Hackers who lost their way

By Simon Rocker, September 2, 2010

Belvoir Castle, the Duke of Rutland's pad in Leicestershire, is the setting for an annual teddy bears' picnic in its stately grounds.

But visitors to its website the other day would have been bemused to find images of the castle replaced by the Algerian flag and a message in Arabic denouncing Israel.

The geographically challenged Algerians who perpetrated the hack had confused this slice of aristocratic England with Belvoir Fortress, a former Crusader garrison 2,000 miles away in Israel.


Kosher guide goes mobile

By Simon Rocker, August 26, 2010

It can be hard to keep up with the ins and outs of kashrut. Bounty bars recently returned to the approved list after many years off it - but how would you know?

Help is at hand with a new mobile phone app from Arta Creative Solutions, which can give the run-down on 8,000 products from the London Beth Din's kashrut guide.

A handy device when your child is pestering you to buy something in the sweetshop.


O2 sorry for sending parcel to 'Jew Face'

By Marcus Dysch, August 12, 2010

Mobile phone company O2 has apologised after a woman received a parcel addressed to "Ms Jew Face".

Joan Jennings, who is not Jewish, was shocked when the package containing a free Sim card and letter arrived with the offensive comment.

The letter, received on Monday, was addressed: "Hi Jew".

The following day Mrs Jennings contacted BBC Three Counties radio and the incident was discussed on air.


Police clamp down on gambling in Israel

By Nathan Jeffay, August 12, 2010

In the latest move of cat-and-mouse between Israel and the gambling industry, police have decreed that internet service providers must block access to online gambling sites.

With the exception of the state lottery and football pools, gambling is illegal in Israel. But Israelis have long been on the lookout for ways around the law.

Underground casinos have always flourished. Police are constantly closing down operations - they closed six in the last month, but this is thought to be the tip of the iceberg.


Israeli soldiers get Shabbat Bluetooth phone

By Nathan Jeffay, August 12, 2010

Inventors have come up with a Bluetooth device for the Israeli Defence Forces, which can make any soldier's mobile phone permissible for use on Shabbat.

Where lives are at risk, such as in the army and in hospitals, special Sabbath innovations are permitted that are not allowed in other contexts.

The new phone device will eliminate the main transgressions associated with telephoning on Shabbat, making it permissible in the army and in hospitals. But the inventors stress that it does not make telephoning for normal social or business purposes acceptable.


Genealogy site boosts searches

By Jessica Elgot, July 15, 2010

A Jewish genealogy organisation has teamed up with a popular family heritage website to help people researching distant Jewish relatives.

Jewish research charity JewishGen holds more than 14 million records which researchers can consult about their Jewish ancestry.

The organisation has agreed a deal with Tel Aviv-based My Heritage, a website which has 50 million members. Users create profiles to share information on their family trees and search for missing or unknown relatives, and the site's software matches up families when it finds connections.


Grandmother, 63, put on eBay

By Robyn Rosen, June 18, 2010

When 63-year-old grandmother Sandi Firth asked her son to put her dining room table on eBay for her, she had no idea it was not the only thing he was planning to sell.

The next day he called to tell her that he had placed another item in the Collectibles category on the auction website - his very own "Yiddishe Momma".

James Doyan, a 38-year-old management consultant, said he decided to auction his mother, who lives in Leeds, after "having enough of her exploits in trying to find love".


Orthodox girls suspended for emailing

June 17, 2010

GIRLS at a strictly Orthodox high school in Manchester have been disciplined for breaking a pledge not to use the internet.

Beis Yaakov High School is understood to have taken action against pupils and to have excluded a number of girls. The voluntary-aided school, previously known as Jewish High, says it regards the internet "with great fear and suspicion".

A small number of Beis Yaakov girls are understood to have been subject to fixed-term exclusions in recent weeks after the school learned they had been exchanging emails.


Computer game to teach Middle East Peace

By Robyn Rosen, May 27, 2010

British schoolchildren are set to learn about the Israel-Palestine conflict thanks to a computer game devised in Denmark.

Global Conflicts: Checkpoints lets players take on the role of journalists reporting from the conflict.

The game is being used in more than 500 schools around the world. It has been designed for students aged 13 and above by award-winning company Serious Games Interactive, based in Copenhagen.

It is the second remake of Global Conflicts: Palestine, an educational game launched in 2007 that has been sold in more than 50 countries worldwide.


Click to buy

By Candice Krieger, May 27, 2010

A Tel Aviv-based private investor made history last week when he became what is believed to be the first Israeli to exchange contracts online to buy a UK investment property.

The transaction, which took place through London estate agent Singer Vielle Sales, took place via their online property service called Click to Purchase®.

Sounds like everything clicked.