Presidential advisor believes education, overall government experience sufficient
In an interview with the Information Security Media Group publication, White House cybersecurity coordinator Michael Daniel admits to having no practical experience with the subject matter. Daniel claims that "being too down in the weeds at the technical level could actually be a little bit of a distraction" to his job of advising the president about ongoing and emergent information security issues.
Ruling could have affected outcome of second Apple-Samsung trial
US Federal District Court Judge Lucy Koh has denied Samsung's post-trial request to invalidate two Apple patents, both of which were used successfully to convict Samsung of copying the iPhone maker's technology yet again in the second federal Apple-Samsung trial, held earlier this year. Samsung had filed the motion in early July, based on a recent Supreme Court decision, Alice vs. CLS Banks, which stated that software ideas that were just abstract representations of real-world concepts (such as turning a doorknob) were not patentable.
Charter swept up in FCC info dragnet, September 11 deadline for submissions
A request for information from the US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has been submitted to Comcast and Time Warner Cable, demanding the pair detail its Internet and programming agreements before the merger is approved. Information sought are broadcast deals with sports leagues, Internet network management such as that with Netflix traffic, consumer data caps, and other information deemed vital which may impact relations with customers should the deal be approved.
Firm has worked with Dell, HP, Logitech on a wide variety of consumer electronics
Google has acquired design firm Gecko, in an effort to bolster its Google(x) product manufacture efforts. The firm has previously done industrial design work for OLPC, Logitech, Sling Media, Herman Miller, Hewlett-Packard, and contributed to the Fitbit design, pre-launch.
Amazon hopes contract will pave the way for cloud-based confidential data
Amazon Web Services has received the first ever U.S. Department of Defense level three through five provisional authorization for the AWS GovCloud (US) region under the Defense Information Systems Agency's (DISA) codified Cloud Security Model (CSM). This new authorization allows Department of Defense users to conduct development and integration activities for everything but classified workflows with Amazon's service.
Unlimited plan follows on new family sharing plan, contrasts savings against T-Mobile
With the exit of Dan Hesse and the appointment of CEO Marcelo Claure earlier in the month, Sprint is kicking into a new gear with a bunch of new offerings. Following on a new family plan structure, including a $100 plan with up to 10 lines and 40 GB of date, Sprint announced a new single line plan that offers unlimited text, talk and data for only $60 per month. The new plan follows on previous reports that a similar plan was in the works for $50 a month.
Startup will need to take the case district court if it wants to continue fighting
Aereo, the broadcasting startup that allowed users to rebroadcast and time shift programming, appears to be running out of ways to stay alive. According to documents acquired by the Washington Post, the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit denied the company's recent request to reconsider the case.
Company complies with only half of judge's controversial order
Following a ruling by a Brazilian judge that anonymous social apps such as Secret violate the Brazilian constitution, Apple has removed the program from the App Store in that country, citing that its own guidelines require that apps comply with local laws in the country they're sold in. In addition to Apple, the judge ordered Google and Microsoft to also remove the app or similar apps. There has not, however, been any reports of Apple or the other companies remotely deleting the app from users' devices.
Tech could be used to keep premiums, expenditures down
Apple is talking with at least two insurance companies about its HealthKit platform in iOS 8, according to Bloomberg. These include Humana, and UnitedHealth, the US' biggest such firm. It's not clear, though, what the parties might have in mind.
One year of unlimited LTE data offered to both new T-Mobile customers and referrers
T-Mobile is ramping up its fight against Sprint, by attempting to coax subscribers to switch carrier. From August 29th, whenever a T-Mobile customer convinces another person to sign up to the carrier, both accounts will receive unlimited LTE data free for an entire year, or in the case of existing T-Mobile Simple Choice customers already having unlimited LTE, a $10 monthly credit for one year instead.
First Amazon Prime Air service could operate in Mumbai, Bangalore
Amazon's Prime Air drone delivery service will initially launch in India, according to a report. The retailer is allegedly preparing the service, which uses an army of automated flying drones to carry light parcels, to operate out of its warehouses in Mumbai and Bangalore, with a view to getting it up and operational this October.
Releases $2.6M Apple bond covering never-enacted Galaxy Tab 10.1 sales ban
On Wednesday, US Federal District Court Judge Lucy Koh ruled on two motions in the ongoing leftover matters related to the first Apple vs. Samsung patent trial from 2012. The first ruling denied Apple the opportunity to recover attorney's fees from Samsung related to its guilty verdict on trade dress claims, and the second returned a $2.6 million Apple bond the company had put up to enforce a sales injunction against the Galaxy Tab 10.1, which was found to have copied Apple's iPad technology. No action was ever taken on the ban due to the appeals process, and both companies have since agreed to drop the injunction.
Organization debuts new Tablets/Slates category, required for gov't purchasing
The Apple iPad is overwhelmingly dominant in a new EPEAT (Electronic Product Environmental Assessment Tool) category covering tablets and slates. Out of 135 devices currently registered, 134 are simply different configurations of the iPad Air, iPad mini, and fourth-generation iPad. The one non-Apple entry is the Dell Venue 11 Pro.
Hyatt, United, Starbucks, Tripadvisor among early partners
Uber has released an anticipated API that will let third-party developers integrate its ridesharing services into their own apps. The company says it is already working with 11 high-profile partners, including Starbucks, United, OpenTable, TimeOut, Tempo, Hinge, Tripadvisor, Tripcase, Hyatt, Mememo, and Expensify. Apps based on the API will be able to show available rides and/or price and time estimates, and make use of a person's trip history.
Package changes developer ad ID with that of assailant with Cydia Substrate
A new piece of malware has started infecting jailbroken iOS devices earlier this year. The "AdThief" or "Spad" package hijacks advertising clicks and revenue, and redirects them to the author of the package, rather than the developer who inserted the advertising in the first place. The malware is simple and low profile -- it replaces the developer's ID with the attacker's ID. Mobile ad kits targeted by the AdThief malware are mostly from Chinese vendors, with four in the US, and a pair in India.
Change in Twitter policy to help protect families from malicious imagery
Twitter is now accepting requests to remove images and videos of the deceased. In a change of policy, the service announced it will take down photographs and other materials "in certain circumstances," with requests from immediate family members and other authorized individuals being considered for removal "in order to respect the wishes of loved ones."
Independent tester finds that Verizon beats out all other carriers for first half of 2014
A new study of wireless carriers for the first half emerged today, putting Verizon at the top of the pile in five categories, marking it as the best overall carrier in the United States. Market research firm RootMetrics announced its findings, showing that Verizon was the best carrier in reliability, speed, data performance and call performance.
Enforcement group wants to install 'piracy wheel clamp' through ISPs in the future
It appears that the piracy enforcement group Rightscorp has been looking into a new strategy when it comes to repeat infringers of its clients' intellectual property. In an earnings conference call last week, the company revealed a different direction that it was considering for the future, one that includes working with Internet service providers (ISP) to block Internet browsing until a payment is made to the group.
Organization believes that auction violates Spectrum Act, abuses discretion under APA Act
The National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) has filed a petition with the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, seeking a review of the Federal Communications Commission's (FCC) 2015 spectrum auction. In the filing, the NAB states that the FCC isn't taking the proper precautions to protect broadcasters that choose to retain their spectrum. According to the NAB, an updated methodology the FCC is using will result in a loss of coverage area for remaining broadcasters.
Outgoing Ballmer to spend time with Los Angeles Clippers, teaching
Steve Ballmer has stepped down his position as Microsoft board member, six months after being replaced as CEO by Satya Nadella. In a letter to the current CEO, the former leader advises that he is departing "effective immediately," citing his involvement with teaching and his ownership of the Los Angeles Clippers as keeping him "very busy."
Terms under 'quiet period' until September 30, Adam Carolla crowdfunded defense fund
Big name podcasts may be in the clear for the time being, as Personal Audio and Adam Carolla's Lotzi Digital recently agreed to jointly dismiss a patent lawsuit without prejudice last Friday. The filing, obtained by the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), comes after a settlement was reached between the two parties, the details of which have yet to be announced. Both companies are under a "quiet period" until September 30.
New malware not stealing info, passwords; just growing
The Gameover Zeus botnet has re-appeared in stronger form, with most of the infections taking place inside the US. The new botnet implementation doesn't rely on the peer-to-peer methodology of the parent strain, but instead relies on a more flexible, and harder to stop, domain generation algorithm (DGA) to determine how the malware botnet will connect with command-and-control servers.
New division encompasses 44,000 patents, three major technologies
BlackBerry has spun off a new business unit, collecting the majority of its unique technologies under one roof -- the BlackBerry Technology Solutions (BTS) division. Dr. Sandeep Chennakeshu will lead the new group, which encompasses embedded software group QNX, "Internet of Things" division Project Ion, cryptography division Certicom, RF antenna tuning group Paratek, and 44,000 associated patents.
Prediction makes assumptions on launch availability, but based on supplier data
Amit Daryanani of RBC Capital Markets, who currently forecasts sales of 56 million iPhones in the December quarter, has told investors that depending on availability and features, the next generation of iPhones could sell as many as 75 million units in the final quarter of the year, which would be an all-time record for any manufacturer, even Apple itself. By comparison, last year Apple ordered 60 million units ahead of the iPhone 5s and iPhone 5c debut.
Personal information including social security numbers stolen, no medical information
Today, in a filing with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), medical services provider Community Health Systems (CHS) revealed that it was the victim of a cyber attack that spanned a three-month period. According to the filing information, personal information from around 4.5 million patients was stolen, including Social Security numbers.
Judge allows rideshare company to return to business, ban lasted only four days
Uber fans in Berlin can rejoice for the time being, as the company has been given the go-ahead to resume its UberPop and UberBlack services today for the time being. A judge from the Berlin Administrative Court suspended the municiple ban, allowing the ride-sharing service to return to business. There is no time frame on how long the suspension will last.
One of Apple's earliest efforts in current theme
Apple's "Misunderstood" iPhone ad, aired during the holidays last year, has been awarded a 2014 Creative Arts Emmy for Outstanding Commercial. The spot was produced with the help of TBWA/Media Arts Lab and Park Pictures, and features a boy who appears to be ignoring friends and family in favor of his iPhone, but is really shooting and editing a special video (said to be based on a true story). It beat out efforts on behalf of corporations like GE, Nike, and Budweiser.
Jetpac to be removed from app store shortly, support discontinued in September
Google recently made another acquisition, this time involving a team that uses deep learning in its apps. The team behind the Jetpac City Guides app announced last week that they would be joining Google in an unspecified capacity. Details of the deal weren't disclosed, but the San Francisco-based team would be moving on to Google, leaving their apps behind in the process.
Microsoft gaming properties could continue media expansion if studio deal occurs
Sources have said that Microsoft's Xbox Entertainment Studios (XES) may not be shuttering, as previously indicated during the company's announcement of 18,000 layoffs. Microsoft has reportedly been shopping the studio around in an attempt to find it a new home, with some possible results already popping up. It is said that Microsoft has recently entered into talks with Warner Brothers about XES operating under the studio.
Breaches target 209 Supervalu stores, AB Acquisition stores in 21 states
Last week, supermarket chain Supervalu announced that it discovered an intrusion into part of its computer network, specifically for the portion that processes payments with debit and credit cards. The company believes that card data may have been stolen from 209 of its standard and franchise stores. A day prior, AB Acquisition LLC announced that its systems were breached, but was said it had yet to determine if any cardholder data had been stolen.
Lenovo on track to buy IBM server unit for $2.3 billion
IBM has gained a US national security regulatory agency's approval in one of its first steps to sell its server division to Lenovo Group, a Chinese company. The Committee on Foreign Investment in the US has deemed that the $2.3 billion dollar sale can continue with little or no risk to US security interests, despite rising conflicts about Internet issues and continued espionage allegations between the nations.
Blackberry launches 1.1 version of BBM for Windows Phone
BlackBerry has officially released BBM for Windows Phone, taking it out of beta. The new release implementes a number of bug fixes and speed improvements that the company gathered during the beta phase. The 1.1 version of the app allows users to engage in BBM Chats with one or many contacts, with the ability to share pictures, voice notes, contacts and location. Features like BBM Voice, Channels, and location sharing are still yet to be added.
London-based Vedanti Systems Limited allege post-it notes prove misdeeds
London firm Vedanti Systems Limited (VSL) is suing Google over the compression algorithms used in YouTube. According to the complaint, filed on August 10, Google uses the technology across a wide swath of Google offerings, with YouTube being the primary violator. VSL attorney Adam Levitt wrote in the complaint that "this case is yet another of the many occasions on which Google has unlawfully taken, rather than developed for itself or paid for, valuable technology that is core to the functioning of its many businesses and products."
Staff deluged by comments for and against the controversial plan
Under an onslaught of remarks, both slamming and supporting Federal Communication Commission Chairman Tom Wheeler's Net Neutrality proposal, the agency has extended the second public comment phase five days, now ending September 15. The alteration was made "to ensure that members of the public have as much time as was initially anticipated to reply to initial comments in these proceedings," according to the agency.
Plans being tested involve changes to Sprint Framily, $50 unlimited plan
Sprint is allegedly testing a suite of price plans for potential launch in the near future, not long after Marcelo Claure took to the Chief Executive Officer position. The new plans being trialled are apparently aggressive, partly to fend off T-Mobile and to recoup its haemorrhaging customer base, with one plan said to offer unlimited voice, text, and data for $50 per month.
Apple says it has worked to fix problems
The Fair Labor Association has published the results of 2013 audits of Shanghai and Changshu facilities run by Apple supplier Quanta, documenting numerous labor rights violations. These included illegal recruitment and underage labor practices, as well as health and safety problems. The audits were previously mentioned in Apple's 2014 Supplier Responsibility report, but the company has responded today with a new statement insisting that it was worked to improve conditions since, and that it will cut ties with firms that fail to meet FLA standards. "Our suppliers must live up to the toughest standards in the industry if they want to keep doing business with Apple," it says.
Previous rulings favoring Vringo nullified, revenue percentage payout killed
A long-standing court battle between Vringo's I/P Engine and Google is grinding to a halt in the Mountain View-base ad agency's favor. The US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit declared two patents of Vringo's invalid, nullifying a jury verdict that found the search engine giant and others liable for a total $30 million in damages plus a percentage of Google Adwords profits. The ruling is the latest in a string of verdicts calling into question the overall validity of software functionality patents over that of the code itself.
New IE 'not the one you remember' claim developers on Reddit.
Microsoft has had several discussions at high levels, according to reports, considering renaming the nearly two-decade old Internet Explorer browser. The move would be to distance the new versions from previous, flawed iterations, and would hopefully help to improve the image of the tarnished software. Also noted was that while there are tools for developers to test sites in Internet Explorer environments, there are no plans to make an OS X version of the browser.
Directors, executives accused of bringing company into legal trouble
A new lawsuit, filed on behalf of plaintiff R. Andre Klein, is seeking damage compensation for Apple shareholders as a result of alleged misconduct by the company's directors and executives. Lawyers for Klein accuse former CEO Steve Jobs, current CEO Tim Cook and others of "breach of fiduciary duty, gross mismanagement, corporate waste, and breach of the duty of honest services." Specifically, by engaging in anti-poaching practices, Apple leaders are said to have caused the company to break antitrust laws, issue misleading proxy statements, and suppress workers' wages.
Sharing of soccer goals via Vine, social networks claimed as a breach of copyright
Fans of soccer in the United Kingdom have been warned against the creation and sharing of animated GIFs and Vine clips of goals for high-level matches. The Premier League claims it is working on ways to trawl the Internet for football goal clips and to warn creators of the breach of copyright, just one day before the new season is set to start in the country.
Server-quality processor arriving en masse in September with up to 18 cores
Apple's much-lauded 2013 Mac Pro redesign will celebrate its first year of shipping just after Christmas, but that anniversary might bring with it an upgraded version. Intel has announced that its successor processor to the "Romley" series used in the latest Mac Pro will arrive in quantity in September. Furthering the speculation, AMD has begun outing its successors to the W7000/W8000/W9000 FirePro graphics cards, which are roughly equivalent to the custom-made D-series used in the current Mac Pro.
Korean company reportedly paid out $200 million for two-year old company
SmartThings has announced on its blog today that electronics powerhouse Samsung has acquired the home automation company. CEO Alex Hawkinson stated that SmartThings would continue operate independently under Samsung's Open Innovation Center group. TechCrunch first reported on the sale in mid-July, with sources stating a deal had been sealed for around $200 million. SmartThings didn't comment on the terms of the sale in the latest announcement.
Companies withdraw contributions after watch dog group call the donations suspect
Comcast and Time Warner Cable have withdrawn contributions to the Kaitz Dinner, a yearly event that celebrates diversity in the cable industry. News of the funding removal came after the Citizens of Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) objected to the contributions, as Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Commissioner Mignon Clyburn was being honored with an award at the event.
Company aims to fight ruling, calls decision 'not progressive'
Berlin, Germany has banned the Uber unlicensed cab service from city limits, citing concerns for passenger safety and the unregulated nature of the drivers for the service. The firm itself is liable for a fine of $33,000 per fare, with drivers themselves seeking riders likely to be hit with a $26,500 charge by authorities as well.
Last prong of three-spoke trial initial hearing held in front of skeptical judge
A nine-year-old lawsuit over Apple's digital rights management in the iTunes Music Store and on the iPod rages on. Lawyers for the complainants continue to claim that changes in iTunes blocking other companies' music stores from functioning on the iPod allowed Apple to raise prices. The $350 million lawsuit against the Cupertino manufacturer had a hearing earlier this week, following the retirement of the first judge in the case.
Company holds record for consecutive appearances
Apple has dropped from 38th to 88th place on Fortune's annual 100 Fastest-Growing Companies chart. The list includes domestic and foreign businesses that trade on US stock exchanges and have a market cap of at least $250 million. In explaining the fall, Fortune observes that while Apple's sales are high, the pace has been slowing.
Foxconn, Pegatron may ship 50 million units by end of 2014
Pegatron has won half of Apple's orders for production of the 4.7-inch iPhone 6, supply chain sources tell Digitimes. The remainder are expected to go to Foxconn, Apple's primary assembly partner. Together the two manufacturers are forecast to churn out 50 million iPhone 6 units by the end of the year.
Investigation showed no danger to Apple workers, but risks too great
Thanks to the work of activists in raising awareness of the potential risks of some chemicals used in the production process of its products, Apple has announced that it is now restricting suppliers from using n-hexane and benzene in the final assembly process, even though the company's own investigation showed there was no direct danger of contamination for Apple workers. Because of the potential effects, the chemicals (used mostly for cleaning) are no longer permitted.
P2P file-sharing, unofficial tethering both violations of the terms of plans
On the heels of Verizon's announcement that it will periodically throttle the LTE speeds of its most prodigious users during times of network congestion, a leak from T-Mobile has revealed a similar program -- but with a different approach. Rather than targeting a certain percentage of the heaviest users without discrimination, the carrier plans to first educate and then restrict the speeds of only those users who are in violation of the terms and conditions of the "unlimited' data plans through torrenting or tethering abuse.
Startup aims to bridge digital currencies, normal currencies, loyalty points with debit card
A startup is attempting to make it easier for people to pay for goods and services using digital currencies. Shift Payments, backed by Y Combinator, is testing a debit card which lets users spend Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies as if it is a normal fiat currency, with a view to allowing customers to switch between virtual currencies, normal funds, and loyalty points in the future.