Daily Briefing: Cortana Makes Windows 10 Debut in Preview Build

Microsoft has added its digital assistant Cortana to its newest preview build of Windows 10. The newer version is available to members of the Windows Insider program. According to company estimates, 1.7 million "insiders" have taken Windows 10 for a spin.

Gabe Aul, Data and Fundamentals lead in Microsoft's Operating Systems Group explained that Cortana can be voice-activated by clicking the microphone icon, then speaking to set reminders or ask about weather, sports, finance and other content from Bing.

In a report issued Jan. 27, the Federal Trade Commission laid out steps that vendors and businesses should take to ensure that security is built into the devices and applications running on the Internet of things.

The IoT is expected to grow by tens of billions of devices over the next few years, end users need to be sure the devices and data they are access are safe, according to the FTC.

Among the FTC's recommendations is a call for developers to ensure that security is built into the devices from the start, rather than tacking it on during the design process, and making sure that users are trained about the importance of security.

Dell's Kace K1000 v6.3 management appliance enables businesses to monitor any connected device, ranging from smartphones and tablets to printers and projectors.

The company began to add Internet of things capabilities to Kace with the release last year of version 6.0. In addition, the updated Kace K1000, announced Jan. 27, now provides the ability to monitor the increasingly popular Chromebooks and offers agentless inventory and monitoring of Windows-based servers.

Hewlett-Packard is enhancing its SureStart technology to provide more security capabilities to users. SureStart, which HP introduced in September 2013, offers the promise of a self-healing PC BIOS that can protect users from damaging cyber-attacks.

HP Distinguished Technologist Vali Ali explained that a BIOS virus can potentially remain undetected for a long time, and even if it is detected it's not easy to recover from an attack. The promise of SureStart is to help users protect, detect and recover from BIOS attacks.

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