Just a Moment News - 2023-12-28


Hello, everyone! This is Erika, and you’re listening to ‘Just a Moment News’ on December 28th, 2023. Let’s dive right into today’s top stories.

First up, an iPhone attack that has been ongoing for the past four years has finally been revealed. Researchers have discovered that this attack, named “Triangulation,” exploited a previously unknown hardware feature in Apple devices, allowing the attackers unprecedented access to the backdoor of many iPhones, including those owned by Kaspersky employees. The campaign involved infecting iPhones through iMessage texts without user interaction, installing spyware to transmit sensitive data to attacker-controlled servers. The exploit chain used four critical zero-days, now patched by Apple, affecting various Apple devices. The researchers are still unsure of the campaign’s origins, but they believe that the attackers’ knowledge of the hardware feature could have come from accidental disclosure or hardware reverse engineering.

In sports news, Proteas opening batter Dean Elgar has had a triumphant day in the Boxing Day Test at SuperSport Park. Elgar, who is retiring from international cricket after the second Test in Cape Town next week, was unbeaten on 140 after a fluent performance and wants to continue piling on the runs to give the Proteas a significant advantage. He expressed his joy at finally scoring his first Test ton at SuperSport Park, a feat he had been hoping to achieve throughout his career.

In other news, Cape Town teen Lily Day has clinched the top prize at a powerlifting competition. Day’s journey into powerlifting began at the age of 15 when she joined the Bohemian Bar Belle Club to boost her confidence and fitness. Her coach, Amy, recognized her potential and suggested she try powerlifting. In just two years, Day overcame her insecurities and achieved notable success, including winning a gold medal at the World Powerlifting Congress in the UK.

In South Africa, customer service chatbots have become increasingly widespread. However, despite technological advancements, a significant percentage of users remain dissatisfied with these AI-powered tools. An Ipsos poll indicated high levels of frustration among users, and a study in the Journal of Consumer Research suggested negative evaluations stem from perceptions of cost-cutting rather than improving customer experience.

Next, James May, a host of The Grand Tour on Prime Video, hinted at a possible reunion with Jeremy Clarkson and Richard Hammond after their final episodes of the show. Despite Clarkson stating in November that the trio was “done” after 34 years in car review programs, Prime Video has not officially cancelled the show, which remains one of its top-rated original series.

In more serious news, the Hawks, a South African special crime unit, arrested American national Derek Lewitton following the discovery of 26 unreported rhino carcasses at his Limpopo game farm. Lewitton faces charges under the Firearms Act and the National Biodiversity Act of 2004, including violations of the Firearms Control Act and restricted activities with rhino horns.

Finally, Moderna and Merck have made significant advancements in melanoma treatment with their mRNA-based cancer vaccine, mRNA-4157 (V940). The vaccine, personalized for each patient, instructs the body to produce up to 34 neoantigens found only on cancer cells, thus training the immune system to recognize and attack any new cancer cells, potentially preventing recurrence.

And that’s it for today’s news. This is Erika, and you’ve been listening to ‘Just a Moment News’. Thank you for tuning in, and we’ll see you next time!

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