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The Register - Business: Policy

Biting the hand that feeds IT

Copyright: Copyright 2018, Situation Publishing

Addicts of Facebook and pals are easy prey for manipulative scumbags – thanks to tech giants' 'extraordinary reach'

Tue, 20 Mar 2018 19:11:08 GMT

Let me at 'em, growls EU privacy watchdog

Relying on internet giants' goodwill to stop the spread of misinformation online and prevent the manipulation of netizens has failed, Europe's top data protection watchdog has said, adding that regulators now need to take action.…

US govt's final bid to extradite Lauri Love kicked into touch

Tue, 20 Mar 2018 16:06:07 GMT

UK High Court refuses to certify point-of-law appeal

The US government has had its final shot at arguing for the extradition of accused hacker Lauri Love snuffed out by the High Court in London, England.…

We need to talk, Brit Parliamentary committee tells Mark Zuckerberg

Tue, 20 Mar 2018 14:59:11 GMT

Cambridge Analytica brouhaha fallout continues

The Parliament’s Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee has demanded Facebook chief Mark Zuckerberg “appear before us to give oral evidence” in the fallout over Cambridge Analytica – while an ex-Facebooker is due to spill the beans tomorrow.…

Gartner's top tip to data crunchers on the eve of GDPR? Don't be creepy

Tue, 20 Mar 2018 12:56:12 GMT

Why do people forget they're a customer outside the office?

Businesses risk losing millions from the investments they made in data and analytics if they don’t respect their customers’ privacy, according to Gartner research director Bart Willemsen.…

Here is how Google handles Right To Be Forgotten requests

Mon, 19 Mar 2018 09:43:13 GMT

Software engineer? Lawyer? Not a lawyer, even? Sure, have a go

RTBF trial Google allows software engineers, as well as its dedicated Right To Be Forgotten (RTBF) operatives, to make decisions about which search results ought to be deleted on request – and places such requests onto its internal bug-handling systems.…

Whois? More like WHOWAS: Domain database on verge of collapse over EU privacy

Fri, 16 Mar 2018 19:58:11 GMT

Governments refuse to get sucked into policy shambles, kibosh DNS GDPR plans

An effort to resolve conflicts between upcoming European privacy legislation and the global Whois service for domain names has, predictably, failed, raising fears that cybercriminals will take advantage of the impasse.…

Konichiw-aaaaargh! Amazon's Japanese HQ raided in antitrust probe

Fri, 16 Mar 2018 19:27:07 GMT

Bezos Bunch under the microscope of anti-monopoly cops

Amazon has had its Japanese headquarters raided by police as the web giant finds itself the focus of an antitrust probe.… told: Draw up code of practice for cops bulk-slurping car plates

Fri, 16 Mar 2018 16:40:13 GMT

CCTV commish welcomes amendment 3 years after first suggested

UK government will be forced to debate a code of practice for cops' use of automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) systems after Labour MPs tabled an amendment to the Data Protection Bill.…

Birmingham UK to Uber: Want a new licence? Tell us about your operating model

Fri, 16 Mar 2018 14:17:05 GMT

App biz's Nice Guy makeover yet to convince all regulators

Birmingham authorities have asked for more information on Uber's business model and operations before granting it a new licence.…

Techies building UK web smut age check tools: You'll get a spec next week

Fri, 16 Mar 2018 12:17:24 GMT

Citizens not keen on having habits tracked are watching closely

A spec for online age verification is due to be published on Monday, a decision backers hope will pacify opponents of the smut checks.…

Take that, com-raid: US Treasury slaps financial sanctions on Russians for cyber-shenanigans, 2016 election meddling

Thu, 15 Mar 2018 18:57:42 GMT

Но все же никакого сговора

The US Treasury is freezing the assets of 19 people and five groups from Russia who launched cyber-attacks and interfered with America's elections.…

Google to 'forget me' man: Have you forgotten what you said earlier?

Thu, 15 Mar 2018 14:59:08 GMT

To forget, or not to forget? That is the question

RTBF trial The man demanding Google deletes search links to interviews he gave about a criminal offence he committed has been accused of giving “demonstrably false” answers in court by Google’s barrister.…

NHS Digital heads accused of being 'suppliers', not 'custodians' of UK patient data

Thu, 15 Mar 2018 13:19:13 GMT

Compliance with Home Office data-slurp not cool, say MPs

The heads of the Digital arm of the UK's National Health Service have been accused of acting as suppliers, rather than guardians, of the data belonging to patients under their care by handing address information to the Home Office for immigration enforcement.… to plough £67m into gigabit broadband for all and sundry

Thu, 15 Mar 2018 11:41:14 GMT

Handouts from March but you're on your own for line rental fees

The UK government has unveiled its £67m broadband voucher scheme, flinging £3,000 at SMEs to set up gigabit connections and handing £500 ones to regular folk*. After that users have to stump up the rest in ongoing rental fees.…

Trump’s immigration policies costing US tech jobs says LogMeIn CEO

Thu, 15 Mar 2018 04:58:13 GMT

If you can’t bring people in, you build bigger offices offshore

President Trump’s immigration policies are costing the United States technology jobs, rather than their intended effect of growing them, according to Bill Wagner, the CEO of LogMeIn.…

After repeated warnings Facebook bans Britain First for 'inciting hatred'

Wed, 14 Mar 2018 18:19:08 GMT

Party leaders would protest but they're currently in prison

Facebook has removed the pages of far right group Britain First from its platform along with those of its party's leaders.… urged to ensure punters can 'still roam like at home' after Brexit

Wed, 14 Mar 2018 15:31:43 GMT

Also holibobs disruption from 2019 if aviation deal isn't struck

Consumer charity Which? has called on the UK government to ensure consumers will continue to "roam like at home" while abroad in the European Union after Britain's withdrawal from the bloc.…

Crypto crackdown: Google bans ads for unregulated currencies

Wed, 14 Mar 2018 12:08:13 GMT

Bitcoin prices plummet

Google has joined the Bitcoin-hating bandwagon with a ban on ads for cryptocurrencies and initial coin offerings from June.…

Uncle Sam slams plans to give govts final say over domain privacy

Tue, 13 Mar 2018 22:29:23 GMT

ICANN throws itself under bus to hit GDPR deadline

A plan by ICANN to let governments collectively decide who is allowed to bypass new European privacy rules over domain names has been blasted by its most powerful member, the United States.…

US government privacy watchdog stumbles back to its feet with new hires

Tue, 13 Mar 2018 20:16:49 GMT

But look closely and you'll note the PCLOB has no teeth

The federal agency designed to ensure US spy agencies protect people's privacy and civil liberties has been revived two years after it was effectively killed off by Congress.…

Uni IT man stole £22k of Macs to pay for smack

Tue, 13 Mar 2018 18:45:08 GMT

Lawless man sold lifestyle devices at Cash Converters

A university IT technician stole Apple Macs valued at £22,200 and flogged them for £200 a piece at rail pawnbroker Cash Converters to fund his drug habit, a court has heard.…

Privacy folk raise alarm over schools snooping on kids' online habits

Tue, 13 Mar 2018 16:10:08 GMT

Survey finds almost half track students' internet use

Privacy activists have called for more transparency and parental control over web monitoring in British schools after a survey indicated that almost half track their students online.…

Please, Hammond ... don't hurt 'em: 'Suggestions' time for UK digi tax clampdown

Tue, 13 Mar 2018 15:18:07 GMT

Spring mini-statement for the UK: Who gets broadband cash etc

UK Chancellor of the Exchequer* Philip Hammond unveiled the first areas to receive £95m from the government's full-fibre fund and suggestions for how the UK could tax large digital businesses - in a slimmed-down "Spring Statement" light on details.…

Man who gave interviews about his crimes asks court to delete Google results

Tue, 13 Mar 2018 10:37:19 GMT

Case continues in London

RTBF Trial The Right to be Forgotten trial has heard arguments on whether a man who gave interviews about his criminal past should be able to have those reports, among others, deleted from Google Search.…

London Mayor calls for social networks and sharing economy to stop harming society

Tue, 13 Mar 2018 08:02:10 GMT

And for politicians to regulate before disruption disrupts disruptively

London Mayor Sadiq Khan has called for social networks and sharing economy platforms to act for social good, rather than profit.…

Transport for New South Wales told to stop tracking oldies, students

Tue, 13 Mar 2018 00:47:27 GMT

Full-fare payers can travel anonymously, but not concession-card holders

The public transport authority in the Australian State of New South Wales has been told to limit the amount of data it collects with its stored value "Opal card", after a decision released by the state's Civil and Administrative Tribunal in February 2018.…

What would Jesus sue? The FCC, it seems

Mon, 12 Mar 2018 21:54:52 GMT

United Church of Christ not serene about Sinclair media ownership rule relaxation

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has picked up another foe in its ongoing love-in with Big Cable. But this time it's the Big Guy. Yes, we're talking about Jesus.…

Tech giants should take the rap for enabling fake news, boffins tell EU

Mon, 12 Mar 2018 17:31:04 GMT

Yes, yeesss, give us lots of new things to do, say academics

Giant US tech platforms are spreading misinformation and deliberately hiding their algorithms to evade scrutiny, according to a report for the European Commission.…

Age checks for UK pr0n site visitors on ice as regulator cobbles together some guidance

Mon, 12 Mar 2018 12:26:10 GMT

April no longer deadline for compliance

Smut gazers today breathed a sigh of collective relief as UK government delayed controversial age verification checks for online porn – because the new regulator set up to oversee them still hasn't issued guidance.…

UK digi minister Hancock suggests Facebook and pals give your kids a time-out

Mon, 12 Mar 2018 11:27:14 GMT

Oh plus this GREAT idea... 14-and-ups should hand over their data

UK Minister of Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Matt Hancock said this weekend he wants social media sites to enforce a cut-off for youngsters on Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat and the like.…

Tim Berners-Lee says regulation of the web may be needed

Mon, 12 Mar 2018 08:32:12 GMT

Social networks have too much power, says web daddy, and their profit motive means they won't act for the good of all

Sir Timothy Berners-Lee has used the 29th anniversary of the publication of his proposal for an "information management" system that became the world-wide web to warn his creation is in peril.…

Department of Work and Pensions internal docs reveal troubled history of Universal Credit

Fri, 09 Mar 2018 14:40:06 GMT gives in, publishes after 2-year legal spat

After a two-year legal battle, the UK government's Department for Work and Pensions has capitulated – and released a series of embarrassing assessments of its disastrous Universal Credit programme.…

NHS Digital to probe live-stream spillage of confidential patient info – after El Reg tipoff

Fri, 09 Mar 2018 13:07:09 GMT

Risk of app's vid demo falls under spotlight

Exclusive NHS Digital has opened an inquiry after patients' personal information was revealed during a live-streamed research session for a new app.…

Brit spy wrangler details sign-off process for snooping warrants

Fri, 09 Mar 2018 12:07:22 GMT

Transparency doc on spooks data slurping released

The Investigatory Powers Commissioner's Office, the body tasked with watching UK spooks, has revealed how it will decide whether to approve snooping warrants authorised by government.…

Most IT contractors want employment benefits if clobbered with IR35

Fri, 09 Mar 2018 09:31:05 GMT

That'll go down well with full-time Sir Humphreys..

The vast majority of IT contractors believe they should receive employment benefits, such as sick pay and holiday leave, if they are to be classed within the IR35 tax clampdown.…

I'm anti-Google, please elect me: Senate hopeful rides tech backlash

Thu, 08 Mar 2018 23:00:07 GMT

Missouri attorney general Hawley hopes to tap into ire against Silicon Valley

In another sign that anti-tech sentiment is rising in the United States, the Attorney General of Missouri is using his stance against Google as a platform to run for a Senate seat this November.…

Got some broken tech? Super Cali's trinket fix-it law brought into focus

Thu, 08 Mar 2018 19:38:57 GMT

Right to Repair Act just in case your phone becomes atrocious

Lawmakers in the US state of California are mulling proposed rules that would force electronics makers to allow people to repair devices themselves.…

Info Commissioner tears into Google's 'call us journalists' trial defence

Thu, 08 Mar 2018 14:56:06 GMT

No wriggling out of regulation, snarls ICO chief

RTBF Trial UK Information Commissioner Elizabeth Denham has declared war on Google, urging the High Court to throw out the ad biz's defences in the Right To Be Forgotten trial because they are "impermissibly broad".…

Does Parliament or Google decide when your criminal past is forgotten?

Thu, 08 Mar 2018 12:18:23 GMT

Right To Be Forgotten trial reaches halfway mark

RTBF Trial "It's never been suggested that the public have some right to require the press to impart information to them," barrister Hugh Tomlinson QC told the Right To Be Forgotten trial in London's High Court yesterday.…

Defra to MPs: There's no way Brexit IT can be as crap as rural payments

Thu, 08 Mar 2018 10:29:06 GMT

Look, we're used to dealing with cock-ups

The IT challenges posed by Brexit to the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) are "significantly less complex" than its woeful Common Agricultural Payments system, Defra's permanent secretary has told MPs.…

Sci-tech wants skilled worker cap on PhD and shortage jobs scrapped

Thu, 08 Mar 2018 10:03:13 GMT

Limit 'undermines business confidence', groups tell

Forty industry bodies have called on UK government to rethink its cap on skilled workers' visas, which has been reached for the last three months running.…

FBI chief asks tech industry to build crypto-busting not-a-backdoor

Thu, 08 Mar 2018 03:06:07 GMT

'You guys can build anything if you put your mind to it' is the gist of the argument

FBI director Christopher Wray has addressed a cyber-security conference and again called for technologists to innovate their way around strong cryptography.… Name a more iconic duo than 'culture' and 'digital'. We'll wait

Wed, 07 Mar 2018 14:21:06 GMT

Matt Hancock once again calls app Britain

Minister for fun Matt Hancock, of eponymous app fame, has unveiled a report titled "Culture is Digital" (PDF), aimed at boosting the "ultimate power couple" sectors via "an ambitious framework".…

British military spends more on computers than weapons and ammo

Wed, 07 Mar 2018 11:03:42 GMT

Shows where wars of the 21st century will really be fought...

The Ministry of Defence has admitted that it spends more on computer services than it does on weapons and ammunition for the Armed Forces.…

MPs lay into's planned immigration data exemptions

Wed, 07 Mar 2018 10:04:13 GMT

But press regulation risks derailing Data Protection Bill debate, warn observers

The UK government's plan to excuse itself from having to hand over information about the data it holds on immigrants has received short shrift from MPs.…

Rhode Island proposes $20 porn tax. Er, haven't we heard this before?

Tue, 06 Mar 2018 23:11:26 GMT

For example: South Carolina, Virginia, North Dakota and Kentucky

Legislators in Rhode Island have come up with a novel way to deal with online pornography: require ISPs to block sexual content and then require consumers to pay a $20 "digital access fee" if they want to see smut.…

The KITT hits the Man: US Congress urged to OK robo-car trials

Tue, 06 Mar 2018 20:13:42 GMT

Democracy being what it is, some folks are opposed

More than one hundred organizations called on US congress to fast-lane legislation on self-driving cars.…

'A sledgehammer to crack a nut': Charities slam UK voter ID trials

Tue, 06 Mar 2018 14:44:26 GMT

Electoral Reform Society says proposal is 'dangerous'

Mandatory voter ID trials are "dangerous" and won't stop the main cause of election fraud, UK government has been told.…

UK data watchdog's inaugural tech strategy was written with... *drumroll* Word 2010

Tue, 06 Mar 2018 13:43:11 GMT

So much for keeping up with the cutting edge, eh?

Staying up to date with the latest tech seems to be proving challenging for the UK's data protection watchdog.…

Reddit 'fesses up to just a little Russian reaming

Tue, 06 Mar 2018 06:28:09 GMT

CEO says propaganda's a worry, but the deeper problem is Americans' credulity

Searchers for Russian influence on the United States 2016 presidential election have of late swung their searchlights towards Reddit, which has tried to explain its role in the affair.…