Asha Barbaschow

Published 2 hours ago: May 15, 2023 at 8:37 am

Happy Monday, hope you’re well-rested and ready for the week ahead. Morning motivation aside, let’s get stuck into the tech news you’re actually here for.


1. Apple brings Emergency SOS via Satellite down under

Apple announced its Emergency SOS via Satellite feature back in September alongside its iPhone 14 range. The idea is that if you find yourself in an emergency situation, one without reception, you can call for help with only minimal effort. Emergency SOS via Satellite does what it says on the tin: reaches out to emergency services in the region you’re in through the use of satellite. Whatever your feelings are about wielding an iPhone, you can’t ignore the fact that calling for help via satellite connection is a genuinely helpful safety feature. And it’s now available in Australia.

2. A busy weekend for cybercriminals

A multinational industrial tech company specialising in electrification and automation, ABB, told Cybernews it recently detected an IT security incident that directly affected certain locations and systems. ABB is a massive company you’ve probably never heard of, with over 100,000 employees around the world. In Australia, ABB partnered with the Public Transport Authority (PTA) of Western Australia to supply electric vehicle charging stations for the state’s first all-electric public transport bus route. It’s not the only security incident from the weekend, however, with Reuters reporting the personal information of 237,000 current and former federal government employees has been exposed in a data breach at the U.S. Transportation Department. Back home, meanwhile, The Australian is reporting that Police are investigating after a ­respected Sydney cancer surgeon Felix Chan was hacked by cybercriminals and sensitive patient details leaked online.

3. $7.75M funding from 33 Aussie orgs

Australia’s financial counselling services will receive a $7.75 million boost following a donation from a group of 33 organisations from across the banking, finance, insurance, energy, telecommunications, and online gambling sectors. The donation is expected to help the Financial Counselling Foundation deliver a series of initiatives to support victims of family violence, those at risk of homelessness, and First Nations communities. Aussie Broadband (one of the organisations involved) said: “The community work completed by the foundation is essential in supporting Australians in a variety of ways. We’re proud that our support will help it continue to make a welcome difference in the lives of Australians facing financial hardship, homelessness and digital disenfranchisement.”

4. Twitter has a new CEO

On Friday, Elon Musk announced that he’s stepping back as CEO of Twitter, and will soon be replaced by Linda Yaccarino, NBCUniversal’s former head of advertising. It’s a sensible choice for the platform. Musk completed his fraught acquisition of his favourite social media platform in October 2022. Just two months later, he indicated plans to step down from the Twitter CEO post — as soon as he managed to find someone “foolish enough” to take over. Somehow, about half a year later, he’s apparently managed to do just that. People are still finding a way to sook.

5. AI tool to predict Parkinson’s disease onset

Scientists from UNSW Sydney and Boston University have developed a tool that shows early promise in detecting Parkinson’s disease years before the first symptoms start appearing. The researchers examined blood samples taken from healthy individuals and focusing on 39 patients who developed Parkinson’s up to 15 years later, the team ran their machine learning program over datasets containing extensive information about metabolites – the chemical compounds that the body creates when breaking down food, drugs or chemicals. Read more about the study here.

BONUS ITEM: There was a lot of doom and gloom, particularly around AI, this weekend, as well as SO many Eurovision takes. But, to arm you with a bit of dopamine for the start of a very cold week, here’s a mumma kangaroo and her joey.

See you tomorrow.

More From Gizmodo Australia


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here