May 28, 2015 23:56 UTC

Science & Technology

FBI: Ransomware Scams on the Rise

05/26/2015
An old Internet scam is getting some new attention lately. It is called “ransomware.” Ransomware is a term used for a specific type of software that locks up files or access to a computer until the money is paid. The FBI had issued a warning about an increase in the spread of ransomware in the U.S. More

Video New Tool Maps Buildings' Energy Efficiency

Architects, engineers and building supervisors will soon be able to quickly collect information that once took weeks to measure and process. Scientists have developed a device to gather information about building interiors – the design and exact measurements of a building.

Video Study: Insecticide Is Killing Wild Bees

Environmentalists in the United States and Europe say chemicals called neonicotinoids are causing a drop in the number of bees. The chemicals target insects that eat crops, and they do not spread beyond the field. But they do get into pollen and nectar, where the bees come into contact with them.

Audio Google Self-Driving Car Heading to Public Streets

This summer, the latest version of Google's self-driving car will make its first appearance on public roads. The two-seat vehicle does not need a gas pedal or steering wheel. The prototype can drive, brake and recognize road dangers without human involvement.

Video Amazon Receives Patent for Drone Delivery System

Amazon.com has received patent rights to send its products to customers by unmanned drone aircraft. The company is the largest U.S.-based online seller of products. But even with a patent, it does not appear the company will put its new delivery system in place any time soon.

Audio Will Vietnamese 30 Under 30 Help Their Country?

A U.S. magazine has named 30 top business leaders under the age of 30 in Vietnam. A recent conference honored them for their work, especially in technology. But some say today’s young people may care more about Facebook and luxury cars than helping their own country.

Audio US Agency Announces Wave Energy Prize Competition

Experts say that sun and wind are the richest sources of clean, renewable energy. But ocean waves also create powerful, clean energy. So, the U.S Department of Energy has announced a $1.5 million-dollar prize for the winner of a competition on how to capture that energy.

Audio Antibiotic Resistance Found in Amazon Tribe

Scientists were shocked to find antibiotic-resistant bacteria on people with no known contact with Western civilization. Find out why this is worrying to scientists and the danger this may bring to fighting disease worldwide. This is an advanced level story with complex medical terms.

Audio Satellites Study Weather Conditions, Predict Diseases

The disease meningitis is a health threat every year to 21 African countries. Now, scientists say they can predict meningitis and other diseases with the help of satellites orbiting the Earth. Every year, dust storms blow across the Sahel area of Africa. And every year, meningitis crosses the Sahel.

Audio NASA Working Toward Mission to Mars

It is a dream as old as man; to travel through space and discover what lies on other planets, and beyond. Recently a group gathered in Washington to discuss putting humans on Mars. NASA Administrator Charles Bolden says the agency is on track to land people on Mars in the 2030s.

Video Surgical Glue Approved for Use Inside the Body

The new medical glue can hold tissue together. TissueGlu is the first glue to be approved for use in medical operations. The developers say it is biodegradable meaning it breaks down inside the body.

Video Preventable Carbon Monoxide Still Claims Many Lives

Many areas around the world suffer from frequent loss of electrical power. People often must use other sources of power, such as gasoline or diesel fuel. But these other power sources can be deadly if people do not ventilate the area in which they are used.

Video New Paint Resists Oil and Water

It has been long known that rainwater slides off the leaves of some plants without leaving a mark. Soon, the same may be true for raindrops on your car. Scientists can now reproduce that quality, or property, of tropical plants like the taro and lotus.

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Video Hot Computers Could Be Used to Heat Homes

When computer servers operate a complex program, they can get very hot. Cooling the servers can be costly. So researchers asked what would happen if the heat created by the servers could be captured and used? A Dutch company is looking to do just that.

Video Growing Better Fruits and Vegetables

Throughout the US, researchers, farmers, professional cooks and seed producers are working to develop and grow tastier fruits and vegetables. We talk with a vegetable breeder who has been working to create a better carrot for 35 years!

Audio 3-D Printed Device Helps Children with Rare Breathing Disorder

University of Michigan researchers have develop what they are calling a 4-D medical device to help children with a rare condition. The device is designed for very young children and changes as their bodies grow.

Audio Experts See Closer Link Between Earthquakes and Oil Drilling

Since 2009, earthquake activity has greatly increased in the central and eastern United States. A new report from U.S. earthquake experts links drilling for oil and gas with the rise in the number of earthquakes in those areas. The US has expanded its oil and gas production in recent years.

Audio India Plans to Build 100 'Smart' Cities

Many of India’s biggest cities are struggling. They have too many people and not enough places for them to work, live and play. The number of people living in cities is expected to rise to 814 million by 2050. To deal with the predicted growth, India will build many “smart cities.”

Audio Are We Safer Without Pilots in the Cockpit?

Officials say the co-pilot of a Germanwings flight crashed into a mountain on purpose. Now, experts wonder if removing pilots from planes would improve safety. Some suggest letting officials on the ground take control if the pilot is acting strangely. But some warn that the technology has problems.

Learn with The News

  • FIFA President Sepp Blatter delivers his speech during the opening ceremony of the 65th FIFA Congress in Zurich, Switzerland, May 28, 2015.

    Audio FIFA President: Charges Bring Shame to Sport

    FIFA President Sepp Blatter said corruption scandals within the world soccer organization have brought "shame and humiliation" on the sport. Also in the news, Iranian foreign minister expresses hope for nuclear deal; President Barack Obama hosts a Twitter chat on climate change. More

  • Audio Extreme Heat in India Kills Over 1100

    Indian officials say most of the heat-related deaths were reported in the southeastern states of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana. The unusually hot weather is reaching temperatures above 46 degrees Celsius. People most at risk are those who work outside. Help may come with monsoon rains. More

  • Greek Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis arrives for a meeting of eurozone creditors earlier in May.

    Audio Greece Says No Payment to Lenders Without Deal

    Greece has said it cannot make its debt payment to the International Monetary Fund for June. The country’s Interior Minister Nikos Voutsis spoke on Greek television Sunday. He said the country needs to reach a deal with its creditors or it will not be able to make payments. More

  • A picture taken on March 14, 2014 shows Syrian citizens walking in the ancient oasis city of Palmyra, 215 kilometres northeast of Damascus.

    Audio Islamic State Executes 20 in Palmyra Roman Theater

    A Human Rights group says that the Islamic State militants have executed 20 people in the ancient Roman theater in Palmyra, a UNESCO World heritage site. Also in the news, Heat wave kills 1,100 in India; Former U.S. Senator Rick Santorum announces his campaign for president. More

  • U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch announces an indictment against nine FIFA officials and five corporate executives for racketeering, conspiracy and corruption at a news conference, in Brooklyn, New York, May 27, 2015.

    Audio US, Swiss Officials Take Action against FIFA in Corruption Cases

    United States officials have brought charges against current and former leaders of FIFA, the group that governs the sport of football around the world. A U.S. federal indictment accuses them of corruption and other wrongdoing. More

Featured Stories

  • Audio Brain Remembers Language Better If You Sing It

    If you have a long list of vocabulary words to learn, you might want to write them into a familiar song. Researchers at the University of Edinburgh studied the relationship between music and remembering a foreign language. After the tests were over, the singers came out on top. And it's more fun! More

  • Video New Tool Maps Buildings' Energy Efficiency

    Architects, engineers and building supervisors will soon be able to quickly collect information that once took weeks to measure and process. Scientists have developed a device to gather information about building interiors – the design and exact measurements of a building. More

  • Audio Guide to 2016 Campaign: Money and Super PAC

    Raising money is an important part of any election in America. Candidates for the 2016 race for the White House and Congress are busy lining up dollars to fund their elections. VOA Learning English helps explain how the campaign finance systems work in the U.S. More

  • Audio Hold Your Horses!

    Horses are part of the history and romance of the Old American West. These days, they are popular for sport and entertainment. So, it is easy to understand why we Americans use so many horse expressions. Learn some of the most common and try to answer our horse riddle! More

  • Audio Everyday Grammar - Introducing Conditionals

    In everyday conversation, English speakers often talk about things that are not true. Or, they talk about things that only happen if something else happens. Learn how to correctly use these conditional forms in English. If you write to us, we will let you know if it is correct. More

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