Articles by date
03 July 2017
Internet business is about to get another shakeup. On May 18, the Federal Communications Commission proposed rolling back net neutrality rules that regulate how internet service providers manage internet traffic. The recent proposal from Trump-appointed FCC chairman Ajit Pai will place communications companies – including Comcast, AT&T and Verizon – under a different Communications Act classification, and potentially revert the industry to pre-2015 net neutrality regulations. Currently, internet service providers are classified as Common Carriers under Title II of the Communications Act, and are explicitly barred from treating internet traffic differently because the service is considered a utility, much like cable TV or landline phone service. Pro-net neutrality advocates argue that this classification ensures equal internet access for all businesses and consumers, while those against it – including Chairman Pai – argue that it prevents industry innovation, investment and competition.
02 July 2017
Delete Hate Speech or Pay Up, Germany Tells Social Media Companies (New York Times)
Social media companies operating in Germany face fines of as much as $57 million if they do not delete illegal, racist or slanderous comments and posts within 24 hours under a law passed on Friday.
To tackle Google's power, regulators have to go after its ownership of data by Evgeny Morozov (The Observer)
The problem with regulating technology companies is that, faced with tough new rules, they can eventually innovate their way out, often by switching to newer, unregulated technologies. The risk of targeted regulation informed by little other than economic doctrines might even be fuelling a corporate quest for eternal disruption: instead of surrendering to the regulators, technology firms prefer to abandon their old business model.
Internet regulation: is it time to rein in the tech giants? (The Observer)
“Enough is enough,” said Theresa May outside 10 Downing Street after the London Bridge attack last month. “When it comes to taking on extremism and terrorism, things need to change.” And one of those things was the behaviour of internet firms, which should not allow extremism a place to breed. “Yet that is precisely what the internet – and the big companies that provide internet-based services – provide,” she continued.
83 organisations send strong message to Five Eyes (InternetNZ)
InternetNZ - alongside 83 organisations and individuals from Five Eyes countries Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, and the United States - signed onto an open letter asking government officials to defend strong encryption.
01 July 2017
A little over 20 years ago, Grateful Dead lyricist John Perry Barlow penned a manifesto that served as the basic blueprint for Silicon Valley cyber-libertarian ideology for two decades. Premised on the notion that the Internet (capitalized here since Barlow definitely treated it as a space rather than as a tool for communication), freed from government interference and the application of laws, would produce a more perfect society in which disputes would be resolved through dialogue rather than force or mandate, he famously wrote in his 1996 Declaration of Independence of Cyberspace.
30 June 2017
Google has come face to face with two of its greatest nightmares this week. The first garnered enormous attention worldwide, and will be an expensive period regardless of how it shakes out; but the second flew below the radar, despite the fact that it could eventually be far more damaging to the company’s operating model.
Three ways the 'NotPetya' cyberattack is more complex than WannaCry (The Conversation)
The WannaCry ransomware was barely out of the headlines when another cyberattack took down computer systems around the world.
Pay TV provider Foxtel is looking to have an additional 73 domain names blocked by Australian internet service providers for engaging in or facilitating copyright infringement.
More than one in three British 15-year-olds are “extreme internet users” who spend at least six hours a day online – which is more than their counterparts in all the other 34 OECD countries apart from Chile, research has found.
Porn use on the rise among Australian teens, researchers find link with mental health problems (ABC News)
More Australian teenagers are viewing porn and doing so at a younger age than ever before, according to new research.
29 June 2017
A ransomware attack that affected at least 2,000 individuals and organisations worldwide on Tuesday appears to have been deliberately engineered to damage IT systems rather than extort funds, according to security researchers.
Why Europe got tough on Google but the U.S. couldn't (Washington Post)
In the fall of 2012 the staff at the Federal Trade Commission had concluded that Google had engaged in unfair competition by favoring its own services over those of its competitors. As the Wall Street Journal reported, the staff had recommended an enforcement action: “The 160-page critique, which was supposed to remain private but was inadvertently disclosed in an open-records request, concluded that Google’s ‘conduct has resulted — and will result — in real harm to consumers.’”
Canada’s Supreme Court upheld a British Columbia court ruling today that ordered Google to de-list entire domains and websites from its global search index.
ICANN and Verisign Renew .NET Agreement with 10% Increases Likely to See Registrar Fee of Over $15 by 2023
Verisign has entered into a renewal of the .net Registry Agreement that runs for 6 years until 30 June 2023 with no changes to the material terms to the current .net Registry Agreement from 2011. There is an expectation the agreement will be renewed in 2023 "so long as certain requirements are met".
28 June 2017
Phishing attacks increased by 65% in 2016 over 2015 to be the worst year for phishing in history according to APWG’s new Phishing Activity Trends Report. According to the report the total number of phishing attacks in 2016 was 1,220,523.
Facebook Inc said on Tuesday that 2 billion people are regularly using its flagship service, marching past another milestone in its growth from a college curiosity in the United States to the world's largest social media network.
Many organizations in Europe and the US have been crippled by a ransomware attack dubbed “Petya”. The malicious software has spread through large firms including the advertiser WPP, food company Mondelez, legal firm DLA Piper and Danish shipping and transport firm Maersk, leading to PCs and data being locked up and held for ransom.
Cyberattack Hits Ukraine Then Spreads Internationally (New York Times)
Computer systems from Ukraine to the United States were struck on Tuesday in an international cyberattack that was similar to a recent assault that crippled tens of thousands of machines worldwide.
Google fine: EU is not waging underhand trade war against US tech firms... and more coverage (The Guardian)
Let’s start by laying one falsehood to rest. In fining Google €2.42bn (£2.14bn), the European commission is not engaged in a form of underhand trade warfare against US technology companies. Instead, Margrethe Vestager, the EU competition commissioner, is addressing a central commercial question of the digital age: to what extent should companies such as Google be able to exploit their dominance in one area to gain advantage in another?
ICANN announced at its public meeting currently underway in Johannesburg, its 59th, that Kobe and Montréal would be its 64th and 66th public meetings in March and November 2019.
27 June 2017
Google hit by record-breaking €2.4bn fine from EU (The Guardian)
Google has been handed a record-breaking fine €2.42 billion fine by the European Union for abusing its dominance of the search engine market in building its online shopping service.
Facebook, YouTube, Twitter and Microsoft have created a joint forum to counter terrorism following years of criticisms that the technology corporations have failed to block violent extremists and propaganda on their platforms.
European Union officials are expected to issue a record fine of at least 1.1 billion euros, or $1.2 billion, against Google as soon as Tuesday for breaking the region’s tough competition rules.
Google’s self-professed mission is to organize the world’s information. But a company known for engineering excellence is still trying to solve the very human problem of how to organize itself.