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Tech News Roundup - 06/27/2017

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Snapchat hires new director of US public policy. The parent company of Snapchat is tapping a new director of U.S. public policy as it ramps up its lobbying operation. (The Hill)


Eshoo pushes for cyber hygiene standards. A new bill would direct the National Institute of Standards and Technology to develop voluntary standards that would help prevent cyber infections on U.S. networks, computer systems and mobile devices. (FCW)
China pledges not to hack Canadian companies for economic gain. Canada and China have agreed not to hack into each other's companies to benefit their domestic industries. (Politico Pro)
U.S. and Israel Team Up to Fight 'Bad Actors' in Cyberspace. Israel and the U.S. are starting a high-level partnership to create a bulwark against increasingly sophisticated cyber attackers who target critical national infrastructure. (Bloomberg)

Apple, Cisco team up to push for cyber security insurance discounts. Apple Inc (AAPL.O) is working with Cisco Systems Inc (CSCO.O) to help businesses that primarily use gear from both companies to get a discount on cyber-security insurance premiums, Apple Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook said on Monday. (Reuters)

Google Fined $2.7 Billion in E.U. Antitrust Ruling. Google suffered a major regulatory blow on Tuesday after European antitrust officials fined the search giant about $2.7 billion for unfairly favoring some of its own search services over those of rivals. (New York Times)
EU hits Google with record $2.7 billion antitrust fine. EU antitrust regulators hit Alphabet (GOOGL.O) unit Google with a record 2.42-billion-euro ($2.7 billion) fine on Tuesday, indicating they will likely take a tough line with the company in two other ongoing cases. (Reuters)
Vestager's Google decision risks messy endgame. Don't judge Europe's competition case against Google by the billion-euro fine headline. Look instead at whether the EU can wring changes from a company that looks genuinely too big to hurt. (Politico Pro)
Google Said to Face $1.2 Billion Antitrust Fine, but Battle With Europe Looms. 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. (New York Times)
EU court seen ruling on Intel antitrust case next year. Europe's top court is likely to rule on Intel's (INTC.O) appeal against a record 1.06 billion euro ($1.19 billion) EU antitrust fine next year, an EU judge said on Monday, a case that may affect companies such as Google (GOOGL.O) and Qualcomm (QCOM.O) in the EU's crosshairs. (Reuters)

Social media giants step up joint fight against extremist content. Social media giants Facebook, Google's YouTube, Twitter and Microsoft said on Mondaythey were forming a global working group to combine their efforts to remove terrorist content from their platforms. (Reuters)

Public Sector

Acquisition reform prioritized in 2018 NDAA. The House Armed Services Committee wants to give the Department of Defense a check for $686 billion in fiscal year 2018, but it wants the Pentagon to do a better job of spending its allowance. (FCW)

Is there a budget deal on the horizon? The NDAA might be a clue. Over the last four days the 2018 defense authorization bill got a little smaller, but that slight change in funding could signal a much bigger budget deal on the horizon. (Federal News Radio)

The real key to technology transformation. The news has been mixed with regard to the Government Accountability Office's latest scoring of federal agencies' efforts to implement improvements mandated by the Federal Information Technology Acquisition Reform Act. (FCW)

HUD picks Johnson Joy as its new CIO. The Department of Housing and Urban Development has named a new CIO - Johnson Joy assumed the role this month. (FedScoop)

Virginia state IT agency files $300 million counterclaim against Northrop Grumman. The Virginia Information Technology Agency (VITA) has filed a counterclaim against Virginia-headquartered contractor Northrop Grumman in pursuit of $300 million in damages. (StateScoop)


Technology subcommittee 'disappointed' with slow progress in rural broadband. Industry representatives spoke before a congressional subcommittee Wednesday to discuss definitions and mapping of broadband connectivity and accessibility, emphasizing the importance of accurate data for proper allocation of taxpayer dollars to bridge the urban-rural divide. (FedScoop)


Carbon in Atmosphere Is Rising, Even as Emissions Stabilize. On the best days, the wind howling across this rugged promontory has not touched land for thousands of miles, and the arriving air seems as if it should be the cleanest in the world. (New York Times)

Sea level rise isn't just happening, it's getting faster. In at least the third such study published in the past year, scientists have confirmed seas are rising, and the rate of sea level rise is increasing as time passes - a sobering punchline for coastal communities that are only now beginning to prepare for a troubling future. (Washington Post)

Why Trump and Modi talked tech visas. When President Donald Trump and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi met at the White House Monday afternoon, they apparently discussed a program that allows U.S. businesses to import hundreds of thousands of specialized workers - but is beset by accusations that employers use it to replace American workers with cheaper foreign labor. (Politico Pro)

Supreme Court Will Hear Travel Ban Case. The Supreme Court announced on Monday that it would decide whether President Trump's revised travel ban was lawful, setting the stage for a major decision on the scope of presidential power. (New York Times)

Short of IT workers at home, Israeli startups recruit elsewhere. When Alexey Chalimov founded software design firm Eastern Peak in Israel four years ago he knew he would not find the developers he needed at home. (Reuters)


The All-Seeing Surveillance State, Feared in the West, Is a Reality in China. Gan Liping pumped her bike across a busy street, racing to beat a crossing light before it turned red. She didn't make it. Immediately, her face popped up on two video screens above the street. (Wall Street Journal)

Facial Recognition May Boost Airport Security But Raises Privacy Worries. Passengers at Boston's Logan International Airport were surfing their phones and drinking coffee, waiting to board a flight to Aruba recently when a JetBlue agent came on the loudspeaker, announcing: "Today, we do have a unique way of boarding." (NPR)

Industry 'surprised' by DOJ appeal in data warrant case. Businesses leaders expressed surprise that the Department of Justice (DOJ) is appealing a case about when law enforcement should have access to data stored in other countries. (The Hill)


Report: Russia says terrorists used encrypted messaging service Telegram to coordinate attack. Russia's FSB intelligence service said Mondaythat terrorists have used encrypted-messaging service Telegram to plan attacks, according to Reuters. (The Hill)

Internet of Things

Alphabet's Waymo Hires Avis to Service its Driverless Cars. Google parent AlphabetInc.GOOGL -1.15% is hiring rental-car firmAvis Budget GroupInc.CAR +10.23% to store and service its self-driving cars in a deal that shows Alphabet's vision of a network of driverless taxis is getting closer to reality. (Wall Street Journal)
Apple Is Working With Hertz to Test Its Self-Driving Technology. Apple Inc. is leasing a small fleet of cars from Hertz Global Holdings Inc. to test self-driving technology, an agreement that echoes a larger deal between competitors Alphabet Inc. and Avis Budget Group Inc. Hertz shares soared the most in almost two years. (Bloomberg)

NAM, tech industry group lay out India priorities ahead of Modi visit. The National Association of Manufacturers and the Information Technology Industry Association have issued wish lists for the U.S.-India trade relationship ahead of President Trump's meeting with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi next week. (ITI's Cody Ankeny, Inside World Trade)

President Donald Trump and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi pledged today to work together to boost - and balance - bilateral trade, including through sales of U.S. liquefied natural gas currently being negotiated. (Politico Pro)

Trump's Anti-Nafta Stance Is on a Collision Course with Natural Gas. Of all the industries thrown into question by President Trump's promise to upend free trade with Mexico, natural gas is easily one of the most important. (New York Times)

U.S. Durable Goods Orders Fall 1.1% in May. Demand for long-lasting factory goods declined in May for the second straight month, driven by a pullback in airplane orders as the U.S. manufacturing sector continues to find its footing. (Wall Street Journal)


Congressional Black Caucus calls on Uber to hire executives of color. A group of black lawmakers in Congress is pushing Uber to hire more people of color for executive roles at the ride-hailing company. (The Hill)

A powerful group of black lawmakers is pressuring Uber to hire more diverse executives. A group of powerful black lawmakers in the U.S. Congress is pushing Uber to hire more people of color, as the ride-hailing company labors to fill a growing list of vacant leadership positions. (Recode)

Google, Microsoft among companies urging court to back gay workers. Dozens of companies, including Alphabet Inc's Google, Microsoft Corp, CBS Corp and Viacom Inc urged a federal appeals court on Monday to rule that a law banning sex discrimination in the workplace offers protections to gay employees. (Reuters)


Koch network donors eye Trump and Congress warily on health care, taxes. Conservative donors see a major opportunity this year to achieve years-old Republican goals of reforming the tax code and passing a new health care law. But they are also consumed with worry that the GOP will somehow blow the chance it has been waiting for - whether because of an unfocused President Donald Trump or fretful congressional Republicans. (Politico Pro)

GOP chairman: More tax-reform hearings coming in July. House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin Brady (R-Texas) said Monday that the panel will hold two more tax reform hearings in July. (The Hill)

Artificial Intelligence
Amazon Robots Poised to Revamp How Whole Foods Runs Warehouses. When Inc.'s $13.7 billion bid to buy Whole Foods was announced, John Mackey, the grocer's chief executive officer, addressed employees, gushing about Amazon's technological innovation. (Bloomberg)

Smart Robots Put 10.5M US Jobs At High Risk, New Report Says. 10.5 million U.S. jobs are at high risk of obsoletion due to artificial intelligence and robotization, according to a new CB Insights study. A prime example: food preparation and cooking. (Forbes)

Tech Business

JD Vance, Steve Case want the heartland's start-up pitches. Best-selling author JD Vance and AOL co-founder Steve Case are taking a road trip through America's heartland this fall. (USA Today)

Smartphones are probably not making us that much more intelligent. Researchers wanted to find out if the mere sight of a smartphone was enough to impair cognitive functioning. (USA Today)

FAA bills include baby steps on drones. When it comes to drones, FAA reauthorization bills moving in both chambers are seeking changes related to registration issues, privacy concerns and air traffic control for low-altitude airspace - but both punt on other key issues, such as pre-empting state laws. (Politico Pro)

ITI Member News

Apple CEO touts India impact in push for deeper market access. Apple CEO Tim Cook on Sunday highlighted the economic impact the company is having on India in a meeting with its prime minister as the iPhone maker seeks deeper access to the world's third-largest smartphone market behind the United States and China. (Reuters)

How Apple's iPhone changed the world: 10 years in 10 charts. Apple's first iPhone was released 10 years ago this week - on June 29, 2007. While it wasn't the first smartphone, it leapfrogged far beyond the competition and launched the mobile revolution. Few industries or societies have been left unchanged. (Recode)

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: 1:30 p.m. - 2:30 p.m. Last votes expected: 4:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Today at 2:00 p.m. the Senate will convene and begin a period of morning business.
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