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The search for an elusive 1989 Porsche finally pays off for one sports car admirer – The Peterborough Examiner

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Rocco Malfara’s love affair with Porsche started when he was 10 years old and first saw the sports car’s distinctive silhouette. He has owned a few Porsches over the years, starting with a black, stainless-steel toy version he would play with as a child. (It now sits proudly on his desk at work.)

In the 45 years since he first gazed on the car’s unique look, the senior managing partner of All-Risks Insurance Brokers has owned a 911 Targa and a couple Macans — he is waiting for his new one to be delivered — but it is his 1989 Porsche 911 Turbo, in rare Baltic Blue and featuring a white interior, that he cherishes most.

He found the car after a seven-year search that saw him scouring auto magazines and placing search alerts on several websites to make sure he wouldn’t miss out on a chance to own one. He was finally able to buy it this December. Malfara tells us why he loves his vehicle.

“All my friends know that I always talk about the 1989 Turbo,” said Malfara. “The car is rare because it was a limited-production car. It is different because it’s the first time that Porsche put a five-speed transmission in the car. Before that, since 1960, they were always four-speed. The ’89 is also special because it’s the last year of full analog. The generation after that, Porsche introduced power steering and more power components in the car.

“It was also called ‘The Widowmaker,’ because a lot of rich stockbrokers bought the car but didn’t know how to drive them and would lose control. The cars have what’s called turbo lag, where the turbo kicks in and you get a big boost of power. It just jumps out like a rocket,” he said. “A lot of the cars from that era didn’t survive because they got smashed up or they were modified to improve their overall performance.

“I searched for seven years because I was looking for an unmodified car in Baltic Blue. When the car popped up at this high-end dealership in Calgary, I couldn’t believe it. The first question I asked was if the car originally came in that colour. They checked the certificate of authenticity — each car is issued one that lists all the options picked and the original owner — and it was that way when it left the factory in Germany.

“I’m the third owner. The original owner had it delivered to the Porsche dealership in Edmonton more than 30 years ago. When he died, his estate sold it to the gentleman I bought if from,” said Malfara. “I bought the car without physically seeing it, but I did do a pre-purchase inspection at Porsche Calgary. They went over the car with a fine-tooth comb, checked the car mechanically, confirmed the serial number of the car, the paint, and checked everything. The car’s in really good shape and so I’m just trying to preserve it as best I can.”

A closer look 1989 Porsche 911 Turbo

Why blue?

“People that know me know that I love everything blue,” said Malfara. “My cars are all blue. My other 911 is a silver-coloured car but it has a blue leather interior, which is kind of rare, and a blue roof. Everyone said that a blue 1989 Turbo doesn’t exist. That it’s a unicorn. But then one appeared. It’s been a mission of mine since I bought this car to find other blue cars, but I haven’t found another.”

A collectible

“Car club members know their cars. They know which ones are rare. As soon as I tell someone the year and that it’s a Turbo, they go, ‘Wow.’ Forget about the colour, because everybody knows that’s the first five-speed manual transmission. In the Porsche world that’s huge,” he said. “People who don’t know ask why anyone would want this car when you can have a new Turbo for less. But there’s so few of them, especially in concours condition. I look at the car, and see a collectible piece of art.”

Driving analog

“These older cars are more analog,” said Malfara. “You feel the changing of the gears, the rev and when the booster kicks in. The sound is much louder. The handling and power are nowhere as good as in newer cars. It’s more of a driver-focused vehicle and you’re more responsible for what it does. It’s also an air-cooled car, which is totally different than today’s modern cars. This old car cannot be replaced.”

The specs

Body styleFastback coupe

Drive methodAWD

Engine3.3L L6 SOHC 12V Turbo, 282-hp; 278 lb.-ft. torque

Fuel economy (city/highway)32.93/49.40 litres per 100 kilometres

Cargo volume110 litres

PriceStarting at $70,975 (U.S.) in 1989

SCAN CODE: Scan this code to read about the 2022 Porsche Cayenne Turbo GT

This article was edited for space and clarity. To be featured in Why I Love My Vehicle?, email us at wheels@thestar.ca. Renée S. Suen is a Toronto-based lifestyle writer and photographer. Follow her on Twitter: @rssuen.

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Google's Making It Easier to Sync Photos, Wi-Fi Passwords to Chromebooks – PCMag

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Google is taking a few pages from Apple’s playbook with the release of Chrome OS 103.

The company says(Opens in a new window) the operating system update will introduce the ability to automatically sync photos and share Wi-Fi settings between a Chromebook and a paired Android smartphone. The former sounds a lot like iCloud Photos, which syncs images between Apple devices, but Google is actually planning to make the feature a lot more powerful than its competitor’s offering.

“With the latest update, you’ll now also have instant access to the latest photos you took on your phone — even if you’re offline,” Google says. “After taking a picture on your phone, it will automatically appear within Phone Hub on your laptop under ‘recent photos.’ Just click on the image to download it, then it’s ready to be added to a document or email.”

The company’s answer to sharing Wi-Fi settings between devices seems a bit less compelling. Google says that users will have to follow a multi-step process on their Android phone to share the information to a nearby Chromebook; Apple’s offering prompts users to share a Wi-Fi password if their device is unlocked and connected to the network in question.

A new feature called Fast Pair designed for Bluetooth headphones

But Google has another trick planned for Chrome OS. It’s called Fast Pair, and the company says that it will allow Chromebooks to “automatically detect when a new pair of Bluetooth headphones are on, are nearby, and are ready to be set up.” The devices can then be paired with a single press (or tap) on a pop-up that appears whenever those conditions are met.

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“Whether you want to use new headphones to watch a video, join a virtual meeting or listen to music, Fast Pair will make it hassle-free,” Google says. “This feature will be compatible with hundreds of different headphone models — and counting.” The company says that it plans to release Fast Pair in a separate update to Chrome OS “later this summer.”

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Google warns of 'hermit spyware' infecting Android and iOS devices – Mashable

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As part of Google’s efforts to track the activities of commercial spyware vendors, the company’s Threat Analysis Group (TAG) released a report Thursday on spyware campaigns targeting Android and iOS users.

Google TAG researchers Benoit Sevens and Clement Lecigne go into detail about the use of entrepreneurial grade spyware dubbed “Hermit.” This sophisticated spyware tool allows attackers to steal data, private messages and make phone calls. In their report, TAG researchers attributed Hermit to RCS Labs, a commercial spyware vendor based in Italy.

Hermit poses many significant dangers. Due to its modularity, Hermit is quite customizable, allowing the functions of the spyware to be altered to the will of its user. Once fully situated on a target’s phone, attackers can harvest sensitive information such as call logs, contacts, photos, precise location, and SMS messages.

Sevens and Lecigne’s full report details the ways in which attackers can access both Android and iOS devices through the use of clever tricks and drive-by attacks. Potential targets of this scam will have their data disabled through their ISP carrier before sending a malicious link via text to get them to ‘fix’ the issue. If that doesn’t work, targets will be tricked into downloading malicious apps masqueraded as messaging applications.

Just last week, cybersecurity firm Lookout reported the use of Hermit by agents working in the governments of Kazakhstan, Syria, and Italy. Google has already identified victims in these countries, stating that “TAG is actively tracking more than 30 vendors with varying levels of sophistication and public exposure selling exploits or surveillance capabilities to government-backed actors.”

The Milan-based company claims to provide “law enforcement agencies worldwide with cutting-edge technological solutions and technical support in the field of lawful interception for more than twenty years.” More than 10,000 intercepted targets are purported to be handled daily in Europe alone.

When reached out for comment by The Hacker News, RCS Labs said its “core business is the design, production, and implementation of software platforms dedicated to lawful interception, forensic intelligence, and data analysis” and that it “helps law enforcement prevent and investigate serious crimes such as acts of terrorism, drug trafficking, organized crime, child abuse, and corruption.”

Still, the news of the spyware being used by state government agents is concerning. Not only does it erode trust in the safety of the internet but it also puts at risk the lives of anyone a government considers an enemy of the state such as dissidents, journalists, human rights workers, and opposition party politicians.

“Tackling the harmful practices of the commercial surveillance industry will require a robust, comprehensive approach that includes cooperation among threat intelligence teams, network defenders, academic researchers, governments, and technology platforms,” Google TAG researchers wrote. “We look forward to continuing our work in this space and advancing the safety and security of our users around the world.”

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iPhone, Android users ALERT! Google warns of Italian spyware out to hack your phone – HT Tech

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An Italian company’s hacking tools were used to spy on Apple Inc (AAPL.O) and Android smartphones in Italy and Kazakhstan, informs Google. Check details here.

In a shocking development it has been revealed that your iPhone and Android phones are at risk. As per the information a tool has been developed to spy on personal messages and contacts of the targeted devices. Alphabet Inc’s Google has said in a report that an Italian company’s hacking tools were used to spy on Apple Inc and Android smartphones in Italy and Kazakhstan. According to the report, Milan-based RCS Lab, whose website claims European law enforcement agencies as clients, developed tools to spy on private messages and contacts of the targeted devices. However, Google said it had taken steps to protect users of its Android operating system and alerted them about the spyware.

“These vendors are enabling the proliferation of dangerous hacking tools and arming governments that would not be able to develop these capabilities in-house,” Google said. According to a report by Reuters, commenting on the issue, an Apple spokesperson said the company had revoked all known accounts and certificates associated with this hacking campaign. RCS Lab said its products and services comply with European rules and help law enforcement agencies investigate crimes.

Also read: Looking for a smartphone? To check mobile finder click here.

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Reuters was further informed via an email, “RCS Lab personnel are not exposed, nor participate in any activities conducted by the relevant customers.” RCS Lab further said that it condemned any abuse of its products.

It can be known that the global industry making spyware for governments has been growing, with more companies developing interception tools for law enforcement. Anti-surveillance activists accuse them of aiding governments that in some cases use such tools to crack down on human rights and civil rights, said Reuters in a report.

Also Read: Google Workspace will NOT be Free anymore; here are top 5 alternatives

As per the report, the industry came under a global spotlight when the Israeli surveillance firm NSO’s Pegasus spyware was in recent years found to have been used by multiple governments to spy on journalists, activists, and dissidents.

Though not as stealthy as Pegasus, RCS Lab’s tool can still be used to read messages and view passwords, said Bill Marczak, a security researcher with digital watchdog Citizen Lab. “This shows that even though these devices are ubiquitous, there’s still a long way to go in securing them against these powerful attacks,” he was quoted as saying by Reuters.

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