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CityFibre snaps up Entanet for £29m and plans to raise £185m

Small Brit broadband provider CityFibre has splashed £29m on connectivity service Entanet and is seeking to raise £185m in additional funds. The cash pile will be used to expand CityFibre's fibre metro area network from 42 to 50 UK cities by 2020. CityFibre said it expects to make around £3m per year by 2020 from the Entanet …
Kat Hall, 05 Jul 2017
Parliament photo by Shutterstock

Brit prosecutors ask IT suppliers to fight over £3 USB cable tender

Updated Small businesses have often moaned that government procurement is just one massive pork barrel, with only the greediest and biggest able to stick their snouts in. But some departments are doing their best to carve up tenders into smaller, more manageable chunks. Step forward the UK's Crown Prosecution Service, which threw a …
Kat Hall, 05 Jul 2017

Intel axes 140 IoTers in California, Ireland

Intel is shedding nearly 140 staff from its Internet of Things business lines. The layoffs were probably inevitable, since during June, Intel discontinued three of its IoT product lines – the Joule, Edison and Galileo compute modules and boards. Those three boards were once the flagships for Chipzilla's pitch to the wearable …
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Facebook's left hand is fighting for Americans' right to privacy

Facebook's lawyers are racking up the billable hours in the US, with the company winning a lawsuit about tracking and privacy, but still doing battle against the American government over protecting users from government warrants. In a privacy and wiretapping lawsuit, Northern California District Judge Edward Davila decided …
Rotten apple

Imagination: Apple relations still rotten but, hey, losses have shrunk

Brit chip designer Imagination Technologies has returned to operating profit, in part aided by 350 poor souls – about a fifth of its workforce – that were tossed onto the employment bonfire amid wider cost cutting. The firm had found itself in the middle of a perfect storm what with stalling smartphone and tablet sales, and …
Paul Kunert, 04 Jul 2017

Toshiba files motion to have WDC memory sale injunction thrown out

Toshiba has filed a legal motion claiming a court has no right to judge Western Digital Corp's (WDC) attempt to halt its memory business sale, which, Toshiba says, would cause irreparable harm. WDC through its SanDisk subsidiary had filed a motion for injunctive relief in the Superior Court of California for the County of San …
Chris Mellor, 04 Jul 2017

FTC approves Broadcom Brocade buy – if Cisco switch tech is walled off

Broadcom's $5.9bn purchase of Brocade has been approved by the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) so long as Broadcom's technology used in chips for fibre channel switches built for Cisco is walled off from its storage networking business. The two main suppliers of fibre channel switches used in storage networking are Brocade …
Chris Mellor, 04 Jul 2017

Happy 4th of July: Norks tests another missile

North Korea's regime remains bent on brinkmanship, with yet another missile test launched and suspicions it reach Japan's Exclusive Economic Zone. The governments of South Korea and Japan are convening emergency meetings of their respective national security councils after the test, which appears to have been a ballistic …

America's net neutrality rage hits academia

Special report In an extraordinary flurry of allegations, personal insults and legal threats, net neutrality has entered the world of academia. At the heart of the row is a new paper in the International Journal of Communication (IJOC) that claims to act as a rebuttal to an earlier paper that has been repeatedly cited by the chairman of …
Kieren McCarthy, 03 Jul 2017
NHS hosptial photo, by Marbury via Shutterstock

Google DeepMind trial failed to comply with data protection – ICO

The Royal Free NHS Foundation Trust failed to comply with the UK's Data Protection Act when it provided 1.6 million patient details to Google's DeepMind, the Information Commissioner's Office said today. The trust provided the personal data as part of a trial to test an alert, diagnosis and detection system for acute kidney …
Kat Hall, 03 Jul 2017
Businessman makes A-OK sign. Photo by Shutterstock

Blighty's Department for Culture, Media & Sport gets 'digital' rebrand

The Ministry of Fun - aka the UK government's Department formerly known as Culture, Media & Sport - has received a "digital" rebrand today, making it DDCMS for short. As with job titles, The Register has a theory that the more words required to describe what a department does, the less meaningful it actually is. Contrast, for …
Kat Hall, 03 Jul 2017
Station F, Paris

Exposed pipes – check. Giant pillows – check. French startup mega-campus opens

Giant tech startup incubatory "space" Station F, which describes itself as the world's largest startup campus, officially pulled the dust covers off the scatter cushions last week in Paris's 13th arrondissement. The 34,000 m2 building will host over 2,600 entrepreneurs – who have fought fiercely for their places – inside 26 …
Andrew Silver, 03 Jul 2017

One-third of Brit IT projects on track to fail

Nearly 40 per cent of IT projects in the UK are on course to fail, according to a survey of 182 project managers. That is according to the research commissioned by Axelos, the joint venture set up in 2014 by the government and Capita, to develop, manage and operate qualifications in the project management methodology PRINCE2 …
Kat Hall, 03 Jul 2017

Kaspersky repeats offer: America can see my source code

Eugene Kaspersky, founder of the eponymous antivirus firm, has reiterated his offer to give the US government access to his source code. The company is moving to try and head off budget legislation which, as we wrote last week, would shut Kaspersky out of American military contracts. The US Senate committee that's proposed …
Australian Parliament House Canberra

Oz attorney-general a step closer to SCNA*

The Australian government is moving a step closer to having the attorney-general overseeing its telecommunications networks – even while the committee that looked at the bill says it lacks detail. The Telecommunications and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2016 gives AG George Brandis' department oversight of …
A broken camera

Photobucket says photo-f**k-it, starts off-site image shakedown

Photobucket is cracking down on people embedding on third-party websites images it hosts, until now, for free. The photo-slinging internet elder now says that anyone who wants to use its service to display photos it hosts on other pages – such as signature banners in forum posts – will now need to open up their wallets and …
Shaun Nichols, 30 Jun 2017
A finger pressing a delete key

Tick-tick... boom: Germany gives social media giants 24 hours to tear down hate speech

The German parliament has today approved a law that would see social media titans fined up to €50m if they don't quickly remove hate speech from their sites. The law - Netzwerkdurchsetzungsgesetz, or Network Enforcement Act - gives the likes of Facebook and Twitter just 24 hours to remove or block criminal content from the …
Rebecca Hill, 30 Jun 2017
Robot looks into magnifying glass, human eye displayed. Photo by Shutterstock

Europe seeks company to monitor Google's algorithm in €10m deal

The European Commission is seeking a company to police Google’s algorithm in a tender worth €10m, following its record antitrust fine against the advertising business of €2.4bn (£2.1bn). The tender is for a "Technical expertise to support the Commission on issues relating to an antitrust case in the IT sector." It called for …
Kat Hall, 30 Jun 2017

US Senators want Kaspersky shut out of military contracts

Russia has hinted at retaliation if the US adopts a Senate committee recommendation to ban Kaspersky from American military contracts. The Senate Armed Services Committee, in its 2017-2018 budget recommendations (PDF) under the National Defense Authorisation Act, recommended the ban as part of its proposals for “countering …
Parliament House Canberra

Who botched Oz cancer registry rollout? Pretty much everybody

Australia's derailed outsourcing of its National Cancer Registry is the latest project red-flagged by the Australian National Audit Office. The audit, released yesterday, reaches the seemingly-contradictory conclusions that the Department of Health's management of the tender was effective and achieved value for money; but that …

Useful Ajit Pai's lawyer nominated for top US telco watchdog role

President Donald Trump has nominated Brendan Carr, the FCC's general counsel, to fill the last remaining Republican commissioner slot at America's telco watchdog. Carr is a long-time associate of FCC chairman Ajit Pai, having served as his personal legal advisor for three years before being appointed as the regulator's general …
Iain Thomson, 29 Jun 2017
Hand pulls on a latex rubber glove (disposable). Photo by shutterstock

UK regulator probes PwC over BT's Italian accountancy scandal

The UK's Financial Reporting Council (FRC) is to investigate PwC's audits of BT, following an accountancy scandal at the telecom firm's Italian unit. The accountancy regulator will probe PwC's consolidated financial statements of BT Group for the years ended 31 March 2015 to 2017, in the wake of the scandal which forced a …
Kat Hall, 29 Jun 2017
Rupert Murdoch pictured in 2014. Pic: Shutterstock

Murdoch's £11.7bn Sky takeover referred to competition regulator

The proposed £11.7bn takeover of Sky by Rupert Murdoch's 21st Century Fox has been referred to the Competition and Markets Authority regulator today. Culture secretary Karen Bradley announced the decision after considering an investigation into the takeover by the media watchdog Ofcom, which found the deal might influence the …
Kat Hall, 29 Jun 2017

Nations 'ethically obliged' to ensure public health data is up to scratch

The World Health Organisation has issued what it says is the first international framework for ethical public health data collection and use. The WHO said that there is an “imperative to conduct surveillance, analyse the data and act on the results” in a transparent, ethical and responsible way. Public health surveillance - …
Rebecca Hill, 29 Jun 2017
Dr Strangelove bomb

NATO: 'Cyber' is a military domain

NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg has told a press conference ahead of a ministerial meeting tomorrow Brussels time that “cyber” is a “military domain” – and that a cyber-attack on one member can trigger NATO's Article 5. Article 5 of the Washington Treaty that establishes NATO embodies the principle of collective …
A closed sign

O Rly? O'Reilly exits direct book sales

O'Reilly Media, the preeminent publisher of tech titles for non-dummies, is exiting print distribution. In the kind of prose you can only compose if you've been crafting business prose for decades, the company explains it's a "reinvention" needed because "we're in the midst of a fundamental shift in how people get and use …

Australian regulator will decide if Uber drivers are staff or contractors

Scandal-ridden, leaderless not-a-taxi dudebro poster-child Uber is under investigation in Australia about whether its “independent contractor” drivers are actually employees. The investigation, by workplace regulator the Fair Work Ombudsman, was launched this week in response to a long campaign by a group of drivers calling …

Five-eyes nations want comms providers to bust crypto for them

This week's five-eyes meeting has issued its communique, promising to get the tech sector to solve the problems of online terrorism and encrypted communications. As is the way of political communiques, there's a carefully-crafted lack of detail (sufficient, for example, for plausible deniability) about what exactly is planned …
Uber office in San Francisco

Murderous Uber driver 'attacked passenger and the app biz did nothing. Then he raped me'

Uber is accused of ignoring warning signs about an attempted murderer who signed up as a driver and then allegedly attacked a passenger before raping another. A lawsuit filed in Kansas City, Missouri, US, claims Yahkhahnahn Ammi sexually assaulted a customer in January this year after beating up another woman just weeks before …
Shaun Nichols, 29 Jun 2017

Search results suddenly missing from Google? Well, BLAME CANADA!

Canada's Supreme Court says America's Hat has authority over Google results worldwide – at least in cases when someone's copyright has been stomped on. The Great White North's top legal bench, ruling in a copyright infringement dustup today, has ordered the California ads giant to remove from search results links to websites …
Shaun Nichols, 28 Jun 2017
Vikings. Credit: History Channel.

Toshiba sues WDC for a cool billion bucks

Toshiba is suing WDC in a Tokyo court for ¥120bn ($1bn, £830m), alleging unfair competition. It alleges WDC has "interfered" with the bid process related to the sale of Toshiba’s Memory Corporation (TMC) business. The overall background to this tortuously complicated issue by the financially threatened Toshiba can be read …
Chris Mellor, 28 Jun 2017

A minister for GDS? Don't talk digital pony

Comment The appointment of UK digital minister Caroline Nokes yesterday was met with some sniggering when it was revealed she was formerly the chief executive of the National Pony Society. Her posh-girl credentials could not have appeared more obvious if she’d ridden into the Government Digital Service wielding a hockey stick while …
Kat Hall, 28 Jun 2017

Dixons Carphone stirs PC Curry, reports 10% profit gravy

Dixons Carphone reported a bumper year, with profits up 10 per cent to £501m for its preliminary results 2016/17. Revenue in the UK and Ireland rose 2 per cent to £6.5bn, with overall group sales up 9 per cent to £10.5bn. The borg is in the process of closing 134 stores in the UK this year, as part of its 3-in-1 store concept …
Kat Hall, 28 Jun 2017

Facebook hit two billion users today and SugarCRM reminded us you are Zuck's product

Facebook's hit two billion users. Founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg took to his creation on Wednesday to share the news. The company later revealed that “Each day, more than 175 million people share a Love reaction, and on average, over 800 million people like something on Facebook. More than 1 billion people use Groups every …
Simon Sharwood, 28 Jun 2017

Microsoft brings caregiver leave home to US, plans to finish global rollout soon

Microsoft has decided that family caregivers deserve support, so it's decided to take its paid leave program global. Redmond's HR veep Kathleen Hogan explained the decision in a LinkedIn post (Do we have to? Oh, all right, here's the link), as the company began offering the program in the USA. Saying “times when life happens …

Mozilla dev and Curl inventor Daniel Stenberg denied travel to USA

All Daniel Stenberg wanted to do was endure about fifteen hours of air travel from Sweden so he could spend a fun week talking code at Mozilla's all-hands meeting in San Francisco. But the Moz developer and maker of the Curl data transfer tool was denied boarding in Stockholm, en route to London and then The City By The Bay. …
Simon Sharwood, 28 Jun 2017
Australian money at a crime scene

Costly, under-featured MyGov is just fine, says Oz national auditor

The Australian National Audit Office (ANAO) has rubber-stamped the government's MyGov portal, in spite of cost-overruns and a lack of performance metrics. The cost blowout was impressive: from an original four-year budget of AU$29.7 million (approved by the previous government in 2012), the project actually spent nearly triple …

Koh-no! Silicon Lucy blocks Qualcomm from wriggling out of FTC's chip monopoly trial

Qualcomm will have to face trial against America's trade watchdog over alleged price gouging on its chip designs. Judge Lucy Koh has shot down the California company's motion to dismiss complaints from the FTC over its licensing policies. The FTC has accused Qualcomm of dirty dealings against Apple when it forced the …
Shaun Nichols, 27 Jun 2017

Former GDS head Mike Bracken quits Co-op

Former head of the Government Digital Service Mike Bracken has quit his job as chief digital officer at Co-op to work on advising governments. In a blog post Bracken wrote: "It’s been a brilliant two years with a fantastic organisation. As I said when I joined, my focus was to create a Co-op fit for the digital age, based on …
Kat Hall, 27 Jun 2017

What? What? Which? Former broadband minister Ed Vaizey dismisses report

The UK's former digital minister Ed Vaizey has dismissed a report published by consumer charity Which? today finding more than 11 places in Blighty still receive broadband speeds of less the 10Mbps. Speaking on the BBC's Today programme, Vaizey said he did "not agree with the premise" of the report. Average speeds were low …
Kat Hall, 27 Jun 2017

Google hit with record antitrust fine of €2.4bn by Europe

Google was today hit with a record antitrust fine of €2.42bn (£2.1bn) from the European Union today for promoting its own shopping search service over those of smaller rivals. The regulator found that Google had abused its market dominance as a search engine "by giving an illegal advantage to another Google product, its …
Kat Hall, 27 Jun 2017
Lady  standing on a hand with a megaphone shouting into mans ear

UK's Ministry of Fun considers what to tell social media firms about online bullying

The UK government is to start talks with social media providers about a code of conduct that will guide their response to online bullying. The code will issue social media companies with guidance on how to deal with online bullying, and is the first time that they will be subject to legislation on online bullying. It is one …
Rebecca Hill, 27 Jun 2017

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