Windows has major flaw
Microsoft Corp, whose software runs more than nine of every 10 personal computers, said a flaw discovered in its Windows XP operating system could let an attacker gain control of a computer. The vulnerability, considered "critical" by Microsoft, could allow intruders to create files, delete data and make other changes to a computer running Windows XP. Microsoft said users can download software from its Web site that will correct the vulnerability. The vulnerability was discovered and reported to Microsoft by Foundstone Research Labs. Microsoft has issued more than 70 security bulletins this year outlining potential problems with its software.
■ Video outlets
Blockbuster cuts forecast
Blockbuster Inc cut its 2002 profit estimate by at least 16 percent, saying competition from discount stores had crimped fourth-quarter sales at the largest movie-rental chain. The stock plunged a record 32 percent. Per-share profit this year will be US$1.03 to US$1.10 on sales of more than US$5.5 billion, Blockbuster said in a statement. Last month, the Dallas-based company predicted that profit before some expenses would rise to US$1.31 a share from US$1.01 last year. Higher sales of movies on digital video discs at rival retailers pinched Blockbuster's rental revenue. The company redesigned its more than 4,400 US stores last month in a bid to win a bigger share of the US$8.4 billion retail market for DVDs, rather than relying on rentals. The overhaul failed to fend off the competition.
■ Food industry
Dole chairman to buy firm
Dole Foods Chairman David H. Murdock has agreed to buy all of the outstanding shares of the giant food company he does not already own, and take it private in a US$2.5 billion deal. Murdock will pay US$33.50 per share for the approximately 76 percent of the company's outstanding common stock, Dole said in a statement released Wednesday. That is US$4 a share more than the price the self-made billionaire offered in September, when he first proposed to take the world's largest producer of fresh foods and produce private. "I believe the company can be better managed as a private company," Murdock told the Ventura County Star in a telephone interview shortly before the deal was announced. "I'm buying it, so I don't think it's a bad deal, but it's not a steal at this price," he added.
Arabs face high joblessness
The economic picture of the Arab world is bleak, with unemployment reaching as high as 20 percent of the combined work force, an Arab League meeting heard Wednesday. "The Arab economic yield does not correspond with the people's needs," the secretary general of the Council of Arab Economic Unity, Ahmed Goweili, told ministers of trade, finance and economy of the 10 league members represented on the council. Goweili said the gross national product of the Arab world stood at US$712 billion last year, a figure that represents only 2 percent of the world gross product. It shows that Arab economies make a very limited contribution to the world economy. "In the year 2001, unemployment sharply increased, especially among young and educated people, to reach 20 percent of the work force," Goweili said.
SECURITY CONCERNS: The Telecom Technology Center ran black-box tests for the Executive Yuan on devices and software from Chinese, US and South Korean firms Network devices from several Chinese manufacturers are insecure and allow personal information to be leaked, testing commissioned by the Executive Yuan has shown. A variety of devices and software, including apps, from Chinese, US and South Korean manufacturers that are used by government agencies at the central and local level were subjected to black-box testing — in which the functionality of an application is examined without knowing about its internal structure, an information-security official said yesterday on condition of anonymity. The Telecom Technology Center conducted the tests, which simulated cyberattacks, to determine their resilience to the attacks, the official said. The center
Americans awoke yesterday to charred and glass-strewn streets in dozens of cities after another night of unrest fueled by rage over the mistreatment of African Americans at the hands of police, who responded to the violence with tear gas and rubber bullets. Tens of thousands marched peacefully through streets to protest the death of George Floyd, a black man who died on Monday last week after a white Minneapolis police officer pressed his knee on his neck until he stopped breathing. However, many demonstrations sank into chaos as night fell: Vehicles and businesses were torched. The words “I can’t breathe” were
China would attack Taiwan if there is no other way of stopping it from becoming independent, Chinese General Li Zuocheng (李作成) said yesterday. Speaking at Beijing’s Great Hall of the People on the 15th anniversary of China’s “Anti-Secession” Law, Li, who is chief of the Joint Staff Department of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army Central Military Commission, left the door open to using force. The 2005 law is China’s legislative basis for military action against Taiwan. “If the possibility for peaceful reunification is lost, the people’s armed forces will, with the whole nation, including the people of Taiwan, take all necessary steps to
EXTRA INVITATIONS: Russia, Australia, South Korea and India would be asked to a later summit dedicated to countering China, Donald Trump said US President Donald Trump has been forced to cancel a planned face-to-face summit of G7 leaders this month and now wants to host an expanded meeting in September dedicated to countering China to which Russian President Vladimir Putin would be invited. Trump on Saturday announced that he had canceled the June meeting, which he had billed as a symbol of the US “transitioning back to greatness,” after German Chancellor Angela Merkel told him in a telephone call that she saw the summit in Washington as a health risk. Hundreds of security staff, journalists and officials also attend the two-day summits. Reports suggest