Kat Hall

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Crystal ball. Pic: Shutterstock

Hey Europe, your apathetic IT spending is ruining it for everyone

Listless IT spend in Europe is dragging down the pace of global recovery, according to the latest prediction from entrail-prodders Gartner. During 2018, IT expenditure on the continent is expected to increase 1.5 per cent to €667bn (£593bn). Worldwide IT spending is projected to total $3.7tn (£2.7bn) in 2018, an increase of 4. …
Kat Hall, 16 Jan 2018

220 heads to roll as Steria hacks away at UK.gov back-office IT biz

French outsourcer Sopra Steria plans to make 220 folk redundant from its UK government business as part of a major upheaval of its public sector operation. The Register has seen evidence that the firm plans to put 400 people at risk of redundancy and expects 220 roles to go. The redundancies are part of a shake-up of its UK …
Kat Hall, 15 Jan 2018
HMRC photo, Gov.uk

UK taxman told to go easy on transformation with Brexit in headlights

The UK government's spending watchdog has warned HMRC is biting off more than it can chew by undergoing major transformational projects while simultaneously coping with the fallout of Brexit. HMRC's transformation programme is not as "deliverable" as planned due to unrealistic assumptions and increased pressure from the …
Kat Hall, 12 Jan 2018
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Shared services plan: UK.gov hitches wagon to cloudy Oracle offering

Another year, another government shared services strategy. This time Whitehall wants to roll out Oracle Cloud across departments - a move it says will require "substantive negotiations" with the Sopra Steria-run joint venture. No estimated cost savings or timelines were included in the strategy (PDF), naturally. The Cabinet …
Kat Hall, 11 Jan 2018
Boss leans back comfortably in desk. Pic via Shutterstock

Tata for now: Marks & Sparks transfers 250 tech jobs to outsourcer

Middle-class nirvana Marks & Spencer – the British purveyor of classy date-night grub and frumpy clothes – is slashing its tech supplier base and sending 250 staff to Tata Consultancy Services under an IT outsourcing accord. The High Street giant will pay a one-time "implementation cost" of £25m to offload delivery and …
Kat Hall, 10 Jan 2018
Trying to catch money in a net

Apple agrees to pay £136m in back idiot taxes to UK taxman

Apple has agreed to cough up £136m in back taxes to HMRC following an "extensive audit" by the tax man. In its Company's House filing for the year ended April 2017, Apple Europe said: "Following an extensive audit by HMRC the company has agreed to pay the adjustment covering prior years up to September 26 2015. This payment of …
Kat Hall, 10 Jan 2018

MPs sceptical of plan for IT to save the day after UK quits customs union

MPs have slammed government's approach of touting tech "as its magic solution to customs post Brexit" in a Parliamentary debate. Mel Stride, financial secretary to the Treasury, was discussing the Cross Border Trade Bill, which will lay the groundwork for Blighty exiting the EU customs union. He said the government has …
Kat Hall, 9 Jan 2018
Shark surfaces above water with prey in his teeth, Photo by Shutterstock

Japanese giant NEC gobbles Brit IT firm Northgate for £475m

Japanese multinational NEC has splashed £475m on UK-based IT provider Northgate Public Services. NEC bought the company from private equity biz Cinven and the acquisition is due to close this month. Takashi Niino, NEC chief exec, said the business hopes to build on Northgate's technologies for police operations, "establish …
Kat Hall, 9 Jan 2018
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UK exam chiefs: About the compsci coursework you've been working on. It means diddly-squat

GCSE computer science coursework will no longer count toward the final grade after answers to set tasks were leaked online last year. Exam regulator Ofqual announced that non-exam assessment will not count to the final mark in GCSE computer science in 2018 or 2019. Previously the 20-hour assessment had accounted for 20 per …
Kat Hall, 8 Jan 2018
smug windsailing man on turquoise ocean makes surfer sign at gopro camera

GoPro exits drone market and slashes jobs amid sales warning

Action camera maker GoPro is exiting the consumer drone market and slashing 254 roles after issuing a sales warning. GoPro issued a sales warning for its fourth quarter results of $340m (£250m) for the three months to end of December - down 37 per cent on what it previously turned over for the same period last year. It has not …
Kat Hall, 8 Jan 2018
Conservative Party Facebook

Your connection is not Brexit... we mean private: UK Tory party lets security cert expire

Another day, another embarrassing gaffe for the Tories. This time it seems someone forgot to renew the UK Conservative Party's website's security certificate. "Your connection is not private. Attackers might be trying to steal your information from www.conservatives.com (for example, passwords, messages or credit cards)," web …
Kat Hall, 8 Jan 2018

Cisco to release patches for Meltdown, Spectre CPU vulns, just in case

Cisco is the latest company to prepare patches to tackle the serious security vulnerabilities affecting the majority of CPUs, Meltdown and Spectre. Cybersecurity group CERT has warned companies that the only way to protect themselves from the flaw was to rip out and replace their processors. It has since backtracked on that …
Kat Hall, 5 Jan 2018
Frustrated accountant puts head in hands. Photo by Shutterstock

Azure VMs borked following Meltdown patch, er, meltdown

Microsoft Azure customers are reporting problems with their virtual machines, which are struggling to come back online after being updated with the Meltdown processor patch. The firm told one customer in a direct message on Twitter: "We are currently investigating alerts affecting Virtual Machines in West Europe. You should be …
Kat Hall, 4 Jan 2018
Scots as Braveheart photo Cintia Erdens Paiva via Shutterstock

Jocks in shock as Irn-Bru set to slash sugar and girder content

Angry Scots are protesting against plans to slash the sugar content of their beloved national soft drink Irn-Bru and folk have begun stockpiling the beverage said to be a hangover cure. As of this month, Irn-Bru will be made with 50 per cent less sugar. Currently a can of has just under 140 calories, which will reduced to 65 …
Kat Hall, 4 Jan 2018
Gavel

Citrix hurls patent suit at network tiddler Avi, claims rival smeared NetScaler

Citrix has launched a patent suit against rival Avi Networks accusing it of patent infringement and of spreading "false claims" about Citrix's NetScaler networking products. The patent dispute centres around Avi's Vantage Platform, a software-defined application service. "Avi Networks is using Citrix's patented technology …
Kat Hall, 4 Jan 2018

Proposed Brit law to ban b**tards brandishing bots to bulk-buy tickets

The British government is to ban ticket touts from using automated software to snap up more tickets than allowed by event organisers. The new criminal offence will be brought forward under a provision in the Digital Economy Act. Those who break the law will face an unlimited fine. The plans are part of draft legislation and …
Kat Hall, 3 Jan 2018
pirate

Captain Morgan told off for Snapchat lens: That grog be aimed at kiddies

Rum peddler Captain Morgan has come under fire from the UK ads watchdog for using a Snapchat lens that could appeal to underage teenagers. In response, the drinks firm has suspended all its advertising with Snap globally, while it assess the incremental age verification safeguards that Snapchat is implementing. The lens made …
Kat Hall, 3 Jan 2018
Friends look shocked watching TV. photo by Shutterstock

Liberty Global's sale of Austrian biz paves way for Voda merger plans – reports

Liberty Global is rumoured to be near to closing a deal to flog its Austrian biz to Germany's Deutsche Telekom for about $2bn (£1.5bn), which could reopen merger talks with Vodafone in Blighty. Blabbermouths briefed on the negotiations told the Financial Times that discussions between Liberty Global and DT over the unit are …
Kat Hall, 22 Dec 2017
overtime

IT giant CSC screwed its 1,000 sysadmins out of their overtime – jury

Computer Sciences Corporation (CSC) “willfully” misclassified 1,000 of its system administrators to avoid paying the techies overtime. On Wednesday, a jury in Connecticut, USA, found in favor of staff who had brought 11 claims of labor law violations against the IT services provider. Their class-action lawsuit, launched in …
Kat Hall, 21 Dec 2017
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We have standards, says 3GPP as group starts to lay groundwork for 5G

The first standards for 5G have been agreed, meaning industry can press ahead with next-gen speeds. The 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP), the body responsible for setting the standard, unveiled the 5G New Radio Non-Standalone at a meeting in Lisbon, Portugal. The introduction of an intermediate standard on the way to …
Kat Hall, 21 Dec 2017

Oh good. Transport for London gives Capita £80m for WAN, LAN and Wi-Fi

Transport for London has inked an £80m deal with outsourcing giant Capita to provide Wide Area Network services in the UK capital. Under the deal, Capita will maintain WAN, LAN and Wi-Fi networks across more than 1,000 TfL sites from August 2018. The deal is for five years, with the option to extend it for another five. TfL …
Kat Hall, 21 Dec 2017
Hughes Products 1960s videophone concept

Ofcom sees off legal threat over 5G auction terms

Ofcom has seen off a legal challenge to its spectrum auction by BT's EE and Three today. UK mobe network Three launches legal challenge over spectrum auction READ MORE The action had been a response to the regulator's decision to set a limit on how much spectrum individual operators could buy – in order level the playing …
Kat Hall, 20 Dec 2017

UK.gov pushes ahead with legal right to 10Mbps

Folk will have a legal right to minimum broadband speeds of 10Mbps by 2020, with the government having today rejected a voluntary proposal by dominant telco BT. Currently, just over a million premises in Blighty, or 4 per cent of properties, cannot get speeds of 10Mbps, according to Ofcom. After mulling its options, the …
Kat Hall, 20 Dec 2017
Uber self-driving car on a transport truck

European court: Let's not kid ourselves, Uber. You're a transport firm, not a 'digital service'

Uber should be treated as a transport company, not a digital service, the European Court of Justice declared today. The ruling (PDF) said that the service Uber provides "is more than an intermediation service consisting of connecting, by means of a smartphone application, a nonprofessional driver using his or her own vehicle …
Kat Hall, 20 Dec 2017
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Oh good, half of Defra's Brexit projects involve IT

The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs’ (Defra) poor track record on IT puts the department at high risk in decoupling its systems from Europe, the chair of the government’s spending watchdog has warned today. According to the National Audit Office, Defra is one of the departments most affected by the EU Exit. …
Kat Hall, 20 Dec 2017

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