Articles about European Commission

The Rise of Islamic State: ISIS and the New Sunni Revolution

New EU security strategy: Sod cyber terrorism, BAN ENCRYPTION

“It is unacceptable that a Kalashnikov can be bought easily on the internet,”* thundered European Commission number two Frans Timmermans yesterday, as he presented the Commission’s plans to combat terrorism. So what’s he going to do about it? That’s right, hold a consultation. The much-trumpeted new EU Security Strategy is …
Jennifer Baker, 29 Apr 2015
Google HQ logo. Pic: Bob Dormon

Hurry up and just SLAP GOOGLE, MEPs fume at EU commish

The European Parliament took the EU’s executive arm to task on Tuesday for failing to give Google a good kicking resolve the ongoing investigation into Google’s alleged abuse of dominance in the search market. In a statement endorsed by members of the European Parliament (MEPs), it welcomed “further investigations into Google's …
Jennifer Baker, 11 Mar 2015
Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs restored on Blu-ray

Antitrust this! EU Commish goes after HOLLYWOOD’s big guns

After an 18-month investigation, the European Commission on Thursday decided to file antitrust charges against US movie studios 20th Century Fox, Warner Brothers, Sony Pictures, Paramount, NBCUniversal, and Sky TV. Competition head honcho, Margrethe Vestager, has sent a so-called Statement of Objections to Sky and Co, usually …
Jennifer Baker, 24 Jul 2015

Have YOU got Equation NSAware in your drives? Meh, not really our concern, says EU

After Kaspersky revealed the so-called Equation Group’s HDD-snooping malware, the European Commission says it's “up to member states to take appropriate measures” to deal with cyber-badness on their patches. With the spyware closely resembling Stuxnet, Kaspersky researchers have concluded that the US National Security Agency is …
Jennifer Baker, 19 Feb 2015
germany

German telco watchdog bitten by hound with bigger teeth

Germany’s telecoms regulator is in the firing line after it ignored requests from the European Commission to lower fixed termination rates. Fixed termination rates are the fees telcos charge each other to deliver calls between networks. Since each operator has access to customers on its own network, there is an incentive to …
Jennifer Baker, 07 Nov 2014

EU parliament pushes for Dodd-Frank style conflict mineral laws

European electronics manufacturers will have to double check where the minerals in their products come from in future, according to a draft EU law approved by MEPs on Wednesday. The law, adopted by 402 votes to 118, is part of an effort to clamp down on so-called conflict minerals, so that European companies and consumers do not …
Jennifer Baker, 20 May 2015
Railway line split. Pic: Ian Sane

Qualcomm gazes at its navel while stroking the surgeon's saw

Qualcomm is pondering a breakup as it embarks on a major corporate soul-searching exercise prompted by activist investors, according to reports. The firm may announce the strategic review when it reports fiscal third-quarter results on Wednesday, sources told The Wall Street Journal. It follows reports in April that activist …
Kat Hall, 21 Jul 2015
Columns of coins in the cloud

March deadline nears for FAT, JUICY Euro Commish cloud service contracts

EU cloud service companies have until 5 March this year to bid for lucrative EU Commission contracts. The Commish tender call aims to secure about 2,500 virtual machines and 2,500TB of storage for up to four years. The plan is to enable EU institutions to use cloud-based IT services before the end of 2015. As yet, there is no …
Jennifer Baker, 13 Jan 2015
Qualcomm

EU to Qualcomm competitors: So how's that competition going?

Qualcomm may have settled its antitrust issues in China but EU regulators are still scrutinizing the chipmaker closely, a new report claims. The European Commission has sent questionnaires to Qualcomm competitors in Europe, Reuters reports, asking them to weigh in on the US firm's business practices. Among the roughly 40 items …
Neil McAllister, 09 May 2015

EU anti-trust watchdog ponders TeliaSonera/Telenor merger

The European Commission is worried that a proposed merger between TeliaSonera and Telenor would be bad for consumers, and is now pondering whether to approve the deal. Both companies provide telecoms services in several European countries, but in Denmark the merged entity would face little competition, leaving the public with a …
Jennifer Baker, 09 Apr 2015

Angry Austrian could turn Europe against the US - thanks to data

In a David versus Goliath battle, an Austrian law student may topple the biggest EU-US data sharing deal when he gets his day in court in a couple of weeks' time. Max Schrems, who set up the Europe v Facebook group, alleges that Facebook violated the so-called safe harbour agreement which protects EU citizens' privacy. He says …
Jennifer Baker, 13 Mar 2015
chart

European Commission to cough €12m for software badnesses

The European Commission must pay software firm Systran €12 million in damages for infringing its copyright when it asked other companies to work on Systran's software, the EU's General Court has ruled. Systran created a specially adapted version of its Systran-Unix machine translation software for the Commission, calling it EC- …
OUT-LAW.COM, 18 Dec 2010
The Register breaking news

European Commission details Five Year Security Plan

The European Commission has revealed some more details of how it intends to get the Stockholm Programme to strengthen security enacted into law by 2014. The Commission promises to strengthen data protection law, make ID theft a criminal offence, introduce new hacking offences, improve the rights of those accused of crimes, make …
John Oates, 20 Apr 2010
Gunther Oettinger, EU digital commissioner. Pic: Jennifer Baker

EU digi-chief to meet ministers and sort out the net neutrality thing

Gaffe-prone Gunther H-dot, Europe’s digital chief, has waded into the net neutrality debate once again, but has vowed to sort everything out in a meeting with national ministers next Friday. Commissioner Oettinger was reported this week saying that “net neutrality is socialism by the back door”. This alarming statement is only a …
Jennifer Baker, 08 Jun 2015
Red Dead Redemption

Dutch MEP slams 'cowboy practices' of GCHQ 'n' pals following Gemalto allegations

As news of the alleged hack of encrypted SIM-card producer Gemalto by the NSA and GCHQ spreads, a Dutch MEP is demanding to know what the European Commission is going to do about what could constitute a serious breach of EU law. According to a new report from Glenn Greenwald, mouthpiece of rogue NSA sysadmin Edward Snowden, the …
Jennifer Baker, 20 Feb 2015

Europe a step closer to keeping records on all passengers flying in and out of the Continent

The European Parliament's civil liberties committee LIBE voted on Wednesday in favor of collecting and storing information about all air passengers traveling into or out of the EU. The so-called Passenger Name Record (PNR) scheme requires the storage of all data collected by airlines about passengers – including sensitive and …
Jennifer Baker, 15 Jul 2015
The European flag

Europe may ask Herr Google: Would you, er, snap off your search engine? Pretty please

The European Parliament will reportedly consider pressuring, say, ad giant Google to snap off its search engine and move it away from its biz operations. A draft motion, seen by the Financial Times, calls for the "unbundling [of] search engines from other commercial services." The motion has the support of the two main blocs in …
Iain Thomson, 21 Nov 2014
Cookie Monster

Google turns cookie monster on AdSense, DoubleClick clients

Google has warned its AdSense and DoubleClick customers to sort out their cookie tracking policies before the European Commission gets pissy with them. In a blog post published on Monday (July 27) by Jason Woloz, the Chocolate Factory’s security and privacy programme manager for display and video ads, the search monster said …
Jennifer Baker, 30 Jul 2015
Holiday tech

Booking.com smacked by EU competition bods. Yeah, yeah, yeah

Booking.com has promised three European countries it will stop blocking other hotel and holiday deal sites, following an EU investigation. Competition authorities in Sweden, Italy and France have accepted assurances offered by the slumber search site that it will no longer force hotels to give it lower prices than everyone else …
Jennifer Baker, 22 Apr 2015
The Register breaking news

European Parliament prepares for crucial ACTA vote

On Thursday the European Parliament's International Trade Committee will vote on the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) and give its recommendations on whether or not to recommend the controversial treaty. Some votes are already pretty clear: Scottish MEP David Martin's opposition, for example is plain. He is serving as …
Iain Thomson, 21 Jun 2012
Ashlee Vance, Elon Musk: How the Billionaire CEO of SpaceX and Tesla is shaping our Future

EU graciously lets Dutch splurge €33m on 'leccy car charger network

The Netherlands is to fork out nearly €33m in public funds for electric car chargers after the European Commission gave its permission for the plan to go ahead on Monday. EU Competition Commish Margrethe Vestager said that the plans were within EU state aid rules and would not unduly distort competition, adding that “electric …
Jennifer Baker, 27 Jul 2015

Passions run high in EU parliament debate over air passengers' privacy

MEPs are massively split on whether or not to hand over air passengers’ personal data to security authorities. Members of the European Parliament’s civil liberties committee debated the planned PNR (passenger name record) law that would involve storing all the information collected by airlines about passengers – including …
Jennifer Baker, 04 Jun 2015
The track of K6RPT-11 on aprs.fi

EU-US safe harbour talks are lingering just outside port, says US

In a visit to Brussels this week, US Under Secretary Catherine Novelli told reporters that an agreement on a revised Safe Harbor framework was just weeks away. But the European Commissioner responsible for data protection, Vera Jourova, said there were still obstacles to be overcome. The Safe Harbor agreement is a legally …
Jennifer Baker, 05 Jun 2015
Julia Reda MEP, Pirate Party. Pic: Joachim S. Müller

Loneliest Pirate's EU copyright report secures MEPs' approval

The European Parliament adopted the “Reda report” on copyright yesterday. Pirate Party MEP Julia Reda’s report on the functioning of the current Infosoc Directive is widely seen as a bellwether for the coming copyright legislation overhaul. Digi Commissioner Gunther H-dot Oettinger is due to present his proposals before the …
Jennifer Baker, 10 Jul 2015
eBay

eBay sides with Google in EU competition case? Only if you cherry-pick

Update eBay has come galloping to Google’s rescue in its EU anti-trust case... if you define a “market” in the way the Chocolate Factory wants. eBay chief executive John Donahoe told the Financial Times that in the shopping sector it is a major competitor to Google, thus backing up the Chocolate Factory’s argument that it is not …
Jennifer Baker, 27 Apr 2015
willy wonka oompa loompa

B is for Brussels: Google's corporate rejig WON'T insulate firm against antitrust probes

Brussels confirmed late on Tuesday that Google's radical corporate shape-shifting that spawned parent company Alphabet would not "insulate" the Chocolate Factory from the EU's competition probes. The European Commission's competition spokesman Ricardo Cardoso told The Register: We have seen press reports that Google is …
Jennifer Baker, 11 Aug 2015
Beats Music The Sentence

Take a deep breath, Apple: Europe snaps on gloves for vigorous iTunes stream pat-down

Apple is once again in the headlights of oncoming government regulators, this time over its forthcoming iTunes music-streaming service. Reports from The New York Times and Wall Street Journal cite well-placed sources claiming the Cupertino idiot-tax operation is being scrutinized by the European Commission over its dealings with …
Shaun Nichols, 02 Apr 2015

Wikipedia: YES! we’ve SAVED the INTERNET again!

Just as we predicted only yesterday, Wikipedia has proclaimed a famous “victory” over something that was never going to happen. The site launched a high-profile campaign to “Save the Freedom of Panorama”, after an amendment was tacked onto a European Parliament report produced by the Parliament’s only Pirate MEP. The amendment …
Andrew Orlowski, 03 Jul 2015

EU says dominant Google ILLEGALLY FIDDLES search results

The EU’s chief competition regulator alleged today that Google is illegally abusing its dominant position in the search market. Antitrust commissioner Margrethe Vestager has now taken the first official step towards fining the ad-slinging search monster. “I am confident that Google has artificially boosted its position in the …
Jennifer Baker, 15 Apr 2015
US Pentagon. Pic: DoD photo by MSgt Ken Hammond, USAF

Respect mah privacy! EU delegation begs US to play nice with data

A delegation of MEPs is in Washington this week to put pressure on the US authorities to respect EU privacy laws. The 11-strong group from the European Parliament’s Civil Liberties Committee (LIBE) is led by British Labour MEP Claude Moraes. He said the Parliament hasn’t forgotten about the National Security Agency (NSA)'s …
Jennifer Baker, 17 Mar 2015

China gets free pass from EU commish as telco probe dropped

The EU has decided to make friends with China despite earlier worries that it may have been giving an illegal boost to telco manufacturers. On Monday, the European Commission decided to drop an investigation into alleged illegal subsidies and dumping of telecommunications equipment by Chinese exporters. Following “intensive …
Jennifer Baker, 20 Oct 2014
willy wonka oompa loompa

Google meets more EU apparatchiks than anyone else in Brussels

Google tops the list of companies lobbying in Brussels, according to a report published on Wednesday by Transparency International (TI). TI analysed the 4,318 lobby meetings declared by the top tier of European Commission officials between December 2014 and June 2015 and found the Chocolate Factory came out on top for individual …
Jennifer Baker, 25 Jun 2015
Euro notes

Euro probe headed for Amazon's tax back door

A 2003 Luxembourgeois tax ruling used by Amazon.com to structure its European affairs looks likely to become the subject of a European Commission probe, according to the Financial Times. The Pink 'Un's paywalled report suggests Luxembourg's decision to limit the amount of Amazonian profits it would tax may have constituted an …
Simon Sharwood, 07 Oct 2014

Want the EU to work on making cloud snoop-proof? Speak up, my good 'stakeholder'

The public has less than two weeks to respond to one of the vaguest European Commission consultations ever… but one that will decide where the Commish spends its money. The deadline for submissions to the public consultation on Cloud Computing and Software has been extended by a week to 17 October. But unlike many consultations …
Jennifer Baker, 06 Oct 2014

Grumpy EU ministers agree shaky pact on new data protection law

EU states' justice ministers seemed to be competing to sound the most disappointed as they grudgingly agreed to move forward on a new data protection law. Although a compromise general approach was reached, most countries found fault with the text of the proposed General Data Protection Regulation – quite a feat considering the …
Jennifer Baker, 15 Jun 2015
Two teenage girls - one whispering in other's ear

Commish: Pssst, wanna see that Google chargesheet?

Google’s rivals will be given a tiny, sneak preview of the charges ranged against the search monster in the coming weeks, sources have confirmed to The Register. The Commission is, as always, cagey about the details, so complainants in the ongoing anti-trust case will be given only a redacted version of the Statement of …
Jennifer Baker, 17 Jun 2015
Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos

EU: Explain your tax affairs. Google, Amazon, Facebook: Mmm... nah

Amazon, Facebook and Google are among those who have been invited to a pow-wow with MEPs over their tax practices – but not all plan to show up. MEPs said on Tuesday that it's regrettable that the multinationals “seem unable to find time to discuss their tax practices in public before the European Parliament’s Tax Rulings …
Jennifer Baker, 10 Jun 2015

EU-turn: Greenpeace pressure WON'T mean axing of Chief Scientist

After months of mixed signals and confusion it appears that the European Commission will make a U-turn and keep the role of Chief Science Advisor. Last November, Chief Scientific Advisor (CSA) Anne Glover revealed that the Commish planned to scrap the role, which is “to provide independent expert advice on any aspect of science …
Jennifer Baker, 16 Jan 2015
The Register breaking news

Commission to Euro biz: Show us your breaches

EU businesses could be required to flag up any breaches of their "network and information systems" under a new "strategic" action plan to combat cyber security problems across the trading bloc. The European Commission is planning to draft new laws on cyber security that could introduce a requirement for businesses to report when …
OUT-LAW.COM, 25 Jul 2012
Amazon Kindle 2

Top Euro court ends mega ebook VAT slash in France, Luxembourg

Your Kindle purchases are about to get dearer following a decision by the European Court of Justice (ECJ) that France and Luxembourg can no longer charge a reduced rate of VAT for ebooks. Both France and Luxembourg set reduced rates of value-added tax for ebooks in 2012, and the European Commission took issue with this, hence …
Jennifer Baker, 06 Mar 2015
Google UK office logos

EU Google-bashing is making us look really bad, say Google bashers

It appears that Google's rivals, who have complained about the ad giant's European dominance, are worried that bashing the goliath can go too far. “It is irresponsible to try and make the Google case seem wider than it actually is,” said Microsoft-backed ICOMP, an organisation representing big businesses that have moaned to the …
Jennifer Baker, 13 Dec 2014
Uber - living the dream

Spanish judge dodges the ultimate question – is Uber a taxi company?

Uber will continue to ferry food around Barcelona but not people, as yet another court case involving the ride-sharing pseudo-taxi service is sent to the European Court of Justice. Last year, Spain banned the company following complaints from traditional taxi drivers. However, now a Barcelona judge has decided to let Europe’s …
Jennifer Baker, 22 Jul 2015
Rickmote

WORLD+DOG line up to SLAM Google after anti-trust case unveiled

Although EU competition commissioner (and Borgen inspiration) Margrethe Vestager made clear that her decision to slap Google with a statement of objections is about consumers, that hasn't stopped the US firm's Euro detractors queuing up to cheer her decision. Representatives of Fairsearch and ICOMP – both organisations set up to …
Jennifer Baker, 16 Apr 2015

MEPs, Council still deadlocked over EU telco laws

After three years of negotiations, the proposals to overhaul Europe’s critical telecoms rules could come to nothing, with political power blocks seemingly deadlocked. The so-called Telco Package has been shorn of many of its original proposals and has now been whittled down to just two major issues: net neutrality and roaming …
Jennifer Baker, 03 Jun 2015
Threesome photo via Shutterstock

EU threesome promises good times for data protection reform

Things can only get better. That’s the message from all parties negotiating the new EU Data Protection Regulation. Following the first so-called trilogue meeting on Wednesday, negotiators representing the European Parliament, the European Commission and the council of national justice ministers said that citizens’ data would be …
Jennifer Baker, 24 Jun 2015
flag.Germany

Steelie Neelie orders Germany to sort out its mobe charges – or EU will go FULL LEGAL

Steelie Neelie has warned Germany – for the fifth time – that if it doesn’t sort out its proposals on mobile termination rates, the Commission will take legal action. The European Commissioner for the Digital Agenda may be on her way out, but Neelie Kroes has seemingly reached the end of her tether with the German telecoms …
Jennifer Baker, 21 Oct 2014
Use google.com button

SMACK! EU set to hit Google with 'abuse of dominance' rap

EU digi-chief Gunther H-dot Oettinger poured fuel on rumours that the European Commission will haul Google over the coals with antitrust charges this week - and now it's happened. Backing up comments he made to a German weekly newspaper on Sunday, H-dot Oetti said: “We have to look more critically at the market position and …
Jennifer Baker, 14 Apr 2015
Mexico

Going on holiday? Mexico wants your personal data

European airlines could soon be forced to break citizens’ right to privacy if they want to fly to Mexico. Mexican authorities have decided to implement a "passenger name record" (PNR) scheme from 1 April. PNR data encompasses all the information airlines hold on their passengers – from credit card details, phone numbers and …
Jennifer Baker, 11 Mar 2015

New Euro digi chief says he WILL consider an EU-wide copyright law

Europe’s new digi chief Gunther H. Oettinger has said that he could have a first draft of new copyright laws within six months. Oetti made the comments to the German Bundestag committee on the Digital Agenda on Tuesday, but with the German barely through the door of his new office at the European Commission – he officially …
Jennifer Baker, 06 Nov 2014
Bank vault

UK data watchdog: Massive fines won't keep data safe

The UK’s data protection watchdog has said issuing fines "left, right and centre" is not the way to ensure privacy. However, Information Commissioner Christopher Graham added that this doesn’t mean his office shouldn’t have those exact powers at its disposal. “The obligation laid on data protection authorities always to fine …
Jennifer Baker, 22 May 2015