Online Reputation Management Blog

Secure Search Engine Sees Significant Growth

Intel Is Changing How It Does Things

Intel, the world’s largest manufacturer of computer chips, once sold standard forms of its x-86 processors by the millions, but half of the chips it’ll sell to public clouds — an increasingly vital part of its sales — will be completely customized.

“We have never said no to a custom solution,” said Diane Bryant, the head of Intel’s data center business. “We get orders from the tens of thousands to the hundreds of thousands.”

Public clouds are computer systems accessible to anyone. For example, Amazon Web Services, Google Compute, and Microsoft Azure are all public clouds that frequently sell their computer power or data storage. One recent study also found that about 60% of businesses also use services like public clouds to perform IT-related operations as well.

Since these public clouds are reaching millions of people, they need to work as well as is possible, which is why there’s such a high demand for custom chips, Bryant explains.

“[These companies] are running a million servers, so floor space, power, cooling, people — you want to optimize everything,” she said. “The name of the game is customization.”

Case in point, eBay wanted to install a hyper-efficient cooling system, and so it asked Intel to make chips that had a superior thermal tolerance, which allowed them to be worked even harder.

Though there’s an obvious demand for custom chips, it seems a little odd for Intel to suddenly start taking so many custom jobs. After all, it made heaps of profit churning out tens of millions of cookie-cutter chips. Why even bother with custom chips?

For two reasons, it seems. First, Intel’s chip fabrication plants have become so automated that creating custom chips is not as laborious as it sounds. All it takes to leave out a core or change some other property of the chip is to input a few new commands into the machine. Second, it’s because there’s profit to be made there. Clients are willing to pay extra for a special run, or pay an engineering fee.

“As the dependency on technology increases, you have more workloads going across greater amounts of infrastructure,” said Bryant. “The name of the game is customization.”

iCloud Hackers Regroup After Celebrity Nude Photo Scandal


Celebrities are not the only ones upset about the recent iCloud hack that resulted in the leak of hundreds of nude celebrity photos. Hackers from the porn forum “AnonIB” that hosted many of the photos are not used to so much publicity, nor did they want it. The creators of the site quickly took the forum down after realizing that the hacker who stole the photos, known as “OrigianlGuy,” had leaked the photos on their site.

Hackers who had shared hacking tips and advertised their skills on AnonIB disbanded after the story began to circulate through the news, and have only recently regrouped. Although the website is back up and running, its layout has changed in the aftermath of the celebrity scandal. The page that contained stolen photos, nicknamed “Stol,” is no longer available. The Stol page had previously been used as a way for hackers to adversities their services and as a common place for hackers to share tips on obtaining nude photographs. The creators of the site didn’t give an explanation for deleting this section of the forum, but fear of legal action against them is a likely cause.

iCloud hackers might not be able to steal information off the web as easily now that Apple has upped its security measures, but that isn’t likely to stop them. Information stored on the cloud is vulnerable to attacks, and nearly 50% of businesses lost data in the cloud in 2013. It might be more difficult, but hackers will find a way.

The war wages on in the celebrity nude photo scandal with the most recent legal actions involving Google. Celebrity lawyer Marty Singer has written to Google, demanding that they remove any nude celebrity photos that continue to circulate on its site and asking them to cut off any sites listed on Google that host the nude photos. He has threatened to sue the company for $100 million if they don’t cooperate.

A request made on behalf of victims of the photo scandal to remove all photos was sent to Google a month before the threat, but many sites that Google owns still displayed the pictures. Jennifer Lawrence, Kate Upton, Rihanna and Ariana Grande are among the female celebrities targeted by the iCloud attack.

How to Remove a Page from Google Search

One of the myths of Internet is that search results are permanent and cannot be deleted.  In reality, online reputation management companies know that internet search results can and do change frequently.  What is on page one of Google today, can appear on page three tomorrow. And conversely, what is on page three of Google today, can appear on page one tomorrow.

Websites go out of business (or fail to pay their registration fees) and the domain is taken down.  Pages are deleted by site owners and webmasters.  Social media profiles on popular sites like Facebook can be easily deindexed or hidden from view by people searching for you online by applying basic privacy settings.  But did you know that you can remove pages from the Internet?  It’s true.

If you discover a page in Google search results that shares personal information such as your social security or credit card number, Google will review the request and may remove the information from their search results.  Examples of personal information which may be deleted by Google includes:

  • Your social security or government ID number
  • Your bank account or credit card number
  • An image of your handwritten signature
  • Your first and last name or the name of your business appearing on an adult content site (e.g., online pornography) that’s spamming Google’s search results.

If you discover personal information about you or your family online, your first point of contact should be the Webmaster that is publishing the confidential information and request removal immediately.

If the Webmaster or site owner is unable or unwilling to remove the content, you can contact Google directly and request removal.

When you contact Google to request removal, you will need to be very specific about the content that you are seeking to remove and why.  For example, you can:

  • Request removal of an entire page
  • Request removal of the cached version of a page.
  • Request removal of an image
  • Request removal of Google-hosted content (e.g., YouTube, Blogger, etc.) for legal reasons, such as copyright infringement

If Google cannot remove the information from their search results, you may want to contact a reputation management company to discuss how to remove or suppress the negative results from the first pages of Google and other leading search engines.

If you want to monitor whether personal information about you or a member of your family appears online, reputation management companies recommend you try The Me on the Web feature of your Google Dashboard can help you keep track of the latest mentions on the Web.

"Search" button
While Google still reigns supreme on the search engine market, the gap is closing. Still a small company, search engine DuckDuckGo tripled its growth at the end of 2014, receiving approximately seven million direct search queries daily.

But what makes DuckDuckGo special? Founded in 2008, DuckDuckGo promises not to track users – and it keeps that promise by not storing search histories, computer or location information. It also keeps users’ search queries from other websites. These are all things other search engines do to increase advertising.

According to DuckDuckGo’s daily usage statistics, the end of 2014 marked two full years of dramatic growth. While there was steady growth in the beginning of 2014, usage rose exponentially toward the end of the year. The first eight months of 2014 saw a steady monthly increase of 3.5%. Then, from September to December, monthly growth rose to 10.2% – almost triple the usage.

What caused the sudden growth spurt? In September, Apple added DuckDuckGo as a search option that users could select in the Safari browser, though Google remains the default option. Later, in November, DuckDuckGo was added to Mozilla’s Firefox browser as well. Unsurprisingly, there don’t seem to be any plans to add DuckDuckGo to Google Chrome in the foreseeable future.

“DuckDuckGo has significantly increased its user base from both integrations,” CEO Gabriel Weinberg told Quartz. “Though the exact amount is unclear since we don’t track people.”

While the Mozilla and Apple distribution certainly helped DuckDuckGo become more popular, the company’s largest growth to date followed revelations of mass government surveillance in June of 2013. Because DuckDuckGo does not collect any information that could be used to identify users or their search habits, many people felt that it was an obvious choice to make the switch from other search engines.

DuckDuckGo has a long way to go before it rivals Google, but if their usage continues to grow at this rate, eventually they will get there.