ITI Daily News Roundup

03/04/2015

Key Issues

Tech Business

At Geneva Auto Show, Worry About Silicon Valley. Dieter Zetsche, the chief executive of Daimler, began a meeting with reporters at the Geneva International Motor Show on Tuesday by half-jokingly asking them not to spend too much time talking about Apple. (NY Times) 

China says tech firms have nothing to fear from anti-terror law. China's proposed anti-terrorism law will not affect the legitimate interests of technology firms, a top Chinese spokeswoman said Wednesday after U.S. President Barack Obama warned of its impact and demanded amendments. (Reuters)

FAA wants to speed approval process for commercial drones. The Federal Aviation Administration is seeking ways to speed up the approval process for commercial drone operations, but its efforts have been hindered by its lack of authority to review multiple applications on a group basis, the FAA chief said on Tuesday. (Reuters) 

NBCU Plans Subscription Comedy Video Service. Comcast Corp. ’s NBCUniversal is aiming to launch a comedy-focused subscription Web video service later this year, people familiar with the plans say, signaling the company’s growing interest in reaching young viewers online as its traditional cable-TV business stagnates. (WSJ)

The Next Marketing Frontier: Your Medical Records. When Allan Treadwell views patient charts on his computer, a yellow alert sometimes pops up—a handy feature that tells him when a patient is due for vaccines for hepatitis B, influenza or other ailments. (WSJ)

Tech Firms Buy Up Land, Seeking Room to Grow. Some of Silicon Valley’s biggest companies are on a real estate buying binge, paying premium prices to make sure they have enough space for future expansion. (WSJ)

This Article Was Written With the Help of a ‘Cyber’ MachineOveruse of prefix sparks a backlash, but alternatives are few; ‘computery’. (WSJ)

Broadband

Affordability report shows why emerging markets need smart internet policies. The Alliance for Affordable Internet (A4AI) has released its latest study into, well, the affordability of internet access. The study shows how big the challenge is on that front in emerging markets – for over two billion people there, fixed-line broadband costs on average 40 percent of their monthly income, and mobile broadband costs on average 10 percent of their monthly income. (Gigaom) 

Italy approves plan to boost broadband networks. The Italian government approved a plan on Tuesday to bring its high-speed broadband network into line with European Union targets, but it held back from forcing operators to replace their copper-wire networks with fiber-optic cable. (Reuters)

Net Neutrality

The FCC Has Ruled on Net Neutrality; Do States Get a Say? Among the many details of the FCC's net-neutrality plan that remain vague is the role of states in implementing the regulations, setting in a modern context one of the oldest debates in American politics: the overlapping and sometimes conflicting roles of state and federal government. (National Journal) 

Proposals on European net neutrality open ‘two-speed’ internet. European internet providers would be allowed to profit from “two-speed” data services under proposals being considered in Brussels, opening a transatlantic divide on telecoms regulation after the US banned similar tactics last week. (FT) 

Why Comcast, AT&T and other Internet providers might not sue the FCC after all. Internet providers are widely expected to sue the Federal Communications Commission to overturn the agency's new net neutrality rules. Who will fire the opening salvo, and when, is becoming the subject of a new Washington parlor game — at least until the rules are actually published. (Washington Post) 

Privacy

Chertoff: Protect electronic conversation privacy today. The time is ripe to revisit how electronic communications are intercepted by law enforcement. (USA Today Op-Ed) 

Internet Memes And 'The Right To Be Forgotten'. "Scumbag Steve," "Overly Attached Girlfriend," "Bad Luck Brian." All these Internet celebrities have one thing in common: They didn't intend to become famous. Their pictures just happened to go viral. (NPR)

Obama is upset that China wants tech companies to undermine their own security. President Obama came out against back doors in encrypted communications -- if the Chinese government can access them. But the president has avoided taking a position on whether tech companies should build in ways for U.S. law enforcement to access secure communications, a policy endorsed by some high-ranking administration figures. (Washington Post)

Time Is Running Out on NSA Reform. Lawmakers have less than 100 days left to decide whether they want to reform the National Security Agency's controversial bulk collection of U.S. call data—or risk losing the program entirely. (National Journal) 

Cybersecurity

A lackluster FISMA report card. The Office of Management and Budget's annual cybersecurity report card noted an increase in both cyber intrusions and measures agencies took to detect them. (FCW)

DHS plans meeting on new cybersecurity info-sharing entities and standards. The Department of Homeland Security has scheduled a March 18 meeting on the development of new organizations and standards for the sharing of cyber threat data among public and private sector stakeholders. (Inside Cybersecurity)

FCC’s ‘new paradigm’ for cybersecurity will have to wait. The cybersecurity of the U.S. telecommunications system is simple to measure, the industry says in a new report: If the phone gives a dial tone and the Internet loads webpages, it’s secure. (Politico Pro)

‘FREAK’ flaw undermines security for Apple and Google users, researchers discover. Technology companies are scrambling to fix a major security flaw that for more than a decade left users of Apple and Google devices vulnerable to hacking when they visited millions of supposedly secure Web sites, including Whitehouse.gov, NSA.gov and FBI.gov. (Washington Post) 

How Secure Could Hillary Clinton’s Personal Email Be? Hillary Clinton's use of a personal email account during her time as secretary of State is raising alarm over how secure her communications were from hackers and foreign governments interested in prying into private files of the nation's top diplomat. (National Journal)

Official Says FAA Is Trying To Keep Hackers Out Of Air Traffic Control. FAA Administrator Michael Huerta told Congress today his agency is implementing changes to insure the nation's air traffic control system is protected against computer hackers. Huerta told a House panel "the system is safe," despite a Government Accountability Office report that found "significant security control weaknesses." (NPR) 

Regulator accused of overstepping on cybersecurity enforcement. A federal consumer watchdog has overstepped its authority by punishing companies for weak cybersecurity, lawyers for Wyndham Worldwide argued Tuesday. (The Hill)

Global Trade

Hatch Says Congress Won't Consider TPA Before April; Hints No Bill Before Then. Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch (R-UT) said Tuesday (March 3) that he does not expect Congress to consider a bill to renew Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) before April, as he is still at odds with Finance Ranking Member Ron Wyden (D-OR) over language in the legislation that would allow Congress to strip a completed trade agreement of fast-track protection. (World Trade Online)

Japanese official: Adding currency rules would kill Pacific trade pact. Any effort to add rules against manipulation of currencies in a 12-nation Pacific trade pact would mean the end of negotiations, a senior Japanese negotiator said on Tuesday. (Reuters) 

Republicans press Wyden to back off TPA demands. Senate Republicans on Tuesday accused Sen. Ron Wyden of seeking changes to trade promotion legislation that would make it harder for the White House to negotiate and win approval of trade agreements, but they expressed hope a deal could be reached with the Oregon Democrat by the end of the month. (Politico Pro)

Unions plan Capitol Hill trade blitz. Labor unions are ramping up their campaign against trade promotion authority (TPA) with a planned blitz on Capitol Hill. (The Hill)

Tax

Rubio tax plan takes aim at big business break. Sen. Marco Rubio is the first major 2016 presidential hopeful with a detailed tax plan, and the business community is not likely to be pleased. (Politico Pro) 

Upholding Internet Sales Tax Law, a Justice Invites a New Case. The Supreme Court on Tuesday handed a victory to a trade group challenging a Colorado law seeking to aid state authorities in the collection of sales taxes on out-of-state purchases made online. (Washington Post) 

Environment and Sustainability

SolarCity sues Arizona utility over solar anti-competitive practices. The solar financier and installer chaired by Elon Musk, SolarCity, has filed a lawsuit in Arizona federal court claiming that the Arizona utility Salt River Project is using anti-competitive practices to maintain a monopoly around energy and solar power and unfairly block competition. (Gigaom)

Public Sector

GSA proposes to change acquisition regulation vendors loathe. The General Services Administration once again is trying to change one of the acquisition rules that industry despises the most — the Price Reduction Clause. (Federal News Radio) 

Is more data science in the stars for NASA? A new job posting shows that NASA is ready to follow the biggest hiring trend the federal government is currently seeing. (FedScoop)

OFPP set for new IT acquisition initiatives. Three months ago the Office of Management and Budget issued a memo to federal agencies expanding category management practices and digital acquisition strategies, and championing more effective vendor engagement on large-scale IT projects. Now it's looking to go even further. (FCW) 

Utah governor calls state a ‘technology haven’. Lehi, Utah, may be a little colder and more mountainous than California’s Silicon Valley, but that doesn’t stop Utah Gov. Gary Herbert from speaking out in favor of his state’s technology industry potential. (StateScoop) 

Innovation

This strange and beautiful object is a 3D-printed violin. A 3D-printed violin is just one of a suite of instruments designed to provide a collaborative experience exploring our relationship with sound. (CNET)

Mobility

We can't avoid the war around us: Life as an Afghan mobile telco. Roshan faces having 19 of its 1,000 base stations attacked every month, but life is improving for Afghanistan's largest mobile network operator. (ZDNet)

ITI Member News

Apple granted patent to use wireless strength map data for vehicle navigation. Apple was issued a patent on Tuesday for vehicle navigation technology that can take wireless signal strength into account for planning a route. Apple first filed for the patent in August 2012, and Apple wireless executives Swapnil Dave and Devrim Varolgu are listed as inventors on the filing. (Gigaom)

'Avengers'-style 'Community' trailer sends Greendale into the Yahoo age. "Community" is coming back for a sixth season thanks to Yahoo, and a new trailer builds the hype for what looks to be the triumphant return of Greendale's most prominent study group. (CNET) 

HP fine-tunes its multi-cloud pitch. It must be really interesting to work at Hewlett-Packard these days. Not only is the company breaking itself in half, it’s making multi-billion-dollar acquisitions and it’s balancing an array of cloud offerings. Oh, and it just shook up cloud management, with Marten Mickos turning key responsibilities over to three other execs, including Bill Hilf,  SVP of HP Helion product management. (Gigaom)

1600 Penn.

Today, President Obama will attend closed press meetings at the White House.

Today on the Hill

The House will meet at 10 a.m. for morning hour and 12 p.m. for legislative business.

The Senate will convene at 9:30 a.m. and resume consideration of S.J.Res.8, a joint resolution of disapproval of the NLRB rule on representation case procedures.

 

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