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The Register - Business

Biting the hand that feeds IT

Copyright: Copyright 2018, Situation Publishing

BT: We're shuttering final salary pension scheme

Mon, 19 Mar 2018 18:02:17 GMT

Hybrid arrangement hatched, union says it's best they'll get

Former UK state-owned telco monopoly BT has confirmed the closure of the defined benefit BT Pension Scheme (BTPS) from the end of May with a "hybrid" replacement waiting in the wings.…

UK tech whale Micro Focus: Share price halves as CEO quits, sales slide

Mon, 19 Mar 2018 12:30:10 GMT

About that business model of buying legacy software brands..

The brief tenure of Micro Focus CEO Chris Hsu came to an abrupt end today when he quit following a sales slide and confirmation of execution missteps since the purchase of HPE’s Software division.…

Nice little Nesta egg: Former lottery quango took cash from Google

Mon, 19 Mar 2018 10:57:25 GMT

Founded pro-Big Tech think tank Readie

Former UK lottery quango Nesta pocketed cash from Google to set up a Big Tech-friendly think tank.…

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.…

Breaking up is hard to do: Airbus, new bae Google and clinging on to Microsoft's 'solutions'

Mon, 19 Mar 2018 09:06:14 GMT

Ex still has place in the helicoptery, defencey bit of Airbus’s heart

Airbus won't eradicate Microsoft Office from its entire user base after all it seems: the Defence, Space and Helicopters units will retain the on-premises version due to the "legal and national security implications" of storing sensitive data in the cloud.…

Sysadmin held a rack of servers off the ground for 15 mins, crashed ISP when he put them down

Mon, 19 Mar 2018 08:05:10 GMT

Help desk covered his tracks by telling ALL callers to reboot their PCs

Who, me? Welcome to the ninth edition of Who, me? In case you’ve come late to the party, it’s The Register’s Monday column featuring readers’ tales of stuffing things up.…

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.…

Brit retailer Currys PC World says sorry for Know How scam

Fri, 16 Mar 2018 11:29:08 GMT

Forced punters to cough extra £40 for pre-configured laptops

Currys PC World today apologised for forcing customers to pay an extra £40 for pre-configuration on their laptops that they didn't request – a dodgy practice brought to light by consumer charity Which?…

Office junior had one job: Tearing perforated bits off tractor-feed dot matrix printer paper

Fri, 16 Mar 2018 07:02:12 GMT

And he couldn’t do that, until tech support showed printers and staplers don’t mix

On-Call Why look at that! Friday is upon us, which means it’s time to read this week’s edition of On-Call, our weekly column featuring Register readers’ recollections of tech support jobs gone wrong.…

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.…

Patent quality has fallen, confirm Euro examiners

Thu, 15 Mar 2018 06:00:07 GMT

Extraordinary letter to EPO Admin Council blows up management claims

An extraordinary letter from nearly 1,000 patent examiners has confirmed what critics of the European Patent Office (EPO) have been saying for some time: patent quality has fallen thanks to a determined push by management to approve more of them.…

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.…

Ex-Samsung man to serve 6+ years in prison for embezzlement

Thu, 15 Mar 2018 00:00:57 GMT

Lee forced to serve full term after eight-year hiatus

A former Samsung exec is headed to prison after losing his appeal on charges of wire and tax fraud.…

YouTube plan to use Wikipedia against crackpots hits snag

Wed, 14 Mar 2018 23:37:11 GMT

The video site neglected to inform Wikipedia that it will be leeching its labor

In Austin, Texas, on Tuesday, YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki told the audience at the South by Southwest Interactive conference that the social video site plans to defuse conspiracy theory content by pairing it with corrective information culled from Wikipedia – a site editable by more or less anyone.…

Bad blood: Theranos CEO charged with massive fraud

Wed, 14 Mar 2018 19:20:31 GMT

'Next Steve Jobs' humiliated and ruined but avoids jail

The woman heralded as "the next Steve Jobs" has been charged with massive fraud, forced to pay a $500,000 fine and been stripped of control of the company she founded.…

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.…

Broadcom’s bid to win the hand of Qualcomm ends in tears

Wed, 14 Mar 2018 13:36:08 GMT

There, there, never mind. There are plenty of other victims, er, fish in the sea

Singapore-based chip biz Broadcom announced today that it has withdrawn its bid for Qualcomm.…

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.…

Maplin shutdown sale prices still HIGHER than rivals

Wed, 14 Mar 2018 11:08:13 GMT

UK tat bazaar enters final death spiral

Closing-down sale posters are being plastered over the shop windows of moribund Brit 'leccy tat emporium Maplin Electronics, but even now the discounted goods can still be bought more cheaply from rivals.…

The Great China Tech Panic is just posh xenophobia

Wed, 14 Mar 2018 10:34:13 GMT

There's more to success than sweat and STEM

Comment Donald J Trump has been stoking xenophobia since he took office as President of the US, aiming his sharpest barbs at China. But he's not alone. Others, with better manners than the president, have too – they’re just more subtle about it.…

‘Dead weight’ Dell would destroy VMware’s value, says big investor

Wed, 14 Mar 2018 04:01:06 GMT

Jericho Capital says deal would benefit Dell alone, suggests VMware buy Red Hat instead

Investment firm Jericho Capital Asset Management L.P has departed from its usual practice of not commenting publicly on deals by publishing a scathing letter addressed to VMware’s independent directors decrying a reverse merger between VMware and Dell.…

Google ad blocks itself with DoubleClick snafu

Tue, 13 Mar 2018 22:59:34 GMT

DoubleClick for Publishers has been exhibiting unexpected behavior for several hours

Google's ad service DoubleClick for Publishers has been experiencing problems since at least 1000 Pacific Time (1700 UTC) on Tuesday.…

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.…

Keep Calm and Carillion: Outsourcers seek image rebrand after UK construction firm crash

Tue, 13 Mar 2018 12:31:07 GMT

'Cos the garden was soooo rosy before that

Outsourcers are anxious their hard-earned reputations are being besmirched by the recent collapse of Brit multinational construction firm Carillion, so much so their representative organisation is seeking a drastic image rebrand.…

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.…

Broadcom's buyout of Qualcomm bogs down as DC blocks merger

Mon, 12 Mar 2018 23:59:39 GMT

'Great, great company' to 'security risk' in six months

The White House crushed Broadcom's bid for Qualcomm, declaring the deal cannot go due to national security concerns.…

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.…

Air Canada's network soars back up after Monday morning death dive

Mon, 12 Mar 2018 20:44:14 GMT

Computer outage leaves Canucks grounded

The famed politeness of Canadians was put to the test on Monday after the nation's largest airline suffered a massive computer outage, leaving travelers stranded.…

Stock trader gets two years in prison for pumping up with Fitbit

Mon, 12 Mar 2018 19:24:12 GMT

Using wearable to get wrong kind of gains get Big House visit

A US stock trader has been sentenced to two years in prison for running a pump and dump operation involving wearables vendor Fitbit, albeit one that earned him only a few thousand dollars.…

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.…

Broadcom moves to the US: CFIUS-inspired redomiciling makes for happy voters

Mon, 12 Mar 2018 15:54:05 GMT

... even though the sound of it to Qualcomm's quite atrocious

Broadcom plans to bring forward its redomiciliation to the US to 3 April in a move that, of course, has nothing to do with Qualcomm's delayed stockholder meeting happening two days later.…

Capita screw-ups are the pits! Brit ex-miner pensioners billed for thousands in extra tax

Mon, 12 Mar 2018 14:34:07 GMT

Outsourcer blames HMRC's new PAYE portal

Troubled outsourcer Capita accidentally charged 17,000 former miners in the UK tens of thousands of pounds in extra tax, and has blamed the error on a change to HM Revenue & Customs' online PAYE portal.…

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.…

HP is turning off 'Always On' data deals but won't say why

Mon, 12 Mar 2018 09:02:08 GMT

April Fools' Day deadline set

HP Inc has terminated a mobile data service that bundled free data with select laptops, tablets and 2-in-1s.…

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.…