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Security

Garmin Still Down After Reported Ransomware Attack

Garmin’s servers and services have been taken down for almost a day, purportedly by a ransomware attack late Thursday, according to ZD Net.

Several Garmin services went down on Thursday, with the issue affecting Garmin’s website, apps, aviation software, and call centers, as well as Garmin Connect. Users with Garmin wearables have been unable to sync their data, and those using the aviation navigational equipment are no longer able to meet Federal Aviation Administration requirements for flights.

Garmin tweeted it was working to resolve the crash “as quickly as possible” but did not give a reason for the loss in service.

Digital Trends asked Garmin what caused the outage, but haa not heard back. We will update this story when we receive a response.

According to ZD Net, Garmin was reportedly forced to shut down all service operations to address the fallout behind the hack, which left internal systems and networks encrypted and unable to be accessed.

It is uncertain whether any customer or partner data was lost in the reported attack, but a Garmin spokesperson has called the outage “a part of an ongoing investigation,” according to ZD Net.

In a post to r/sysadmin, a Reddit user claimed that ransomware variant WastedLocker was responsible for the recent server attack on Garmin and has demanded a ransom payment of an unknown amount. This group is known for targeting U.S. organizations with malware in exchange for steep ransom payments of up to $10 million in Bitcoin.

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Security

Garmin Received Decryption Key, May Have Paid Ransom

GPS technology company Garmin is recovering from a recent ransomware attack and has reportedly received a decryption key to recover its files, suggesting it may have paid a ransom, as uncovered by Bleeping Computer.

The site found that the attackers used the WastedLocker Ransomware and reported that they demanded $10 million as a ransom. Now, it also uncovered that Garmin is using a decryption key to regain access to its files, suggesting that the company may have paid that ransom demand or some other amount. The WastedLocker software uses encryption which has no known weaknesses, so the assumption is that to break it, the company must have paid the attackers for the decryption key.

Garmin was the victim of the ransomware attack at the end of July, when hackers succeeded in shutting down services including Garmin Connect, the network which syncs data for Garmin customers using wearables such as watches. Affected systems came back online within a few days, but services continued to be slow for some users.

As well as the inconvenience for wearables users, the hack had some people worried about more serious consequences as well. Some aviation navigation software like the flyGarmin app was also affected, meaning it could have been in breach of Federal Aviation Authority (FAA) requirements.

The company reassured customers that no customer data was stolen, and that no payment information from the Garmin Pay payment system was accessed or stolen either.

On Twitter, the company announced last week, “We are happy to report that many of the systems and services affected by the recent outage, including Garmin Connect, are returning to operation. Some features still have temporary limitations while all of the data is being processed.”

When asked for comment on these reports, a Garmin representative pointed Digital Trends to a statement the company made about the incident last week and said it had no further comments at this time.

Update August 3, 2020: Added response from Garmin

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Tech News

Garmin Venu 2 smartwatch is the do-all fitness tracker

The Garmin Venu 2 smartwatch will cost you approximately $400 – let’s talk about why. The Garmin Venu 2 does everything the original Venu does, but ALSO adds an array of new features. This watch works with GPS (and GLONASS, GALILEO), heart rate monitor, barometric altimeter, compass, gyroscope, accelerometer, thermometer, ambient light sensor, pulse ox blood oxygen saturation monitor, and a battery time of up to 10 days in smartwatch mode. It has a touchscreen, color display, and is able to connect to Android and iOS devices.

In addition to the features included in the original Venu, this device is available in two distinct sizes and multiple colors. This version has “enhanced battery life” with both rapid recharging and a battery saver mode – which for the Venu 2 means it’ll have up to 11 days of up-time, and the 2S rings in at 10 days (both in smartwatch mode).

This series also has new HIIT workouts with on-screen animations, as well as activity profiles for HIIT, hiking, bouldering, and indoor climbing. Venu 2 works with Health Snapshot to record and share health stats, and has a “Fitness age” system.

With the fitness age system, the watch “estimates the body’s age” given activity, resting heart rate, chronological age, and either body fat percentage (if you’ve got a Garmin Index scale) or BMI. The Venu 2 also adds new sleep score and insights with Firtbeat Analytics. Below you’ll see a presentation video from Garmin about this new Garmin Venu 2 series.

The Garmin Venu 2 has a 45mm watch case and a 22mm band. The Garmin Venu 2S has a 40mm watch case and an 18mm band. The bands work with “industry-standard quick release” silicone band connections, and the watch has a stainless steel bezel.

The display is an AMOLED touchscreen panel protected with Corning Gorilla Glass 3. If you’re looking at the Venu 2S, you’ll have a 1.1-inch diameter display with 360 x 360 pixels. The Venu 2 has a 1.3-inch diameter display with 416 x 416 pixels. Both have 5 ATM water ratings, meaning they’re able to withstand pressure equivalent to a depth of 50 meters. That means you’ll be protected against splashes, showers, diving, snorkeling, swimming, and your basic rain and snow.

Both the Garmin Venu 2 and Garmin Venu 2S will cost you approximately $400 USD. These watches were made available for purchase through Garmin (dot com) starting this week.

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Tech News

Garmin Lily smartwatch leak suggests a female target market

Smartwatches are a dime a dozen these days but, despite being targeted at the general population, some would point out how they seem to be designed more for males or at least those with larger wrists. Even those that are explicitly marketed to be for women still share the same watch and strap sizes as other models. That may be the issue that Garmin will be addressing with a new Lily smartwatch that is seemingly designed for those who prefer smaller, more discreet wearables.

There are actually quite a few smartwatches targeted at women but few can boast of coming in a comparatively petite size. According to WinFuture’s leak, the Garmin Lily will have a body of 34mm and a proprietary strap that’s only 14mm wide. In comparison, even the smallest smartwatches are 38mm big, with most sporting 40mm or 44mm bodies.

Aside from that, however, there might not be much else that will set the Garmin Lily aside from the rest of the smartwatch market. It will have your basics, like sensors for measuring heart rate, and activity tracking. It will have a pulse oximeter for measuring blood oxygen saturation but it will depend on a smartphone for GPS.

Curiously, the leak also claims that the LCD screen only displays white over a colored background. That may also explain why the smartwatch will reportedly boast five days of battery life. The company best-known for its navigation systems also uses its own smartwatch platform, providing only the basic functionality without the extras of, say, Wear OS by Google.

The Garmin Lily could be close to debut and it will have a 199 EUR price tag. There will be two versions, a Classic and a Sport, but the site theorizes the only real difference will be the material used for the housing.

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