1.APPLE: Apple Inc on Thursday said it will implement a system that checks photos on iPhones in the United States before they are uploaded to its iCloud storage services to ensure the upload does not match known images of child sexual abuse.
Detection of child abuse image uploads sufficient to guard against false positives will trigger a human review of and report of the user to law enforcement, Apple said. It said the system is designed to reduce false positives to one in one trillion.
Apple’s new system seeks to address requests from law enforcement to help stem child sexual abuse while also respecting privacy and security practices that are a core tenet of the company’s brand. But some privacy advocates said the system could open the door to monitoring political speech or other content on iPhones.
Most other major technology providers – including Alphabet Inc’s Google, Facebook Inc and Microsoft Corp- are already checking images against a database of known child sexual abuse imagery.
“With so many people using Apple products, these new safety measures have the lifesaving potential for children who are being enticed online and whose horrific images are being circulated in child sexual abuse material,” John Clark, chief executive of the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, said in a statement. “The reality is that privacy and child protection can co-exist.”
Here is how Apple’s system works. Law enforcement officials maintain a database of known child sexual abuse images and translate those images into “hashes” – numerical codes that positively identify the image but cannot be used to reconstruct them.
Apple has implemented that database using a technology called “NeuralHash”, designed to also catch edited images similar to the originals. That database will be stored on iPhones.
When a user uploads an image to Apple’s iCloud storage service, the iPhone will create a hash of the image to be uploaded and compare it against the database.
Photos stored only on the phone are not checked, Apple said, and human review before reporting an account to law enforcement is meant to ensure any matches are genuine before suspending an account.
Apple said users who feel their account was improperly suspended can appeal to have it reinstated.
The Financial Times earlier reported some aspects of the program.
One feature that sets Apple’s system apart is that it checks photos stored on phones before they are uploaded, rather than checking the photos after they arrive on the company’s servers.
2.AIG:- American International Group Inc beat second-quarter profit estimates on Thursday, driven by strong performance in its general insurance and life and retirement units.
The U.S. insurer posted an underwriting income of $463 million in its general insurance business in the quarter, compared with a loss of $343 million a year earlier when it booked large losses related to the pandemic.
The business saw $118 million of catastrophe losses, compared to $674 million in the prior year.
Global insurers last year faced a sharp rise in payouts related to the health crisis, but many have now seen a fall in coronavirus-related claims as vaccines roll out.
Adjusted after-tax income attributable to AIG’s common shareholders rose to $1.33 billion in the quarter ended June 30, from $561 million a year earlier.
Excluding items, AIG earned $1.52 per share, exceeding analysts’ estimates of $1.20, according to Refinitiv IBES.
The company’s general insurance accident year combined ratio – which excludes catastrophe losses – was 91.1 for the quarter, compared with 94.9 a year earlier.
A ratio below 100 means the insurer earns more in premiums than it pays out in claims.
Gross premiums were written rose 12% to $9.5 billion in the general insurance business.
AIG’s life and retirement unit posted a 26% jump in adjusted pre-tax income to $1.12 billion, driven partly by higher private equity returns.
3.BOEING CO:- Boeing Co said on Thursday it plans to spin off its venture capital arm, HorizonX, to forge a broader external investment fund, in a deal said by sources to value the unit at several hundred million dollars.
Under the deal, AE Industrial Partners (AEI), a specialist private equity firm, will add fresh capital to the portfolio born out of Boeing’s decision to set up its own venture fund in 2017.
“The partnership with AEI and future partners broadens our investor base, enables HorizonX to invest at a rapid pace and gives Boeing access to more outside innovation than ever through this investment collaboration,” Boeing Chief Strategy Officer Marc Allen said in a statement.
The move accelerates efforts by Boeing to deepen the pipeline of technology available to the U.S. aerospace giant, and will ease the burden of supporting the future growth of HorizonX, which has invested in more than a dozen companies.
HorizonX “needs to go faster and needs a bigger capital pile to invest in more companies,” a person familiar with the deal said.
Boeing will remain a strategic investor with a “significant majority” stake in the initial fund to be created from the spinoff, which is expected to be named AE HorizonX, the person said.
It will continue to hold smaller stakes in any follow-on funds bringing in more entrepreneurial capital.
4.FORD:–Ford Motor Co confirmed Thursday it hopes to cut 1,000 U.S. salaried positions as it offers voluntary incentives to leave to some white-collar employees in select areas.
The No. 2 U.S. automaker said the “action is to further enable us to match our business priorities with the critical skills needed to turn around our automotive operations.”
.5.MONSTERS BEVERAGE – Monster Beverage reported on Thursday second-quarter results that beat analysts’ forecasts, led by strong sales in its Monster energy drinks business.
Monster Beverage shares gained 2.25% in after-hours trade following the report.
Monster Beverage announced earnings per share of 75 cents on revenue of $1.46 billion. Analysts polled by Investing.com anticipated EPS of 68 cents on revenue of $1.39 billion.
Net sales for the company’s Monster energy drinks segment increased 33.0% to $1.37 billion for the 2021 second quarter, from $1.03 billion for the 2020 second quarter.
L’Oreal ADR had matched expectations on July 29 with second-quarter EPS of $1.02 on revenue of $8.99B, compared to forecast for EPS of $1.02 on revenue of $9B.