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09/27/2016

Key Issues

Tech Politics

What are the big tech companies lobbying for this election?. When US presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump take the stage at Hofstra University in Long Island, New York, for their first formal, head-to-head debate on Monday night, they will undoubtedly be watched carefully by senior executives of – and lobbyists for – the country’s largest technology companies. (ITI Dean Garfield Quoted, The Guardian)

Global Trade

Japan's Leader Vows to Accelerate Economic Measures, TPP. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe pledged Monday to accelerate his mix of policies to prop up Japan's economic recovery and speed up parliamentary approval of the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade pact. (AP)

Don't go wobbly on trade, GOP. Last fall, Hillary Clinton notoriously abandoned what she had once said was her most important accomplishment as secretary of state. (Washington Examiner)

There's a lot at stake for TPP ratification: USCC. U.S. Chamber of Commerce's Tami Overby says she is confident that the next U.S. president will recognize the economic potential of the TPP deal. (CNBC)

Broadband/Communications

Google backs Obama's internet transition plan. Google is throwing its support behind the Obama administration's controversial plans to hand over management of the internet domain name system. (The Hill)

A Choice Beyond Cable Box Rentals? It May Hinge on a Swing Voter. When the Federal Communications Commission announced a plan this year that would free people from having to rent cable set-top boxes, the cable and television industries balked and lobbied hard to forestall the proposal. (New York Times)

Germany seeking comprehensive 5G mobile network: report. Germany wants to become the first country to set up a comprehensive 5G mobile network, the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung quoted digital infrastructure minister Alexander Dobrindt as saying in Tuesday's editions. (Reuters)

German carmakers and technology firms form 5G telecoms association. German car makers Audi, BMW (BMWG.DE) and Daimler (DAIGn.DE) on Tuesday launched an alliance with mobile telecoms network equipment firms Ericsson (ERICb.ST), Huawei [HWT.UL], Intel (INTC.O), Nokia (NOKIA.HE) and Qualcomm (QCOM.O) to accelerate development of the infrastructure needed for self-driving cars. (Reuters)

Internet Governance

Republicans Say Obama Administration Is Giving Away The Internet. Republican lawmakers are accusing the Obama administration of allowing countries like Russia, China and Iran to take control over the Internet. Their beef with the administration focuses on a relatively obscure nonprofit overseen by the U.S. government that is scheduled to become fully independent Saturday. (NPR)

Cybersecurity

How infected IoT devices are used for massive DDoS attacks. One of the largest and most devastating distributed denial-of-service attacks to date shows how a mix of infected computers and internet-connected devices is giving attackers more firepower than ever before. (FedScoop)

Payments networks battle new breed of criminals in cyber attacks. When $81m was stolen by cyber criminals from the Bangladeshi central bank earlier this year, it was not just the money that was lost, but trust in the Swift global payments network relied on by 11,000 members. (Financial Times)

New bill would give tax credits for cyber insurance. Rep. Ed Perlmutter (D-Colo.) introduced legislation this month to subsidize data breach insurance for businesses while encouraging practices that would keep them from ever having to use it. (The Hill)

Artificial Intelligence

Artificial intelligence is too important to leave unmanaged. Artificial intelligence is having a breakout moment (again). Scarcely a day passes without some startling news emerging about the latest advances in smart machines, whether it is digital assistants, robot surgeons, or self-driving cars. Venture capital money is seemingly pouring into any start-up that can sprinkle the magic acronym AI over its pitch deck. (Financial Times)

Tax

OECD official says EU Apple ruling not precedent for future tax cases. A multi-billion euro back tax bill handed to Apple by the European Commission should not be seen as a precedent for future tax cases as it was based on state aid rather than tax law, the OECD official spearheading global tax reform said on Monday. (Reuters)

Internet of Things

Obama administration grants another $80M for smart cities. One year after launching its Smart Cities Initiative, the White House announced Monday the federal government is expanding its efforts by investing an additional $80 million in localized technology-driven initiatives. (FedScoop)

Obama Giving U.S. ‘Wide Latitude’ in Autonomous Driving Pursuit. Automated cars have the backing of President Barack Obama, who’s signed off on what’s largely been a hands-off approach to regulating the burgeoning industry, U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx said. (Bloomberg)

Renault, Nissan partner with Microsoft for connected car technology. Renault SA's carmaking alliance with Nissan Motor Co is partnering with Microsoft Corp to develop cloud-based services for cars, a step toward the group's plans to build self-driving automobiles by 2020. (Reuters)

Public Sector

Oracle to leave GSA schedule: A signal of broader change?. Oracle is leaving the General Services Administration’s schedules program. It’s not going to just stop selling directly through the IT schedule, but the software giant will no longer use third-party resellers either, according to multiple sources. (Federal News Radio)

FAA looks to take over commercial space traffic control. The Federal Aviation Administration might be extending its commercial air traffic control responsibilities into space. (FCW)

DoD to take on the next challenge with cloud: application security. Since May, the Defense Department has more than doubled the number of approved commercial cloud computing providers. (Federal News Radio)

DoD to take on the next challenge with cloud: application security. Since May, the Defense Department has more than doubled the number of approved commercial cloud computing providers. (Federal News Radio)

Federal real estate portfolio needs better organization, less red tape. The federal government reduced its facilities footprint the equivalent of three Pentagon buildings in the past five years, and it’s looking to double that amount of saved space through fiscal 2020. (Federal News Radio)

HHS targets health data blocking in new contracting guide. The Department of Health and Human Services issued an electronic health records contracting guide Monday to help health care providers avoid buying technologies or services that may ultimately prevent or limit their ability to share patient data with other systems. (FedScoop)

Reality check: Philly's cloud ambitions grind to a halt after transition. When former Philadelphia CIO Adel Ebeid declared Philadelphia a “cloud-first city” more than a year ago, he set the wheels in motion to pioneer the way that state and local governments move to the cloud. (StateScoop)

U.S. regulators accuse Palantir of discrimination against Asians. The U.S. Department of Labor on Monday filed an administrative lawsuit against Palantir Technologies, alleging the data analysis company systematically discriminated against Asian job applicants. (Reuters)

Environment/Sustainability

The circular economy as a $1 trillion opportunity. Growth without rapacious consumption of resources. Finding and realizing new value in existing, already used materials. Keeping materials and their molecules in play. A trillion dollar shot in the arm to the global economy. These are all ways the circular economy has been described. (GreenBiz)

The US May Not Be Able to Hit Its Ambitious Climate Goal. The Obama Administration has been ambitious about solving the problem of climate change. (Wired)

Why we need a carbon tax — and why it won’t be enough. It feels as if we may be getting close, or at least closer, as a nation to putting some kind of price on global warming pollution. (GreenBiz)

Which U.S. city is doing the most to save its water?. Water is complicated. We know that life depends on it and cities rely on it to thrive. It is governed by a complex and intricate set of international, federal, state and local laws. This complexity reflects some intricacies of the water cycle and the many critical roles that water plays in the natural and built environment. (GreenBiz)

How 100 Local Governments Will Work Together to Speed up Sustainability. In The Art of War, Sun Tzu wrote: “When in difficult country, do not encamp. In country where high roads intersect, join hands with your allies. Do not linger in dangerously isolated positions.” (GovTech)

A New Debate Over Pricing the Risks of Climate Change. Some companies, including Exxon Mobil, say the economics of climate change are too hard to predict for them to give investors hard numbers about the business impact of global warming. (Wall Street Journal)

Privacy

German regulator orders Facebook to delete WhatsApp user data. A German privacy regulator ordered Facebook (FB.O) on Tuesday to stop collecting and storing data of German users of its messaging app WhatsApp and to delete all data that has already been forwarded to it. (Reuters)

Tech Business

Snapchat, Known for Ephemera, Proves Its Staying Power With Videos. The Summer Olympics was something of a coming-out party for Snapchat, the mobile storytelling and messaging app. (New York Times)

Snapchat Has 60 Million Daily Users in World’s Biggest Ad Market. Snapchat now has more than 60 million daily active users in the U.S. and Canada -- about a third of what Facebook Inc. has in the world’s most lucrative advertising market. (Bloomberg)

Roku Reboots Streaming Video Lineup With Cheap HD and High-End 4K HDR Boxes. For the first time in years, Roku Inc. is revamping its entire line of streaming media boxes, keeping only one model. (Wall Street Journal)

EU's 'sharing economy' stifled by petty rules on coat hangers to light bulbs. Europe's bid to champion the "sharing economy" is being undermined in the short-term rental sector by capitals imposing petty rules such as dictating the number of coat hangers home-owners must provide, a complaint filed to the European Commission says. (Reuters)

Is this the moment e-sports comes of age?. It is a deal that could mark the moment e-sports enters the big league. The US owners of a famous basketball franchise and investors in Premier League club Crystal Palace have snapped up two of the leading e-sports teams. (BBC News)

Maps to help drivers find parking spaces. Audi, BMW and Mercedes Benz cars fitted with on-board sensors are to share information in real time about on-street parking spaces and roadworks via a digital map service. (BBC News)

German minister sets March deadline for fight against online hate. Justice Minister Heiko Maas said on Monday the German government could take legal action against Facebook and other social media groups if they do not intensify their fight against illegal hate speech or Islamist "terror phantasies". (Reuters)

BlackBerry CEO says turnaround two-thirds complete. BlackBerry Ltd Chief Executive John Chen said on Monday he was two-thirds of the way toward achieving his goal of turning the Canadian technology company's fortunes around. (Reuters)

It’s 2016. Where Are the Pizza Delivery Drones?. Drones are the future. Flying robots will tend our fields, fight fires, and definitely deliver your junk from Amazon. Most importantly, they will bring pizza — fast. Your phone will ding and there, at the door, will be food. No fumbling for cash tips; in fact, there will be none of that pesky human interaction at all. (Recode)

Yellow taxis have a new weapon in their war against Uber: gadgets. Riding in a yellow taxi used to be a miserable experience, which helps explain why Uber and Lyft were able to swoop in and so thoroughly disrupt the industry. (The Verge)

Why Money Is Rushing Into Venture Capital. Venture capitalists may be storing up supplies for winter. With VC fundraising on track for its best year since the dot-com era, some investors say there's a rush to raise cash before it disappears. (Bloomberg)

UK 'has never been more addicted to smartphones'. If you've ever woken up in the middle of the night and immediately checked your phone then you're not alone. (BBC News)

Men without work. Over the weekend, the FT published my review of Nicholas Eberstadt’s important new book Men Without Work. The core message is captured in the graph below. (Financial Times)

New EU laws legitimise fintech challengers. The difficulty of competing with banks came home to the founders of French fintech company Bankin’ in 2013 when one of them received a surprising phone call. (Financial Times)

Financial industry faces extreme disruption in payments. A few weeks before the Olympic Games started in Brazil this summer, a world record of a different kind was claimed by two small banks in Canada and Germany, when they completed a transaction that could change the world of finance. (Financial Times)

The Startup That Wants to Help You Find High-End Fashion’s Holy Grails. On SSENSE.com, the retail site for luxury fashion and independent designers, a brand new Raf Simons patch denim shirt retails for about $785. (Motherboard)

ITI Member News

Microsoft Joins Adobe to Compete With Amazon in the Cloud. Microsoft Corp. is joining with Adobe Systems Inc. to offer cloud-based products to their large mutual customer base, helping the software giant to better compete with leading cloud contender Amazon.com Inc. (Bloomberg)

Microsoft and BAML team up on blockchain-based trade finance project. Microsoft (MSFT.O) and Bank of America Merrill Lynch (BAC.N) have joined forces on a project to use blockchain technology to make trade finance transactions faster, cheaper, safer and more transparent, the companies said on Tuesday. (Reuters)

Adobe Makes Microsoft’s Azure ‘Preferred’ Service. Adobe Systems Inc. threw some weight behind Microsoft Corp.’s cloud-computing efforts Monday, making the software giant’s Azure technology the “preferred” service for some of its offerings to business customers. (Wall Street Journal)

Making Video Ads That Work on Facebook’s Silent Screen. The Geico commercial that made its premiere this summer seemed like a standard 30-second television ad. (New York Times)

Samsung opens branch in Tel Aviv to tap into Israel’s engineering innovation. Samsung Electronics opened a branch of its early-stage technology investment program in Tel Aviv to tap into the innovative engineering Israel is known for. (Washington Post)

Senator seeks SEC probe of Yahoo disclosure on hacking. Democratic Senator Mark Warner on Monday asked the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission to investigate whether Yahoo (YHOO.O) and its senior executives fulfilled obligations to inform investors and the public about a hacking attack affecting 500 million user accounts. (Reuters)

SWIFT says bank hacks set to increase. SWIFT, whose messaging network is used by banks to send payment instructions worth trillions of dollars each day, said three clients were hacked over the summer and cyber attacks on banks are set to increase. (Reuters)

Disney Is Working With an Adviser on Potential Twitter Bid. The Walt Disney Co. is working with a financial adviser to evaluate a possible bid for Twitter Inc., according to people familiar with the matter. (Bloomberg)

Google launches service to take internet to India malls, cafes. Google, a unit of Alphabet Inc, said on Tuesday it launched Google Station in India, a service that aims to deepen its reach across the country, as the search giant seeks to bring more people on to its Google platform. (Reuters)

1600 Penn.

Today, in the morning, the President will receive the Presidential Daily Briefing in the Oval Office. In the afternoon, the President will participate in a DNC roundtable.

Today on the Hill

Today, the House will meet at 10:00 a.m. for morning hour and 12:00 p.m. for legislative business. First votes expected: 2:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m. Last votes expected: 5:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.