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Cellphones

DoJ Wants Apple To Decrypt 12 More iPhones (macrumors.com) 285

tlhIngan writes: The Wall Street Journal (paywalled) is reporting that the Department of Justice is seeking Apple's help in decrypting 12 other iPhones that may contain crime-related evidence. The cases are not identified, though a list of the 12 phones in question has come out, but it is not known what level of Apple assistance is required (i.e., how many of those cases are waiting on the FBI request for special firmware to be developed and to be used on "one more phone"). It appears Tim Cook's assertion that hundreds of requests are waiting on this software may not be a fabrication, and the goal is not about just one phone, but to set a precedent to unlock more phones. As TechDirt (which also lists those 12 cases, a list which certainly does not encompass all the phones the Feds would like to peer into) puts it, "[O]nce again, Director Comey was flat out lying when he claimed the FBI has no interest in setting a precedent."
The Courts

"Most Hated Man In America" Martin Shkreli Arrested On Suspicion of Fraud (ibtimes.co.uk) 245

Ewan Palmer writes that everyone's least favorite medication price gouger, Martin Shkreli, has run into some legal problems. According to the article "Pharmaceutical start-up owner Martin Shkreli, dubbed the most hated man in the US over his controversial plans to significantly raise the price of life-saving drugs, has been arrested on suspicion of fraud. Shkreli, 32, who received widespread criticism for hiking up the price of Daraprim from $13 to $750 per pill in September, is being questioned over allegations involving stock from a company he founded in 2011. According to Bloomberg, Shkreli is accused of illegally taking stock from biotechnology Retrophin Inc to pay off debts from unrelated business dealings."
Bitcoin

Bitcoins Seized In Drug Bust 198

First time accepted submitter Salo2112 writes "In a case believed to be the first of its kind, federal authorities have seized a Charleston man's virtual currency due to an alleged drug law violation with possible links to a shadowy online black market. From the article: 'The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration recently posted a forfeiture notice indicating that agents had seized 11.02 Bitcoins worth $814 from 31-year-old Eric Daniel Hughes for allegedly violating the federal Controlled Substances Act. No other details were provided.'"
Republicans

GOP Study Committee Director Disowns Brief Attacking Current IP Law 176

cervesaebraciator writes "Saturday an article was featured on Slashdot which expressed some hope, if just a fool's hope, that a recent Republican Study Committee Brief could be a sign of broader national discussion about the value of current copyright law. When one sees such progress, credit is deservedly given. Unfortunately, others in Washington did not perhaps see this as worthy of praise. The committee's executive director, Paul Teller, sent a memo today disavowing the earlier pro-copyright reform brief. From the memo: 'Yesterday you received a Policy Brief or [sic] copyright law that was published without adequate review within the RSC and failed to meet that standard. Copyright reform would have far-reaching impacts, so it is incredibly important that it be approached with all facts and viewpoints in hand.' People who live in districts such as Ohio's 4th would do well to send letters of support to those who crafted the original brief. I cannot imagine party leadership will be happy with so radical a suggestion as granting copyright protection for the limited times needed to promote the progress of science and useful arts."
Encryption

Amazon Kindle Proprietary Format Broken 203

An anonymous reader writes "The Register reports that the proprietary document format used by the Amazon online store and Amazon's Kindle has been successfully reverse engineered, allowing these DRM-protected documents to be converted into the open MOBI format. Users of alternative e-book readers rejoice." Here are the hacker's notes on the program he is calling "Unswindle," and here is the (translated) forum where the Kindle challenge was posed and answered.
The Courts

Student Suing Amazon For Book Deletions 646

Stupified writes "High school student Justin Gawronski is suing Amazon for deleting his Kindle copy of Nineteen Eighty-Four (complaint, PDF), because doing so destroyed the annotations he'd created to the text for class. The complaint states: 'The notes are still accessible on the Kindle 2 device in a file separate from the deleted book, but are of no value. For example, a note such as "remember this paragraph for your thesis" is useless if it does not actually reference a specific paragraph.' The suit, which is seeking class action status, asks that Amazon be legally blocked from improperly accessing users' Kindles in the future and punitive damages for those affected by the deletion. Nothing in Amazon's EULA or US copyright law gives them permission to delete books off your Kindle, so this sounds like a plausible suit."

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