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Bing Rewards Now Expands to MSN in the United States – Visual Studio 2012 Update 2 ISO

Bing Rewards expands to MSN in the U.S., “now you will be able to earn Bing Rewards credits by exploring and discovering new ways MSN keeps you in the know.”

“Bing Rewards members are now able to keep track of their credit balance right from the MSN homepage. From getting things done with the help of Bing’s search results to catching up on the news that matters most to you on MSN, we’re delighted to enhance the benefits and experience of using both Bing and MSN every day,” informs Bing.

To get started, simply navigate to MSN.com and look for the Bing Rewards icon and credit counter at the top of the page (currently not available on MSN for Windows 8).

Bing Rewards expands to MSN in the United States

“If you’re a Bing Rewards member you’ll see your balance and offers automatically. All the credits members earn across Bing and MSN can be taken to the Bing Rewards redemption centerwhere they can be redeemed for a selection of rewards including brand name gift cards, opportunities to enter to win exclusive prizes or charitable donations to a variety of causes,” Bing explains.

Bing Rewards since its launch back two and a half years ago now has over 3 million members. And has since added new benefits such as silver and gold status, new rewards including apps and games for Windows Phone 8, Xbox Music Passes and Skype Credit, and the ability to earn extra credits for referring friends.

In other news, Microsoft has released a Security Advisory 2847140, regarding an issue that impacts Internet Explorer “8”.

This would typically occur by an attacker convincing someone to click a link in an email or instant message. Internet Explorer 6, 7, 9 and 10 are not affected by the vulnerability.

Microsoft says it’s working on a security update, meanwhile customers using affected versions of IE can use the steps as a workarounds to mitigate the issue:

  • Set Internet and local intranet security zone settings to “High” to block ActiveX Controls and Active Scripting in these zones

    This will help prevent exploitation but may affect usability; therefore, trusted sites should be added to the Internet Explorer Trusted Sites zone to minimize disruption.

  • Configure Internet Explorer to prompt before running Active Scripting or to disable Active Scripting in the Internet and local intranet security zones

    This will help prevent exploitation but can affect usability, so trusted sites should be added to the Internet Explorer Trusted Sites zone to minimize disruption,” explains MSRC blog.

Microsoft security also highlighted today, that Keygens are great threat affecting Windows 8 and Windows 7 based systems. Some of these threats try to trick users into paying for software that’s distributed for free from trusted sources.

“Keygens are used to generate software keys to make them licensed software. Keygens are typically not very dangerous on their own. However, malware authors are having great success using deceptive downloads that either pretend to be Keygens or contain them as well as other malware to spread their malicious payloads.”

Below is a chart showing off the threats affecting Windows 8 and Windows 7, as seen in the Security Intelligence Report (SIRv 14):

Keygens and how they ranked in prevalence on different Windows operating system platforms

Microsoft has also released an ISO image for Visual Studio 2012 Update 2, and says it “plan to ship ISO images for the RTM version of future Visual Studio updates,” in addition to the existing distribution mechanism we already provide.

Download Visual Studio 2012 Update 2 ISO here.

Stefan Weitz, Director of Bing Search, recently revealed that Bing receives 2 billion datapoint updates a day from Facebook. However, not all of those are worthwhile to pair with search queries, so the team has to correctly identify the useful bits of information out of this massive data pull.

Importantly, this information is opt in content, Microsoft is not scraping the data and this is all information that has been volunteered by the end user.

Microsoft is integrating Photosynth to Windows 8.1 Camera app rather than releasing it as a standalone application on the store.

In order to activate the feature, the settings.dat file must be replaced with the alternate version. This simply tricks the system into enabling the Photosynth feature which then can be accessed from the Camera app.

@h0x0d’s tweeted of having activated the panorama feature in Windows Blue 9385 Camera app working as well as links to the “settins.dat” file.

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