[NEWS] Noteworthy tech news of 2021
The year 2021 is just about to draw to a close. It’s been quite a year, as you’d probably agree. In this, our final tech news roundup of the year, let’s look back at some of the most intriguing stories we featured through the year.
- ABBA performing again—as holograms. Sweden’s beloved band ABBA released a new album Voyager and then announced a series of concerts with a twist. They planned to wear holographic suits while they performed that would allow them to appear as they looked when at their peak in 1979 (rather than as septuagenarians).
- Twitch hack exposes top earners. The interactive live video streaming service Twitch got caught with its digital pants down when hackers exploited a server misconfiguration and accessed huge amounts of user and company data, including earnings by top Twitch streamers. Many decried poor security protocols while others had concerns about how much certain streamers made on the platform.
- Microsoft sends IE out to pasture. In news applauded by all web designers, Microsoft announced that Internet Explorer will finally be retired in June 2022. Since the story broke, WordPress has already dropped support for the browser.
- Britain finally recognizes Alan Turing’s contributions. In June, to coincide with his birthday, the UK released a new £50 note featuring the likeness of Turing and celebrating his achievements as a scientist, codebreaker, and father of modern computing. Persecuted for his homosexuality, this move represents long-overdue appreciation of his contributions to the modern world.
- Dogecoin takes off. Dogecoin, a cryptocurrency inspired by a meme of a rescue-dog named Kabosu, became a sensation after tweets from Elon Musk, Snoop Dogg, and Gene Simmons in late 2020 and early 2021. A subsequent flurry of social media activity pushed the value of Dogecoin upwards, leading to an increase of over 14,000% in just five months.
- Ransomware extends tentacles across the world. Over the past year we’ve reported on several ransomware attacks, but none quite as chilling as one over the summer that hit over a thousand small businesses internationally. Authorities pointed to REvil, a Russian-linked organized crime gang, as being behind the attacks. But then in October several law enforcement groups banded together to shut down the REvil servers and then in November, the US Justice Department announced that one of REvil’s hackers was arrested and millions of dollars seized.
- Hackers tackle pirates. In an ironic twist of fate, antivirus provider Avast discovered malware dubbed Crackonosh hidden within many pirated versions of popular video games. Some of the games affected include pirated versions of Grand Theft Auto V, The Sims 4, Fallout 4 GOTY, and NBA 2K19.
- Robots were everywhere. This year we’ve featured stories about robot dogs, robots running races, and even robots with human mannerisms. While we might not all have personal robot pals yet, it seems like they’re right around the corner. Here’s a video of a robot dancing to open out 2021. Who knows what they might accomplish in 2022?
From all of us at Namecheap, we wish you a happy 2022!