Data Breaches Security

Marriott reports data breach of Starwood guest reservation database

Marriott International reported a data breach of its Starwood guest reservation database in November 2018.  The data was for customers with reservations from 2014 up to September 2018 and includes hotel brands W Hotels, St. Regis, Sheraton, Westin, Element, Four Points, Design, and Starwood branded timeshare properties.

Update: Marriott now states that no more than 383 million records were affected by this data breach in a new statement.

More information is available for customers at Customers will be able to enroll in WebWatcher’s web monitoring service free of charge for one year. U.S. and Canada residents may also call their help line at 877-273-9481.

Legislation Security

Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency Act of 2018

The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) Act of 2018 was signed into law as of November 16, 2018.  This legislation reorganizes the National Protection and Programs Directorate (NPPD) as the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), a standalone federal agency in charge of cyber and physical infrastructure security.

More information is available at the Department of Homeland Security’s CISA website.

Training offers free online training for participating library card holders, the online learning platform owned by LinkedIn, offers free training through participating public libraries for library card holders through its Lynda Library program.    The library patron must log in through their local library’s digital resources website and not through the main website.  A full list of courses may be found at

Users also have the option to link their LinkedIn Learning and accounts. content is also available using iOS, Android, and streaming apps.

Android Smartphones

Samsung announces future release of folding screen smartphone

Samsung announced the future release of its new smartphone folding screen technology called Samsung Infinity Flex Display at its 2018 Developer conference.   The screen folds in the middle like a book and phones using this feature may be released in 2019 or later.

Operating Systems Windows

Microsoft resumes release of Windows 10 October 2018 Update

Microsoft has announced that it will resume the release of the Windows 10 October 2018 Update (version 1809).   This update was temporarily stopped because some users had lost files after the earlier version of update was installed.    This issue should not occur with the newest update release.

Apps and Utilities iPad iPhone

CloudConvert app can convert between hundreds of file formats

CloudConvert is a file conversion application developed by Lunaweb that allows you to convert various file types into hundreds of other file formats.  It can run as a free web version (with user registration), and it also available as an iPhone and iPad app and as a Google Chrome Web Store extension.

Apple iPhone Smartphones

iPhone 5 added to Apple vintage and obsolete products list

Apple recently added the iPhone 5 smartphone to its vintage and obsolete products list. The iPhone 5 is considered vintage by Apple because it was discontinued between five years and seven years before today. Products discontinued more than seven years ago are considered obsolete by Apple.

Apple has discontinued hardware service for its vintage products with some exceptions, and all obsolete products with no exceptions.