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Audi takes lead in automated driving, but others wary to follow

German carmaker Audi is taking a lead in bringing more automated driving to roads, but rivals seem in no rush to follow while legal and regulatory uncertainties still cloud the technology.

Graffiti-fighting drones are coming to clean up San Jose

San Jose has a new high-tech solution to its persistent graffiti problem.

GRAD was dreamed up in response to a challenge by San Jose city leaders: find a solution to remove graffiti from hard-to-reach spots like overpasses, freeway signs, sound walls and railroad trestles. — AFP

Google offers to display rival sites via auction: sources

Alphabet unit Google has offered to display rival shopping comparison sites via an auction in order to comply with an EU antitrust order to stop favouring its own shopping service, four people familiar with the matter said.

The proposal, which resembles a failed offer made to the European Commission three years ago to settle the case, would allow competitors to bid for any spot in its shopping section known as Product Listing Ads, the people said. — Reuters

Hackers compromised CCleaner free software, Avast's Piriform says

Hackers broke into British company Piriform Ltd's free software that optimises computer performance last month, potentially allowing them to control the devices of millions of users, the company and independent researchers said on Sept 18.

More than two million people downloaded tainted versions of CCleaner, which then directed the computers to get instructions from servers under the hacker's control. — Reuters

Nokia says to get sales boost after patent ruling

Nokia will start to book additional revenue from the current quarter after a ruling by an arbitration court on payments from South Korea's LG Electronics for using its smartphone patents.

Nokia has recently signed deals with larger phone makers Samsung Electronics and Apple, as well as China's Xiaomi Technology. — Reuters

Baidu hires Weibo CFO Herman Yu as finance chief amid AI push

Chinese search engine giant Baidu Inc said on Sept 18 that it had hired the finance chief of Weibo Corp as its chief financial officer, marking a leadership change for the firm as its hones its focus onto artificial intelligence.

Baidu has been forced to revamp its business model and focus to keep pace with its main local tech rivals which are spending billions of dollars expanding into new markets. — Reuters

Google joins mobile payments race in cash-reliant India

Alphabet Inc’s Google introduced a digital payments service specifically designed for India as competition heats up for the country’s billion-plus potential users.

Google’s new service goes beyond Android Pay by allowing the linking of payment apps from a clutch of Indian banks, as well as services of Paytm Payments Bank Pvt and One MobiKwik Systems Pvt. — Reuters

Growing unease as India curbs the Net to keep the peace

First he tried messaging friends, but WhatsApp was down. Then, the credit card readers at his clothing store weren't working. Ride-sharing apps were offline too.

Slack valued at US$5.1bil after new funding led by SoftBank

Software startup Slack Technologies Inc said it raised US$250mil (RM1.04bil) from SoftBank Group Corp and other investors in its latest funding round, boosting the company's valuation to US$5.1bil (RM21.35bil).

Slack's sizeable funding round reflects the trend of a growing number of US$100mil (RM418.70mil)-plus checks pouring into technology startups. — Reuters

The Pirate Bay used visitors’ computers to mine cryptocurrency

Like most torrents sites, The Pirate Bay is notorious for pop-up ads, but it is now looking beyond ads to make money by using the computers of its visitors to mine cryptocurrency.

The Pirate Bay included a Javascript code on its site to hijack the processing power of computers to mine the cyrptocurrency Monero. — RAYMOND OOI/The Star