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FTC scam lawsuit

FTC accuses man of faking its news to further tech support scam

An alleged PC tech support scam that used fake news releases from the US Federal Trade Commission to make its false claims more believable has attracted the attention of the consumer watchdog agency in the form of a lawsuit. The FTC on Monday sued Lake Worth, Florida, resident Daniel L Croft, doing business as PC Guru Tech …
Amazon Cash

BezosBux: Amazon gets into scrip game with Cash scheme

Amazon has introduced a payment system that will let customers buy its products without the need for a bank card. The Amazon Cash system is partnering with brick and mortar retailers to collect cash payments from customers, which are then credited towards an Amazon account. The funds can be used to make purchases on Amazon, …
Shaun Nichols, 3 Apr 2017

Canadian court refuses to let Feds snoop on Megaupload servers

A Canadian appeals court has told the FBI it's not allowed to review servers from file-sharing service Megaupload held north of the border. "In my view, it is offensive to the appearance of fairness, and specifically the appearance of judicial impartiality, to have an entity closely associated with one of the adversaries …

Tech visa saber-rattling more sound than fury

Technology firms in the US seeking to hire computer programmers from abroad using the H‑1B visa program may have more trouble doing so, as a consequence of both Trump administration policies and lawmaker concerns that emerged during the Obama administration. As it began accepting H-1B visa petitions for fiscal 2018, US …

Cloudera finally confirms IPO

After playing coy for the past two weeks, Cloudera has finally gone public with its plans to go public, filing the relevant IPO forms with the US Securities and Exchange Commission. The company is looking to raise $200m and the S-1 filing gives some insight into the big data company – mostly that it is losing a lot of money, …

FCC saves Charter from threat of having to compete for customers

US comms watchdog the FCC has voted to eliminate a key provision in Charter Communications's merger deal with Time Warner Cable that required it to expand into new markets. The commission on Monday revoked the 'overbuild' clause in the 2016 approval deal for the $78.7bn merger that brought both TWC and Bright House Networks …
Shaun Nichols, 3 Apr 2017

D'oh! Amber Rudd meant 'understand hashing', not 'hashtags'

It was the cringiest moment in an already gaffe-prone interview on The Andrew Marr Show last week. Speaking about preventing the upload of objectionable content, Home Secretary Amber Rudd said the government needs to get people who "understand the necessary hashtags" talking. That was of course in addition to Rudd's widely …
Kat Hall, 3 Apr 2017
A confused man

Oracle breaks silence to deny 'even considering' buying Accenture

Oracle has seemingly backed away from a potential acquisition of Accenture, and is now claiming it had "never even considered it". The denial follows The Register's report last week that Oracle had brought in some bean-counters to do due diligence on a potential deal, which would of course have been an immensely bold, …
Old Bailey Lady Justice

Hundreds of millions 'wasted' on UK court digitisation scheme

Exclusive Hundreds of millions of pounds have been wasted on plans to digitise the criminal justice system due to the mismanagement of a key programme that has so far delivered little value to the taxpayer, according to multiple insiders. The Common Platform Programme (CPP) was supposed to be complete by March 2019. However, a …
Kat Hall, 3 Apr 2017
Chips

British biz Imagination Technologies admits Apple may dump its IP

British chip designer Imagination Technologies is in trouble after Apple told the firm it would no longer be using its graphics processor cores. Apple, the firm’s largest customer, said it would stop using Imagination’s PowerVR GPU intellectual property in about two years’ time. This had a severe and immediate effect on …
from the great gatsby pic copyright: warner brothers

Franken-firm DXC Technology is born today, the fun begins...

Franken-firm DXC Technology, the corporate mash-up between CSC and HPE Enterprise Services that was brought to life today, has urged staff to turn up to work in fancy dress, or at least corporate colours, to celebrate the launch. Memos - seen by us - were sent to staff of the new company at the end of last week, listing all of …
Paul Kunert, 3 Apr 2017
Curser icon over a news paper folded

Facebook, Mozilla and Craigslist Craig fund fake news firefighter

Facebook, Mozilla and Craig Newmark from Craigslist are among the donors behind a “News Integrity Initiative” that has given itself the mission “advance news literacy, to increase trust in journalism around the world, and to better inform the public conversation”. Just how the Initiative will do that has not been disclosed, …
RAF F-35B ZM137, visiting the UK in 2016. Crown copyright

Head of US military kit-testing slams F-35, says it's scarcely fit to fly

Now-retired Dr Michael Gilmore, until recently the Director of Test and Evaluation for the US military, has published his final evaluation of the F-35 program, and it's a treat. In his parting report (PDF), deliciously dated April 1*, Gilmore details a host of issues remaining with the US$391 billion-and-counting project, with …

Dell warns PC slowdown threatens transition to infrastructure sales

Dell has released its new Form 10-K, the annual warts-and-all disclosure of every possible risk a public company faces, and suggests that slowing PC sales are a risk to its strategy of becoming an infrastructure technology leader. Much of the stuff in a 10-K is boilerplate: just about every such document includes something …

Banking group denied access to iPhones' NFC chips for alt.Apple.Pay

The four Australian banks that wanted to start their own mobile payments service using the near-field communications chips inside iPhones have been rebuffed, partly because Apple said that even if a ruling went against it the company would not have allowed them access to the chippery. The Australian Competition and Consumer …
Assange

Assange™ keeps his couch as Ecuador's president wins election

Julian Assange will sleep easy tonight – assuming he sleeps at all – after Ecuadorian president Lenín Moreno Garcés retained power. Opposition candidate Guillermo Lasso, of the Creando Oportunidades, party, had pledged to evict Assange from Ecuador's London embassy within 30 days of an election win. Lasso's planned to find …
Trump

Make America Wait Again: Trump hasn't stopped H-1B visas

Applications for the United States' H-1B visas open tomorrow, as usual. Which isn't what many expected after president Donald Trump made reform of skilled workers visas one of his key campaign promises. H-1B visas allow those with a bachelor’s or higher degree in a specialty field, and an employer willing to take them on, to …
The first A319 takes to the skies

Boeing and Airbus fly new planes for first time

Airbus and Boeing have both debuted new commercial jets. Boeing's 787-10 took to the skies over South Carolina last Friday and spent four hours and fifty eight minutes strutting its stuff. The 787-10 is the biggest variant of the 787, also known as the “Dreamliner”. The plane boasts the same 60m wingspan and 574cm cross- …

Apple Store in Pennsylvania hit with discrimination complaint

A former Apple Store employee has accused the Cupertino giant's retail arm of racial and religious discrimination. Cori Fisher, who worked at a Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Apple Store from 2010-2016, said he witnessed management at the Center City Apple Store asking security to remove a group of African-American teenagers from …
Shaun Nichols, 31 Mar 2017
Time cover

Oculus Drift: VR gaming boss out at Facebook

Oculus founder Palmer Luckey is stepping down from his position at parent company Facebook. The House of Zuck confirmed this week that Luckey, who had been serving as head of Oculus under Facebook, would be leaving today. Facebook acquired Oculus for $2bn in 2014. "Palmer will be dearly missed. Palmer's legacy extends far …
Shaun Nichols, 31 Mar 2017
Flag of India

Indian Business Machines? One-third of Big Blue staff based there and Bangladesh

Just shy of one-third of IBM's global workforce is now based in India and Bangladesh, a leaked internal blog has indicated. World+dog was aware that Big Blue has spent years offshoring roles. El Reg previously revealed the firm planned to employ eight in ten services personnel in lower-cost locations by the end of 2017. IBM …
Paul Kunert, 31 Mar 2017

Storage startup detaches field sales force from its nexus

+Comment We heard that storage startup OSNEXUS had laid off its outside sales staff and pre-sales engineering staff on Tuesday. We first met OSNEXUS last year, in February, and wrote: “OSNEXUS is a six-year-old startup making software-defined storage in the shape of QuantaStor, which is based on a grid of up to 32 nodes virtualised …
Chris Mellor, 31 Mar 2017
BT Tower photo via Shutterstock

Ofcom pressuring BT to slash wholesale prices for superfast broadband

Ofcom could force BT's Openreach to slash the prices it charges rivals for access to its superfast broadband network under plans that could shave millions off consumer bills. With proposals published by the watchdog today intended to encourage "full-fibre" investment, Ofcom said it wants to cut the wholesale price that …
Kat Hall, 31 Mar 2017
Suitcases

Confidence in £70m customs system has 'collapsed', warns Treasury Committee

Confidence in HMRC's £70m Customs Declaration Service, a computer system that HMRC itself describes as "business critical", has collapsed, the Treasury Select Committee warned today. The system is intended to replace the 25-year-old current system – known as Customs Handling of Import and Export Freight (Chief). But in the …
Kat Hall, 31 Mar 2017

PC survived lightning strike thanks to a good kicking

ON-CALL The sun came up, the world kept turning, another Friday rolled around and so, therefore, did another edition of On-Call, The Register's weekly recount of readers' reminiscences about odd jobs. This week we'll start with “Frank”, who told us about the time a client called with news of a PC gone TITSUP* after a lightning strike …
Simon Sharwood, 31 Mar 2017

Stop us if you've heard this one before: IBM sheds more workers – this time, tech sales

IBM is once again laying off folks – this time swinging its axing mostly through sales teams in the US. This latest round of headcount slashing – coldly categorized internally as a "resource action" – started on Thursday, according to multiple sources. This reduction is taking place throughout North America, with some offices …
Shaun Nichols, 31 Mar 2017
HMRC photo via Shutterstock

IT contractors behind IR35 calculator to leave HMRC... because of IR35

The IT contractors who built the UK tax collectors' IR35 tool to determine whether freelancers are in the scope of the new tax clampdown have themselves been ruled within the scope of IR35. According to sources, the IT software consultancy responsible for building HMRC's Employment Status Service Tool had a total of 250 …
Kat Hall, 30 Mar 2017
Bezos

Thank Souq for that! Jeff Bezos now world's second richest

Amazon chief Jeff Bezos has surpassed clothing tycoon Amancio Ortega and Berkshire Hathaway chairman Warren Buffett to become the world's second-richest person. That is richest in terms of net worth, as each of Bezos' shares in Amazon rose $18.32 yesterday, netting him $1.5bn after his company announced its plans to acquire …
Vulture

Ten bidders sniffing around Toshiba's memory biz – reports

Accordng to the Nikkei Asian Review, there are ten bidders for Toshiba's memory business. The division is being partly or wholly sold so that Toshiba can recapitalise after the horrendous and ongoing financial haemorrhage from its US nuclear plant business, Westinghouse Electric. It has filed Chapter 11 bankruptcy papers, …
Chris Mellor, 30 Mar 2017
Cell tower, view from below. Image by Shutterstock.com

Russian mega-telco exec: 'No business case' for 5G

While the 5G enthusiasts often hit the headlines with visions of AI-driven robots and virtual reality, many operators remain sceptical of the new business models 5G will drive, at least in the short term. Vasyl Latsanych, CMO at Russia's largest telco, MTS, echoed the sentiments Wireless Watch hears from many of its MNO research …
Wireless Watch, 30 Mar 2017
NBN Co fixed wireless antenna

nbn™ to offer 100Mbps fixed wireless service

nbn™, the entity building and operating Australia's national broadband network (NBN), has announced it will launch a 100Mbps fixed wireless service in 2018. Demonstrated to The Register at a trial site in Ballarat today, the service will require subscribers to update their aerial and modem. Hitting 100Mbps for downloads, and …
Simon Sharwood, 30 Mar 2017

Don't believe the hype: UK's £455m Government Digital Service lacks a clear role – fresh audit

The track record of the UK's Government Digital Service has come under fire by the National Audit Office, which today said it has “unclear accountabilities". Many are bound to read the watchdog's latest report through the prism of their own confirmation bias. Those who believe that everything was great until former head Mike …
Kat Hall, 30 Mar 2017
handcuffs

Silicon Valley staffing agency boss charged with H‑1B visa fraud

Jayavel Murugan, CEO of staffing agency Dynasoft Synergy, is accused of faking letters from Silicon Valley bosses so he could ship cheap foreign workers into America. Murugan, 46, and his associate Syed Nawaz, 40, are formally charged [PDF] with 26 counts of visa fraud, conspiracy to commit visa fraud, use of false documents, …
Iain Thomson, 30 Mar 2017

Kiwi cable goes live, and it's nowhere near a volcano

An NZ$100 million submarine cable has given New Zealanders a bit more diversity in their connections to the outside world. Even more than Australians, Kiwis are afflicted with restricted Internet connectivity and diversity, with only the Southern Cross Cable Network linking the nation directly to the US and to Australia. …

BDSM sex rocks Drupal world: Top dev banished for sci-fi hanky-panky

A prominent contributor to the open source Drupal content management system has been asked to distance himself from project because "his belief system is inconsistent with [the] project's goals." The beliefs at issue involve participation in the BDSM and Gorean (NSFW) communities, the latter involving people interested in …
Thomas Claburn, 29 Mar 2017
Man in suit performs double facepalm, presumably after witnessing incident of great stupidity. Photo by shutterstock

IBM: Those 2 redundancy schemes? We need to 'improve margins' and right quick

Exclusive IBM UK has tried to justify running two redundancy schemes concurrently in the Infrastructure Services Delivery team, telling staff that financial pressures forced its hand and it may take similar action again. Some 30 roles are to be chopped under Project Baccarat, launched in February, and a newer, overlapping programme …
Paul Kunert, 29 Mar 2017
Money down the drain

Avaya's $3.7m bankruptcy bonus plan slammed by watchdog

The US federal bankruptcy has slammed telco Avaya for its decision to award 11 execs $3.7m (£3m) in bonuses after the company filed for bankruptcy protection earlier this year. The US Trustee told a New York bankruptcy court that under the Bankruptcy Code, bonus payments to insiders of the type sought "are subject to a strict …
Kat Hall, 29 Mar 2017

Home Office accused of blocking UK public's scrutiny of Snoopers' Charter

The UK's Home Office has been accused of making "it near to impossible to provide a meaningful response" to the public consultations which campaigners fought legal battles to have included in the Investigatory Powers Act. In an open letter to Amber Rudd, the Home Secretary, lawyers and civil society campaigners complained that …
shutterstock_192561857-cat-

Virgin Media suspends 4 staff over misreporting connections

Virgin Media has admitted to overstating its £3bn Project Lightning superfast broadband rollout by 142,000 premises – a move that has led to the suspension of four staff and a reshuffle of its top brass. Parent company Liberty Global embarrassingly had to revise down the reported number of premises added to Virgin Media's …
Kat Hall, 29 Mar 2017
An RAF Chinook Mk.3 over RAF Odiham, Hampshire, in 2013. Crown copyright

UK's 'homebrew firmware' Chinooks set to be usable a mere 16 years late

The Ministry of Defence has started replacing the flight control software on its all-but-useless Chinook Mk.3 special forces helicopters, a mere 16 years after bungled attempts to bake its own software without involving manufacturer Boeing. Branded "the most incompetent procurement of all time", the Chinook Mk.3 saga began in …
Gareth Corfield, 29 Mar 2017
justin bieber

Microsoft wants screaming Windows fans, not just users

Microsoft's revealed it doesn't just want Windows users, it wants Windows fans. As in queue-all-night, constantly-offer-unsolicited-feedback, faint-at-the-sight-of-pop-stars fans. News of Redmond's ardor comes from a post by Yusuf Mehdi, corporate veep of Microsoft's Windows and Devices Group. Mehdi writes of the attending …
Simon Sharwood, 29 Mar 2017
Man in an orange jumpsuit clutches prison bars. Image by Shutterstock

FBI secures guilty plea from Russian bot-herder

A Russian citizen behind “tens of thousands” of Ebury trojan infections has entered a guilty plea in the US and will face sentencing in August. The US Department of Justice indicted Maxim Senakh, now 41, in January 2015. Ebury was a trojan carrying an SSH rootkit and putting backdoors into its targets, which were Linux, …

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