Eastman Kodak could file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection this month or in early February according to a recent report. The troubled camera maker will likely file if it cannot sell 1,100 patents, The Wall Street Journal said Wednesday. The company is reportedly speaking with J.P. Morgan Chase & Co., Citigroup and Wells Fargo, and is asking for as much as $1 billion in debtor-in possession financing. The financing could help keep Kodak alive as it moves through the bankruptcy filing process. If Kodak does indeed have to file for Chapter 11, it will then try to sell its patents through the court in a bankruptcy auction, The Journal explained. Kodak may also soon be delisted from the New York Stock Exchange if it cannot recover within the next six months. More →
We like the Kindle Fire’s odds, and we revealed as much in our review of Amazon’s new tablet published on Tuesday. Analysts have been betting on the Fire as well, with shipment estimates reaching as high as 5 million units for the fourth quarter alone. As detailed in a recent note to investors, Citigroup analyst Mark Mahaney sees Amazon’s success in the tablet market spilling into the new year, with sales of Amazon’s Kindle Fire tablets reaching 12 million units for the full year in 2012. Increasing competition and falling prices could make 12 million tablets a tall order, but if Amazon can pull it off, it will manage to acquire 15% of the tablet market and roughly $3.2 billion in revenue thanks to hardware sales and what Maheny calls an “unmatched content cross-sell opportunity.” Amazon is expected to launch as many as two new tablet models in 2012, an 8.9-inch version of the Kindle Fire and a flagship 10-inch model.
Amazon could have a smartphone on store shelves by the fourth quarter of next year according to Citigroup analyst Mark Mahaney. “Based on our supply chain check, we believe FIH is now jointly developing the phone with Amazon,” Mahaney wrote in a research note. “However, we believe that Amazon will pay NRE to FIH but the device and multiple components will actually be manufactured by Hon Hai’s TMS business group.” Additionally, Mahaney said that Amazon will likely use a Texas Instruments OMAP 4 processor, and that it will adopt Qualcomm’s dual-mode 6-series baseband chip as well. Read on for more. More →
81% of iPad owners have paid for an application compared to just 43% of those who owner other tablets, according to a recent Citigroup survey. iPad owners also download more applications, which is not surprising given the larger selection of tablet-formatted apps in the iTunes App Store. According to Citigroup, 63% of iPad owners have purchased 11 or more applications versus 37% of non-iPad owners. Tablets have yet to gain the consumers’ respect as a work device, however. 62% of the survey respondents said they planned to purchase a tablet in the next year as a “toy or gadget.” Only 18% said they would buy one for work and just 15% thought a tablet would be capable of replacing their notebook. Citigroup’s survey found that most people (67%) actually use their tablet for general web surfing most. 30% of the respondents said they used their iPad to watch movies and TV shows using Netflix, too. Citigroup’s survey was comprised of 1,800 respondents in the United States, China and the United Kingdom. More →
The FBI raided the homes of three hackers from the infamous hacking group ‘Anonymous’ in New York, Fox News reported on Tuesday. Reportedly, more than 10 FBI agents stormed the house of Giordani Jordan in Baldwin New York and took “at least one laptop from the premises.” Jordan is suspected to have been behind denial of service (DoS) attacks against a number of firms, including Mastercard and Visa. In addition, agents are also searching homes in Long Island and Brooklyn. The hackers are said to be in their late teens and early 20s. It’s unclear if the hackers were also part of the group LulzSec, which claimed responsibility for hacks against Sony, the U.S. Senate and the CIA. More →
Samsung Mobile’s chief product and technology officer Omar Khan announced on Monday that he is departing the company to take up a post in the mobile division of Citigroup. There, Khan will work on the bank’s global mobile solutions. Khan’s role at Samsung was to plan, market and manage new products, content and services. He was a staple at most Samsung press conferences, where he introduced new products such as the original Galaxy S line, the Infuse 4G, Galaxy Tab, and more. Nick Dicarlo, vice president of portfolio planning and product marketing, and Gavin Kim, vice president of content, data services, and enterprise Mobility will remain on board at Samsung Mobile and will be “assuming most of the product and service spokesperson responsibilities for Samsung Mobile,” Khan said. More →
A recent online security breach involving the left of 360,000 credit card numbers will cost Citigroup $2.7 million, the company confirmed to U.S. government officials on Monday. Hackers infiltrated Citigroup servers last month and stole account numbers and personal information associated with over 360,000 Citi-branded credit cards. According to Citigroup, personal information and card numbers from approximately 3,400 cardholders was subsequently used to make about $2.7 million in unauthorized purchases. Citigroup stated that affected customers would be reimbursed for the fraudulent charges. No arrests have been made in association with the breach. More →
A hacker known as “The Jester” claims to have revealed the identity of a LulzSec member who may be the group’s leader. Thirty-year-old Xavier Kaotico, also known as Xavier de Leon or “sabu,” has been outed as the hacker prankster group’s leader, though his role and involvement with LulzSec has not been confirmed. The man allegedly lives or has recently lived in New York City, and is an independant IT consultant specializing in Python programming, Linux development, network security and exploit development. LulzSec, a small group of hackers that has become the focus of the international technology media over the past few weeks, has claimed responsibility for carrying out a number of malicious breaches. Recent LulzSec targets include websites belonging to Sony, Citigroup, the CIA and the U.S. Senate. After a public spat between the two high-profile hacker groups, LulzSec united with “Anonymous Operations” to wage a cyber war against the U.S. government, stating, “Sitting pretty on cargo bays full of corrupt booty, they think it’s acceptable to condition and enslave all vessels in sight. Our Lulz Lizard battle fleet is now declaring immediate and unremitting war on the freedom-snatching moderators of 2011.” LulzSec has not directly addressed the allegation that Kaotico is its leader, though it has posted messages to its Twitter account mocking The Jester, who calls himself a “Hacktivist for good. Obstructing the lines of communication for terrorists, sympathizers, fixers, facilitators, and other general bad guys.” More →
Last year hackers made headlines when AT&T announced to a security breach that had allowed hackers to access the personal data from 114,000 iPad 3G users. On Thursday, 26-year old Daniel Spitler from San Francisco pleaded guilty to two crimes: conspiracy to gain unauthorized access to computers and identity theft. Spitler faces up to 10 years in prison — five years for each count, according to The Wall Street Journal. “Computer hackers are exacting an increasing toll on our society, damaging individuals and organizations to gain notoriety for themselves,” said U.S. Attorney Paul Fishman in New Jersey. “Daniel Spitler’s guilty plea is a timely reminder of the consequences of treating criminal activity as a competitive sport.” Fishman’s statements are clearly also aimed at other hackers; LulzSec and Anonymous, two hacking groups, recently announced that they have joined forces to attack the U.S. government. That’s in addition to recent hacks on Sony — which LulzSec took responsibility for — and Citigroup. Spitler will be sentenced on September 28th. More →
Remember Citigroup’s recent security breach? The firm originally said that 200,000 accounts — 1% of its customers — were compromised, but now Citi is going on record and saying that hackers gained access to a total of “360,083 North America Citi-branded credit cards.” Unfortunately, the company hasn’t provided any details on how the attack occurred, or who was behind it; the infamous hacking group LulzSec, which claimed responsibility for a number of recent high-profile targets including Sony, hasn’t yet mentioned any involvement. If you’re an optimist, the good news is that Citigroup says the number of active accounts affected is actually below the 360,000 figure — because of subsequent account closures — and that the hackers didn’t steal info enough to actually use the credit card numbers. 217,000 customers have already been provided with replacement cards, and California residents were hit the hardest — 80,000 of the numbers stolen were from that state. More →
On Thursday Citigroup announced that hackers had breached its systems in May and accessed personal data from 200,000 accounts — about 1% of its customers. The hackers managed to steal customer email addresses, contact information and account numbers, but Reuters reported that other information such as birth dates, Social Security Numbers and credit card expiration dates were not accessed. “We are contacting customers whose information was impacted. Citi has implemented enhanced procedures to prevent a recurrence of this type of event,” Citigroup spokesperson Sean Kevelighan, said. “For the security of these customers, we are not disclosing further details.” It is currently unclear who was responsible for the breach. More →
In a note to investors on Thursday, Citigroup analyst Jim Suva cut his rating on shares of RIM stock from Buy to Hold, dropping his price target from $80 to $45. Suva had upgraded his rating on RIM shares from Sell to Buy back in February on the assumption that the Waterloo, Ontario-based company would take advantage of Nokia’s plummeting market share. “We believe RIMM is letting this opportunity slip,” the analyst said on Thursday. Suva continued, ”Thus far our supply chain checks show that RIMM’s new models have not yet been certified by major wireless carriers and are not in mass production, which concerns us as typically 30-40 days prior to launch new product should be in mass production.” Earlier this month, BGR exclusively reported that RIM’s BlackBerry Bold 9900 smartphone will not launch until September, despite its unveiling at BlackBerry World this past May. More →
In what may be one of the largest digital security breaches in United States history, millions of customer email addresses have been exposed as a result of a breach at Epsilon. BGR reported on Saturday that TiVo customer email adresses had been compromised as a result of unauthorized access to online marketing company Epsilon’s servers. Following that report, several other companies have come forward to confirm that their customers’ email adresses may have been exposed. Those potentially affected include customers enrolled in Best Buy’s Reward Zone program as well as customers of Citigroup, J.P. Morgan Chase, TiVo, Barclays, Walgreens, U.S. Bancorp, Capital One, HSN and College Board, which represents almost 6,000 different U.S. colleges and universities. “A subset of Epsilon clients’ customer data were exposed by an unauthorized entry into Epsilon’s email system,” Epsilon said in a statement last week. The company insists that only names and email addresses may have been compromised, and that sensitive information such as social security numbers, credit card numbers and passwords were not accessed.