Articles about Australia

Flytrap

Linux Australia hacked, warns personal details exposed

The names, phone numbers and street and email addresses of delegates for Linux Australia conferences and PyCon have been exposed in a server breach. The March attack was detected two weeks ago and is revealed in an email to Linux Australia members. Linux Australia's server held information on delegates to its popular annual …
Darren Pauli, 07 Apr 2015
Netflix

According to Netflix, Australia's slowest ISP owns half of Foxtel

Australia's dominant carrier, Telstra, offers Netflix customers the slowest download speeds, the video-streamer says. Here's Netflix's data for Australia. Netflix Australia speed data Netflix's view of Australian internet service provider download speeds Netflix says its index “lists the average prime time bitrate for Netflix …
Simon Sharwood, 11 May 2015
Burning copyright symbol. Photo by: Martin Fisch http://www.flickr.com/photos/marfis75/ on flickr"

Kill all geoblocks says Internet Society of Australia

Geoblocking content should be banned under international trade treaties, according to the Internet Society of Australia. The radical proposal emerged in ISOC-AU's appearance at the Senate committee looking at the proposed site-blocking amendments to Australia's copyright act. With Hollywood hard-balling (all the way up to …

Australia cracks tech giants' tax dodge code

Australia's Economics References Committee, which has been conducting hearings into corporate tax avoidance, looks to have made a breakthrough by eliciting a new method for taxing multinationals from the nation's Taxation Office. Recent hearings have revealed how the likes of Apple, Google and Microsoft manage to pay such low …
Simon Sharwood, 04 May 2015
Australia.gov.au beta

Australia puts itself back into Beta

The Online Services Branch of Australia's Department of Finance, which oversees the nation's online efforts, has put the country in beta with the release of a new design for the national website at australia.gov.au. The new look is said to be the result of “user analysis and … benchmarking with other government agencies both …
Simon Sharwood, 20 Oct 2014

Rackspace Australia expands main bit barn, adds DR site

Rackspace's Australian tentacle has decided the time is right to expand its main bit barn and open a disaster recovery site. Digital Realty's bit facility in the Sydney suburb of Erskine Park hosts Rackspace's Australian kit. Things are going well enough down under that Rackspace is expanding into a second hall of that facility …
Simon Sharwood, 04 May 2015
Optus Logo

Optus fires up Azure clone for Australia

Australia's second-largest telco, Optus, has hopped aboard Microsoft's cloudwagon by flicking the switch on its own Azure service. The Optus Managed Cloud has been given the Azure Pack treatment, meaning Optus is now a member of the Microsoft Cloud OS Network of providers that can offer cloud based on Microsoft's platform. …
Simon Sharwood, 20 Apr 2015
Screenshot of the Office 2013 installer for Office 365

Office 365 and Dynamics go live in Australia

Office 365 files may load just a little faster in Australia today, after Microsoft announced it has flicked the switch for the local version of the service. Redmond's outpost has also decided the time is right to serve Dynamics CRM from its Australian bit barns in Sydney and Melbourne. Like the local version of Azure, the two …
Simon Sharwood, 30 Mar 2015

Australia threatens to pull buckets of astronomy funding

A political impasse is putting at risk Australia's participation in the ginormous Square Kilometre Array (SKA) radio telescope*, along with a slew of other major research science projects. The impasse centres on a plan to "deregulate" Australia's universities by allowing them to charge higher fees to make up for reduced …

Toshiba Australia recalls combustible laptop power cords

Toshiba Australia has issued a recall notice for the power cord it supplied with laptops sold in Australia between 1st September 2010 and 30th June 2012. The recall notice says the “'LS-15' labelled AC Power cord” was built with “electrical insulation [that] may degrade over time”. If that happens, there's “potential to …
Simon Sharwood, 25 Nov 2014
Sydney harbour bridge poking out of the clouds

Verizon brings half its cloud to Australia

Verizon enterprise has opened its cloud in Australia, or least half of its cloud. Verizon's cloud is an oddity inasmuch as it comprises two distinct platforms. One is the kit it acquired along with Terremark and has since indicated it will rebuild on Xen and CloudStack. That cloud's used to dleiver the reserved performance bits …
Simon Sharwood, 17 Mar 2015

Google, Microsoft and Apple explain their tax tricks in Australia

Representatives of Google, Apple and Microsoft Australia today appeared before a hearing into Corporate Tax Avoidance convened by the nation's Economics Reference Committee, and all struggled to explain just where the money goes or whether what they do is fair. All three also admitted, after being told they were permitted to do …
Simon Sharwood, 08 Apr 2015
Uber apologises for Sydney siege surge pricing SNAFU

Uber to Australia: Legalise UberX and we'll GIVE you DATA

Uber has told Australia it wants to stop butting heads with regulators and will offer them traffic data as their quid pro quo for official recognition. The company told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation's 730 programme last week that “We have a lot of information about how people are moving around their cities, so there's …
The Tanami Desert en route to Willowara

Australia: even more empty than you imagine

In a release that went largely unnoticed in the lead-up to Christmas, the Australian Bureau of Statistics launched a data product designed to simplify regional and international comparisons. The Australian Population Grid 2011 (that is, it uses the 2011 Census data) plots Australia's population against a 1km2 grid. Prior to the …
Uber apologises for Sydney siege surge pricing SNAFU

Uber Australia hiring lawyers, PR flaks

Uber Australia has two interlinked problems: because its operations appear to be against current regulations, and it behaves with impunity, a fair share of the public thinks it is a corporate scoundrel. What a surprise then, that on the HR wishlist for the company's Sydney office are the following roles: Lead country counsel, …
Simon Sharwood, 02 Feb 2015
Dunce

Australia dumbs down: Chief Scientist says research performance lags the world

Australia likes to flatter itself that it's good at sciences: the nation's scientists did, after all, invent WiFi and lots of other useful stuff. But when the nation looks in the mirror it should be honest and and admit it's wasting away, says a new report from the nation's Chief Scientist. In a report presented to the …

Australia Post goes a little bit grey with parcel forwarding service

One of the least-favourite activities of Australian online shoppers, working out who offers a safe and reliable international drop service, has become a bit easier after the national postal service Australia Post entered the market. The deliverators have decided to set up in competition with existing forwarders, at the same time …

Australia's digital technologies curriculum parked AGAIN

Australia's proposed digital technologies curriculum, which would see kids taught computational thinking for the first ten years of their schooling, has been parked again. The curriculum's development was spurred by industry concerns that Australia's not producing enough skilled technologists to meet employer demand or foster …
Simon Sharwood, 06 Mar 2015
storage arrays superimposed on cloudy sky

VMware: Our DaaS is is so large it now covers Japan, Australia

VMware has announced that its Horizon Air desktop-as-a-service (DaaS) and application-delivery-as-a-service (AdaaS) offerings will shortly become available from its Japanese and Australian bit barns. Virtzilla reckons this expansion of its DaaS-print makes it “the most geographically distributed … provider in the industry.” …
Simon Sharwood, 20 May 2015
Uber launch party by https://www.flickr.com/photos/5chw4r7z/ CC2.0 sharelalike attribution https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/

Australia forces UberX drivers to become tax collectors

Australia's Taxation Office has issued a guidance note titled “Providing taxi travel services through ride-sourcing and your tax obligations” that makes it clear Uber drivers need to register for, collect and pay the nation's goods and services tax (GST). The note coins the term “ride-sourcing” and defines it as “an ongoing …
Simon Sharwood, 19 May 2015
Parliament House Canberra by Flickr user OzMark17 used under CC Share and Share alike licence

Australia finds $1 BEELLION to replace No-SQL DATABASE

That sound? The first drops of a cool billion Australian dollars (US$770m, £520m) that the nation's government has started pouring into a honeypot for the world's technology community. The sweet, sweet pot of dosh is there because Australia has decided it can't go on running Model 204, an eighties database, to run its welfare …
Simon Sharwood, 10 Apr 2015
rockstar games bully/canis canem edit

Australia's social media censorship law – for the children - all-but passes

The Enhancing Online Safety for Children Bill 2014 has passed Australia's Senate, meaning the nation now has a regime for compelling social networks to remove material deemed to represent bullying of children. The Bill defines bullying material as “… intended to have an effect on a particular Australian child ... likely to have …
Simon Sharwood, 04 Mar 2015

Visa's tokenisation scheme to debut in Australia

Australian and European shoppers will be able to use a throwaway Visa card token to shop online in a bid to reduce fraud. The scheme is being rolled out across Australia and Europe to Visa-allied banks and merchants. Shoppers will be issued tokens that will be matched to their cards. Validated transactions will map tokens to …
Darren Pauli, 25 Feb 2015
Parliament House Canberra by Flickr user OzMark17 used under CC Share and Share alike licence

Australia finds AU$131m for data retention, $254m for e-gov luvvies

BUDGET 2015 Australia's treasurer Joe Hockey has outlined several technology-related items in the nation's budget for 2015/16. In a surprise announcement, the treasurer announced the government will abolish fringe benefits tax “on all portable electronic devices used for work, like mobile phones, laptops and tablets.” Fringe benefits tax …
Simon Sharwood, 12 May 2015

Pacnet becomes 'potential' prey for Australia's Telstra

Australia's dominant telecommunications company, Telstra, has told the nation's stock exchange “that it is in discussions with the owners of Pacnet around a potential transaction to acquire the company.” The announcement of the exploration is so brief it reads a lot like it's a tick-the-boxes reveal under the continuous …
Simon Sharwood, 17 Dec 2014
Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott

Australia to conduct national cyber-security review

Australia will conduct a national “cyber-security review”. Speaking today at the launch of the new Australian Cyber Security Centre in Canberra today, prime minister Tony Abbott put network security on par with physical security, said it is a guarantor of economic security and added “it is so important we keep one step ahead of …
Simon Sharwood, 27 Nov 2014
australia

Forrester says Australia, not China, is next boom market for cloud

Cloud vendors that have done alright in Europe and North American should head to Australia to find their next growth market, according to analyst outfit Forrester. Veep and principal analyst serving infrastructure and operations professionals James Staten says Australia may lack China's or India's size, and is an expensive place …
Simon Sharwood, 29 Jul 2014
slow_sign

Australia's Akamai ranking has nothing to do with the NBN

There's never any shortage of ways for Australia to feel inadequate about its broadband performance, and speed comparisons are a perennial favourite. With Akamai's latest State of the Internet report hitting the Internet at the end of last week, Australians are in for another bout of soul-searching: while our year-on-year …

SNIA's Australia/New Zealand chapter winds itself up

The Storage Networking Industry Association's (SNIA's) Australia and New Zealand chapter has decided to wind itself up. “I would say SNIA ANZ has achieved its goal over the years,” said chairman Sean Kopelke, before going on to explain that the Association's board felt the global SNIA charter – which focuses on standards and …
Simon Sharwood, 22 Oct 2014
Bill Gates talks tech

Microsoft Australia floats 'death to TechEd' thought bubble

Microsoft Australia has hinted that it may follow the lead of its US parent and make TechEd a part of a larger conference. The Microsoft Mothership last month decided to bundle TechEd and conferences dedicated to SharePoint, Lync, Exchange and Project into a “unified Microsoft commercial technology conference.” TechEd will …
Simon Sharwood, 03 Aug 2014

Australia ignores data retention in summer slack-off

The Australian federal government's strategy of conducting inquiries on a short time-scale approaching holidays is paying off in spades when it comes to data retention. The Register has already noted the government's rushed Christmas-eve questionnaire to the telecommunications industry about the costs of data retention. There's …

Digital Post Australia goes titsup in orderly fashion

Having fought a lawsuit against Australia Post (the nation's postal service) to have the right to offer its service, the much-hyped but ultimately-unwanted Digital Post Australia (DPA) is shutting down, saying its service is “not sustainable at this time”. DPA's closure might give pause to communications minister Malcolm …
heart.australia

Australia.gov.au Alpha design revealed to grateful nation

Australia's Department of Finance, within which resides the Australian Government Chief Technology Office (AGCTO), has revealed designs for the nation's new home page. The beta is available here, and if you click on the image below you'll get a look at a lovely big screen capture. Beta of the new australia.gov.au The new …
Simon Sharwood, 13 Jun 2014
Cloud

Australia's favourite(ish) telco taking SDN to the world

Australia's dominant telco Telstra is about to try and make itself a global brand for those considering intercontinental software-defined networks (SDN). Telstra acquired Pacnet in 2014, partly to get its hands on the company's submarine cables and 16-point-of-presence Pacnet Enabled Network (PEN). The PEN is billed as Asia's …
australia

Australia to block piracy sites if Big Content asks nicely in court

Australia will join the ranks of nations that ask local internet service providers block access to sites suspected of illegally distributing copyrighted material. The nation's attorney-general George Brandis and communications minister Malcolm Turnbull today revealed their intention to “amend the Copyright Act, to enable rights …
Simon Sharwood, 10 Dec 2014
Azure icon

Azure Australia launches, complete with full-fibre diet

Microsoft has, as expected, pressed the Big Blue Button to enliven the Australian “geo” of its Azure cloud service. Scott Guthrie, veep of Microsoft's Cloud and Enterprise group had one other snippet to announce, namely the availability of dedicated fibre links – dubbed ExpressRoute - from Equinix and Telstra to the two …
Simon Sharwood, 27 Oct 2014
Julie Bishop & Marty Natelagawa

Australia makes pinkie-promise to end Indonesia spying

Australia has signed a code of conduct to promise not to spy on Indonesia's elected officials in a bid to heal seeping wounds opened by NSA leaks. In November 2013, documents leaked by NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden revealed Australia had spied on the mobile phone of then-Indonesian-leader Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono (SBY), his …
Darren Pauli, 29 Aug 2014
Sydney harbour bridge poking out of the clouds

VMware announces vCloud Air for Australia

VMware has announced it will launch its vCloud Air hybrid offering in Australia in the first half of 2015. Australia's dominant telco, Telstra, scored the hosting gig and will stand up VMware's kit in a Melbourne bit barn. VMware's schtick for vCloud Air is that it is designed from the ground up to hook into its vSphere control …
Simon Sharwood, 04 Nov 2014
Qantas A380 tail

In-flight slab-fondling and mobe-stroking in Australia at last

Australian gadget-owners rejoice, you can now keep your devices switched on from “gate to gate” on Qantas and Virgin Australia flights. Earlier this year, aviation regulator CASA announced it was relaxing the rules that demanded a power-down for mobes and fondleslabs, but that airlines required certification to put the rules …
Steeden NRL ball

National Rugby League boots 'metadata' right into Australia's face

Australian politicians and activists frustrated at their fellows' apparent indifference to the metadata data retention debate have cause to thank the National Rugby League (NRL). In its laudable battle against bad behaviour by the inadvertent role models who sign up to play in its competition. the NRL has announced new rules for …

Netflix fail proves copper NBN leaves Australia utterly 4Ked

I ran into my friend Tom the other day. He’s worked at the intersection of media and technology pretty much from the beginning. When there’s a launch of a new media tech that promises to change the world, Tom’s always in the front row, taking notes. At the end of last year, Tom received an invite to Netflix’s Australian launch. …
Mark Pesce, 08 Apr 2015

AT LAST: Australia gets its very own malware

Australians are being targeted by a new variant of the Carberp malware under what appears to be renewed criminal interest in the antipodes. The modified trojan, Carberp.C, was spread through a spam operation masquerading as a payment invoice. Virus writers pushed the malware out a day after coding it, Symantec researcher …
Darren Pauli, 19 Jan 2015
Dunce

Australia to social media: self-censor or face AU$17,000 FINES

Australia's long-threatened plan to compel social networks to remove bullying material directed at children has emerged, complete with a naughty corner for networks who don't play nice with others. The bill seeks to ensure that all social networks operating in Australia implement “basic online safety requirements” including …
Simon Sharwood, 03 Dec 2014
Azure Index

Azure Australia is ALIVE, but not for the likes of you, just yet

Microsoft has announced that its two Australian Azure bit barns are up and running, in a “private preview”. Microsoft Australia managing director Pip Marlow writes that “a number of customers and partners are using the service today” but adds that “I still can’t give you the final date for general availability but I can share …
Simon Sharwood, 02 Sep 2014
The Tanami Desert en route to Willowara

Australia's new broadband satellites won't be all the help Willowra needs

One of the things we've been asked about our project to figure out how to improve network performance at the Wirliyajarrayi Learning Centre in the remote Australian town of Willowra is why we are bothering. It's a decent question to ask because Australia is building a new Long Term Satellite Solution (LTSS) that promises multi- …
Social media buttons

Australia plans 'penalties' for social networks that don't think of the children

Australia has devised a small stick and big stick approach to cyber-bullying material stored on social networks. The nation's recently-installed government ran on a policy of Thinking Of The Children that proposed the creation of a new “Office of the Children’s e-Safety Commissioner” with the power to compel social networks to …
Simon Sharwood, 29 Oct 2014

Dell Australia managing director steps down

Joe Kremer, Dell's veep and managing director for Australia and New Zealand, has called it a day. Kremer will leave the building in July, to be replaced by Angela Fox. Fox currently leads Dell's services outfit in the Asia Pacific and Japan, having previously served in senior roles in the company's enterprise solutions business …
Simon Sharwood, 10 Jun 2014
Bitcoins

Your Bitcoins aren't money – but it is barter, so we'll tax it, ta ... says Australia's taxman

The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) has issued its official assessment of Bitcoin and other crypto-currencies – and decided it isn't money but can be taxed. The ATO's note says BTC is “neither money nor a foreign currency” and that “transacting with Bitcoins is akin to a barter arrangement”. Australia taxes formal barter …
Simon Sharwood, 21 Aug 2014

Australia tries to ban crypto research – by ACCIDENT

While the world is laughing at UK PM David Cameron for his pledge to ban encryption, Australia is on the way to implementing legislation that could feasibly have a similar effect. Moreover, the little-debated Defence Trade Control Act (DTCA) is already law - it's just that the criminal sanctions it imposes for sending knowledge …
Parliament House Canberra by Flickr user OzMark17 used under CC Share and Share alike licence

Help Australia's PM and attorney-general to define metadata

POLL Australia's prime minister Tony Abbott and attorney-general George Brandis on Tuesday announced that Australia will collect telecommunications metadata. Yesterday, they contradicted each other, and themselves, when attempting to define metadata and exactly what they propose to collect. Both failed to offer a consistent …
Simon Sharwood, 06 Aug 2014