judgecorp writes: "The British Government has joined corporations such as Yahoo, Facebook and BT, in arguing against a tough proposed EU Regulation on Privacy. The UK government's intervention, led by justice minister Lord McNally, wants to scrap the proposed Regulation and replace it with a system of Directives. That's not just a matter of word play, it dilutes the proposals greatly. Regulations must be implemented in all EU member states at once, while the states have freedom on when and how to put a Directive into force."
judgecorp writes: "Seventeen year old Nick D'Aloisio has sold his smartphone app Summly to Yahoo for an undisclosed sum. The app — created when he was 15 — aggregates news stories by topic and condenses them for time-strapped readers. D'Aloisio and his team will go to work at Yahoo when the deal closes."
judgecorp writes: "Apple has promised two-factor authentication for its online services following an embarrassing incident where it gave out writer Matt Honan's credentials to an imposter over the phone — and all his devices were wiped. Apple is proposing standard 2FA, with unique codes sent for every purchase, and a 14-digit recovery key to gain access to accounts which have been hacked, or whose passwords have been forgotten."
judgecorp writes: "Weev, the hacker who exposed an AT&T database says he plans to run for Congress on his release from jail. Real name Andrew Auernheimer, Weev was sentenced to 41 months in jail today. Despite saying the government is made up of "seditious thugs", he told TechWeekEurope that he plans to run for Congress, and has a congressional committee assembled. He also spoke of his Mormonism and his trolling activities."
judgecorp writes: "Reporters Without Borders has named and shamed the surveillance software vendors who sell to repressive regimes, including Syria, China and Iran. Their software is used to track activists, and has been instrumental in delivering some dissidents over for torture, says RWB. The offending companies include US-based Bluecoat, Germany's Trovicor, France's Amesys, the UK's Gamma International, as well as HackingTeam, based in the US and Italy. HackingTeam is unusual in that it turned up at the recent RSA show to defend its reputation, arguing that it avoided selling to countries on international blacklists."
judgecorp writes: "BT is recycling some undersea cables that were not being used, to bring fast fibre broadband to the Isles of Scilly, in the Atlantic off the coast of Cornwall. The fibres had been used to link England, Ireleand and Spain, but have not been used for three years. A cable ship will find them, cut them and move them to connect to the Isles. Although the Isles are only 28 miles from the mainland, the project would not have been possible without the use of second-hand cable, BT says."
judgecorp writes: "The UK's auction of spectrum for 4G mobile services raised only £2.3 billion, about two thirds of the amount which the Government was counting on to reduce the budget deficit. The amount is only one-tenth what the last big spectrum auction made (3G spectrum raised £22bn in 2000). The reason is that there are now many other routes to provide data services, and buying spectrum is not a "do or die" decision as it seemed to be last time. And since the last spectrum auction crippled British mobile operators for years, the low value is probably good news for mobile phone providers and subscribers."
judgecorp writes: "Britain's cyber police are being re-organised, and they are worried about it. A national body, the Serious Organised Crime Agency (SOCA), handles big electronic crime, and every local police force has its own e-crime practices (and a Freedom of Information request reveals these are very varied indeed). In the next nine months, the Police Central e-Crime Unit, run by London's Metropolitan Police will merge with SOCA's cyber-cops to form a National Cyber Crime Unit — but no one seems to know how it will be organised, where it will be based, or who will lead it. Cyber crime is still new, and the people inviolved in policing it are, in some cases the very same people who brought the first (failed) prosecutions that led to the creation of computer misuse legislation. Will the new body retain and use those skills?"
judgecorp writes: "The New York Times claims it has been the victim of a four month cyber onslaught from Chinese sources, following an investigation into Chinese corruption. Attributing the source of an attack can be difficult, but The Times, and security firm Mandiant used honeypot data to track the source of the attacks, which started after an investigation which suggests the family of Chinese prermier Wen Jibao has been amasssing billions of dollars in business deals. The Times was hit with 45 pieces of custom malware through spear-phishing, despite using Symantec's anti-virus- Symantec has responded saying that "signature-based anti-virus components of endpoint solutions alone are not enough"."
judgecorp writes: "To many people's surprise, an audit of British government spending has found that IT spending cuts are actually delivering more benefit than the Coalition government promised in 2011. Shared infrastructure such as the Public Service Network was praised — but there was no mention of the G-Cloud, which was a flagship for the government's IT cost-cutting measures."
judgecorp writes: "British Members of Parliament have warned that the UK's cyber warfare strategy is getting it wrong. According to a defence committee report, the country's IT security forces are inadequately prepared for a cyber attack, rely too heavily on iinadequately protected systems, and do not sufficiently appreciate the difficulty of attributing the source of an attack."
judgecorp writes: "British Prime Minister David Cameron is set to reverse a policy announced last week, and demand that ISPs filter adult content by default. This system would require users to actively opt out of a filter designed to block adult content and material about self-harm. Last week, after consultation with parents, the Department for Education had said that an opt-in system would be sufficient and no default porn block would be required, but the Daily Mail has announced triumphantly that Cameron will be presenting the policy in the paper. MP Claire Perry, who has argued for the block, will be in charge — and freedom of speech campaigners have branded the sudden change of mind as "chaotic"."
judgecorp writes: "Deputy prime minister of Britain Nick Clegg has opposed the Communications Data Bill also known as the Snooper's Charter. This signals a split in the UK's coalition government over this bill with would give law enforcement agencies the right to know details of citizens' communications — a power which Conservative ministers say is necessary to fight terrorism and paedophilia."
judgecorp writes: "The UK's coalition government is divided over the Communications Data Bill, a proposal to give law enforcement agencies greater access to citizens' communications data, which has proved very controversial and is known as the Snooper's Charter. A Parliamentary committee says the Bill goes too far and will infringe on privacy. Opposition from the Clegg's Liberal Democrat party could sink the bill, which is now very likely to go back to be redrafted"
judgecorp writes: "The British Pirate Party has been asked by the music business organisation BPI to pull the plug on the Pirate Bay proxy it has been running. The Pirate Party provides a way round the court-ordered ban on ISPs providing connections to the file-sharing site, The Pirate Bay. So far the Pirate Party says the proxy is a "legitimate route" to the site, but the BPI says the Pirate Bay is "not above the law"."