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Key Issues

Remembering September 11th

Remembering September 11, 2001.



NSA Spying Seen Risking Billions in U.S. Technology Sales.  Just as the Shenzhen, China-based Huawei lost business after the report urged U.S. companies not to use its equipment, the NSA disclosures may reduce U.S. technology sales overseas by as much as $180 billion, or 25 percent of information technology services, by 2016, according to Forrester Research Inc., a research group in Cambridge, Massachusetts.  (Bloomberg)

Court Upbraided N.S.A. on Its Use of Call-Log Data.  Secret documents showed that the National Security Agency was reprimanded for violating its own rules and misleading the nation’s intelligence court about how it used data.  (NYT)

Yahoo files lawsuit against NSA over user data requests.  Yahoo say 'withholding information breeds mistrust' and asks to be allowed to make public the number of data requests it receives.  (The Guardian)

Court Says Privacy Case Can Proceed vs. Google.  A unanimous decision found little merit in Google’s legal maneuverings, stating at one critical point that the company was basically inventing meanings in an effort to declare its actions legal.  (NYT)

Google sets the pace in pushing the NSA on spying.  Companies like Yahoo, Facebook and Google have to be able to assure internet users that their private information will remain private.  (San Jose Mercury News editorial)

Brazil to U.S.: Help us move past NSA controversy.  President Dilma Rousseff is eager to end a diplomatic crisis with Washington over revelations the National Security Agency spied on her and other Brazilians, but first she wants protection against additional leaks that could embarrass her government.  (Reuters)


U.S. critical infrastructure could present a 'glass' jaw to rivals in cyberspace.  The U.S. military's embrace of offensive cyber weaponry ignores the ongoing vulnerability of the nation's critical infrastructure, including power grids and telecommunications networks, which could be targeted in retaliation for cyber attacks overseas, according to cybersecurity experts.  (Inside Cybersecurity)

Industry groups sound alarm over broad scope of cybersecurity language in defense bill.  Cybersecurity language in a defense authorization bill passed by the House could mean increased costs for contractors and a more intrusive role for military Internet traffic watchers, according to a coalition of industry associations.  (Inside Cybersecurity)


Tech still pressing on immigration.  Syria and other issues have pushed reform efforts down on the congressional priority list.  (Politico)

New U.S. labor chief urges immigration reform, wage increase.  In his first major speech since being sworn in last week as the new U.S. labor secretary, Thomas Perez vowed on Tuesday to work with President Barack Obama for comprehensive immigration reform, a higher minimum wage and implementation of new healthcare laws.  (Reuters)


Ways and Means chairman: We’re picking up the pace on tax reform.  Dave Camp and other Republicans on the panel insist there’s still plenty of political space for them to push ahead.  (The Hill)

Global Trade

Froman Vows To Engage Cleared Advisers, Stakeholders On Difficult TPP Decisions.  U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman vowed to step up USTR's engagement with cleared advisers and stakeholders over the next few weeks and months on the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) negotiations, which he said are at a stage where the United States will have to make difficult decisions in order to conclude a deal this year, according to a USTR statement.  (Inside US Trade)

India, Germany look to expand high-tech alliance.  Government officials from both nations are in Berlin this week for high-level meetings, during which they agree to identify ways to deepen bilateral trade relations in technology.  (ZDNet)

Nokia deal could help Microsoft curb Google threat in Africa.  Analysts say Microsoft’s purchase of Nokia puts it in a strong position in an African market that is starting to transition to smartphones.  (ZDNet)


Machines Made to Know You, by Touch, Voice, Even by Heart.  How can Web sites, along with smartphones, refrigerators and television sets, verify your identity? Researchers are proposing new tools to leave passwords in the dustbin of history.  (NYT)

Key To Unlocking Your Phone? Give It The Finger(print).  Passwords are a pain to remember, and they're only partially effective in securing your devices. Now, with a fingerprint scanner built into the new iPhone 5s' home button, biometrics is taking a big step into a much bigger ecosystem. But such scanners raise security and privacy concerns of their own.  (NPR)

Disney develops whispering fingers.  A technology developed by Disney Research transmits audio through the human body, which can be passed from person to person.  (BBC)

Environment & Sustainability

Industry keeps up helium fight as clock ticks.  Several major technology firms are among companies that have signed on to a letter imploring Congress to reauthorize the nation’s stockpile of helium.  (Politico Pro)

Action on efficiency on the Senate horizon.  Senate Majority Leader Reid said long-delayed energy efficiency legislation is truly coming back to the floor very soon.  (The Hill)

Why 'transactive energy' can save endangered utilities.  Don't believe all the hype spelling out gloom for utilities. A smarter grid can thrive well into the next century.  (GreenBiz)

Tech makes a city great: the McKinsey report.  According to the UN, 5 billion people will live in cities by 2030, as opposed to the 3.6 billion currently doing so. The rise of urbanization raises a key question: What should metropolitan leaders do to make their cities great? McKinsey has just released a report seeking to answer that question.  (PandoDaily)


Tech urged to weigh in on E-Rate.  The rewrite aims to raise more cash and make the program more efficient.  (Poliico)

Tech Business

Relax, says new report. Robots aren’t going to steal our jobs.  Robots are replacing workers, right? Tech creates jobs for a few, but they come at the cost of jobs for the many, right? With the rise of automation, the labor market will inevitably contract. Right? Not so right, says a new paper from the Information Technology & Innovation Foundation, a non-partisan tech policy think tank.  (PandoDaily)

Motorola now shipping 100,000 Moto X phones weekly from Texas.  Motorola is shipping 100,000 of its new Moto X phones weekly from a manufacturing facility near Dallas, a modest start for a made-in-the-USA phone that marks the most significant effort to revive the iconic company after Google Inc bought it last year.  (Reuters)

EU telecoms chief gets backing for reform package.  The European Union Commission has approved a plan to spur investment in communications networks and create a single market for telecoms services despite concerns that some parts may favor big operators, two officials said on Tuesday.  (Reuters)

More ITI Member News

Intel’s Extensive Makeover.  While Apple talked about a couple of new products on Tuesday, Intel, with much less fanfare, talked about the transformation of a world, and itself.  Wisely, it did not guarantee the success of its own changes, but showed the steps it is taking.  “We got mired down in the here and now, with this fixation on phones and devices,” Renee James, Intel’s president, said in an exclusive interview at the annual Intel Developers Forum. “We needed to step back and say there is a broader transformation going on.” (NYT)

Intel's new CEO: Company well poised for shifts in computing.  Discounting critics who contend it is mired in the slowing personal-computer market, microchip giant Intel assured a gathering of industry experts Tuesday that it is well positioned to profit from the fast-changing demands of consumers and businesses.  (San Jose Mercury News)

Apple Secures China Mobile Network License.  A Chinese regulator gave the final license necessary for the iPhone to run on China Mobile's network, opening a huge new market for Apple in China.  (WSJ)

Apple IPhone Models Show Shift From Pioneer to Emulator.  Apple Inc., the company that pioneered the era of mobile touch-based computing with the iPhone’s 2007 debut, is taking more cues from the competition.  (Bloomberg)

Dell Said to Have Enough Votes for $24.9B Buyout.  Dell Inc. (DELL) and Silver Lake Management LLC have secured enough votes for approval of their proposed $24.9 billion leveraged buyout, according to a person with knowledge of the matter.  Holders of two-thirds of the voting shares have indicated their support for the proposed transaction, the largest leveraged buyout since 2007.  (Bloomberg)

Google and EdX to Launch a UGC MOOC Site Next Year.  Google and edX are teaming up for an open-source massive open online course site,, that in 2014 will allow anyone to create and post courses. The initiative from Google comes out of the company's research group, and brings two of the stronger brand names in the biz into partnership in the rapidly-crowding online education space. Elite universities will continue to contribute to a separate MOOC site,  (WSJ)

HP’s Exit From Dow Index Signals Challenge.  Hewlett-Packard Co. (HPQ) is being removed from the Dow Jones Industrial Average, a sign of waning confidence in the company’s turnaround efforts amid an historic slump in the personal-computer industry.  (Bloomberg)

BlackBerry to Lobby on Foreign-Takeover Rule.  BlackBerry Ltd. (BBRY) is preparing to lobby the Canadian government over foreign-takeover issues amid investor concern that a domestic buyout of the struggling smartphone maker won’t happen.  The company has registered to meet with lawmakers to discuss the Investment Canada Act, which sets rules for foreign acquisitions of local companies, according to federal lobbying documents. The government automatically reviews any takeover bid of more than C$344 million ($332 million). (Bloomberg)

1600 Penn.

It’s the 12th anniversary of the September 11, 2001, attacks on the United States.  To mark the day and honor those who lost their lives that day, President Obama will participate in a moment of silence at the White House before traveling to the Pentagon for a remembrance ceremony.  This afternoon, the president will participate in a service project in the Washington, D.C., area to commemorate the September 11th National Day of Service and Remembrance.

Today on the Hill

Senate:  The Senate convenes at 10 a.m. ET and resumes consideration of the motion to proceed to a joint resolution that would authorize the use of force against Syria.

House:  The House convenes at noon ET for legislative business and is expected to pass a bill that would bar the government from providing subsidies to help individuals buy insurance under the health care law until the Health and Human Services secretary confirms that a system is in place to verify applicants’ household income and health insurance status.