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US government upends critical spying case with new denial

A closely watched case covering the constitutionality of a spying program has been thrown into disarray after a US government lawyer claimed an assertion at the heart of the lawsuit simply never occurred. Speaking in oral argument [mp3] at the Second Circuit Court of Appeals this week, the government representative told judges …
Kieren McCarthy, 31 Aug 2018
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Micron to shove $3bn in Virginia fab to support manufacture of hardy chips for IoT-type stuff

Semiconductor giant Micron is investing $3bn in its Manassas, Virginia foundry to develop DRAM and flash for autos, IoT, drones and industrial automation. Micron's site is located about 65km (40 miles) west of Washington DC and the company said the development would create around 1,100 jobs. President and CEO Sanjay Mehrotra …
Chris Mellor, 30 Aug 2018
Selection of Australian banknotes

Vodafone, TPG propose 'merger of equals'

One of Australia's most acquisition-hungry telcos, TPG, is to merge with mobile carrier Vodafone Australia. It's spun as a “merger of equals”, which is nearly true: TPG will own 49.9 per cent of the new TPG Telecom Limited, while Vodafone Group and Hutchison (the international businesses who own Vodafone Hutchison Australia, …
Monkey

Big Baboon ain't gibbon up: SAP, HP accused of aping software squirt's e-commerce patent

SAP and HP Inc have failed to get an e-commerce patent case brought against them by a small software firm thrown out. The plaintiff, California-based Big Baboon Inc, has alleged that the companies directly and wilfully infringed on its patent. The outfit filed the suit in 2017, but was initially dismissed because it failed to …
Rebecca Hill, 29 Aug 2018
UK border control photo via Shutterstock

Campaigners call for immigration exemption in UK's Data Protection Act to be scrapped

Campaign groups have today launched a legal challenge against an exemption in the UK's Data Protection Act that could prevent citizens gaining access to immigration data held on them. The Open Rights Group and EU citizens' group, the3million, have argued that, as it stands, many people would not be able to access data that the …
Rebecca Hill, 28 Aug 2018
Sliced latticed pastry cherry pie. Pic by shuttertsock

FPGA-making Lattice Semiconductor names AMD man as CEO

Lattice Semiconductor has hired a shiny new CEO, Jim Anderson, to plot a way forward for the silicon, reference designs and boards maker. Potted history 1983 – Lattice Semiconductor founded 1987 – files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy 1989 – IPO 2010 – Billerbeck appointed CEO 2012 – bought Silicon Blue and its FPGA tech for $ …
Chris Mellor, 28 Aug 2018
Burning a £20 note. Pic: Shutterstock
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UK getting ready to go it alone on Galileo

The UK is about to press the big red button on its own satellite navigation system as an agreement for access to the EU’s Galileo programme looks more and more unlikely. Following hot on the heels of the release of papers detailing the customs and tax implications of a no-deal Brexit come reports that the UK Treasury has …
Richard Speed, 28 Aug 2018
Myanmar
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Facebook admits it was 'too slow' to ban Myanmar regime

Analysis Facebook has banned 20 organizations and individuals in Myanmar, including the country's commander-in-chief, following a United Nations report formally accusing the military regime of serious human rights abuses. Despite having received years of complaints about how the authorities were using Facebook to spread hateful …
Kieren McCarthy, 27 Aug 2018
A child unhappy with her cash stash
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Salesforce boss Marc Benioff objects to US immigration policy so much, he makes millions from, er, US immigration

Almost five dozen CEOs at US tech giants and other big businesses this week denounced the White House's immigration policies in an open letter to Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen. The corporate leaders, members of a chief executive club called the Business Roundtable, did not voice concern over the Trump …
Thomas Claburn, 24 Aug 2018
spank
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As porn site pounds hard on piracy laws, Cox pulls out prematurely

Analysis The US Supreme Court has been asked to take a good hard look at a critical piece of internet law that shields ISPs and websites from legal action when their users pirate copyrighted stuff. Porn studio Ventura Content has asked the court to review the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) for the first time since it was …
Kieren McCarthy, 24 Aug 2018
rain on an umbrella
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HP Inc strips off, rolls around as Windows 10 money pours down

HP Inc's latest set of financials were boringly positive – from a rival's perspective – rising as they did by double digits. "Q3 was impressive," CEO Dion Weisler told a gaggle of Wall Street types on an earnings call. And it was based on a "balanced performance across businesses and regions", he added. Group turnover for HP' …
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Surprise! VAT, customs likely to get a bit trickier in a Brexit no-deal world

A week after the UK's taxman unveiled an exciting new system for modernising its existing processes, the government has published papers describing what might happen in the event the UK tumbles out of the EU next year without a workable deal. Custom declarations in a no-deal world In what should really come as a surprise to …
Richard Speed, 24 Aug 2018

Incoming NBN boss inheriting regulation, service headaches

It's not quite as bad as waking up with a hangover and a mystery tattoo, but incoming nbn™ CEO Stephen Rue will start his tenure with a new regulatory regime, and on notice to fix the network rollout's ongoing new connection problem. This week, Rue was named to follow outgoing boss Bill Morrow, taking the big chair on …
Corbyn thumbs up photo via Shutterstock
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Tax the tech giants and ISPs until the bits squeak – Corbyn

The Leader of Her Majesty’s Opposition wants to tax ISPs and “technology giants” to fund the BBC and independent journalism. With Labour 10/11 to have the most seats at Britain's next General Election, his targets are obliged to take it seriously. Jeremy Corbyn used TV luvvie land's annual festival to float several proposals …
Andrew Orlowski, 23 Aug 2018
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There is still gold to be had in the world of Microsoft resellers

Surrey-based reseller Bytes Software Services (BSS) has had a rather good year, despite some price hikes from its number one supplier Microsoft seemingly dampening margins. In figures filed at the UK’s Companies House, BSS reported turnover of £277m for the year ended 28 February 2018, up 28.4 per cent on the prior fiscal. Did …
Richard Speed, 23 Aug 2018
10

'Surprise!' West Oz gummint is hopeless at information security

Western Australia's auditor general is blinking in disbelief, after an audit of the state's password practices turned up just how many people use bad passwords. Yes, friends, password123 and abcd1234 remain popular among government employees, and the agencies covered by the audit don't block them. Yesterday, the office tabled …
Man being kicked by oversized leg with city in background

Everything's great at Supermicro, just small matter of impending NASDAQ delisting

Supermicro will not meet this week's deadline imposed by NASDAQ to file delayed financial results to regain compliance with its regulations, and expects its common stock to be suspended on the exchange by 24 August. The latest admission came as the server maker reported abbreviated preliminary numbers for Q4 ended 30 June that …
Chris Mellor, 22 Aug 2018
Super-villain Dr Evil puts finger to lip in scheming manner, asks for one million dollars. Pic: New Line Cinema
19

Butcher by name, Butcher by nature? Capita finds new CFO

It may be a case of nominative determinism that in the midst of its expense purge Capita has hired a man called Butcher to take control of the finance function. It might just be coincidence. Patrick Butcher will inherit the wooden abacus at Capita by the end of the calendar year, the sickly outsourcing badass confirmed to the …
Paul Kunert, 22 Aug 2018
Mobile phones on Iran flag
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Facebook brings banhammer down on over 650 pro-Iranian 'fake news' accounts

Tipped off by researchers from infosec outfit FireEye, Facebook has gone on another "fake news" killing spree, pulling more than 650 "inauthentic" pages pushing Iranian interests. The social network's head of cybersecurity policy, Nathaniel Gleicher, blogged that Facebook got the tip in July that a network called "Liberty …
Privacy
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MyHealth Record privacy legislation published

In case it survives long enough to pass legislation, the Australian government has published proposed amendments that would strengthen the privacy protections surrounding MyHealth Record. After it was changed from an opt-in model to op-out, the government's e-health system was criticised for too-easy law enforcement access to …
FLAMING BASEBALL WITH JUSTICE SCALES LOGO
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Bloke hurls sueball over Google's 'is it off yet?' location data slurping

Google's creepy obsession with users' locations is to be challenged in court – a lawsuit has accused the search-cum-ads biz of unlawfully invading users' privates and intentionally complicating the opt-out process. The allegations were levelled at the company in a suit brought by Californian resident Napoleon Patacsil after …
Rebecca Hill, 21 Aug 2018
Flag of India
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US tech circles wagons as India reviews data protection proposals

America's major tech companies are pushing back against India's proposed data protection laws, with a lobby group led by ex-Cisco CEO John Chambers emerging as the protest organiser. The move came a week after the proposals, first published at the end of July, were opened for comment by the Ministry of IT. The draft copped …
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Internet overseer continues wall-punching legal campaign

The organization that oversees the internet's naming and numbering systems is continuing its embarrassing European legal campaign, insisting for a third time that the German courts have got it wrong. On Friday, ICANN appealed [PDF] the latest court decision against it, this time insisting that the Appellate Court of Cologne, …
Kieren McCarthy, 21 Aug 2018
Judge
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Mozilla accuses FCC of abdicating its role, ignoring comments in net neutrality lawsuit

Mozilla has filed its legal brief against the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), accusing the telecoms regulator of abdicating its role, ignoring public comments and failing to understand how the internet actually works. The lawsuit is one of several ranged against the FCC for its controversial decision to tear up …
Kieren McCarthy, 20 Aug 2018
Your ad here, on a movie screen
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Facebook flat-out 'lies' about how many people can see its ads – lawsuit

Facebook brags it has a massive real audience, estimated to be about 2.23bn monthly users and 1.47bn daily users after culling more than 1.27bn fake accounts. However, the social networking giant's math is being challenged in a lawsuit that claims this reach is exaggerated, thereby defrauding advertisers. In other words, it …
Thomas Claburn, 17 Aug 2018
Two eggs hugging couple arranged in carton

UK.gov told data-sharing plans need vendor buy-in

Government departments should mandate interoperability when procuring systems and establish audit trails to track data use in order to benefit from data sharing, a think tank has said. Whitehall has long struggled to make the most of the masses of data it holds, largely due to poor quality data and legacy systems that don’t …
Rebecca Hill, 17 Aug 2018
A large hand flicks an icon of a little red man. Image via shutterstock (Lasse Kristensen)
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DXC Technology asks field-based techies if they'd like to leave

Just as DXC Technology workers thought they’d escaped a summer redundancy session the perennial cost-cutter has asked for volunteers to form an orderly queue to the exit door. Peter Hands, DXC UK and Ireland veep of the Deliver organisation - the unit that actually provides field services to customers - delivered the news to …
Paul Kunert, 17 Aug 2018
weeping techie with crumpled coffee cups
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Home Office seeks Brexit tech boss – but doesn't splash the cash

The reality of the mammoth task facing the Home Office in preparing for Brexit appears to have sunk in – the department is seeking a technology lead for the UK’s exit from the European Union. They will be in charge of overseeing the EU Exit programme, which the Home Office described as "a layer of IT-enabled change that sits …
Rebecca Hill, 17 Aug 2018
Ajit Pai
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Net neutrality freaks furious over lack of fury at FCC hearing

Net neutrality advocates were left furious on Thursday that there wasn't more fury directed at the chair of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) at Congressional hearing despite, the fact he killed off net neutrality several months ago. "Democrats Ripped for Totally Failing to Grill FCC Chair Ajit Pai Over Net …
Kieren McCarthy, 16 Aug 2018
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Don't you just love Windows 10 refreshes, yells Lenovo

Windows 10 PC refreshes in business land helped Lenovo report double digit sales growth for the first quarter of its fiscal 2019 earnings - the Chinese giant made hay while the sun shone. Revenue bounced 19 per cent year-on-year to $11.91bn, but two thirds of this came from PC sales, which went up 19.8 per cent in the quarter …
Paul Kunert, 16 Aug 2018
Man jumps out of window of burning building. Pic by Shutterstock
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Rejoice! Thousands more kids flock to computing A-level

It’s that day again, the day when picture editors across the British news media drop everything to find fresh photos of teenagers suspended in mid-air. Yes, it’s A-level results day – and thousands more pupils are passing exams in computing rather than old school ICT. The number of kids sitting A-level ICT fell by no less than …
Gareth Corfield, 16 Aug 2018
Stalker: woman peers through keyhole
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Google risks mega-fine in EU over location 'stalking'

Special Report Privacy campaigners say Google's obsessive collection of location markers violates Europe's privacy laws - potentially exposing the Californian giant to punitive fines. Several privacy watchers agree that as it stands, users are misled, and can't give informed consent. That exposes the company to financial penalty under GDPR …
Andrew Orlowski, 16 Aug 2018
Bank vault
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Brit banks must disclose outages via API, decrees finance watchdog

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) is enforcing new rules that obligate banks to publicly reveal the number and frequency of online outages – including whether these were caused by malicious actors. Billed as part of consumer-friendly changes to the small print for online banking services, new rules from the FCA and the …
Gareth Corfield, 16 Aug 2018
Cisco logo falling off Cisco building

Cisco shift to recurring revenue gives 3.8 billion signs that it's working

Switch and comms kit biz Cisco reported $12.8bn revenue for its fiscal 2018 fourth quarter, a six per cent increase that is a bit more than than analysts expected. CEO and chairman Chuck Robbins celebrated the highest quarterly figure ever for the company, calling it a very strong finish to a great year. "Our results …
Thomas Claburn, 15 Aug 2018
Person using a card reader
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UK chip and PIN readers fall ill: Don't switch off that terminal!

Updated A problem with credit and debit card readers has left some unlucky UK retailers staring at an error message rather than collecting cash. Register reader Toby Hewett noted that problems began from 7am yesterday, UK time, and sought assistance from payment processing giant Mastercard. The cash slinger popped out a message, seen …
Richard Speed, 15 Aug 2018
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Quantiq slurps asset of Profile Enterprise Solutions

Quantiq has snaffled certain assets of fellow Microsoft Dynamics boutique Profile Enterprise Solutions. The trade buy includes support contracts for roughly 40 customers that had projects on the go with PES, the Hemel Hempstead-based biz that has now formally shuttered its Dynamics NAV practice. A small number of staff have …
Paul Kunert, 15 Aug 2018

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