Articles about Administration

White House to bung electric car industry $4.5bn in loans

The White House has said the US federal government will underwrite loans totaling $4.5bn to expand the use of electric cars. But before you go rushing to Elon Musk asking for a set of Falcon doors, note that it is only for building out charging infrastructure. The Department of Energy has expanded its existing loan program to …
Kieren McCarthy, 22 Jul 2016

Silicon Valley's contribution to the US Republican Convention: Gayness

Analysis If ever there was any doubt that billionaire Peter Thiel was a contrarian, he put it to bed last night in a short speech at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, US. The Paypal cofounder and early investor in Facebook already stood out as a supporter of Donald Trump in Silicon Valley – an industry that despises the …
Kieren McCarthy, 22 Jul 2016
Autopilot

Dear Tesla, stop calling it autopilot – and drivers are not your guinea pigs

Tesla is misleading drivers about the efficacy of its Autopilot feature and is putting lives at risk, according to Consumer Reports. The automaker's autopilot system, when engaged, is supposed to control the speed of the vehicle and its distance from other rides and objects – but it's more of a super-cruise-control than a …
Iain Thomson, 15 Jul 2016

Google quietly takes gag off Mississippi AG after wrecking ads probe

Google has, without fanfare, dropped its legal action that muzzled an investigation into the ad giant's conduct by the State of Mississippi. The state's elected attorney general, Democrat Jim Hood, has taken on Wall Street, the tobacco industry and the KKK, but even he must have been surprised by Google's 44-page restraining …
Andrew Orlowski, 14 Jul 2016
Patchwork

Juniper's bug hunters fire out eight patches

Juniper has fired off fixes for eight security vulnerabilities. The company has been running Junos OS through the security mill since late last year, when its now-notorious backdoor hit the headlines. Junos OS systems running either generic routing encapsulation (GRE) or IP-in-IP (IPIP) tunnels are vulnerable to a kernel …
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NSW vocational education gets re-org to revive its comatose budget

Its budget gutted, in part, by dogged devotion to a failed software project, the Australian State of New South Wales Technical and Further Education (TAFE) institutions are to be reorganised to eliminate its current structure of individual regional institutes. Instead, in a strategy conceived by the same minister as paid …

Don't doubt it, Privacy Shield is going to be challenged in court

Analysis The European Union's attempts to make data transfers to the United States compliant with privacy laws are an opaque exercise, so much is obvious, but will they work? It's clear that it is necessary to retain the Transatlantic data trade – in economic terms, but also as a means of preventing the Balkanization of the internet. …
China keyboard, image via Shutterstock

Maybe China's on to something: Clickbait articles now need to be 'verified' by officials

China has stepped up its online censorship efforts with a declaration that from now on all news stories will need to be "verified" for accuracy. The Cyberspace Administration of China (CAC) has published new rules that say websites should not publish unverified news stories from social media outlets. "It is forbidden to use …
Kieren McCarthy, 05 Jul 2016

EU uncorks €1.8bn in cybersecurity investment. Thirsty, UK?

The EU Commission has launched a public-private partnership on cybersecurity that is expected to trigger €1.8bn ($2bn) of investment by 2020. The EU is promising to invest €450m ($502m) in a bid to spur innovation in cybersecurity with the remainder coming from the private sector. Some security commentators reckon the Brexit …
John Leyden, 05 Jul 2016

Man killed in gruesome Tesla autopilot crash was saved by his car's software weeks earlier

An investigation was launched today after the driver of a Tesla was killed in what is understood to be a malfunction of the car's autopilot. Joshua Brown, a 40-year-old Ohio man, was killed on May 7 while driving his 2015 Tesla Model S on Route 27 in Florida. The car was using the optional autopilot system, which controls the …
Iain Thomson, 30 Jun 2016

Hackers: Ditch the malware, we're in... Just act like a normal network admin. *Whistles*

Hackers almost exclusively use standard network admin tools to move around a compromised network once they’ve broken in using malware or other hacking techniques. Researchers at security startup LightCyber found that 99 per cent of post-intrusion cyberattack activities did not employ malware, but rather employed standard …
John Leyden, 30 Jun 2016
Woman motorist waves from a red car. Photo by Shutterstock

What Brexit means for you as a motorist

The UK has voted in favour of leaving the European Union and in the past few days the markets have reacted violently, plunging the pound to its lowest level against the US dollar since the mid-1980s. Nobody’s really sure what the future holds for the UK or for its economy, but the referendum result has gone against the wishes …
Ryan McElroy, 29 Jun 2016

China cybersec legislation inches towards law

China has moved ahead with new Internet censorship security laws, with its upcoming cybersecurity bill getting a second reading in the country's legislature. Official news agency Xinhua says under the law, network operators will have to “comply with social and business ethics and accept supervision by both government and the …
Uncle Sam's money

Want $50bn from Uncle Sam? Put in a bid on these IT contracts

The US government's General Services Administration (GSA) has opened bidding on what it says will be a $50bn IT services contract package. The federal agency is now accepting applications for the Alliant 2 and Alliant 2 Small Business contracts to create what it describes as a "large, diverse pool of industry partners." The …
Shaun Nichols, 28 Jun 2016
Cut cable

Sliced your submarine cable? Fill in this paperwork

The US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has approved new rules that will require companies to report outages in submarine cables. Although submarine cables account for 95 per cent of the US' international internet traffic, as well as voice and data, the rules over reporting outages are weak and in most cases are simply …
Kieren McCarthy, 24 Jun 2016
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SPC says up yours to DataCore

The 1,510,090.52 IOPS DataCore Parallel Server single node result in March this year was the fourth highest SPC-1 reading, and has now been withdrawn. After someone, possibly a competitor, went over the results with a microscope they noticed there was no UPS. While its presence or absence wouldn't affect the IOPS result, it …
Chris Mellor, 24 Jun 2016
Secretary of State for the Home Department Theresa May. Photo by Twocoms/Shutterstock.com

Home Office ignores plight of BA techies as job offshoring looms

The Home Office has stonewalled the GMB trade union’s attempts to raise the plight of British Airways IT staff whose jobs are being sent to an Indian outsourcer – and the potential security implications involved. The GMB has written four letters to the Department’s Secretary Theresa May – seen by us – after BA hired Tata …
Paul Kunert, 24 Jun 2016

Open letter from EPO staff pleads with country reps to fire president

Update Tension between staff and management at the European Patent Office (EPO) has descended into open warfare with the publication of an open letter by some staff, calling on the organization's Administrative Council to get rid of its president. The letter, signed by a group calling itself the EPO-FLIER Team, goes through an …
Kieren McCarthy, 22 Jun 2016
Two designers sitting in front of a "conceptual" desk filled with buzzwords. Photo by Shutterstock

Professor slams digital efforts of 'website-obsessed' government

A professor of digital governance has slammed Whitehall's IT 'transformation' efforts to date, blaming an obsession with websites for obstructing any real digitally-enabled revamps. Vishanth Weerakkody, who works at Brunel University, said: "Digital technology undoubtedly has huge potential to contribute to the functions of …
Kat Hall, 22 Jun 2016

US watchdog lobs balls of red tape at spy-in-the-sky drones

The US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and Department of Transportation (DOT) have laid out a new set of rules to guide businesses that use small drones for imaging. The Part 107 Rule [PDF] sets out the guidelines for commercial flight of drones weighing less than 55lbs for activities such as shooting photos of an …
Shaun Nichols, 21 Jun 2016
US Flag and money

US House to vote on whether poor people need mobile phones

The US House of Representatives could end the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Lifeline subsidized phone program in a vote today. The bill, HR5525 or the End Taxpayer Funded Cell Phones Act of 2016, threatens to prohibit the FCC paying out subsidies to mobile phone carriers who offer discounted mobile phone service for …
Shaun Nichols, 21 Jun 2016

FBI's iPhone paid-for hack should be barred, say ex-govt officials

The FBI's purchase of a hack to get into the San Bernardino shooter's iPhone should not have been allowed. That's according to a new paper from two former US government cybersecurity officials, Ari Schwartz and Rob Knake. In their paper [PDF] they dig into the current vulnerability equities process (VEP), disclosed in 2014, …
Kieren McCarthy, 17 Jun 2016

Outsourcery sold after Dragon runs out of puff

Something positive was salvaged from the crash at cloud biz Outsourcery - 100 employees have transferred with the business in a pre-pack sale to new owners GCI Network Solutions. The loss-making company ran into cash flow shortages on multiple occasions, most recently in April when principal secured lender Vodafone stepped in …
Paul Kunert, 17 Jun 2016
Little girl looks at camera with an "I told you so" attitude. Photo by Shutterstock  Release Information: Signed model release filed with Shutterstock, Inc

Outsourcery to perform ULTIMATE outsource as it enters administration

Manchester-based failing cloud biz Outsourcery is to undertake a pre-pack administration with Vodafone partner GCI Network Solutions waiting in the wings to buy the company’s assets. The move, exclusively revealed by The Register last week, was confirmed by AIM-listed Outsourcery to the London Stock Exchange this morning. “ …
Paul Kunert, 15 Jun 2016

Net neutrality victory: DC court backs full rules

Analysis Net neutrality rules that make it illegal for ISPs to interfere with data traffic across their networks have been upheld in full by the Washington DC Court of Appeals. The split decision (2-1 in favor) is a big victory, both for the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and the Obama Administration, and a dramatic sign that …
Kieren McCarthy, 14 Jun 2016
Google, photo by lightpoet via Shutterstock

Now Google backs everyone's favorite trade pact: The TPP

Global ad provider Google has come out in favor of the controversial Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade agreement. The web giant's general counsel Kent Walker noted in a blog post that the agreement "is not perfect" and decried the lack of transparency that has dogged the process, but argues that it "recognizes the Internet …
Kieren McCarthy, 10 Jun 2016

US govt OKs handover of internet's control panel to ICANN

The US government has formally approved a plan to transition control of the internet's administrative tasks to the private sector. In an announcement Thursday, the National Telecommunications & Information Administration (NTIA) gave the green light to a plan developed over two years by the internet community to hand control of …
Kieren McCarthy, 09 Jun 2016
Terminator

Robot lung probe wins licence from US authorities

Startup Auris Surgical Robots has formally joined the robotic surgery market, securing a United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) license. Don't worry, you're not going to see The Terminator looming over you as the anaesthetic takes hold: the device, from Auris Surgical Robots, is a bronchoscope. Auris doesn't have …

Microsoft's BITS file transfer tool fooled into malware distribution

Researchers at Dell SecureWorks have spotted a new and dangerous way to misuse of Microsoft's Background Intelligent Transfer Service (BITS). While working on a customer clean-up project, SecureWorks staff found that attackers had created self-contained BITS tasks that didn't appear in the registries of affected machines, and …
Chinese fence

Millions of 'must be firewalled' services are open to the entire internet – research

Millions of services that ought to be restricted are exposed on the open internet, creating a huge risk of hacker attack against databases and more. Infosec firm Rapid7’s researchers took a close look at the millions and millions of individual services that live on the public IP network, one of the most fundamental components …
John Leyden, 08 Jun 2016

Dragons' Den-run cloud biz Outsourcery close to sale – sources

Cash-strapped AIM-listed infrastructure services biz Outsourcery – co-run by former Dragons' Den badass Piers Linney – is close to wrapping up a pre-pack administration, multiple sources have told The Register. Trading in the firm's shares was suspended on Friday after top brass postponed publication of last year's results and …
Paul Kunert, 07 Jun 2016

Microsoft's biggest UK reseller flashes fuller figures for '15

Microsoft licensing mountain Trustmarque won’t have done its chances of snaring a new private equity backer any harm by pushing out a decent set of trading figures for calendar year 2015. The York-based reseller, which merged with sister biz TES at the start of last year, reported turnover of £191.9m, up eight per cent on a …
Paul Kunert, 06 Jun 2016

CryptXXX ransomware improves security, GUI, slurps Cisco creds

Net scum behind the ransomware upstart CryptXXX have parried white hat attacks and released a new and as-yet-uncracked malware variant that can encrypt network shares, and steal account logins. The changes CryptXXX, already the most widely-used ransomware, the most dangerous such tool. The modular malware menace uses StillerX …
Darren Pauli, 06 Jun 2016
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Uncle Sam's IoT deadline

A US government open comment period for a new green paper on the internet of things closes today. The National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) – part of the Commerce Department – is looking for input from everyone including business, civil society and the technical community on a range of issues to do …
Kieren McCarthy, 02 Jun 2016

Tech titans demand free speech law to head off President Trump

Donald Trump has already started bringing America together by forging an unlikely alliance between Republicans in Congress and Silicon Valley. Both groups are working on pushing through a bill aimed at protecting free speech online before the end of the Obama Administration, because neither believe a President Trump would …
Kieren McCarthy, 01 Jun 2016
Professional carbon drone with GPS. Pic via Shutterstock

FAA to test Brit drone-busting kit

The US's Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) will trial the "world's first fully integrated detect-track-disrupt-defeat Anti-UAV Defence System (AUDS)", developed by a trio of British companies. Blighter Surveillance Systems, Chess Dynamics and Enterprise Control Systems describe AUDS as intended "for countering drones or …
Lester Haines, 01 Jun 2016

Deloitte coughs up $11m to end claims it ripped off US govt with IT work

Deloitte will pay $11m to settle allegations it overcharged the US government for IT services. The US Department of Justice (DoJ) said on Tuesday it has struck a deal with Deloitte, which was accused of – and we're paraphrasing, here – treating Uncle Sam's General Services Administration (GSA) as a bottomless pit of cash. The …
Shaun Nichols, 31 May 2016
AS/400

Scale Computing is a tiny fish in a small pond. Fancy its chances?

Comment Scale Computing is one of 13 suppliers attacking the hyper-converged infrastructure market. Not all will survive. What has it got that makes it distinctive and gives it the potential for success? Scale’s difference is based on its SMB customer approach, meaning low-cost and simplified admin, and cleaned up IO stack. This, it …
Chris Mellor, 31 May 2016

Foxconn to slurp loss-making Smart Technologies for $200m

Loss-making interactive display vendor Smart Technologies has agreed to sell up to Foxconn for $200m. Under the terms of the deal, the Chinese contract manufacturer will fork out $4.50 per Smart Tech share, equating to a 21 per cent premium on the average trading price in the last 90 days. The buy gives Smart access to a “ …
Paul Kunert, 27 May 2016
George_Kurian

NetApp posts $8m loss as its pivot continues. Feeling comfy, George?

In its fourth fiscal 2016 quarter NetApp revenues were $1.38bn instead of the $1.425bn predicted at the mid-point of its last forecast, and the company made an $8m loss – the second in George Kurian’s tenure as CEO. The revenues were down 10.4 per cent on a year ago and 0.4 per cent from the previous quarter. A year ago NetApp …
Chris Mellor, 26 May 2016

Judge torpedoes 'Tor pedo' torpedo evidence

A US District Court judge has tossed out evidence gathered by the FBI from Tor users, because the Feds wouldn't reveal how exactly it exploits their browsers to unmask them. Jay Michaud, a Vancouver school administration worker, was charged with viewing a hidden service called Playpen, which hosted child abuse material, on the …
Sorry we're closed

'Grey tech' broker DP Data Systems has gone titsup

DP Data Systems has given up the ghost just months after committing to quit the grey market in favour of “authorised” tech. The company’s website stated, “Sorry we have now ceased trading”. Suppliers and customers were then directed to email addresses of the firm's accounts and credit control departments respectively. Back in …
Paul Kunert, 25 May 2016
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UK distributor Steljes goes titsup

Specialist audio visual distributor Steljes Ltd has called in the administrators after liquidity dried up in what was its 29th year of commercial life. The company had “suffered from severe cash flow difficulties over the past year”, a rep at insolvency practitioner AlixPartners, which is managing the end of life process, told …
Paul Kunert, 24 May 2016
Professional carbon drone with GPS. Pic via Shutterstock

US government publishes drone best practices

You can't use drones to check whether your employee really is sick, or to take pictures of your neighbors, unless you're a news organization in which case the sky is the limit - or more accurately not the limit. That's according to advice published by the US government over how best to use drones – or unmanned aircraft systems …
Kieren McCarthy, 20 May 2016

Republicans threaten to derail internet transition

Republican congressmen are increasing their efforts to delay transition of a critical piece of internet infrastructure from the US government to a non-profit organization based in California. For the third time, a House Appropriations subcommittee has included a provision in a must-pass bill that would prevent the Department …
Kieren McCarthy, 19 May 2016
Great Wall of China by https://www.flickr.com/photos/matt512/ cc 2.0 attribution generic https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

China's new rules may break the internet warns US government

The Chinese government could fragment the internet if it pursues new registration rules for online addresses, the US government has warned. The warning by assistant commerce secretary Larry Strickling and state department ambassador Daniel Sepulveda comes in response to a decision by the Chinese government in March to require …
Kieren McCarthy, 16 May 2016
Afraid of the dark, image via Shutterstock

Americans cutting back on online activity over security and privacy fears

Nearly half of all Americans have not carried out a normal online task because of security and privacy fears, according to a new survey by the US government. Forty-five per cent of the 41,000 households contacted said they had decided not to do online banking, or buy goods online, or post on social networks because they were …
Kieren McCarthy, 13 May 2016
Man shouting through a mega phone with abstract communication icons in the background

Mozilla wants Tor hole

Mozilla has filed an amicus brief [PDF] in a criminal case arguing that the US government should provide it with details of any security holes it knows about before it shares those details with others. The case concerns a public schools administration worker, Jay Michaud, who was charged with accessing a site that hosted child …
Kieren McCarthy, 12 May 2016
Abstract newspaper letters

More time for IoT policy

The US government has extended the public comment period for its green paper on the internet of things by two weeks. The policy paper will take a broad look at the "potential benefits and challenges" of IoT and was announced at the start of April with a deadline of May 23. That has now been extended to June 2. The department …
Kieren McCarthy, 11 May 2016
Space Invaders

Cisco suggests network administration is fun and games

Cisco's trying to get into the games business. A recent trademark application for ”Cisco Geek Factor” suggests the Borg wants to brand its own “Computer game programs; computer game software for use on mobile and cellular phones.” United States Patent and Trademark Office filings are very brief: the only other information we …
Simon Sharwood, 11 May 2016