brilliantly.

Instead of having a gas boiler in every home, heat networks send heat and hot water to numerous properties along a system of underground pipes from one central communal heat source.

This could be a mini-power station in the middle of a housing estate, or waste heat from a recycling plant or a factory.

Image caption Uzoamaka Okafor says the heating provided by the submarine power station has been beset with problems.

Those living on the Myatt’s Field North Oval Quarter estate get heat from a small power station in a building known as the submarine. The system, run by E.on, was installed when the estate was redeveloped.

Uzoamaka Okafor, chair of the residents’ association, said the problems were causing a lot of distress, particularly to elderly and vulnerable residents.

She said some smart meters did not work, which meant people were being sent high estimated bills, including some who were being asked for hundreds of pounds a month.

She said: “It’s been riddled with issues, from intermittent hot water and heating, a number of outages, to concerns around high estimates bills, customer service and technical faults.

“There are lots of residents that do not put their heating on at all; they go to bed early. I’ve bought one resident blankets, because she’s so distressed about bills she doesn’t want to put the heating on.”

Residents said some people were having to choose between heating and eating.

No food

A report about the problems on the estate, written by Ruth London from Fuel Poverty Action and Stuart Hodkinson from the University of Leeds, said there had been heat outages on 48 days in four years.

It detailed individual cases of vulnerable people left without heat for weeks and months on end.

It also details the case of Edward Connell, an elderly man thought to have been suffering with a form of dementia who told people he was struggling with high bills. He died of heart failure in October. The report said there was no food in his flat when he died.

In February, after a meeting with E.on about problems on the estate, residents were sent a letter of apology by the head of the company’s heat division, Jeremy Bungey.

A spokesman told the BBC E.on did not agree with all of the points raised in the report, but acknowledged there had been issues.

He said many had been resolved some time ago. He urged anyone with problems with their smart meter to get in touch.

In relation to Mr Connell, he said: “This is clearly a very sad case, but we have no insight into the wider circumstances of his death and the factors which may have led to it.”

He said the company had spoken to Mr Connell a number of times when he moved into the property in 2015 and that in June, after providing a manual meter reading, he was found to be in credit.

‘Potential to reduce costs’

At the moment, 200,000 people rely on district heating, but the government is championing the system and has put up 320m in seed funding to encourage more heat networks to be built in towns and cities across England and Wales.

It wants 18-20% of heat to come from district heating by 2050, in a bid to help meet carbon reduction targets.

According to the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy website, heat networks “have the potential to reduce heating costs, in some cases by more than 30%“.

But some customers say they have not seen the promised savings, and a traditional gas boiler would be much cheaper for them.

Charles Montlake, who lives in New Capital Quay, Greenwich, has district heating in his flat which is also provided by E.on.

He was given 669 in an out-of-court settlement with the energy giant after he lodged papers with the small claims court saying he had been overcharged for his heating for a year.

E.on says it believes it offers Mr Montlake value for money.

80-year contracts

Unlike traditional energy customers, people like Mr Montlake on district heating cannot go to Ofgem to complain about bills, because district heating is currently largely unregulated.

Customers can go to the energy ombudsman and a body set up by a number of providers called the Heat Trust, but their powers are limited.

And while traditional power users can switch suppliers if they are not happy with pricing or customer service, those on district heating are locked into long contracts.

Mr Montlake told 5 live Investigates: “Our contract is for 25 years, so our current alternatives are move or don’t use heat.”

Ms London said she had come across contracts locking customers in for 40 and even 80 years, and estates where those who owned their own homes were moving house because they could not afford the mortgage and the heat bills.

She said the problem was particularly acute for people on low incomes, like some of those living on the Myatt’s Field North Oval Quarter estate.

She said: “It’s some of the worst fuel poverty we’ve seen.

“We’re afraid the same thing is going to happen to heating systems all over the UK, where people are actually not able to cover their heating costs and they’re going cold and potentially even losing their lives, as well as their health, as a result.

“The industry has to be regulated, it is absolutely not acceptable that it should be a wild-west situation where companies can do what they like.”

‘Tackled these issues’

Tim Rotheray, director of the Association of Decentralised Energy, said: “Across the country, these schemes have been lifting people out of fuel poverty and making cold homes warm.

“But any evidence of unhappy customers is a serious concern.

“A good experience for customers is not only vital for them, but also for the future of the industry.

“We recognise the new and changing nature of this industry means that sometimes quality and customer service standards are not good enough. The industry has tackled these issues head on.

“In March we launched a new task force, attended by consumer groups, investors, developers and observed by government and Ofgem.

“The group is examining both industry and regulatory options to ensure all aspects of consumer protection can be an integral part of enabling new investment.”

To hear more about this story, tune into 5 live Investigates on Sunday April 30 at 11am or listen to the podcast.

Read more: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-39736010

Trump blames constitution for chaos of his first 100 days

The president is learning the limits of power

On his 100th day in office on Saturday, facing historically low popularity ratings, a succession of intractable foreign crises and multiple investigations of his links with Moscow, Donald Trump reminded the nation that 1 May was Loyalty Day.

The day is a US tradition dating back to the cold war, when it was a bolster to stop May Day becoming a rallying point for socialists and unionised workers, but for an embattled president learning politics on the job it has an added resonance.

In an interview with Fox News to mark the 100-day mark, he declared himself disappointed with congressional Republicans, despite his many great relationships with them.

He blamed the constitutional checks and balances built in to US governance. Its a very rough system, he said. Its an archaic system Its really a bad thing for the country.

The Loyalty Day announcement came amid a flurry of other proclamations to mark the milestone at which the early stages of American presidencies are traditionally measured. The coming seven days were named both National Charter Schools Week and Small Business Week. May has been burdened with being simultaneously: National Physical Fitness and Sports Month, Older Americans Month, Jewish American Heritage Month, National Foster Care Month, as well as Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month.

Read more: https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/apr/29/trump-blames-constitution-for-first-100-days-chaos-presidency

Trump’s 100-day rally: president launches attack on ‘failing’ media

The speech in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania returns to familiar campaign themes and includes a dig at the very boring White House correspondents dinner

Donald Trump returned to familiar territory on Saturday in a bullish campaign-style speech in Pennsylvania to mark his 100 days in office.

In a performance that suggested the US president was still in election mode, he repeated his scathing attacks on the media and his well-worn pledges to build a wall, destroy Islamic State, drain the swamp and revive the military.

To loud cheers of USA, USA from the crowd, he vowed to save American healthcare and repeal disastrous Obamacare.

Trump opened the rally in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania with a dig at the White House Correspondents Dinner, which was also taking place on Saturday night, saying it would be very very boring.

Theres a large group of Hollywood actors and Washington media consoling each other in a hotel ballroom in our nations capital right now, he said.

I could not possibly be more thrilled to be more than 100 miles away from the Washington swamp, spending my evening with all of you and a much, much larger crowd and much better people.

Trump decided to skip the White House Correspondents Dinner, becoming the first US leader to miss the annual event since Ronald Reagan in 1981.

Supporters at the Harrisburg rally. Photograph: Alex Wong/Getty Images

They are gathering together for the White House Correspondents dinner without the president, he said.

The crowd booed every time the president mentioned the media and when Trump said organisations such as CNN and MSNBC broadcast fake news.

In a speech that was more backward-looking than agenda-setting, Trump said the media would get a big, fat failing grade for its reporting of his first 100 days in office. In contrast, the president said his administration had been very exciting and very productive and that he was delivering every single day.

We are keeping one promise after another, and frankly the people are really happy about it, he said.

Trump listed what he said were some of his key early accomplishments, including the successful confirmation to the US supreme court of Justice Neil Gorsuch and clearing away many regulations on the environment and business.

He also listed his approval of the Keystone XL and Dakota Access pipelines, killing a pending Asian trade pact, and enhanced security measures that have led to a sharp decline in illegal border crossings at the southern border.

He shrugged off his failure to score major legislative victories on his core campaign promises, such as repeal and replacement of the Affordable Care Act and construction of a Mexican border wall. Trumps ban on visitors from some Muslim nations was blocked in court.

He blamed Democrats for the legislative failures so far and said all of his promises would be kept eventually. Well build the wall people, dont even worry about it, he said.

At one point a protester, reportedly waving a Russian flag, was taken out of the stadium by police. Trump paused his speech to say Thats right get em out of here, get em out.

Read more: https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/apr/30/trumps-100-day-rally-president-attacks-media-and-repeats-pledge-on-wall

Texas severe weather: At least 5 killed, dozens injured after tornadoes rip through state

At least five people were killed and dozens were injured after tornadoes ripped through parts of Texas Saturday night.

The Canton Fire Department Capt. Brian Horton said that at least five were dead, including one person who was in a vehicle when a tornado tossed it along Highway 64 in Canton. Horton said the number of fatalities was expected to rise as dawn breaks.

“We still may have people unaccounted for, Horton said.

Horton asked that people who didn’t need to be in the area to stay out, “so that our teams can do what they need to do to take care of these people who are in need.” He noted that a triage center was set up at the local high school.

ETMC Regional Healthcare Systems hospitals in the region received at least 54 patients following the storm, including one person in critical condition, spokeswoman Rebecca Berkley said. She said the other patients suffered injuries that were non-life threatening.

The extent of the damage in the area wasn’t immediately clear. But video from local television stations showed uprooted trees and overturned cars along rural, wet roadways, along with at least two flattened homes. The tornado flipped pickup trucks at a Dodge dealership in Canton and tore through the business.

The National Weather Service confirmed that at least three tornadoes touched down and passed through Canton, Eustace and Canton City, the Dallas Morning News reported.

The tornado that struck Canton grew to up to a half-mile wide as it teared up a 40-mile path, also hitting Fruitvale and Emory, KXAS-TV reported.

Local resident Ernestine Cook told WFAA-TV that she rushed to a storm center just in time.

“It hit so hard, so fast. It just kept moving,” she said. “I’ve never seen anything like it after 22 years of living here.”

A dispatcher at the Van Zandt County Sheriff’s Office said officers were chasing numerous injury reports and declined further comment

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/us/2017/04/30/texas-severe-weather-at-least-5-killed-dozens-injured-after-tornadoes-rip-through-state.html

May vows to protect pensions from ‘unscrupulous bosses’ – BBC News

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption The Tories will pledge to increase the powers of regulators over company pensions

Theresa May has announced plans to protect pensions from “unscrupulous” bosses if she wins the election.

The Tories will pledge to increase the powers of regulators over company pensions, including fines for employers who deliberately underfund schemes.

Following the BHS pension scandal, corporate takeovers could be blocked where the solvency of the company scheme appears to be threatened.

Meanwhile, Labour has unveiled a plan to strengthen rights at work.

Billionaire Sir Philip Green sold BHS for 1 in 2015 and a year later it went into administration with a 571m pension deficit.

Earlier this year, he agreed with the Pensions Regulator to pay 363m to settle the company’s pension scheme.

Mrs May said: “Today I am setting out our plans, if elected, to ensure the pensions of ordinary working people are protected against the actions of unscrupulous company bosses.

“Safeguarding pensions to ensure dignity in retirement is about security for families, and it’s another example of the choice in this election.”

The Pensions Regulator would also be able to impose large fines on bosses who “wilfully left a scheme under-resourced”, she said, and company directors could be struck off in more serious cases.

The Tories will also consider a new law to make it illegal to intentionally or recklessly put a pension scheme at risk.

In an interview with the Mail on Sunday, Mrs May criticised Labour leader Mr Corbyn, saying he was “weak, unstable, nonsensical and floundering” and said Labour had launched seven “conflicting” Brexit plans.

Image copyright Reuters
Image caption Jeremy Corbyn is due to address the National Association of Head Teachers conference

Meanwhile, Labour has announced a 20-point plan to end the “rigged economy” in the workplace.

The plan includes giving all workers equal rights from day one; pledges to ban zero-hours contracts; guaranteeing trade unions a right to access workplaces; raising the minimum wage; banning unpaid internships; and amending company takeover rules to protect employees’ pensions.

Mr Corbyn is expected to address the National Association of Head Teachers conference in Telford later.

Shadow chancellor John McDonnell said: “These policies will be the cornerstone of the next Labour government’s programme to bring an end to the rigged economy that many experience in workplaces across Britain.

“The scandals of six million people earning less than the living wage, and four million children growing up in poverty, are not inevitable.

“It only takes a change of government to bring these outrages to an end.”

Read more: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-39760717

New Snapchat data shows its bringing more eyes to all devices

Image: kerry flynn/mashable

Snapchat’s pitch to big brands has been the same for a while the opportunity not just to reach its coveted, young audience but to also boost viewership on other platforms.

New data shows that Snapchat’s claims could be true, though the situation opens up a traditionally thorny issue for marketers around causation and correlation.

The Nielsen-commissioned data, released by Snap and first reported by Axios, shows that media companies that partnered on Snapchat’s Discover platform also saw a 16 percent increase in TV “reach” (if they have a TV channel). Publishers without a Snapchat Discover channel saw a 5 percent decline in “reach” which is something like average monthly viewers.

Could it be that Snapchat users are more likely to be watching those channels already? Maybe. But Snapchat would rather lean toward the narrative that its platform serves as something of a marketing opportunity that helps brands elsewhere.

Snapchat’s magic also reaches beyond TV, according to Nielsen. For Discover partners on desktop, Snapchat supported a 20 percent increase in average monthly reach. The average monthly desktop audience had decreased by 1 percent if you compare the first six months of the Snapchat partnership to the prior six months.

What Snapchat is trying to show is that it’s not simply pulling eyes away from TV or away from mobile websites. It’s finding a way to support the growth of brands across their networks. Becoming a Snapchat partner, it seems, creates success across devices.

Image: snap inc.

Obviously, you can’t say Snapchat is everything for these brands and the growth they experienced over that six months period, as Nielsen confirmed.

“It’s not necessarily a causation story. Causation is a very loaded meaning in the industry, but it is like a correlation approach,” said Ronjan Sikdar, Nielsen’s VP of client consulting.

The methodology for Nielsen involved analyzing Snapchat users and non-Snapchat users, ages 18 to 34, from July 2014 to September 2016.

Nielsen studied how these Snapchat users interacted with 15 Discover partners by using its fancy technology called Nielsen Total Media Fusion, including the Nielsen Online Panel for desktop, the Nielsen Electronic Mobile Meter Panel for mobile and the Nielsen People Meter for TV measurement.

Nielsen and Snap declined to disclose the names of the partners. It did include media companies that have a presence on TV, digital and/or mobile. It also declined to reveal more information about the users surveyed, but said their usage varied.

“Why the story is so interesting is it wasnt a filtered group of heavy Snapchat user. It was anyone who’s used Discover,” Sikdar said.

Snapchat also boosted reach of Discover partner’s mobile audience, with a 23 percent increase over the six months prior and only a 4 percent increase in the six months prior to the partnership, according to the Nielsen study.

For Snap, this study provides evidence to their big strategy that they are one of the most publisher-friendly platforms (quite unlike Facebook). The Discover network is rather exclusive, with about 60 partners on it, versus being a free-for-all, like on Facebook, Twitter and Google.

Snap isn’t just about creating a new mobile TV but about growing brands, no matter what platform they choose to be on. Snap’s Chief Strategy Officer Imran Khan discussed its future in TV-like content during Advertising Week last year. His presentation included a video of NBC’s new exclusive content from The Voice and The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon.

“Just like television,” Khan said after a clip aired.

Beyond digital media partners like Mashable, Snap works many major TV networks, including NBC, ESPN, Turner, ABC, BBC, A+E Networks, Discovery, VICE, MGM Television and Vertical Networks. Many of these partners have been locked down in the last year.

WATCH: The best prop in ‘Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2’ is Dave Bautista’s bicep

Read more: http://mashable.com/2017/04/28/snapchat-discover-television-nielsen/

Money saving tips from Alexa von Tobel, the Points Guy and more

Image: Shutterstock / Singkham

April is Financial Literacy Month, and the Council for Economic Education has engaged 28 entrepreneurs, economists, and editors to publish their #1 tip for saving money. The social media campaign dubbed #MySavingsTip is designed to inspire students to start thinking and talking about money, instead of making the conversation taboo.

Below, find part 2 of the tips from a variety of contributors. Part 1 can be found here.

Ann Shoket, author of “The Big Life” Before you buy anything ask yourself: How will i feel about this tomorrow? Happy? Do it! Panicked? Skip it!

Image: Ann Shoket

Alexa von Tobel, founder and CEO of LearnVest.com Saving is a muscle. The soonger you start, the strong it gets!

Image: alexa von tobel

Lo Bosworth, founder of thelodown.com I love to create a monthly savings goal for specific things. Like, save $250 for shoes and you won’t spend more!

Image: Lo Bosworth

Kathryn Minshew, CEO and co-founder of TheMuse.com Rather than spending $1 here or $2 there, save up for larger, more meaningful purchases!

Image: Kathryn mishew

Nan J. Morrison, president and CEO of the Council for Economic Education Evaluation online banks for great rates on money market savings accounts.

Image: nan j morrison

Chondra Sanchez, co-writer of comic book series Key of Z, Kill Audio, and Translucid WAIT. Sometimes if you wait at least two weeks before making a big purcahse, you find you don’t really need the item at all!

Image: chondra Sanchez

Chris Siegfried, television personality Save at least 10% of everything you make/get!

Image: Chris siegfried

Mona Patel, CEO and founder of Motivate Design Keep it simple, decide what you want and then go for it. Get rid of excuses, check your stories and recognize that whatever money challenges can be overcome in the future.

Image: mona patel

Brian Kelly, aka The Points Guy Travel makes you a better person. Save for trips not things!

Image: brian kelly

Sam Zises, founder and CEO at [L]earned Media Paying with cash instead of with a credit card can help you save money. If you are physically holding cash at check out, you will feel more conservative and often times make better decisions.

WATCH: This NYU student went undercover as a worker in a Chinese iPhone factory

Read more: http://mashable.com/2017/04/28/money-saving-tips-part-2/

Uber is making it much easier to delete Uber

Image: carl court/getty images

Were you on Team #DeleteUber but never actually deleted the app? Or are you just now realizing that Uber is a company full of many damning problems?

Well, you’re in luck. Uber is making it easier for you to delete the app from your smartphone.

Uber users can now delete the app directly from their smartphone without having to contact customer support. According to TechCrunch, this process was called “Dear John” internally and was designed over the last year (therefore long before #DeleteUber was trending across social media).

Uber is still putting a fail safe in. Uber will retain a user’s data for 30 days after they opt to delete their account. So, if you change your mind (as in perhaps someone from Harry Potter uses a pensieve to pull your memories of all the corrupt things they have done), you can restore your account.

Prior to this update, Uber users had to contact Uber and customer service representatives had to deal with each request individually. There was no automated system, like exists now. That became a massive problem when 500,000 people requested to delete their accounts following the company’s actions during a protest over President Donald Trump’s travel ban, The New York Times reported.

Beyond making it easier to delete Uber, the app is introducing more privacy features. Users can now choose, within the app, to no longer receive notifications for ride updates or for discounts.

Uber is also making it easier for users to understand, again within the app, how much of their location data Uber knows. No, it’s not letting you limit that. You can either select always or never for location tracking (but you need it on to use the app effectively, as in you would have to know exact address of Point A and Point B and you couldn’t track the driver in real-time so good luck checking never). Uber users also can decide if they want friends to be able to access their location data, as in use Uber’s people to people feature.

Each of these features will become available to users over the coming weeks, according to TechCrunch.

This post was updated to clarify what happens when you check never for location services on Uber.

WATCH: This NYU student went undercover as a worker in a Chinese iPhone factory

Read more: http://mashable.com/2017/04/28/uber-delete-uber-privacy-updates/

MPs say ‘dominance’ of big home-building firms must end – BBC News

Image copyright Getty Images

MPs have called for an end to the dominance of big home-building firms to fix the “broken” housing market.

The communities and local government committee said the eight biggest firms built more than half of all new homes.

MPs said the government should do more for smaller builders who do not have the scale to bid for big projects.

But the Home Builders Federation, which represents large and small businesses, said only big firms could spread the risks large-scale projects pose.

The committee also said local authorities should prepare land for home building.

That would include providing the infrastructure needed, such as roads and public transport.

“The housing market is broken, we are simply not building enough homes,” said Clive Betts MP, chair of the committee.

“Smaller builders are in decline and the sector is over-reliant on an alarmingly small number of high-volume developers, driven by commercial self-interest and with little incentive to build any quicker.

“If we are to build the homes that the country so desperately needs, for sale and for rent, then this dominance must end.”

Government promises more affordable homes

Labour promises to build one million new homes

The committee found that smaller builders struggled to obtained land for development, as local authorities focused on large sites which only big companies could afford to take on.

The Homebuilders Federation said: “We fully support the committee’s call for measures to assist smaller builders, encourage new entrants and scale up specialist housing sectors, such as the retirement housing market.

“The vast majority of the big increases in housing supply in recent years have come from the larger, mainstream builders – but we need more builders of all sizes and specialisms if we are to tackle our acute housing shortage.”

‘Feeble’ measures

In February the government promised to build more affordable houses and help people buy and rent, after admitting the current market was broken.

The housing strategy for England included giving councils powers to pressure developers into starting building on land they own.

Ministers also pledged to make renting more “family-friendly” with longer tenancies offered.

However, Labour called the measures announced “feeble beyond belief”.

Read more: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-39752869