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Tech News Roundup - 06/02/2017

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ITI on US Withdrawal from Paris Climate Change Agreement

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Paris Climate Change Agreement

Trump pulls U.S. out of Paris climate deal. President Donald Trump said he will withdraw the United States from the landmark 2015 global agreement to fight climate change, fulfilling a major campaign pledge. (Reuters)

Everyone But Donald Trump Is Standing By the Paris Climate Agreement. Global leaders vowed to press ahead with the Paris climate accord after Donald Trump pulled the world’s biggest economy out of the pact, and Europe’s heavy hitters rebuffed the American president’s suggestion that it could be renegotiated. (Bloomberg)

Trump Cedes Climate Policy Leadership to Xi With Paris Accord Exit. President Donald Trump’s decision to quit the Paris accord has just handed China’s President Xi Jinping a golden opportunity to burnish his country’s image as a clean-energy innovator and global leader in the drive to avoid possible future catastrophic climate change. (Bloomberg)

Paris withdrawal sets business world at odds with Trump. Captains of industry, corporations and business groups distanced themselves from the White House on Thursday, as many expressed frustration with President Donald Trump's decision to withdraw from the Paris climate accord. The reactions from across the business world—including oil producers, the tech sector and finance—stood apart from Trump's portrayal of the decision as a needed corrective to rules that could stymie commerce. ITI's Dean Garfield is quoted. (AFP)

'Climate Change Is Real': Elon Musk quits White House panels as Other US CEOs Hit Out At Donald Trump. Tesla founder Elon Musk on Thursday confirmed he would quit White House business panels in reaction to President Donald Trump's decision to withdraw from the Paris climate accord. He was joined on Thursday by other tech and industrial sector representatives who expressed frustration with the White House's decision and pledged to continue working to combat global warming. ITI's Dean Garfield is quoted. (AFP)

Silicon Valley comes out strong against Trump’s decision to abandon Paris agreement. The decision by President Donald Trump to withdraw the United States from a major international climate pact quickly reignited the White House’s long-simmering political feud with the tech industry, which had mobilized to defend the Paris agreement in recent months. (Recode)

Tech firms pushed Trump to not withdraw from Paris climate agreement. Following reports that President Trump is expected to withdraw the U.S. from the Paris climate agreement, major technology firms moved swiftly on Thursday to urge the president to reconsider. ITI's Dean Garfield is quoted. (The Hill)

Despite Paris Accord Exit, Companies See Little Change. Withdrawal from the Paris Agreement heralds a decisive change in U.S. climate policy, but many corporate leaders say it will have little immediate impact on their investments and strategies. (Wall Street Journal)

California, New York, Washington and U.S. mayors vow to lead as Trump exits Paris climate pact. State governors and city mayors were quick to claim the mantle of U.S. leadership in fighting climate change after President Donald Trump said on Thursday the country will pull out of the Paris climate agreement. (Reuters)

Major U.S. Media Outlets React:

  • Bloomberg’s Editorial: Trump's Big Paris Mistake: The president shamefully abandons the fight against humanity’s greatest threat. Any rational, responsible business leader, faced with an existential threat to his enterprise, would take steps to manage the risk. With his decision to leave the Paris climate accord, President Donald Trump is putting the lie to one of his central claims: that he would run the country like a business. Rather than remain part of the world's cooperative plan to address this danger, Trump is working to undermine it. (Bloomberg)
  • NYTimes’ Editorial: Our Disgraceful Exit From the Paris Accord. This much is clear now: Mr. Trump’s policies — the latest of which was his decision to withdraw from the 2015 Paris agreement on climate change — have dismayed America’s allies, defied the wishes of much of the American business community he pretends to help, threatened America’s competitiveness as well as job growth in crucial industries and squandered what was left of America’s claim to leadership on an issue of global importance. (New York Times)
  • WSJ Editorial: Trump Bids Paris Adieu-Growth and innovation are better forms of climate insurance. President Trump announced the U.S. will withdraw from the Paris climate agreement on Thursday, to the horror of green elites world-wide. If the decision shows he is more mindful of American economic interests than they are, the other virtue of pulling out is to expose the fraudulence of this Potemkin village. (Wall Street Journal)
  • Washington Post Editorial: Trump turns his back on the world. Global warming’s effects on major world cities could be far more devastating than previously understood according to a new study Monday. On Thursday, President Trump took a major step toward making this dystopia a reality. Not only that, he also dealt a blow to the U.S. leadership that has helped promote peace and prosperity for the past seven decades under Republican and Democratic presidents alike. The traits reflected in Mr. Trump’s decision are self-defeating selfishness, insecurity and myopia. (Washington Post)
  • USA Today Editorial: Paris pullout endangers the planet. Decades from now — if sea levels continue rising, polar ice caps keep melting and weather patterns grow ever more extreme — people might well look back at the spring of 2017 as a key turning point in the failed effort to stave off catastrophic, human-induced climate change. (USA Today)
  • LA Times Editorial: The clearest evidence yet that Trump is turning the U.S. into a force for bad in the world. Trump’s decision, while expected, is nonetheless stunning in its short-sightedness, its rejection of clear science, and its utter disregard for the nation’s long-standing role as a world leader. (Los Angeles Times)


Trump Hands China a Gift: the Chance for Global Leadership as Void in Leadership Opens Door to Global Upheaval. In quitting the Paris climate accord, President Trump creates a vacuum of global leadership that gives allies and adversaries the chance to reorder the world’s power structure. (New York Times)

EU, China Trade Tensions Cloud Climate Unity. European Union and Chinese leaders gathered in the EU capital Thursday to strengthen ties amid increasingly tense relations with the U.S., but a brewing fight over investments bedevils their efforts to tighten economic links. (Wall Street Journal)

Europe’s Bid to Seize Moment Won’t Be Easy. The European Union is back in vogue, as a recovering economic region and as a rallying cry for voters and politicians. As nationalist sentiments and U.S. dependability appear to fade, Germany and France have gaps to bridge in their common push to strengthen the EU. (Wall Street Journal)

Trump Talks Tough on Trade, but His Team Is Treading Lightly. Despite Mr. Trump’s incendiary talk, his top trade advisers are taking a more cautious approach to dealing with America’s trading partners, striking a more moderate tone than the president but still laying the groundwork for the changes he has promised. (New York Times)

China's new cyber law just kicked in and nobody's sure how it works. China's controversial new cybersecurity law came into effect Thursday in the face of criticism and confusion from international companies. The new law is meant to strengthen the protection of personal information and combat online fraud. But some experts say it's vague and leaves foreign businesses, especially tech firms, confused about how it will affect their operations. (CNN)

China’s strict cybersecurity laws took effect Thursday. The official word from Beijing’s state news agency, Xinhua, is that the law is an attempt to battle increasing threats from cyberterrorism and hacking. But it will also have a chilling effect on foreign businesses looking to grab a foothold in the world’s most populous country. So far China’s internet regulator, The Cyberspace Administration of China, has only relented on pushing back the date for laws relating to the cross-border flow of information. (TechCrunch)

Industry trade council warns against using 'sweeping' Section 232 trade restrictions. The U.S. as a result of an ongoing Section 232 investigation into steel imports should not impose broad-based remedial measures based on national security concerns, according to the National Foreign Trade Council, which says doing so would invite retaliation and ignore pre-existing trade laws created to mitigate unfair trade imports. (Inside Trade)

Canada argues NAFTA partners should be exempt from solar safeguards. The Canadian government and the Canadian solar industry have told the U.S. that because the country is not a “top-five” source of solar imports under investigation in a global safeguard case at the U.S. International Trade Commission, its participation in NAFTA should exempt it from any remedies. (Inside Trade)


Putin Hints at Role of Russians in U.S. Election Meddling. Reversing his earlier position, President Vladimir Putin said cyberattacks might have been the work of “patriotically minded” private citizens. (New York Times)

Putin Nods to Prospect That ‘Patriotic’ Russian Hackers Launched Cyberattacks. President Vladimir Putin suggested what he called patriotic Russian hackers could have been behind cyberattacks that have soured relations with the U.S. and other countries, adding fresh nuance to his denials that the Russian state was involved even while he calls fight against Russia’s critics ‘justified’. (Wall Street Journal)

How hacked computer code allegedly helped a biker gang steal 150 Jeeps. In a cross-border auto heist that resembles a scrapped plot from the “Fast and the Furious” franchise, nine members of a Tijuana-based biker club have been charged with stealing 150 Jeep Wranglers using stolen computer code and key designs, the Justice Department announced earlier this week. (Washington Post)

Conspiracies aside, automated info-sharing system still faces challenges. Whether or not the Trump White House is trying to cast aspersions on a Department of Homeland Security cyber information-sharing system, the DHS program still faces challenges in the ongoing struggle to develop an effective, national info-sharing ecosystem. (Inside Cybersecurity)

DHS: WannaCry could linger. In the days following the massive WannaCry ransomware attack that infected hundreds of thousands of computers worldwide, the Department of Homeland Security told critical infrastructure providers they would be less affected by the malware than consumers -- but that they should continue to be on guard. (FCW)

WikiLeaks says CIA’s “Pandemic” turns servers into infectious Patient Zero. Latest Vault 7 release exposes operation that infects PCs inside targeted networks. (Ars Technica)

Is government handling zero-days all wrong? When determining whether or not to disclose discovered vulnerabilities, the implications for the American economy, not national security, should be the leading priority, a former cybersecurity advisor to Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama contends. (FCW)

Tech Politics

In 2017, politics and tech are becoming inseparable. Tech has always been political, of course — the debate around net neutrality, to cite just one example, didn't just spring up on Nov. 9 — but now it's urgently political, or at least it feels like it, with the debate over issues like diversity and immigration dominating the discussion at events like Code. The truth is a little more calculated. (Mashable)


Trump administration asks Supreme Court to revive travel ban. President Donald Trump's administration on Thursday asked the U.S. Supreme Court to revive his ban on travelers from six Muslim-majority nations after it was blocked by lower courts that found it was discriminatory. (Reuters)


GOP Senators Weigh Taxing Employer-Health Plans. Senate Republicans set on reworking the Affordable Care Act are considering taxing employer-sponsored health insurance plans, a move that would potentially raise taxes on millions of people who get coverage on the job. (Wall Street Journal)

All the ways the Trump administration is making tax reform harder than it needs to be. As Senate and House Republicans try to agree on a framework for tax reform, the Trump administration is making the entire process harder, not easier, for everyone involved. It is changing huge, structural parts of the plan on a whim — and sending conflicting signals on critical budget issues. (Vox)

The Tricks That Will Deliver Tax Reform. The GOP has an arsenal of budget gimmicks to achieve massive, permanent tax cuts. Using them could be very dangerous. (Slate)

Is There a Corporate-Tax-Reform Plan B? House Republicans’ ‘border adjustment’ has run into serious resistance that could jeopardize corporate tax reform. (National Review)

GOP rep: Border-adjustment tax could 'sink' tax reform. Rep. Ron DeSantis (R-Fla.) on Thursday expressed opposition to Speaker Paul Ryan's (R-Wis.) border-adjustment tax proposal, arguing that it could jeopardize the fate of a tax code overhaul. (The Hill)

Intellectual Property

The Supreme Court Just Bolstered Your Right to Repair Stuff. This week, the highest court in the land ruled against Lexmark. Why all the fuss? Because this wasn’t really about printer toner. It was about your ownership rights, and whether a patent holder can dictate how you repair, modify, or reuse something you’ve purchased. (Wired)

Laptop Ban

Broader Laptop Ban on Airplanes May Pose Fire Risk. Banning carry-on laptops on international flights might create a fire risk from lithium batteries that would have to be stored in the cargo holds of aircraft, an aviation official warns. (Wall Street Journal)

Bomb-Sniffing Dogs, Scanners Pushed to Avoid Airline Laptop Ban. The U.S. should expand the use of bomb-sniffing dogs and screening technology to avoid a sweeping ban on electronic devices that would pummel business travel, an airline group said. (Bloomberg)


How to Make Your Browsing Data More Private than a Thousand Incognito Windows. Thanks to an assist from Congress, your cable company has the legal right to sell your web-browsing data without your consent. This is how to protect your data from preying eyes. (Wired)

Net Neutrality

Net neutrality activists have already lost, according to these execs. As the Federal Communications Commission prepares to deregulate the telecom and cable industry by rolling back the agency's net neutrality rules, some people on both sides of the issue already say the battle is pretty much moot. (Washington Post)

To kill net neutrality rules, FCC says broadband isn’t “telecommunications”. Bad news for Title II: Courts have let FCC define broadband however it wishes. (Ars Technica)

Online Extremism

EU Cheers Tech Giants’ Commitment to Tackling Online Hate Speech. YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and Microsoft have doubled their efforts over the past six months to remove hate speech and other information that incites acts of terror from their platforms, the European Union said. (Wall Street Journal)

Public Sector

Feds: internet of things potential must be weighed against risks. Elaborate networks of sensors, mobile devices and internet networks could improve federal agencies’ operations, but the benefits of connected technology must be weighed against serious security risks, government technology professionals say. (NextGov)

NIST privacy group offers advice to OMB on security for government IT, election system. An advisory group to the National Institute of Standards and Technology on data security and privacy is urging the White House Office of Management and Budget to do more in securing government systems from botnet and other emerging threats and to protect the nation's election system from foreign or other hacking. (Inside Cybersecurity)

What's slowing down DOD's data center consolidation? The slow pace of consolidating Defense Department data centers was one of the primary sources of frustration for former DOD CIO Terry Halvorsen. But acting CIO John Zangardi is taking a more glass-half-full approach. (FCW)

Sensitive Pentagon files found unsecured on AWS server. Although none of the files were classified, they included passwords to sensitive government systems, credentials belonging to a senior engineer at Booz Allen Hamilton, vulnerability reports on government source code and government contractors with Top Secret clearances after contractor Booz Allen Hamilton appears to have left them there unsecured. (FedScoop)

Banking insurance agency weak on cybersecurity. The government agency that insures banks against devastating losses isn’t doing enough to secure its sensitive financial information from cyber intruders, a government watchdog said Wednesday. (NextGov)

Cloud security provider grabs In-Q-Tel backing. The partnership opens the door for the U.S. intelligence agencies to maintain FedRAMP compliance while transitioning to Amazon Web Services. (FedScoop)

Cyber Mission Forces try to manipulate cyber terrain with new policy. The military’s Cyber Mission Forces are on track to becoming fully operational at the end of 2017, but there are still some kinks to work out, especially regarding technologies in the Third Offset Strategy. (Federal News Radio)

Think holistically about what digital services teams represent to government, report says. Agencies and policymakers must do more to support digital service teams, a new report from the IBM Center says. (FedScoop)

Executive order directs IT consolidation in New Jersey. With seven months left in office, Gov. Chris Christie gives his IT chief the nod on consolidating overlapping assets. (StateScoop)


Lyft just published its first diversity report and it’s not much better than Uber’s. Only 18 percent of Lyft’s engineering team are women, just 3 percent more than Uber’s. (Recode)

Facebook shareholders reject proposal for gender pay equity report. Facebook shareholders have once again rejected a proposal for Facebook to prepare a gender pay equity report to assess pay between men and women across race and ethnicity. (TechCrunch)

Tech Business

Tech Bubble Talk Is a Dot-Com Flashback. Technology companies comprise nearly one quarter of the S&P 500's market value. It's the highest share for tech in more than 16 years. Putting those data points together, some market watchers are worried that what has gone up in tech must inevitably come down—and take the whole ebullient stock market with it. (Bloomberg)

Walmart is asking employees to deliver packages on their way home from work. Walmart’s newest tactic in its fight against online giant Amazon: enlisting its employees to deliver online orders on their way home from work. (Washington Post)

China’s tech giants look to de-Faang US rivals. Facebook, Apple, Amazon, Netflix and Google are fueling a US stock market rally—but so too are China’s tech giants. (Financial Times)

China’s Tencent Has an Entertainment Reach Hollywood Would Envy. To imagine the power of Tencent, think of it as having networking and social media reach well beyond Facebook, a video platform like YouTube plus a movie and series producer akin to a Netflix. (Wall Street Journal)

Chipmakers at Taiwan's biggest tech fair look beyond crowded smartphone market. Chipmakers switched focus at Taiwan's top tech fair this week with bets on new areas such as driverless cars, virtual reality and artificial intelligence, shifting away from smartphones where intense competition has pushed down components prices. (Reuters)

Uber’s CFO Search May Prove Difficult. Uber Technologies Inc. may face steep challenges finding a candidate with the necessary skills to be its next chief financial officer, according to executive recruiters. (Wall Street Journal)

Nintendo’s online Switch service will launch in 2018 and cost $20 a year. Nintendo has shed more light on the paid online subscription service it’s planning to offer for its Switch console, confirming US pricing, and stating that it will launch in full at some point in 2018. (The Verge)

Here’s How to Go Public Without Wall Street. Medical-robotics maker Myomo is taking a shortcut to go public. If it is successful, other small businesses could follow, perking up a dormant corner of the U.S. IPO market. (Wall Street Journal)

Op-ED: Don't Expect Tech to Care About Your Problems. The entrepreneurs of Silicon Valley are undoubtedly finding many ways to make the world a better place—with tunnels, flying cars, interplanetary travel. Yet we can’t help noticing a growing divide between the problems people have and the problems tech companies are willing or able to solve. (Bloomberg)

ITI Member News

What’s Driving Apple’s Epic Valuation, in 14 Charts. Apple’s stock has been on a tear the past year. The company’s share price has risen about 60% since its low point May 12, 2016, adding roughly $300 billion in market capitalization. So what’s driving Apple’s shares? (Wall Street Journal)

Facebook shareholders are not happy with how it’s handling fake news. Facebook chief executive Mark Zuckerberg faced sharp criticism Thursday during the company’s annual shareholders meeting about how the company operates, deals with violence and handles fake news. (Washington Post)

Google to Prepare Publishers for Chrome Ad Blocker. Google has told publishers it will give them at least six months to prepare for a new ad-blocking tool the company is planning to introduce in its Chrome web browser next year, according to people familiar with the company’s plans. (Wall Street Journal)

Intel CEO explains why he spent $15 billion on Mobileye. Intel CEO Brian Krzanich was interviewed at Code Conference on Thursday, where he talked about his long-term vision for automobiles. He said his prediction that “the car of the future is going to look much more like a server” was a driving factor in their recent acquisition of Mobileye. (TechCrunch)

Western Digital Plans New Offer for Toshiba Chip Unit. Western Digital Corp. plans to present Toshiba Corp. with a revised offer for its memory chip unit next week in order to resolve an increasingly bitter conflict over the future of a business the two companies jointly own, according to a person familiar with the matter. (Bloomberg)

Twitter Fails E.U. Standard on Removing Hate Speech Online. The findings are part of a study by the European Commission as policy makers and tech companies battle over what should be permitted online. (New York Times)

1600 Penn.

In the morning, President Donald Trump will receive his daily intelligence briefing. In the afternoon, the President will meet with Senator Lindsey Graham. The President will then sign bills.

Today on the Hill

The House stands adjourned and is not expected to convene again for votes until 6:30 pm on Tuesday June 6.

The Senate stands adjourned to convene for a pro forma session only with no business conducted on Friday, June 2nd at 9:00am. It will next convene for legislative business at 3:00pm on Monday, June 5, 2017.

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