The lightweight Jaguar XE is set to be a class leader, with its clever chassis revealed todayJaguar has revealed a few more details about its BMW 3 Series-rivalling XE, including its 8 September unveil, which will take place in London.Mike Cross, Jaguar chief engineer of vehicle integrity, also says that the Jaguar XE “dynamically outperforms its rivals”. Jaguar claims that’s partly down to the XE’s lightweight aluminium construction, but also the car’s advanced chassis.It uses Integral Link rear suspension, which is unique in the premium compact executive class – even though it’s used on Ford’s forthcoming Mondeo. It helps limit the severity of big bumps and holes in the road, reduces vibration after hitting a bump and also cuts road noise.On top of all those benefits, Jaguar says it still delivers sharp responses. With parts hollow-cast in aluminium, the suspension follows the same lightweight ethos as the rest of the car.Meanwhile, the front suspension is based on that used in the F-Type, which Jag says delivers “XFR levels of stiffness”. Connected up with the latest electric power-steering, the XE promises “class-leading steering feel”. The new system also allows for active safety kit such as self-parking and active lane-keeping.In addition, Jaguar has developed what it calls All Surface Progress Control. At the touch of a button, this allows drivers to let the car take over and pull away on low-grip surfaces such as ice without having to touch the pedals. It’s described as “low speed cruise control”, and promises to solve the problem of a rear-drive car getting stuck in snow.
Today at a ceremony in Rosyth Scotland, the largest ship ever built for the Royal Navy was names by The Queen.
West Fife Schools Pipe Band started off the procession ahead of the Queen’s official naming of the new aircraft carrier.
The company of HMS Illustrious lined the decks as the procession passed the two ships, side by side.
Portsmouth North MP Penny Mordaunt and minister of Portsmouth, Michael Fallon, joined members of the British and Scottish governments, including first minister Alex Salmond. Celebrations are being held in Portsmouth as well as in Rosyth.
First Sea Lord Admiral George Zambellas said the ship was “fit for a Queen”.
“HMS Queen Elizabeth will be a national instrument of power and a national symbol of authority,” he said in a speech.
“That means she will be a national icon too, all the while keeping the great in Great Britain and the royal in Royal Navy.”
Addressing the audience, the Queen said the “innovative and first class” warship, the largest ever to be built in the UK, ushered in an “exciting new era”.
“In sponsoring this new aircraft carrier, I believe the Queen Elizabeth will be a source of inspiration and pride for us all,” she said.
Naming the ship with a bottle of BOWMORE malt whisky rather than champagne has a certain irony about it. The selection of a Japanese owned distiller suggests whoever selected this brand has a lack of knowledge or made a warped point in not selecting a Scottish owned brand. The distillery is owned by Morrison Bowmore Distillers Ltd, a holding company owned by Japanese drinks company Suntory.
“May God bless her and all who sail in her.”
More than 1,000 energy companies in North America and Europe have been compromised in a huge malware attack unearthed by US security firm Symantec.
The hackers are thought to be part of an Eastern European collective known as Dragonfly, which has been in operation since at least 2011.
Targets included energy grid operators and industrial equipment providers.
“Its primary goal appears to be espionage,” Symantec said.
Eighty four countries were affected, although most of the victims were located in the United States, Spain, France, Italy, Germany, Turkey, and Poland.
Since 2013 Dragonfly has been targeting organisations that use industrial control systems (ICS) to manage electrical, water, oil, gas and data systems.
Symantec said Dragonfly had accessed computers using a variety of techniques, including attaching malware to third-party programs, emails and websites, giving it “the capability to mount sabotage operations that could have disrupted energy supplies across a number of European countries”.
It had used Backdoor.Oldrea to gather system information, including the computers’ Outlook address book and a list of files and programs installed, and Trojan.Karagany to upload stolen data, download new files and run them on infected computers, Symantec said.
‘Interesting and concerted’
“The way Dragonfly targeted the companies in question was – while not groundbreaking – interesting and concerted. It appears they clearly mapped out their intended plan of attack,” said Rob Cotton, CEO at global information assurance firm NCC Group.
“The increasing frequency and sophistication of these attacks whilst concerning should not be a cause of alarm for the average consumer – yet. Government departments such as the CPNI (Centre for the Protection of National Infrastructure) provide sound advice to all key components of our society, ensuring the lights stay on and similar core services and functions critical to our way of life are available.”
The attack is similar to the Stuxnet computer worm, which was designed to attack similar industrial controllers in 2010 and reportedly ruined almost 20% of Iran’s nuclear power plants.
Symantec said Dragonfly “bears the hallmarks of a state-sponsored operation, displaying a high degree of technical capability”.
Independent computer security analyst Graham Cluley told the BBC that the motivation for the attack was unclear, but agreed that many would suspect the attacks were sponsored by a foreign state, highlighting a new era of online crime:
“There is no doubt that we have entered a new era of cybercrime, where countries are not just fighting the threat – but are also exploiting the internet for their own interests using the same techniques as the criminals.”
Dr Andrew Rogoyski, chair of techUK Cyber Security Group, told the BBC that “on the face of it, the attacks seem much more benign than Stuxnet but time and further analysis will tell.