Articles by date

18 September 2014

John Key says Edward Snowden 'may well be right' about NSA spying on NZ (The Guardian)

The claim by Edward Snowden that New Zealanders' internet traffic is accessible through a NSA intelligence database "may well be right", the country's prime minister, John Key, has acknowledged.

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17 September 2014

Former New Zealand spy chief denies capacity for mass surveillance following Edward Snowden claims (ABC News)

The former head of the New Zealand spy agency at the centre of allegations of mass surveillance of residents says the organisation does not have the capacity for such a task.

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Google's privacy ethics tour of Europe: a complex balancing act (The Guardian)

Google's advisory council held its first two public consultations on 9 and 10 September in Madrid and Rome, inviting regulators, publishers and academics to discuss the outcome of the recent "right to be forgotten ruling" made by the European court of justice. One of 10 people on the council, Luciano Floridi is documenting the trip.

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Multinational companies' aggressive tax wheezes tackled (The Guardian)

"The only people who really have choices are politicians who set the tax rates," said Matt Brittin, a Google executive, during one of those entertaining but frustrating sessions of the public accounts committee last year.

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16 September 2014

ICANN CEO: US Not Giving Up Control Of Open Internet. Because It Doesn't Have Control. (ICANN)

"No single person, organisation or government has control of the global, decentralised internet," writes ICANN CEO and President Fadi Chehadé on the ICANN blog. "The United States is not giving up control of the open internet. How can I be sure?" Chehadé asks. "Because the U.S. does not have control of the Internet."

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Google: US government demands for user data have risen 250% since 2009 (The Guardian)

Government demands for information on Google's users have risen 150% since the tech giant first started publishing their numbers, the company said on Monday. In the US the number of requests leapt 250%.

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System failures cause most large outages of electronic communications services according to a new ENISA report (ENISA)

The European Union Agency for Network and Information Security (ENISA) publishes today the third annual report about large-scale outages in the electronic communication sector. The Annual Incidents report 2013 provides an aggregated analysis of the security incidents in 2013 which caused severe outages. Most incidents reported to regulators and ENISA involved mobile internet and mobile telephony connections. The most frequent causes are system failures affecting mainly base stations and switches.

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European court to investigate laws allowing GCHQ to snoop on journalists (The Guardian)

The European court of human rights (ECHR) is to investigate British laws that allow GCHQ and police to secretly snoop on journalists.

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Dropbox reveals government requests for user information (The Guardian)

Dropbox received 268 requests for user information from law enforcement agencies in the first half of 2014, the company has revealed in its updated transparency report.

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Turkey: Strike Down Abusive Internet Measures - Powers to Block Websites, Collect Online Data Violate Rights (Human Rights Watch)

New legal amendments giving the Turkish authorities broad powers to block websites and to amass users' internet activity data should be overturned, Human Rights Watch said today.

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F.C.C. Revisits Net Neutrality Exemption for Mobile Broadband (New York Times)

High-speed cellular Internet access has been largely exempt from regulations aimed at preventing Internet providers from slowing down or blocking websites and applications. But wireless broadband's special status is quickly losing support.

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No one group should govern Internet, says Australian Communications Minister (Computerworld)

Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull has urged world leaders to maintain a multi-stakeholder model for governance of the Internet as the United States releases its stewardship of the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA).

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Email: Warner Bros Conspired with New Zealand Over Kim Dotcom Extradition (TorrentFreak)

Kim Dotcom rolled out Julian Assange and Edward Snowden at his Moment of Truth event today, but despite promises to reveal "concrete evidence" in respect of his own case, a big reveal simply did not take place. An email reportedly set to be unveiled was dismissed as a fake by Warner Bros.

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Microsoft Says It Will Pay $2.5b for Company That Created Minecraft (New York Times)

Microsoft agreed on Monday to buy the company behind Minecraft, the world-building computer game, for $2.5 billion in a cash deal meant to add the immensely popular title to its stock of content.

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Microsoft Implements URL Keyword Stuffing Spam Filtering For Bing (Bing Blog)

Microsoft have announced they implemented a specific spam filtering mechanism for their Bing search engine a few months ago that targets a common spam technique known as URL keyword stuffing (KWS.)

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15 September 2014

Edward Snowden Accuses New Zealand Leader of Deception Over Surveillance (Wall Street Journal)

Ex-U.S. intelligence employee Edward Snowden accused New Zealand's Prime Minister John Key of deceiving the public about the mass surveillance of the nation's citizens by the country's domestic spy agency.

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Europe gears up to fight back against giant US beasts of the internet (The Guardian)

In Germany, they have a term for silicon valley companies like Google, Amazon and Facebook, the big beasts of the internet that have come to dominate our online lives. They are known as the datenkraken. The word means data octopuses, and it is intended to frighten - in Norse myth, the Kraken was a murderous sea monster.

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The NSA Breach of Telekom and Other German Firms (Der Spiegel)

According to top-secret documents from the NSA and the British agency GCHQ, the intelligence agencies are seeking to map the entire Internet, including end-user devices. In pursuing that goal, they have broken into networks belonging to Deutsche Telekom.

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Technology has transformed advertising, but consumers need to be kept on board (The Economist)

"Have you ever clicked your mouse right here?" asked the first banner advertisement in 1994. "You will," it confidently predicted. These days advertisers are feeling less certain of themselves. They are still trying to come to grips with the radical changes technology has brought to the way advertising is consumed, sold and personalised.

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Preparing for the Internet of Things (ClickZ)

Wearable technologies are about to change the way we live, and that change is coming very soon. Being on top of this next generation of Internet is imperative to understanding future consumer trends.

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Smartphones and tablets - What advertisers love, and what they hate, about mobile devices (The Economist)

Marketers' mantra of reaching "the right person, with the right message, at the right time" has become a lot more achievable in the past few years. Mobile devices, unlike desktop computers, are typically used by only one person, which is a great help to advertisers who want to target specific users. Being closely connected to people's personal lives and daily habits, the mobile device is the true "mini-me". This year, for the first time, Americans will spend more time on mobile devices (not counting talking) than they do on desktop computers. In Britain that tipping point will probably be reached in 2015.

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Want lithium-ion batteries to last? Slow charging may not be the answer (Computerworld)

New research by a California-based team could change the way lithium-ion batteries are charged in consumer electronics products and electric cars, leading to longer lifetimes and more useful batteries.

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Dating websites focus of Australian Competition and Consumer Commission's crackdown on scammers (ABC News)

The consumer watchdog is today joining an international sweep of dating and romance websites in a bid to crackdown on unscrupulous practices.

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New Zealand PM deceiving public over spying claims, says Glenn Greenwald (The Guardian)

An already tumultuous New Zealand election campaign took another dramatic turn less than a week before polling day when the prime minister, John Key, responded angrily to claims by the American journalist Glenn Greenwald that he had been "deceiving the public" over assurances on spying.

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14 September 2014

Scottish Independence Referendum Throws Up ccTLD Conundrum

The referendum the Scottish people will vote on 18 September to determine whether the country gains independence from the United Kingdom has a lot of far-reaching implications for the country, one of which that is little discussed is top level domains.

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