Articles about German

Angela Merkel. Pic: Christliches Medienmagazin

Chancellor Merkel 'was patient zero' in German govt network hack

The recent cyberattack on the German government began with the compromise of Chancellor Angela Merkel's personal computer, it is alleged. German newspaper Bild claims Merkel's computer was one of the first systems to be infected with malware linked to miscreants in Russia. Hackers reportedly used Merkel's computer to send …
Shaun Nichols, 15 Jun 2015

Ruskies behind German govt cyber attack — report

Russia is the chief suspect in the recent hack of the Bundestag, according to esteemed German mag Der Spiegel. Officials within the German government are still refusing to publicly point the finger, but sources close to the Bundestag’s tech department have told El Reg that all indications point to a state-sponsored attack. …
Jennifer Baker, 04 Jun 2015
Volkswagen Beetle

Herbie Goes Under Investigation: German prosecutors probe ex-VW CEO Winterkorn

Volkswagon's former CEO, Martin Winterkorn, has come under investigation by the German state attorney. The German state attorney's office in Braunschweig, not too distant from Volkswagen's base in Wolfsburg, acknowledged that it had received complaints from people who had raised the issue anonymously, reported the New York …
Angela Merkel. Pic: Christliches Medienmagazin

German data retention law prompts Euro Commission backlash

Germany’s planned data retention law has run into more trouble. But not, despite media reports, because the European Commission is “threatening to take Germany to court”, nor even because of a court ruling against the EU-wide Data Retention Directive. On Tuesday, German stick-it-to-zer-Mann news site Netzpolitik published a …
Jennifer Baker, 17 Sep 2015

YouTube is responsible for user content, says German court #1

YouTube is responsible for, yet not liable for, user-uploaded videos on its service, according to two separate court rulings in Germany this week. Google-owned YouTube has been in dispute with German performing rights organisation GEMA since 2006. On Tuesday, the Munich district court rejected GEMA’s bid for compensation – the …
Jennifer Baker, 02 Jul 2015
Cape 2 Cape drivers at their final destination in Norway

Challenge! German drives from South Africa to Norway in nine days

Hats off to Rainer Zeitlow and his team for driving his Volkswagen Touareg from South Africa to Norway in nine days, 4 hours to set a new Guinness World record. HP and Intel, Rainer’s lead backers for the Cape2Cape challenge showcased security, connectivity and telemetry technology in the exceedingly connected car, a moving …
David Gordon, 22 Sep 2015
willy wonka oompa loompa

You want a 6% Google Tax? Get lost, German copyright bods told

After months of deliberations, Germany's national arbitration board on copyright has told German copyright collection company VG Media to go whistle over its proposal for a six per cent “Google Tax”. Although the ancillary copyright tax law does indeed apply to Google, said the board, which is part of the German Patent …
Jennifer Baker, 28 Sep 2015

EU ombudsman slams Commish handling of German ePrivacy laws

The EU Ombudsman has criticised the European Commission for failing to be rigorous enough in examining Germany’s implementation of the ePrivacy Directive. After a four-year battle, German digital activist Patrick Breyer finally had his arguments partially upheld by the ombudsman, Emily O'Reilly. In 2011, Breyer complained to …
Jennifer Baker, 08 Jul 2015

German spies sold out citizens to the NSA in exchange for super-snoop-ware XKeyscore

German weekly Die Zeit has published documents that reveal how the country’s domestic spies did a deal with the NSA to get their mitts on souped-up surveillance software. Under the 2012 agreement between the United States National Security Agency and the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution (BfV), the latter …
Jennifer Baker, 27 Aug 2015

Aye-aye Eyeo, go safely on your way-o, says German judge

A Munich court ruled on Wednesday (May 27) that there was nothing illegal about the activities of Eyeo, owner of Adblock Plus. For the advert blocking toolmaker, this is the second win in as many months. German broadcasters RTL Interactive and ProSiebenSat1, claimed that users should not be able to block all ads on their …
Jennifer Baker, 27 May 2015
VW Scirocco logo

German regulator sets VW deadline

Germany's Federal Motor Transport Authority, KBA, has lost patience with scandal-plagued Volkswagen and has given it a deadline. By October 7, the regulator says, Volkswagen has to submit its plan for bringing its cars into line with European emissions regulation – and this time, no cheating. That's going to be a tough ask …

Motorola monsters Apple's swipe-to-unlock patent in German court

Apple has suffered yet another setback in its Bleak House lawsuits, with another German court deciding to throw out its swipe-to-unlock patent. The ruling confirms an earlier decision that the patent just didn't have the goods to stand up in Europe. As The Register reported at the time, “European law doesn't allow for the …
The Gnu-look LibreOffice 5

LibreOffice 5.0 debuts, complete with fewer German code comments

The tenth version of open-source productivity suite Libre Office, Libre Office 5.0, has arrived. If that numbering is a little confusing, prepare for more brow-furrowing as this release is considered the fruit of the suite's third development cycle. The first started in 2010, when OpenOffice forked and work on LibreOffice 3.0 …
Simon Sharwood, 06 Aug 2015
A lamb

Heroic German rozzers rescue innocent lamb from sordid brothel

The German fuzz have nabbed a 25-year-old prostitute for keeping her pet lamb in the Munich brothel where she worked. Reuters reported that the woman and her lamb had been discovered during a narcotics raid, and it is understood she was briefly detained on suspicion of drug possession. Unlike the wooly situation in the UK, …
Woman thumbs down, image via Shutterstock

German watchdog rips off Facebook's thumbs after online fracas

Five German companies have removed Facebook’s “like” button from their websites following pressure from the niftily-named Consumer Advice Center of North Rhine-Westphalia (Verbraucherzentrale NRW). Two weeks ago, Belgium’s data protection authorities said the social network was breaking national and EU law by tracking users on …
Jennifer Baker, 26 May 2015
Train racing through forrest in city with squirrel near buy and a Dell ad in the background

German police ARREST SQUIRREL for stalking woman

German police have detained a squirrel for stalking a woman and chasing her down the street. North-Rhine Westphalia police took the squirrel into custody. In an act of not very tough justice, they then fed it apple pieces and honey tea. It is not known at this point if the creature was part of the notorious crack squirrel …
Kat Hall, 20 Jul 2015

German prosecutor given Das Boot over Netzpolitik treason charge, the website at the centre of the treason scandal in Germany, is the real winner in the whole furore as a senior German official was forcibly retired over the scandal, editor Markus Beckedahl told el Reg this morning. Last night, Germany's chief federal prosecutor Harald Range was given the boot by German …
Jennifer Baker, 05 Aug 2015
Uber - living the dream

German court slaps down Uber's ride-sharing app

A German court has slapped Uber with a nationwide ban on its ride-sharing app Uberpop – again. The ruling means the app is no longer allowed, as it enables users to be ferried around by drivers who do not hold the requisite professional licences – a requirement under German law. The company's other services are still permitted …
Kat Hall, 19 Mar 2015
Siemens GSM-R train cab radio. Pic: Joshua Brown

German railways upgrade their comms tech from 2G to 4G

German choo-choo chaps Deutsche Bahn are replacing their GSM-R communications technology and has commissioned a consortium of Siemens Convergence Creators and Huawei to sort out the migration of the system across northern Germany's railway lines. GSM-R is a technology which dates back around 15 years and provides both voice …
Simon Rockman, 03 Aug 2015

German army fights underground Nazi war machine hidden in Kiel pensioner's cellar

The German rozzers raided a villa in a wealthy suburb of Kiel on Wednesday (July 2), and found a Nazi tank from 1943 hidden in the cellar, alongside a torpedo and "other weaponry". The Local reported that the raid took place under the orders of the town's prosecutors, who suspect the villa's owner held the Nazi-era weaponry …
The NSA Unchained

The big boys made us do it: US used German spooks to snoop on EU defence industry

Germany's BND spy agency spied on European politicians and enterprises at the behest of the NSA for over a decade. Der Spiegel reports (in German) that for years the NSA sent its counterparts at the BND (Bundesnachrichtendienst – Germany's Federal Intelligence Service) thousands of so-called selectors – IP addresses, emails, and …
John Leyden, 24 Apr 2015
Raiders of the lost ark

Airbus to sue NSA, German spies accused of swiping tech secrets

European aerospace giant Airbus is promising legal action over claims its top blueprints were stolen by German spies and given to America's intelligence agencies. "We are aware that as a large company in the sector, we are a target and subject of espionage," the company said in a statement to the AFP newswire. "However, in this …
Iain Thomson, 30 Apr 2015

Top German data cop slaps down Facebook's real name policy

Johannes Caspar, Germany’s Hamburg Commissioner for Data Protection, has told Facebook to allow users to use pseudonyms on the free content ad network. In Tuesday's ruling (in German) Caspar said Facebook’s real names policy is against German data protection law and must stop immediately. Facebook’s policy requires users to …
Jennifer Baker, 29 Jul 2015

WW2 German Enigma machine auctioned for record-breaking price

A three-rotor Engima machine was sold for a record $269,000 at a Bonhams auction earlier this week. The machine is in complete working condition and was manufactured for the German military in Berlin in July 1944. The Enigma machines were, for their time, sophisticated encryption devices, and were used to encrypt Morse-coded …
Supermarine Spitfire firing up. SAC Graham Taylor/Crown copyright

Vodafone splashes €2 BEEELLLION to kick German TV sideways

Germany's electricity, gas, telecoms, post and railway regulator, the Bundesnetzagentur, has raised €5.08bn in its latest spectrum auction - including flogging the 700MHz frequencies currently in use by TV channels. The biggest purchaser was Vodafone, which splurged €2.1bn, with the auction going through 181 rounds and …
Simon Rockman, 23 Jun 2015
Angela Merkel's eyes

German spooks target officials who leaked govt docs to bloggers

Germany’s domestic secret service is backing a criminal case against government officials who passed documents to the press. Activists claim the investigation is an effort to clamp down on the freedom of the press, while others see it as a cynical move by interior spooks the Federal Office for the Protection of the …
Jennifer Baker, 16 Jul 2015

EU Commish is rather pleased German BND and NSA thought it worth spying on

According to local media reports Thursday, German intelligence agency BND (the Bundesnachrichtendienst) has helped the US National Security Agency (NSA) spy on the European Commission and French authorities since 2008. German officials themselves were not targeted because of a NSA-BND deal signed in 2002. The revelations have …
Jennifer Baker, 01 May 2015

Ausgezeichnet! Logicalis devours German channel biz

Integrator Logicalis has wolfed down German infrastructure services biz Inforsacom for an undisclosed sum. Some would say this is a brave move given the state of that country IT market and wider economic woes, with Forrester forecasting a 1.2 per cent rise in spending on tech for 2014. But perhaps Logicalis grabbed a bargain …
Paul Kunert, 02 Dec 2014

Microsoft update mayhem delays German basketball game, costs team dear

What’s the worst thing that could happen when your Windows update takes longer than expected? Ask the Paderborn Finke Baskets, a German pro basketball team who got relegated thanks to Windows’ sluggish performance. The Spiralling Progress Indicator of Doom spelled the end of the team’s run in Division Two of the Basketball …
Jennifer Baker, 31 Mar 2015

Ad-blocking is LEGAL: German court says Ja to browser filters

A Hamburg court today ruled the use of ad blocking is legal following a case brought against Adblock Plus by a group of German publishers. The defendant in the four-month trial was Eyeo GmbH, the company that owns Adblock Plus. The lawsuit claimed the company should not be allowed to block ads on websites owned by the …
Kat Hall, 21 Apr 2015

Hackers pop German steel mill, wreck furnace

Talented hackers have caused "serious damage" after breaching a German steel mill and wrecking one of its blast furnaces. The hack of the unnamed mill, detailed in the annual report of the German Federal Office of Information Security, was pulled off after a victim fell for a phishing email. Hackers then pivoted to the …
Darren Pauli, 22 Dec 2014
Angela Merkel's eyes

German chancellor DECLARES WAR on crap rural Wi-Fi

CeBIT 2015 German Chancellor Angela Merkel used the opening of CeBIT to present her 10-point plan to revive Germany’s digital economy. However despite some rhetoric about “Industry 4.0”, the 10 points are instead a rather uninspired collection of the same old ideas that every man and his goat trots out. “The competition is large, the …
Jennifer Baker, 18 Mar 2015
Angela Merkel's eyes

Public prosecutor waves big stick at German spies over NSA data slurp claims

Germany was in a tizz this weekend, in the wake of spying allegations that could harm the country's thorny relationship with surveillance of its citizens. Der Spiegel magazine claimed on Saturday that Germany's spook agency BND had exploited data it had allegedly intercepted on behalf of U.S. spies at the NSA. According to the …
Kelly Fiveash, 03 May 2015
The thumb of the German Defense Minister

German minister fingered as hacker 'steals' her thumbprint from a PHOTO

Security researchers claimed to have cloned the thumbprint of the German Defense Minister by photographing her hand at a press conference. In a presentation at the annual Chaos Computer Club hacker gathering in Hamburg, Germany, biometrics specialist Jan Krisller – known in the community as "Starbug" – explained how he'd taken a …
Iain Thomson, 29 Dec 2014
Euro notes

Efficient German sales engine Bechtle says Q1 was GUT

Insuppressible German headquartered reselling machine Bechtle piled more pounds onto the sales ledger during calendar Q1 seemingly surprising senior management. The business, with ops in 60 locations across Europe, revealed a 6.1 per cent boost in sales to €622.5m, EBITDA climbed 6.3 per cent to €22.5m and profit after tax up 6. …
Paul Kunert, 14 May 2015

German government orders local CIA station chief to pack his bags

The German government has ordered the local station chief of the CIA to leave the country immediately – after a second German government official was arrested in an investigation into US surveillance on its erstwhile ally. "The representative of the US intelligence services at the embassy of the United States of America has been …
Iain Thomson, 10 Jul 2014

Euro Commish OKs €3bn German broadband aid scheme

Germany has got the green light from the European Commission to push ahead with a publicly funded scheme to roll out next generation access (NGA) broadband networks. The €3bn project is to provide high speed internet access throughout the country, including in rural areas. “This aid scheme will make faster broadband services …
Jennifer Baker, 16 Jun 2015

German gets 4 years in clink for $14 MILLION global ATM fraud

A German man has been sentenced to 50 months in prison and ordered to repay $14m after he hacked into US banks, stealing debit card data and even removed withdrawal limits. Qendrim Dobruna, 29, also known as "closEd" and "cLoz", stole card data and spread it worldwide. The stolen credentials were used to make fraudulent ATM …

German 700MHz auction signals start of Euro spectrum flogoffs

Germany is to be the first country in Europe to flog off the 700MHz frequency band, with auctions taking place in May and June this year. The Teutonic auction will take place seven years ahead of the date Ofcom proposes for the frequency to be made available to mobile operators in the UK. The lower frequencies are more valuable …
Simon Rockman, 04 Feb 2015
Cellular basestation antenna

Nokia adds German uni to 5G research ecosystem

With World+Dog working to define their technologies into standards, build their 5G patent books ahead of the anticipated rush, and try and work out what 5G's use-case will be, Nokia has tapped Germany's University of Kaiserslautern to help its 5G research efforts along. The company says the university will be working on network …

Firefighters deliver trapped student from GIANT GERMAN LADYPARTS

A US foreign exchange student has become a deserved internet celeb after firefighters extracted him from a giant vagina in the southwestern German city of Tübingen. According to Erick Guzman, who kindly posted snaps of the incident on Imgur, his chum decided it was a bright idea to get down and dirty with Peruvian artist …
Lester Haines, 23 Jun 2014

German spies want millions of Euros to buy zero-day code holes

Germany's spooks have come under fire for reportedly seeking funds to find bugs – not to fix them, but to hoard them. According to The Süddeutsche Zeitung, the country's BND – its federal intelligence service – wants €300 million in funding for what it calls the Strategic Technical Initiative. The Local says €4.5 million of that …

New Snowden leak: US and Brit spooks 'tap into German telco networks to map end devices'

An NSA and GCHQ surveillance programme - dubbed Treasure Map - grants US and British spooks access to the networks of German telcos such as Deutsche Telekom, according to a new stash of leaked documents from Edward Snowden. Der Spiegel published the latest revelations today. However, Deutsche Telekom reportedly said it had found …
Kelly Fiveash, 14 Sep 2014

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

Wir streiken! German Amazon workers down tools

German warehouse workers haven’t given up on the idea that striking will help them to win their pay dispute with Amazon. Labour union Verdi has called for another in a long line of strikes this week, with employees of distribution centres in Bad Hersfeld, Leipzig, Graben, Werne and Rheinberg all set to down tools. The first …

German music moguls slammed for 'wurst ever DMCA takedown spam'

A German record label's bungling anti-piracy software flooded Google with demands to remove search results – just because the links included the word "download" in their URLs. Total Wipes Music Group says it never meant to falsely accuse sites – including, and – of hosting illegal …
Shaun Nichols, 23 Feb 2015
Angela Merkel. Pic: Christliches Medienmagazin

NSA snooped on German chancellors for DECADES: Wikileaks

Less than a month after Germany abandoned its probe into alleged NSA spying on Chancellor Angela Merkel, a new Wikileaks drop suggests snooping on the Chancellory goes back decades. The leak, published here, draws the inference that prior chancellors were targeted, based on the list of telephone numbers targeted by the NSA. “ …

German minister photo fingerprint 'theft' seemed far too EASY, wail securobods

Claims that fingerprints can be cloned from pictures are being taken seriously by security experts, who argue that any possible hack underlines the fragility of the biometric technique. Hacker Jan "Starbug" Krisller cloned the thumbprint of the German Defence Minister Ursula von der Leyen after photographing her hand at a press …
John Leyden, 30 Dec 2014
Sony PRS-T2 Reader

Sony reads the future, quits e-reader market says German report

Earlier this year, Sony decided to quit the North American e-book market and get Kobo to supply content for readers in the US and Canada. The company then staged similar retreats in Europe and Australia. Now, the former Japanese powerhouse has decided to quit the device market as well – worldwide. According to German site Lesen. …
Privacy image

German data commish makes a Hamburger out of Google

In another likely-to-be-fruitless attempt to rein in the globalisation of privacy invasion, Hamburg is telling Google to seek punters' permission for a range of services that build user profiles. The news comes just a day after Brussels told Android OEMs they could either open the skirts on their contracts with Google, or face …