Articles about Local Authorities

£10 notes. Pic: Howard Lake

Kent Council cheerily flings about £100m at managed services bods

Kent County Council and two other local authorities are on a mission to splash between £50m and £100m on a mega outsourcing gig with managed services providers. The four-year contract is to be awarded to five suppliers for "the outsourcing of day-to-day management responsibilities and functions" and is part of council plans to …
Kat Hall, 22 Jan 2016

Brit cuffed for Kyrgyz 'horse penis' sausage quip

A British man is facing a possible five years in a Kyrgyz jail after ill-advisedly comparing local horse meat sausage chuchuck to a stallion's todger. Welding superintendent Michael McFeat was celebrating New Year's Eve at the Kumtor open-pit goldmine in eastern Kyrgyzstan when he posted photos on Facebook of a "fantastic …
Lester Haines, 04 Jan 2016
Pakistani ISP PCTL welcomes YouTube back to the country

Cat vids return to Pakistan as YouTube turns on censor-matic

Pakistan has allowed YouTube to traverse its digital borders again, after Google agreed to oversight by the nation's telecoms regulators. Pakistan barred YouTube in 2012, after the film Innocence of Muslims hit the service and sparked often-violent reactions to its supposedly blasphemous content. The nation decided it could …
Simon Sharwood, 20 Jan 2016

UK councils continue to run into the arms of Capita

IT service providers BT, IBM and Mouchel all took a double-digit hit on their share of the local government market over the last year as councils continue to run into the arms of Capita, according to research. Once again Capita reigned supreme as the primary supplier to councils, increasing its deals by 22 per cent to £658m, …
Kat Hall, 27 Jan 2016
Southend on Sea pier. Pic: Danny Nicholson

Southend-on-Sea splashes £1.5m on hybrid cloud data centre

Southend-on-Sea Borough Council is the latest local authority to build its own dedicated data centre, with the council ready to spend up to £1.5m housing its own "hybrid cloud" services. The council said it is looking to appoint a provider to supply, install, and test the new data centre. The contract lasts for three years and …
Kat Hall, 12 Jan 2016
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
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Vodafone turns self in to cops over journo phone records hack

Vodafone's Australian outpost has had a change of heart and will co-operate with local authorities, after it admitted that an employee had trawled through a journalist's text messages and call records. As we reported over the weekend, in 2011 Vodafone Hutchison Australia (VHA) was the subject of media reports suggesting …
Team Register, 15 Sep 2015
Indian mobile use

Indian State shuts off mobile internet to stop rumours fuelling riots

An activist's call for the Indian State of Guajarat to restrict access to WhatSapp and mobile internet has been heeded by local authorities, in the hope that restricting communications will quell violence. Authorities complied with that request. 22 year-old Hardik Patel is a member of the Patidar caste, a group that has been …
Simon Sharwood, 28 Aug 2015

Indonesia: e-commerce firms must have local domain

Indonesia will effectively ban cross-border e-commerce and make it harder for foreign firms looking to invest in the country, by mandating that anyone wanting to sell goods online must register a local .ID domain. The Communication and Information Ministry made the announcement as part of new rules for “electronic system …
Phil Muncaster, 28 Mar 2013
Bookshelf in the British Library basement

Library web filtering removes info access for vulnerable, says shushing collective

Poor implementation of internet-filtering policies in the UK's public libraries has damaged public access to exactly the kind of information local library computers are intended to provide, according to a just-released batch of data from a collection of library professionals. Despite the possibility for filtering to be …
Abbott and Costello dressed as policemen

Police Scotland will have direct access to disabled parking badge database

Police Scotland has been given direct access to Scottish councils' databases of disabled parking badge holders in order to crack down on fraudsters misusing them. An agreement was reached between the single Scottish police force, Police Scotland, and the country's 32 local authorities to allow the police direct access to the …
Iain Duncan Smith. Pic: Foreign & Commonwealth Office

Universal Credit slammed by MPs: Late programme branded 'unacceptable'

MPs have highlighted "new concerns" over the glacially slow Universal Credit programme, concluding in a report that the programme "still has a long way to go." Meg Hillier MP, chair of the Public Accounts Committee, said today: “The lack of transparency surrounding a programme with such wide-reaching implications for so many …
Kat Hall, 03 Feb 2016
france

The French want to BAN .doc and .xls files from Le Gouvernement

Microsoft could get the boot from the French government if a new recommendation from an official advisor is adopted. DISIC (Direction interministérielle des systèmes d'information et de communication de l'État) has recommended that French authorities ditch Microsoft Office tools in favour of the Open Document Format (ODF). …
Jennifer Baker, 22 Jul 2015

Hey, posh boy. Fancy a £200m PHONE THREESOME?

A massive phone and network connectivity services framework between three local authorities is up for grabs, valued up to £200m over four years. A contract notice for by the procurement peeps at the Royal Borough of Chelsea and Kensington was published this week on the Official Journal of the European Union. The tender for …
Kat Hall, 09 Jan 2015

Man in India claims his new iPhone 6 combusted in his car

A man in India says his iPhone 6 burst into flames just two days after he purchased the handset. The Times of India reports that restaurant owner Kishan Yadav was making a hands-free call while driving through the city of when he noticed his new iPhone 6 emitting sparks. He tossed the overheating handset out of the window and …
Shaun Nichols, 24 Jun 2015
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Drones need their own version of Asimov's laws of robotics – MEPs

The European Parliament’s civil liberties committee on Thursday warned lawmakers to take concerns about data protection and surveillances seriously in drawing up new rules for drones. The opinion, approved by 50 votes to four, will now be sent to the Parliament’s transport committee, which is leading the charge in coming up …
Jennifer Baker, 04 Sep 2015
The Register breaking news

Janet, E2BN procure network for education and local authorities

The national education network and a broadband provider to public services have shared a £6m deal for new infrastructure in the east of England. The Joint Academic NETwork (Janet) and the East of England Broadband Network (E2BN), have jointly procured the network to support broadband services for schools, higher and further …
Kable, 25 May 2010
Plain Capita logo

Capita hoovers up 1 in every 5 pounds of outsourced UK.gov IT spending

Capita has increased its share of the public sector IT market by one quarter since 2012, despite overall government IT outsourcing spending remaining flat over that period. In 2014, Capita hoovered up £905m in public sector IT spending, up from £671m in 2012. At the same time, overall spend over the last three years across …
Kat Hall, 07 Sep 2015
The Register breaking news

ICO: Nearly HALF all FOI complaints are about local councils

The Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) received 1,922 freedom of information complaints about local authorities in 2011-12, accounting for 43 per cent of the total number of complaints, according to the watchdog's latest annual report. The document says that of the 4,633 freedom of information complaints during the year, …
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Local gov buying group inks £50m software framework

The Pro5 buying consortium has confirmed that 12 suppliers have made it onto the next generation software and services framework agreement. The framework is worth tens of millions over a 36-month period. The procurement group includes the Central Buying Consortium as well as purchasing organisations for the North-east, Eastern …
Paul Kunert, 16 Apr 2012
Sleeper

Legalising London's bed-hopping economy is POINTLESS

Exclusive There is no evidence to support claims that London residents have been fined for using sites such as Airbnb, despite moves by the government to push through headline-grabbing "sharing economy" legislation, El Reg can reveal. Last month, the government announced it would introduce an amendment to allow London residents to use …
Kat Hall, 12 Mar 2015
The Register breaking news

ICO slates local authorities on data protection compliance

The Information Commissioner has called for the commencement of the custodial element of the section 55 offences and expressly criticised data protection compliance by local authorities as being “very bad”. He also criticised data controllers, especially in banks and financial services, as being uncooperative in relation to …
Banksy protester image 1000 words via Shutterstock

Brits learning from the Continent? Authority, digi gov wheezes and the Autumn Statement

Analysis Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne included several uses of technology in Wednesday’s Autumn Statement and Spending Review. As part of a major expansion, the Government Digital Service will develop a common payment system on gov.uk, so that by 2020 citizens will have the option of paying online for every central …
SA Mathieson, 26 Nov 2015
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Civica splashes the cash on 'good fit' Web Technologies

Public sector IT outfit Civica has gobbled up IT services minnow Web Technologies Group for what is thought to be approximately £10m. Simon Downing, chief exec of Civica, said the deal will extend Civica's capability in central government. Meanwhile, James Steventon, chief executive of WTG, said having "the backing of Civica …
Kat Hall, 09 Sep 2015
man and scottish flag photo via Shutterstock

Shadow state? Scotland's IT independence creeps forth

As debate kicks off at Westminster over the surveillance powers of spies and the police, the 55 Scottish National Party lawmakers look likely to be a restraining influence. The party’s general election manifesto pledged to oppose the Snooper’s Charter. A decade ago, SNP MPs were among the first to oppose New Labour’s identity …
SA Mathieson, 12 Nov 2015

UK surveillance commish asks CCTV operators to please be good

The Surveillance Camera Commissioner has written to local authority chief executives, reminding them of their duty to "pay regard" to the surveillance camera code of practice. Tony Porter, appointed as the first Surveillance Camera Commissioner in March 2014, has circulated a letter reminding those who are responsible for …

Bloke hits armadillo AND mother-in-law with single 9mm round

A Georgia man who took a 9mm pistol to an armadillo also managed to pop a cap in his wife's mum after the round ricocheted off the animal, "hit a fence, went through the back door of his mother-in-law's mobile home, through a recliner she was sitting in, and into her back". According to cops, 54-year-old Larry McElroy pulled off …
Lester Haines, 14 Apr 2015

£300m education tech framework is LIVE

Crown Commercial Services has rung the bell on the mega ICT for Education framework, with 21 suppliers passing the entrance exam, one more than was originally planned for. The four-year agreement was first tendered last October and the roll out was delayed by a couple of weeks due to the high number of responses from candidates …
Paul Kunert, 22 May 2015
Panic button

Uber hits PANIC BUTTON after India threatens to BAN dial-a-car firm

Dial-a-car outfit Uber is addressing safety complaints in India by giving users a "panic button" to call police, amid reports suggesting the service may soon be banned in the state of Maharashtra, where Uber operates in the cities of Mumbai and Pune. The company said in a blog post that it will offer users the option to contact …
Shaun Nichols, 06 Feb 2015
Cash register, photo via Shutterstock

The Register reveals SAP’s very own version of Black Friday

Exclusive SAP is understood to be aggressively discounting the price it charges for maintenance to retain customers. A Register investigation has uncovered cases where the software giant is offering customers who are considering switching to independents extremely competitive deals. The threat is this: companies paying SAP on an …
Gavin Clarke, 20 Nov 2015
Taxi Driver

UberPop granted temporary reprieve in France

A French Court has declined to ban Uber's controversial UberPop app, bouncing the decision to the country's highest appeals court. The ruling provides a reprieve for Uber's lower cost app service, which effectively allows users to be ferried around without a professional licence. "The Paris Court of Appeal today gave a strong …
Kat Hall, 31 Mar 2015

Working over Christmas? Government tech suppliers will be

The government’s tech procurement arm is asking suppliers to burn candles brightly over the festive season by filling in a 700-question Network Services tender after redrafting it. An OJEU contract notice for the framework, worth between £100m to £2bn over four years, was rewritten because suppliers claimed it was convoluted. As …
Paul Kunert, 22 Dec 2014
Un Frog

Sacré bleu! Parking machine labels French mayor ‘thieving bastard'

Police are investigating complaints from a Gallic politician after he was branded a “thieving bastard” on hundreds of parking tickets emanating from a machine in the town where he's mayor. Jean-François Copé, a former bigwig of the French (conservative) opposition party Les Republicans, stood down last summer following a …
The Register breaking news

Local authorities offered outsourcing benchmarks

Local authorities wondering if they are keeping up with The Joneses in the outsourced IT stakes will soon be able to find out through a new performance benchmarking service from the Society of IT Management (Socitm). As well as keeping an eye on how other local authorities are handling outsourced projects and partnerships, the …
Lucy Sherriff, 16 May 2005
Houses of Parliament at night-time

MPs and peers have just weeks to eyeball UK gov's super-snoop bid

IPB A joint panel of cross-party politicos and peers have been granted a very small window to scrutinise the Home Office's draft Investigatory Powers Bill. The committee is expected to report by mid-February next year – which is an incredibly short space of time to pore over a legalese-packed document that runs to nearly 300 pages …
Kelly Fiveash, 26 Nov 2015
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BT hands £129m back to UK.gov after beating rural broadband targets

Both BT and the Ministry of Fun – or the Department of Culture, Media and Sport, if you prefer – have spun BT’s toeing-the-line-of-a-contractual-obligation as unbridled generosity towards taxpayers. A statement from the Minister of Fun, John Whittingdale, said: It's fantastic to see that the rollout of superfast broadband is …
Simon Rockman, 30 Jul 2015
Barcelona brothel takes poster site

GSMA: Er, sorry about that MWC brothel ad with our logo

Mobile World Congress organiser the GSMA has issued an apology for the use of its logo on a website advertising a Barcelona brothel, but has been unable to do anything about a large poster which sits next to a Samsung advert. Visitors to Mobile World Congress are used to the route from the airport to the city imploring the 90, …
Simon Rockman, 06 Mar 2015

UK Cabinet Office's £200m IT bonanza: I got 999 contracts but a pitch ain't won (yet)

The UK government is seeking as many as 999 firms to provide a raft of tech services across the public sector, according to a contract notice in the Official Journal of the European Union. The Cabinet Office, acting via government procurement body Crown Commercial Services, is splitting the Technology Services framework into 11 …
Paul Kunert, 05 Nov 2014

MonkeyParking FLINGS AWAY San Francisco service

Embattled mobile app vendor MonkeyParking has suspended service in San Francisco under threat of legal action from City Hall. The company said that users in San Francisco would no longer be able to bid on parking spots through the mobile app. The move leaves Rome as the only city in which MonkeyParking currently operates. …
Shaun Nichols, 11 Jul 2014
hands waving dollar bills in the air

Local councils will carry on splurging on IT

Despite the recession Kable believes UK local government ICT budgets will rise to nearly £4bn by 2016. Research by the publisher of GC News says that growth in technology spending will be driven by transformational outsourcing projects, online channels and mobile working. Its Local Government Forecast: Opportunities in …
Kable, 17 Aug 2010
The Register breaking news

Local authorities must change child privacy practices

Local authorities across England should change their rules on collecting information about children, a new report into the protection of children's privacy has said. The report was produced by children's rights lobby group Action on Rights for Children (ARCH). The report calls for better training for local authorities in data …
OUT-LAW.COM, 03 Mar 2009
A dragon in Game of Thrones

Yes, but what are your plans if a DRAGON attacks?

Brits are very concerned about the potential for life-threatening incidents involving dragon attacks, asteroid crashes and ghostly manifestations and they want their local council to do something about it, if their FoI requests are anything to go by. A dragon in Game of Thrones England’s Local Government Association has …
The Register breaking news

Cell site data sinks into black hole of local bureaucracy

It seems that UK mobile operators do publish the location of every base station, but they then mail that information to local authorities who do almost nothing with the data. The data is collected by the Mobile Operators Association (MOA), and converted into the standard-but-little-known Easting and Northing coordinate system …
Bill Ray, 05 May 2011
Police direct a cabbie at the Uber protest in London

Only a CNUT would hold back the waves of the sharing economy

Something for the Weekend, Sir? The Turtle-Necked Twats are having their bluff called at last. Taxi-hailing app developer Uber has been invited to rejoin the real world and the TNTs are in uproar. London’s transport authority, TfL, has launched a public consultation into private-hire taxi services in England’s capital. As usual, Uber’s TNTs are convinced …
Alistair Dabbs, 03 Oct 2015

CCTV warning notices NOT compliant with data protection laws – ICO

The government must take action to ensure that signs used to warn motorists that CCTV cameras are being used to monitor for parking offences are compliant with UK data protection laws, a watchdog has said. The Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) said that there are "deficiencies" in the information displayed to motorists …
OUT-LAW.COM, 10 Feb 2014
wales

Official: BT wins £420m Wales PSN gig... just as we said it would

The Welsh government has finally coughed to what El Chan readers have known for months, that BT dislodged incumbent Logicalis from the next Public Sector Network (PSN) contract valued at roughly £420m over seven years. The gig to provide the public sector in Wales with broadband and other IP services was actually awarded to the …
Paul Kunert, 08 Oct 2014
South Park Ginger Cow episode

Broadband bumpkin BONANZA: 8 altnets shortlisted for £10m UK.gov subsidy

The government has earmarked a £10m wad of broadband cash for eight outfits whose bids were shortlisted for what the Ministry of Fun described as the "feasibility stage" to bring faster internet connections to hard-to-reach parts of Blighty. It said the Tory-led Coalition was "focusing on exploring ways to reach those premises …
Kelly Fiveash, 19 Jun 2014

Indian techies-in-training face down MAN-EATING LEOPARD - and WIN

You've heard of the tiger that came to tea, but what about the leopard that came to lessons? That's exactly what techies-in-training at the Indian Institute of Technology in Bombay had to deal with when a big cat invaded their campus. After a leopard was spotted by the metallurgy department last week, the local forestry …
Jasper Hamill, 29 Jul 2014
Houses of Parliament at night-time

Millions of voters are missing: It’s another #GovtDigiShambles

Millions of people may be unable to vote in May's general election because the Cabinet Office refused to heed warnings from its own pilot programmes two years ago. Electoral Registration Officers (EROs) at local authorities who have spoken to us on condition of anonymity say the Cabinet Office – the secretive Whitehall …
Andrew Orlowski, 23 Mar 2015
Toilet

'We've got the sanitation problem solved', says world's richest poop drinker

QuoTW This week, the headlines were dominated by Lenovo's bad behaviour, Google's dot-xyz obsession and a story from Silicon Valley, where even the trailer parks have $40m drama. These were some of the best quotes: The team behind the film Dallas Buyer's Club wants to go pirate hunting down under, but local authorities aren't so …
Team Register, 16 Aug 2015