WASHINGTON, July 13 (Reuters) - The U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) voted unanimously on Tuesday to finalize a $1.9 billion program to reimburse U.S. carriers for removing equipment from telecommunications networks from Chinese companies deemed national security threats like Huawei (HWT.UL) and ZTE Corp (000063.SZ).
Last year, the FCC designated Huawei and ZTE as national security threats to communications networks - a declaration that barred U.S. firms from tapping an $8.3 billion government fund to purchase equipment from the companies. The FCC in December adopted rules requiring carriers with ZTE or Huawei equipment to "rip and replace" that equipment.
A new report from the Government Accountability Office (GAO) has revealed near-total lack of accountability from federal agencies using facial recognition built by private companies, like Clearview AI.
Of the 14 federal agencies that said they used privately built facial recognition for criminal investigations, only Immigration and Customs Enforcement was in the process of implementing a list of approved facial recognition vendors and a log sheet for the technology’s use.
THE HAGUE, Netherlands (AP) — A Dutch consumer group is launching a 1.5 billion euro ($1.8 billion) claim against TikTok over what it alleges is unlawful harvesting of personal data from users of the popular video sharing platform.
The Consumentenbond and a foundation called Take Back Your Privacy demanded Thursday that TikTok pay damages to 1.2 million to 1.6 million Dutch children who use the app.
“The conduct of TikTok is pure exploitation,” Consumentenbond director Sandra Molenaar said in a statement. “The company earns hundreds of millions per year on the backs of children. And that while privacy law prescribes that children should receive additional protection.”
STOCKHOLM, June 22 (Reuters) - A Swedish court on Tuesday upheld a ban against Huawei (HWT.UL) selling 5G equipment in the country, dashing the Chinese company's hopes of staging a comeback in Europe and increasing the chances of potential retaliation by China against rival Ericsson (ERICb.ST).
In October, Swedish telecom regulator PTS unexpectedly banned Huawei supplying 5G equipment to Swedish mobile firms due to security concerns raised by Sweden's security service SAPO, a decision the Chinese company challenged in the court.
"Sweden's security is of heavy importance and the administrative court has taken into account that only the Security Police and the armed forces together have an overall picture regarding the security situation and the threat to Sweden," the court said in a statement.
LONDON (AP) — Facebook’s WhatsApp faces a complaint from European Union consumer groups who say the chat service has been unfairly pressuring users to accept a new privacy update in what it calls a breach of the bloc’s regulations.
WASHINGTON, June 30 (Reuters) - The United States needs to accord the same legal protections to user data held on tech companies' servers as it does to physical files stored in personal file cabinets, media attorneys and lawmakers said Wednesday.
The witnesses spoke at a hearing on whether the U.S. government overuses it secret subpoena power in a way that harms American internet users. The proceeding follows revelations that former President Donald Trump's U.S. Department of Justice secretly sought the phone records of reporters and Democratic representatives to investigate the leaks of classified material.
In March 2016, “smart” doorbell camera maker Ring was a growing company attempting to market its wireless smart security camera when it received an email from an officer in the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) Gang and Narcotics Division, who was interested in purchasing a slew of devices.
The Los Angeles detective wanted 20 cameras, consisting of 10 doorbell cameras and 10 “stick up” cameras, which retailed for nearly $3,000. Ring, headquartered in nearby Santa Monica, first offered a discount but quickly sweetened the deal: “I’d be happy to send you those units free of charge,” a Ring employee told the officer, according to emails released in response to California Public Records Act (CPRA) requests filed by EFF and NBC’s Clark Fouraker. These emails are also the subject of a detailed new report from the Los Angeles Times.
ByteDance, the Beijing-based parent company of video sharing app TikTok has started selling TikTok’s AI to other companies, the Financial Times reports (may require subscription). The company has a new division called BytePlus, and according to its website, its client list already includes US fashion app Goat, Singapore travel site WeGo, Indonesian shopping app Chilibeli, and India-based social gaming platform GamesApp.
TikTok’s recommendation algorithm is a huge part of what has made it so popular. Essentially, the way you interact with the app affects what videos it will recommend to you. The company explained in a blog post last year how its ForYou feed determines what videos to serve a given user. Its recommendations are based on user interactions including which videos you like, share comment on, or create; video information, such as captions and hashtags; and device and account settings including what device you’re using, your language preferences, and your location settings.
Google is announcing today that it is delaying its plans to phase out third-party cookies in the Chrome browser until 2023, a year or so later than originally planned. Other browsers like Safari and Firefox have already implemented some blocking against third-party tracking cookies, but Chrome is the most-used desktop browser, and so its shift will be more consequential for the ad industry. That’s why the term “cookiepocalypse” has taken hold.
In the blog post announcing the delay, Google says that decision to phase out cookies over a “three month period” in mid-2023 is “subject to our engagement with the United Kingdom’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA).” In other words, it is pinning part of the delay on its need to work more closely with regulators to come up with new technologies to replace third-party cookies for use in advertising.
Over the past year, the use of online proctoring apps has skyrocketed. But while companies have seen upwards of a 500% increase in their usage, legitimate concerns about their invasiveness, potential bias, and efficacy are also on the rise. These concerns even led to a U.S. Senate inquiry letter requesting detailed information from three of the top proctoring companies—Proctorio, ProctorU, and ExamSoft—which combined have proctored at least 30 million tests over the course of the pandemic.1 Unfortunately, the companies mostly dismissed the senators’ concerns, in some cases stretching the truth about how the proctoring apps work, and in other cases downplaying the damage this software inflicts on vulnerable students.