Articles about government

Take off, ya hosers! Silicon Valley court says Google can safely ignore Canadian search ban

No, funnily enough, US tech monster Google doesn't have to obey a Canadian court order in America, a judge in the ad giant's home turf of California ruled this week. Google had asked a US federal district court in San Jose for an injunction banning Canadian router-maker Equustek from enforcing, in the United States at least, a …
Shaun Nichols, 3 Nov 2017

Brave Twitter axes Russian media ads 11 months after the fact

Twitter has kicked up a fresh new crop of controversies over both its advertising policies and its user numbers. The San Francisco-based milliblogging giant said Thursday it would stop taking ads from two major Russian state-backed media outlets, Russia Today and Sputnik, effective immediately. Both publications had recently …
Shaun Nichols, 26 Oct 2017
A 3D Robotics Solo drone seen in flight. Pic: Ian Hudson

Drones thrown a bone: Americans can ask nicely to go where FAA says they can't roam

The US Department of Transportation is toying with allowing regional governments to set rules for drone owners that are otherwise incompatible with federal law. In a pilot program, no pun intended, the DoT will let quadcopter fanatics work with local officials to obtain waivers to operate their gizmos in ways that might not …
Shaun Nichols, 25 Oct 2017
UK passport control photo via Shutterstock

National Audit Office: We'll be in a world of pain with '90s border tech post-Brexit

The clunky technology underpinning Blighty's border control leaves the UK in concerning position post-Brexit, a National Audit Office report has found. Border operations in the UK still rely on '90s technology that lacks modern functionality. "The government's ambitions to seamlessly interact with citizens, and securely share …
Kat Hall, 20 Oct 2017
Stack of cash

Google faces $10k-a-day fines if it defies court order to hand over folks' private overseas email

Google and the American government are quarreling over just how much money the Chocolate Factory must pay in daily fines if it loses its war against a search warrant for email held overseas. The Mountain View giant is refusing to comply with the warrant, issued in the US, requiring it to cough up Gmail messages held on a …
Shaun Nichols, 19 Oct 2017
Collage of neon lights, street signs and advertisements at Times Square in New York City on June 23, 2013. Times Square holds the annual New Year's Eve ball drop. Photo by Allen G/Shutterstock for editorial use only

Verizon coughs up $18m after crooked contractor overcharged NY schools

Verizon will have to reach between its couch cushions for $17.7m to shoo away allegations it overcharged New York schools for phone lines and broadband. America's comms watchdog, the FCC, said the payment will settle out of court its complaint against the US telco giant. The row is centered on a technology consultant who took …
Shaun Nichols, 18 Oct 2017
trump

No, the FCC can't shut down TV stations just because Donald Trump is mad at the news

The head of America's telly watchdog, the FCC, said he cannot follow up on Donald Trump's threat to revoke the broadcast licenses of TV networks that run unflattering news coverage of the US president. Speaking at a public policy conference at George Mason University, Virginia, FCC chairman Ajit Pai said the authority of the …
Shaun Nichols, 17 Oct 2017

Supreme Court to rule on whether US has right to data stored overseas

The US Supreme Court has agreed to hear a dispute over whether Microsoft should release personal emails stored in Ireland to America's federal government. In 2014, the US Department of Justice took Microsoft to court because the software giant refused to give up emails stored on its data centres in Ireland, which would …
Andrew Silver, 16 Oct 2017
Pennies in a jar. Photo via Shutterstock

UK.gov: Who wants £25m... *cheers*... to trial 5G? *crickets chirping*

The British government is looking for places to chuck £25m it has set aside for 5G trials. Under the plans, the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport is asking interested parties across the UK to submit proposals for match-funded grants of up to £5m. It reckons the technology will enable speeds of up to 10Gbps, …
Kat Hall, 16 Oct 2017
Vladimir Putin

Microsoft is Putin a stop to Russian-sanctions-busting IT resellers

Microsoft is investigating how some of its products were sold to businesses and government offices within Russia and Crimea despite strict sanctions against such sales. El Reg understands the American software giant has been probing these sanctions-dodging allegations for some time now, and that the products in question are …
Shaun Nichols, 12 Oct 2017
A businessman in handcuffs

Ex-Autonomy CFO begs court to toss out US fraud allegations

The former chief financial officer of ill-fated $11bn HP acquisition Autonomy is asking a US court to dismiss felony fraud charges related to his role in the 2011 merger deal. Lawyers for Sushovan Hussain argued in the San Francisco Northern California district court late last week that the American government has no grounds …
Shaun Nichols, 11 Oct 2017

Online criminal records checks to take a punt on troubled Verify system

The Disclosure and Barring Service, responsible for processing requests for criminal records checks, has taken the gamble of using the Government Digital Service's online ID system authentication portal. From next year, users will be able to apply direct to DBS for an online check. "As part of the online application you'll …
Kat Hall, 6 Oct 2017
Donald Trump thumbs up photo via Shutterstock

Tech VCs sue Uncle Sam over President Trump's immigration chill

A group of technology venture capitalists are suing the US government for, effectively, preventing them from investing in startups due to immigration red tape. The National Venture Capital Association (NVCA) has accused the Department of Homeland Security of harming their money-making schemes by not implementing the …
Shaun Nichols, 2 Oct 2017

It's high time we extend Freedom of Information Act to outsourcers

Comment "You idiot. You naive, foolish, irresponsible nincompoop. There is really no description of stupidity, no matter how vivid, that is adequate. I quake at the imbecility of it," Tony Blair famously said. He wasn't referring to the Iraq war – as some might think – but the introduction of the Freedom of Information Act. Some 17 …
Kat Hall, 25 Sep 2017

UK.gov lays down rules for cross-Whitehall data slurps

The UK government has offered more detail on how public authorities can pass around the data they hold on citizens – a mere five months after the Digital Economy Act passed into law. The final versions of the codes of practice, which are used to add some meat to the bones of the legislation, are now open for a six-week …
Rebecca Hill, 22 Sep 2017

Blame Canada? $5.7m IBM IT deal balloons to $185m thanks to 'an open bag of money'

A CA$5.7m IBM contract to update payroll systems for the Canadian government has turned into a CA$185m boondoggle for the Great White North. That's $4.62m and $150m in US currency, respectively. The relatively straightforward task of installing PeopleSoft HR software for a few government agencies has morphed into a massive …
Shaun Nichols, 21 Sep 2017

Brit ministers jet off on a trade mission to tout our digital exports...

In a desperate attempt to improve our international trade prospects, UK digital minister Matt Hancock has jetted off on a "cyber trade mission" to "tap huge markets in Singapore and promote UK fintech sector in Tokyo." Meanwhile British culture secretary Karen Bradley will travel to Finland and Sweden, where she will "set out …
Kat Hall, 18 Sep 2017
HMRC photo, Gov.uk

New HMRC IT boss to 'recuse' herself over Microsoft decisions

Exclusive The UK's incoming Chief Digital Information Officer of HMRC is to recuse herself from making any decisions regarding Microsoft, as she is on sabbatical from the company under a two-year placement with the taxman. Jacky Wright was named as CDIO last week, and will take up the £180,000 per annum role in October 2017. She is …
Kat Hall, 18 Sep 2017

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