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ICT Law Blog
Thursday, September 28, 2006
  Microsoft sues British spammer for Hotmail breach
Microsoft has won what it described as the largest reported civil award against a spammer in Europe. The software giant says it won a court order requiring spammer Paul Fox to pay £45,000.

Should interoperability become a legal right?
IBM, Microsoft and Apple have each been accused of withholding interface information. Over the years, antitrust complaints were made against all three. But do we need a new approach? Do we need an intellectual property law to assist interoperability?

Universal will attack YouTube, MySpace says CEO
The world's biggest record label has said that it may pursue YouTube and MySpace for copyright infringement. The move reverses big business's recent courting of the new media titans.

Sales agency wins rights to database in High Court
A sales agent has won the right to retain a customer database built up while working on behalf of an insulation company. The High Court ruled that the agent was the 'first owner' of the database under the EU Database Directive.

Ireland brings case against data retention to Europe
The Irish government has filed its case against the European Union's data retention directive in the European Court of Justice. Although it backs the principles of data retention, Ireland is arguing that the process used to pass the controversial Directive is wrong.

Tesco loses trade mark right over unsent documents
Tesco has lost the right to a Europe-wide trade mark on the word 'Metro'. The trade mark right for Europe has now passed to German retailer MIP Metro because Tesco did not submit a set of papers to the EU trade mark authority.

Mobile web shake-up gets started
The mobile web is about to receive the biggest shake-up in years with the start of open registration for mobile phone-specific website addresses.

3 AOL Subscribers Sue Over Data Release
Three AOL subscribers who suddenly found records of their Internet searches widely distributed online are suing the company under privacy laws and are seeking an end to its retention of search-related data.

Lime Wire, squeezed, files countersuit
One of the last remaining peer-to-peer havens is fighting to stay alive.

Commerce reports loss of more than 1,100 laptops over 5 years
An agencywide review at the Commerce Department turned up more than a thousand missing or stolen laptops over the last five years, with hundreds containing the personal information of American citizens.

Internet Advertising Cooling Its Jets
Growth in U.S. online ad spending will decline slightly this year due to a maturing market and a projected slowdown in consumer spending, predicts research firm eMarketer. Still, Internet ad revenue is projected to rise a robust 26.8 percent to $15.9 billion in 2006.

Securing Corporate Networks in a Wired World
New security methods are needed to protect businesses and individuals from threats that may expose them to identity theft, violation of privacy and compromised intellectual property. Reliance on traditional security measures will not suffice. Companies must make it a top priority to incorporate the latest generation of intelligent, proactive security solutions into their IT infrastructure.

Over 90% of email is spam, says Spamhaus founder
The founder of Spamhaus says that over 90% of the world's email is spam. Steve Linford's estimates of spam levels are significantly higher than those of other spam monitoring firms in the IT security industry.

Government says data sharing should extend to the private sector
The Government has underlined its desire to share Government information about citizens with the private sector. A new paper from the Government has proposed that public bodies join a private sector fraud database

Symantec Report: Home Is Where the Threat Is
The latest Symantec Internet security threat report indicates that the writers of malicious code are turning more and more of their attention to the home user. "They're now starting to target home users quite heavily, primarily because home users are the weakest link in the security chain," says Dean Turner, Calgary-based editor of the twice-yearly threat report.

Microsoft sues British spammer for Hotmail breach
Microsoft has won what it described as the largest reported civil award against a spammer in Europe. The software giant says it won a court order requiring spammer Paul Fox to pay £45,000.

Hackney wins £300,000 from Nike in logo dispute
Hackney council has won £300,000 from Nike in a dispute over the London borough council's logo, which Nike had used on sports clothes without permission. Nike will also pay the council's legal costs.

If you see these CEOs on MySpace ...
The conventional wisdom is that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. But in the digital age, that's often not the case for high-profile professionals being targeted on

British Library calls for digital copyright action
The British Library has called for a "serious updating" of current copyright law to "unambiguously" include digital content and take technological advances into account.

Criminals flock to the Internet, survey finds
Criminals are increasingly trying to trick citizens into giving them their bank account details, according to a survey published on Monday which showed such "phishing" attempts almost doubled in the first six months.

Pioneer sues Samsung over plasma patents
Japan's Pioneer has filed suit in the United States against Samsung SDI and Samsung Electronics for what it says are patent violations of its plasma display-panel technology.

Symantec: 'There is no safe browser'
Hackers are hitting paydirt in their search for browser bugs. According to Symantec's twice-yearly Internet Security Threat Report, hackers found 47 bugs in Mozilla's open-source browsers and 38 bugs in Internet Explorer (IE) during the first six months of this year. That's up significantly from the 17 Mozilla and 25 IE bugs found in the previous six months.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006
  Attorney says companies need clear blogging policies
Blogs can be a great way to showcase your small company and get it noticed on the Internet's cutting edge.But the popular Web logs also can sink you as an employer if you aren't careful.

Kids can contact a cop with one click
An educational drive has been launched with the aim of protecting both children today and future generations from being groomed online.

A POLICE forensics officer is exposed by The People today as a paedophile grooming a girl he thinks is TWELVE to have sex with him.

EU & the right to data privacy: European Data Protection Supervisor speaks out
Yesterday the European Data Protection Supervisor (EDPS) spoke about his achievements both in terms of data protection advice to the EU-institutions and supervision of their data processing, he also commented on the current debate climate - in which data protection and privacy advocates are wrongly criticised of hindering security policies.

Panel Wants Answers from Wireless Firms on Privacy
WASHINGTON (Reuters)—Top executives of Verizon Communications, Sprint Nextel Corp., Cingular and T-Mobile USA have been invited to testify Friday at a U.S. House Energy and Commerce Committee hearing into the use of deceptive measures to obtain personal information, known as pretexting, the panel said on Monday.

Wired for Trouble
Interoperability, like perfection, is a simple word to say even if it rarely occurs. Some might even say the more the word is uttered the less it happens - and interoperability is a much discussed topic.

Digital rights activists take aim at EU data laws
An Irish lobby group aims to dismantle Europe's laws forcing telecoms firms to retain phone and internet data on citizens. The group, Digital Rights Ireland, is taking a case both against the Irish Government and the European Directive on data retention.

Digital rights activists take aim at EU data laws
An Irish lobby group aims to dismantle Europe's laws forcing telecoms firms to retain phone and internet data on citizens. The group, Digital Rights Ireland, is taking a case both against the Irish Government and the European Directive on data retention.

AOL sued over search engine data release
A trio of AOL subscribers are suing the media giant over the public release of search engine queries.
The Californian lawsuit (PDF), which seeks class action status, is the first to cry foul over AOL's release of some 19m search queries by around 650,000 AOL subscribers over a three month period, AP reports.

Software patents back to haunt Europe
Intellectual property lobbyists are warning that new plans to shake up Europe's policy on patents could put patentable software back on the menu, as well as upping legal fees and putting small businesses in jeopardy.

Apple to trademark "podcast"
MAKER of entertainment gear Apple has decided to issue cease and desist notices to all those who use the word podcast on their web sites.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006
  Assistant Principal Sues Students Over Page
A high school assistant principal in San Antonio is suing two students and their parents, alleging the teens set up a Web page on in her name and posted obscene comments and pictures.

Jailed Chinese journalist to file US suit against Yahoo
A Chinese journalist jailed in part due to e-mail evidence provided by a Yahoo subsidiary plans to file a lawsuit in the U.S. against the Internet company within the next few months.

Publishers aim for some control of search results
Global publishers, fearing that Web search engines such as Google Inc. are encroaching on their ability to generate revenue, plan to launch an automated system for granting permission on how to use their content.

Cybersecurity chief quits after unusual contract expires
The Bush administration's cybersecurity chief, who worked under an unusual agreement with a private university that does extensive business with the office he manages, is leaving his job.

1,100 Laptops Missing From Commerce Dept.
More than 1,100 laptop computers have vanished from the Department of Commerce since 2001, including nearly 250 from the Census Bureau containing such personal information as names, incomes and Social Security numbers, federal officials said yesterday.

Google publishes Belgian court ruling
Google Inc. on Saturday published on its Belgian website a court order which forbids the Internet search engine to reproduce snippets of Belgian press on its news amalgamation service.

Popular MXit upgrades
The latest version of MXit, version 5.0, will be available for download from Monday.

New Jersey Lawyers File Identity Theft Class Action Against Bank of America
The New Jersey law firms of Pellettieri, Rabstein & Altman and Lynch Keefe Bartels filed a complaint against Bank of America today in New Jersey Superior Court, Law Division, Mercer County, on behalf of Trenton resident Cindy Jones. The attorneys announced their intention to seek class action status to represent other identity theft victims as well against financial services giant Bank of America for damages resulting from the theft of tens of thousands of customer information files.

Leak of guns list has link to ruling
Berks County Sheriff Barry J. Jozwiak was trying to comply with a court order to create a more secure list of gun-permit holders when an outside contractor left at least some of the list exposed on the Internet, officials said Thursday.

NewsChannel 3 Exclusive: Personal Information Stolen From DePaul Hospital
Your NewsChannel 3 has learned that someone has stolen two computers from the Radiation Therapy department at DePaul Medical Center in Norfolk.

Life’s not so good for Hub retailer’s hacked Web site
Hackers illegally accessed a Life Is Good Inc. computer database containing the names, addresses and credit card information of some 9,250 of its customers.

Bank machine reprogramming made easy
A bank machine in Virginia Beach has been reprogrammed to dispense four times the money requested, and the simplicity of the procedure has created questions about the security of independent bank machines.

Browser flaw seen on porn sites
Microsoft has issued warnings about a serious flaw in Internet Explorer that allows attackers to hijack a PC via the popular browser.

U.S. Attorney General pushes for new ISP laws
U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales is pushing for new laws requiring ISPs to retain access logs for longer periods, claiming the need to fight child pornography.

FTC hasn't paid victims of breach at ChoicePoint
Nearly eight months after regulators trumpeted a settlement with ChoicePoint Inc. over a data breach, the government has not paid any money to victims from a $5 million fund that was to be set up as part of the agreement

Experts warn of AOL botnet threat
Security analysts have identified a new worm known as Win32.Pipeline that is propagating over AOL Instant Messenger.

House surveillance bill passes committee
A House of Representatives committee has approved a controversial bill that would broaden the government's ability to conduct electronic surveillance on U.S. residents by making it easier for federal law enforcement officials to get court-issued warrants.

Some Sobering Security Stats
Symantec today released its latest report on Internet security, cataloging 2,249 software vulnerabilities discovered or reported from January through June 2006 -- the most the company has ever recorded in a six-month period.

Fixing Business Development With CRM
Too many companies take a segmented and very myopic view of business development. It is convenient to compartmentalize this function and loosely hold it responsible for just the top of the sales funnel. If you want results from business development give that department the entire sales funnel. This means partnering with sales like never before.

Do It Yourself E-Commerce, Part 2: Nuts and Bolts
In addition to implementing comprehensive e-tailing features and functionality, gaining customers' confidence and trust -- the first and every time they buy -- is critical to establishing a successful retail business, whether it's online, in the mall, or on the corner.

MySpace Member Takes Sinister Approach to Homework Assignment
A Virginia Commonwealth University student is reportedly responsible for posting a threat to kill his professor's pug, Oscar, on The post was the student's solution to an advertising class homework assignment to make the professor's pooch famous.

Data at Risk as Census Bureau Reports Lost Laptops
Since 2003, the U.S. Census Bureau has reportedly lost 217 laptop computers, as well as 46 portable data storage devices and 15 handheld devices. Census Bureau employees may have used some of the laptops to compile survey data, however, the Commerce Department reports that passwords, encryptions and other safeguards were in place to protect any personal data that may have been contained in the devices.

Will Google Learn Government 101?
For all the dangers that might lurk in the rigors of the competitive marketplace, government control is a worse fate. Microsoft experienced years of antitrust issues that still dog the company, and the telecom sector felt it with price controls from the 1996 telecommunications act. Now Google faces problems with building the citywide WiFi network it thought San Francisco would expedite. When will these companies ever learn?

GSU employee arrested in child porn sting
Peachtree City police Wednesday arrested a Georgia State University staff member in an internet sex sting.

Europe's software patent war ignites again
Three political groups in the European Parliament have warned that the possibility of introducing software patents is re-emerging.

Two U.S. software firms lobby EU on Microsoft-WSJ
Two U.S. software firms are asking the European Commission to take action against Microsoft's (MSFT.O: Quote, Profile, Research) new Vista operating system, the Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday.

Copyright hindering scholarship in the humanities and social sciences
A report from the British Academy, launched on 18 September, expresses fears that the copyright system may in important respects be impeding, rather than stimulating, the production of new ideas and new scholarship in the humanities and social sciences.

An end run round copyright laws?
What Linux has done for operating systems, the Internet should do for content, a prominent lawyer and activist urged Tuesday.

Concourt's SABC ruling 'a disappointment'
The Freedom of Expression Institute said on Thursday it was disappointed that the Constitutional Court upheld a Supreme Court of Appeal order not to broadcast Schabir Shaik's appeal.

FXI welcomes court ruling on attempted gagging of M&G
The Freedom of Expression Institute welcomes the decision of the Johannesburg High Court a few hours ago, giving the Mail & Guardian the go-ahead to publish an article on allegations of possible fraud, violations of tender rules, and contraventions of the Public Finance Management Act that had occurred in the South African Post Office.

M&G wins battle for media freedom
The Mail & Guardian on Thursday won an important victory for media freedom in the Johannesburg High Court.

AG Wants Law Compelling ISPs to Hold Customer Data
Attorney General Alberto Gonzales is pushing for new data retention laws that would require Internet service providers to hold onto information concerning what their customers are up to on the Internet. Gonzales said such a law would be a vital tool in the fight to eradicate child pornography.

Growing Your Web Infrastructure Wisely
Problems caused by growth are generally considered good problems to have. While this is true, snap decisions in crisis can lead to greater expenses and more problems down the road. If proper forethought is given to growth before a snap decision is necessary, businesses save money and prevent headaches for their customers and for their employees who will be tasked to solve the problem.

Linux lab: GPL clarification needed ASAP
The Free Software Foundation urgently needs to explain how software governed by the current General Public License will interact with that governed by a successor now under development, the leader of the Open Source Development Labs said Wednesday.

VOIP presents major security risk, expert warns
Banks and other companies switching their phone systems to VOIP (voice over Internet Protocol) are making themselves vulnerable to phishing attacks for which there are currently no effective detection or prevention tools, a security researcher warned Wednesday.

Google fights fines for not posting Belgian ruling
Google Inc. (GOOG.O) is refusing to post a copy of a Belgian legal ruling against it on its local Web site, and is asking the court to annul that provision of the case and the daily fines associated with it.

EarthLink Wins $11.6M Judgment Against Spammer
A Nevada-based company accused of sending out millions of unsolicited e-mails touting mortgage deals has been ordered to pay $11.6 million to Atlanta-based EarthLink Inc. The total came from U.S. District Court Judge Timothy C. Batten Sr.'s Aug. 31 order awarding treble damages arising from a 2004 case filed by the Internet service provider against a company called KSTM LLC.

U.S. to extend pact with Internet oversight firm ICANN
The U.S. Commerce Department said Wednesday it will extend its oversight of the California organization that handles domain name policies, while finding ways to improve the group's accountability and transparency.

Napster becomes copyright guardian
The force behind one-time music industry nemesis Napster has changed his tune by becoming a guardian of copyrighted songs.

Debt throws Harare off cyberspace radar
ZIMBABWE’s telecommunications problems have worsened as the country’s internet service almost ground to a halt after a major narrowing of the cyberspace bandwidth due to nonpayment of arrears.

South Africa third in Worldwide ADSL growth
South Africa has shown excellent ‘percentage growth’ during the second quarter of 2006, but other supporting figures put this growth in perspective.

Mxit sends, stores files
Mxit, the instant messaging (IM) service popular with teenagers, is to release version five this Monday and it expects some 50 000 people to download it on the first day.

Monday, September 25, 2006
  Hacker group offers stealth Internet surfing
A group calling itself "Hacktivismo" launched a web browser on Thursday that promises to protect the privacy of Internet surfers from "hostile governments" or "data thieves".

Faster-changing viruses and Web 2.0 threaten security
Polymorphic viruses and vulnerabilities in Web 2.0 technologies could cause problems for IT security chiefs in the future, according to the latest biannual Threat Report from Symantec released today.

E-cards used in data-thieving scam
Cybercrooks are using e-cards that appear to come from a secret admirer in a scam to collect sensitive personal information, a security expert has warned.

New Technology Protects Privacy of Messages
"I don't typically have customers come to me and say, 'I'm looking for a messaging system where I can hide all traces of what I'm saying,'" said Matt Brown, a senior analyst at Forrester Research. Of VaporStream's overall prospects, he said, "I'm highly skeptical." Companies also can set up "blacklists" and "whitelists" for their employees that dictate who can and cannot send VaporStreams to each other.

Where Data Goes, Security Must Follow
Over the last several years, well-publicized security breaches have been causing enterprises to develop security policies in order to protect their brands from the damaging publicity surrounding such an event. The only feasible approach to securing information is to take an encrypted, data-level approach to security. Anything less leaves companies, customers and partners at risk.

No End in Sight: Data Breach Tally Approaches 100 Million
The total number of records containing sensitive personal information involved in security breaches over the past two years now stands at 93,754,333, according to the Privacy Rights Clearinghouse. The updated tally includes thousands of instances of data exposure in the past month alone.

Free anonymising browser debuts
Web users worried about privacy can now use a modified version of Firefox that lets them browse the net anonymously.

Global web celebrations under way
People around the world are coming together on Friday to celebrate the world wide web.

Internet's future in 2020 debated
The internet will be a thriving, low-cost network of billions of devices by 2020, says a major survey of leading technology thinkers.

Internet crime to hit homes hard
Home computer users are now the favourite targets of hi-tech criminals, reveals research.

Browser bug could get early patch
Microsoft is considering the early release of a fix for a bug in Internet Explorer that malicious hackers are actively exploiting online.

Consumers 'being fed a lot of hot air'
To stand in a sweet-lined check-out queue at a supermarket with a young child, or in a movie-house foyer filled with the evocative smell of outrageously-priced popcorn, is to experience the art of consumer manipulation at its most cunning. And the reasoning behind it is bizarre...

Wednesday, September 20, 2006
  Icasa Failing
WHILE ACCEPTING THAT no industry can flourish in an overregulated market, the absence of an efficient and effective regulator - especially in the dynamic broadcasting and telecommunications sector - can be a recipe for disaster.

Consumer law worries cellular industry
A proposed consumer protection law will have serious consequences for the cellular industry as the basis of South African contract law will change, Virgin Mobile and legal firm Cliffe Dekker say.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006
  Webloyalty, Fandango named in coupon lawsuit
Online marketing company Inc. and online movie ticket seller Fandango Inc. were named in a lawsuit on Monday that accuses them of participating in a scheme where customers' credit cards are billed monthly fees without their knowledge.

Use it or Lose it
International bandwidth costs remains one of the most prohibiting factors for broadband provisioning in South Africa, with the underutilization of the valuable SAT-3 cable serving as a major contributor.

'ISP industry became far too compliant'
“The industry still hasn’t pushed the boundaries near enough, we have probably listened to the Regulator too much,” stated Frankel during his presentation at the iWeek Conference recently. He stated that the industry needed to push the envelope in a way that people would look back and see it as beneficial.

M&G exposé stifled
The Mail & Guardian was interdicted from publishing a major story on Thursday when Maanda Manyatshe, the boss of cellphone giant MTN South Africa, applied for an interim interdict in the Johannesburg High Court to prevent its publication.

Opposition decries move on Icasa posts
Opposition parties have objected to two Department of Communications officials being shortlisted for appointment to the independent communications regulator, saying it allowed the minister control through the back door.

MERVYN King is the well-known author of the second King report on corporate governance. Corporate Citizen is a practical guide to corporate governance based on a crystallisation of King’s knowledge, skill and experience.The principles of governance apply not only to companies but also to nonbusiness entities, state-owned enterprises, nongovernmental organisations and so forth.

Vodacom wins dropped call case
Johannesburg - Cellular operator Vodacom can't be held responsible for dropped calls, the Johannesburg High Court ruled on Friday.
The ruling follows an application by a company which offers to claim back money charged for dropped calls.

German police seize TOR servers
Prosecutors in Germany have seized 10 servers which hosted the anonymising service TOR.
The action has raised fears of a wider clampdown against the service, which provides a way for people to browse the internet anonymously. The seized machines are assumed to be TOR exit nodes.

IT law special interest group convenes
Yesterday marked the introduction of a special interest group on IT law, backed by the Information Security Group of Africa and led by Johann Hershensohn, advocate of the High Court of SA.

ICASA outlines conversion process
The Independent Communications Authority of SA (ICASA) has published a notice outlining the process of converting all licences that fall under its jurisdiction, as well as the schedule for converting the licences

Xanga to Pay $1 Million in Children's Privacy Case
Social-networking site Inc. and its operators said yesterday that they would pay a $1 million fine for alleged violations of the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act, at a time of heightened parental and government concern about children's safety online.

Chase trashes tapes with client info
WILMINGTON, Del. (AP) - Chase Card Services says it's notifying more than two and a-half (m) million Circuit City credit card holders that computer tapes containing their personal information were mistakenly thrown in the trash.

Calif. police probe computer breach in Schwarzenegger's office
September 11, 2006 (Computerworld) -- The California Highway Patrol (CHP) is investigating the apparent hacking of a computer in Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's office.
The investigation was launched after a digital recording of a private conversation Schwarzenegger had with some of his staff members earlier this year was leaked last week to the Los Angeles Times, according to CHP spokesman Tom Marshal.

Security breach hits online world
Every player of Second Life has been asked to change the password they use to enter the popular online world. The alert follows a security breach in which a malicious hacker broke into a database holding information about Second Life's 650,000 users.

Spyware Operation Fined $2M
A spyware operation that promised protection from viruses and spam but instead installed malware agreed today to pay a $2 million fine to settle Federal Trade Commission (FTC) charges of false and deceptive practices.

Credit card companies team up for security
The five major credit card companies have teamed up in the interest of better security.
American Express, Discover Financial Services, JCB, MasterCard Worldwide and Visa International announced Thursday the creation of an organisation to develop and maintain security standards for credit and debit card payments. It's the first time the five brands have agreed on a single, common framework.

Early Signs of Trouble
Restructuring in It Industry puts Senior Security Managers' and Consultants' jobs at risk.

Monday, September 18, 2006
  Email directory harvest attacks rise 30 per cent
Attacks designed to steal a company's entire email directory rose by 30 per cent in August compared with the figures for July.

Privacy group tackles US government on e-spying
The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) has launched a campaign to shed light on the US government's electronic surveillance programmes.

Scan Those Links Before Visiting
In an era when simply clicking on a link sent to you via e-mail or instant message can spell speedy doom for Microsoft Windows users, it's nice to have yet another resource for checking the validity and security of Web links.

Paris Hilton Accused of Phone Phreakiness
You may have read the story from a while back about how hackers broke into socialite Paris Hilton's cell phone account and posted online racy pictures of the hotel heiress stolen from her mobile device (turns out the perpetrators were the same people accused of hacking into consumer database giant LexisNexis last year). But could it be that Hilton herself has begun using some of the same hacker tactics leveraged against her in personal attacks against others?

Botnet Operator Sentenced to 37 Months in Prison
A California man whose online criminal ring hacked into hundreds of thousands of computers and disrupted operations at a U.S. hospital and several military installations was sentenced Friday to 37 months in prison for his crimes.

Wireless carriers snap up federal airwave licenses
Two regional wireless carriers and the nation's largest cable companies could shake up the cellphone market with new offerings in key markets after winning airwave licenses in a landmark federal auction that's winding down.

Creators confess to Lonelygirl15 mystery
LOS ANGELES — The creators behind the Internet video mystery teen Lonelygirl15 have revealed themselves and want their fans to know they are not a front for a big Hollywood studio marketing some upcoming film.

Social Networking Sites May Face Label's Legal Ire
Speculation that Universal Music may take legal action against YouTube and MySpace grew Thursday when Merrill Lynch analyst Jessica Reif Cohen said in a research note that YouTube and other social networking sites that rely on user-generated video may be the company's first target. Such videos often feature popular songs as their soundtracks.

Mobile Companies Plot Course to Next Gen Wireless
A collection of wireless carriers from around the world have joined together to form the Next Generation Mobile Networks initiative. The consortium said it had created a set of requirements, which may someday become standards, for future wide area mobile broadband networks beyond the fastest and highest capacity wireless networks available today.

Internet Movie and TV Laws Are Nonsense
There are so many questions and fine lines looming over the file-sharing world. One question, for example, concerns downloading television shows. Technically you do not pay for television shows, you pay for a service that provides you access to hundreds of television shows, so is it illegal for me to download an entire season of "Project Runway?"

How to Choose the Right Web Host for Your Business
It may seem simple, yet it is often overlooked. When it comes to choosing the right Internet hosting provider for their Web sites, the majority of business owners or companies know very little about making the best Internet/Web hosting decisions.

Judges Cite More Blogs in Rulings
Judges have discovered the Internet's 600 legal blogs, citing them at least 32 times in 27 decisions over the last two years.

Legal Concerns Raised Over Exposing Replies to Online Sex Ad
At first glance, the posting looked like any number of Internet classified ads explicitly seeking sex. But instead of the 27-year-old woman with long brown hair advertised in the posting, a Seattle-area graphic designer collected the replies and posted them online -- with photos, names and contact information.

Court: Accessibility lawsuit against Target can proceed
September 08, 2006 (Computerworld) -- A federal judge in San Francisco ruled Wednesday that a lawsuit filed against Minneapolis-based Target Corp. by the National Federation for the Blind (NFB) regarding the accessibility of the retailer's Web site can move forward.

Security breach hits online world
Every player of Second Life has been asked to change the password they use to enter the popular online world.

Shuttleworth heads to cyberspace on Ubuntu software
Johannesburg: South African magnate Mark Shuttleworth has already conquered space. Now he's set his sights on cyberspace, where he hopes to challenge Microsoft.

Driven entrepreneurs Mxit up
Two innovative young Cape Town men are using the internet and a popular cellphone service to put people in touch with driving school instructors.

Security firm: Samsung site hosts Trojan
Samsung Electronics' U.S. Web site is hosting a Trojan horse that logs keystrokes, disables antivirus applications and steals online banking access codes, according to Internet security company Websense.

U.S. court halts alleged Web site billing scheme
A U.S. district court has ordered a halt to an operation that allegedly added unauthorized charges to the phone bills of small businesses and nonprofit groups for Web sites services that, in many cases, they didn't know they had and didn't request, the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) said.

Will Vista stall Net traffic?
Thanks to new directory software, Windows Vista could put a greater load on Internet servers. But experts disagree over whether we're headed for a prime-time traffic jam or insignificant slowdown.

Xanga fined $1 million under child privacy act, a social-networking and blog site, has been ordered to pay $1 million in a settlement with the Federal Trade Commission for violating the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act.

Software pirate gets record sentence
A U.S. judge on Friday sentenced the owner and operator of to 87 months in prison, the longest sentence ever given for software piracy, according to a software trade group.

Cellphone child porn scandal hits KZN
Children are increasingly "starring" in sex videos for kicks, while images depicting them engaging in sex acts with adults are being circulated on the Internet and by cellphone.

Film board gets tough on child porn
The Film and Publication Board is coming down hard on child pornography and are making their stance on the matter very clear.

Vintage computer could cause problems for kidnap investigators
Problems retrieving data from a computer popular in the 1980s could hamper the Austrian police in their investigations into the kidnap and eight-year detention of Natascha Kampusch by Wolfgang Priklopil.

Hewlett-Packard accused of spying on board members
Hewlett-Packard paid security consultants to secretly gather telephone records data on its board members, according to a recently-resigned board member. Chairwoman Patricia Dunn ordered the surveillance while attempting to identify the source of press leaks, said Tom Perkins.

The image rights and wrongs of Suri Cruise
Celebrities are getting younger. Suri Cruise, five-month-old daughter of Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes, was yesterday's Vanity Fair cover star in the US and already has a global reputation. An academic today questions her image rights.

Mobile spy software use almost always illegal, says expert
A piece of software which allows a user to track another person's mobile phone use would be almost impossible to use in the UK without breaking the law, according to a surveillance law expert.

Copyright is a set of exclusive rights regulating the use of a particular expression of an idea or information. At its most general, it is literally "the right to copy" an original creation. In most cases, these rights are of limited duration. The symbol for copyright is © (Unicode U+00A9), and in some jurisdictions may alternately be written (c).

Controversy over Icasa panel
Cape Town - Parliament's portfolio committee on communications has dwindled the list of candidate to fill senior positions at the telecommunications regulator - the Independent Communications Authority of SA - from 20 to eight, but the Democratic Alliance (DA) is worried that three of the nominees are not independent enough.

Tech companies oppose WIPO treaty on TV rights
Dell, HP, AT&T, Sony and others have joined forces to oppose a plan that would give broadcasters a whole new set of intellectual property rights over television programmes. They will fight to stop the UN proposal being adopted internationally.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006
  Workers get porn fix on company PCs
In a study conducted by Security Audit and Control Solutions (SACS), it was found the existence of pornography on company-owned computers is a frequent occurrence, the company said on Friday.

Thursday, September 07, 2006
  Health Care Agencies Violate Patients' Privacy
As the federal government pushes harder for electronic sharing and storage of medical records, privacy and security advocates have been raising concerns about the potential for data breaches and misuse and a new government report supports those fears.

Privacy: 10 Ways to Protect Customers
AOL has joined an ever-growing list of companies that have had to admit that customer names, Web activities, Social Security numbers and other sensitive data they collected and stored was lost, stolen or mistakenly released to the public. In AOL's case, the company released detailed keyword search data for about 650,000 users.

No Joke: Microsoft Seeks To Patent Verbs
The software giant's system is aimed to help students learn to conjugate verbs in a foreign language. But mum's the word on how it plans to use the technology.

i2 sues SAP for patent infringement
i2 Technologies Inc has slapped the America's division of German business software giant SAP AG with a patent infringement suit.

Who invented e-learning? A patent dispute shakes up academic computing
Every day, millions of students taking online college courses act in much the same way as their bricks-and-mortar counterparts. After logging on, they move from course to course and do things like submit work in virtual drop boxes and view posted grades all from a program running on a PC. It may seem self-evident that virtual classrooms should closely resemble real ones. But a major education software company contends it wasn't always so obvious. And now, in a move that has shaken up the e-learning community, Blackboard Inc. has been awarded a patent establishing its claims to some of the basic features of the software that powers online education.

Putting Patent Trolls on the Defensive
Software companies say overbroad patents held by others are among their biggest problems, leading to wasteful lawsuits and skyrocketing costs. The way they see it, patents that cover broad, basic concepts have helped give rise to the so-called "patent troll" -- a company or individual who owns a patent and uses it not to make something but to sue innovators for infringement. Patent trolls sometimes win hefty damages or even, as in the BlackBerry case, try to shut down supposed infringers through court injunctions.

Superhero Trademark FAQ
Q: What does it mean that Marvel and DC have a trademark on the word “Superhero”?

Copyright tussle looming over online video?
An online culture built around user-generated content on websites such as MySpace and YouTube would be imperiled by a new treaty, public interest groups and some technology companies said on Tuesday.

Why the internet is at risk of splitting
ACCORDING to Kaled Fattal, "People say the net works, but it only works for those communities whose native language is Latin-based. The rest of the world is totally isolated." Fattal speaks perfect English but, as chairman and chief executive of the Multilingual Internet Names Consortium (MINC), and an Arab, he knows most of the world's population does not.

Don't Risk Losing Your Business Domain Name!
Thousands of small business webmasters briefly lose their domain names at expiration, due to a simple lack of understanding about the roles of three key players in the drama: domain name registrars, web hosts and internet service providers. Fortunately for most, they learn quickly how to save their web site from oblivion by using the 30 day redemption period for expired domain names enforced by ICANN.

Open Season on Unsecured Wi-Fi
The popularity of wireless Internet connections is growing at an incredible pace. And because so many users fail to secure those connections, the question arises as to whether it is legal (and/or ethical) to connect to a wireless account that hasn't been protected properly. Alternately, we can pose the question like this: If a network doesn't require authorization, then how can there be unauthorized access?

Mother wins fight for new law against violent porn on the net
A WOMAN whose daughter was killed by a man who was obsessed with violent pornography on the internet won her fight yesterday for a new law that will make possession of such images a criminal offence.

Law firm sues IBM; hacking alleged
A Washington, D.C., law firm with ties to the payday lending industry has sued IBM in federal court and offered a $100,000 reward to find out who allegedly hacked its e-mail system last year.

Law firm sues IBM; hacking alleged
A Washington, D.C., law firm with ties to the payday lending industry has sued IBM in federal court and offered a $100,000 reward to find out who allegedly hacked its e-mail system last year.

Law firm sues IBM; hacking alleged
A Washington, D.C., law firm with ties to the payday lending industry has sued IBM in federal court and offered a $100,000 reward to find out who allegedly hacked its e-mail system last year.

Libel case key for Internet free speech
The Rivoli, a well-known Toronto club, may seem like an unusual venue to consider Internet free speech. Yet, later this week, it will play host to a fundraiser in support of, a British Columbia-based website that is being sued for defamation for comments posted on the site by its readers.

What a tangled web we weave
James Sturcke hears service providers claim obtuse libel laws are stifling freedom of speech on the internet and only protecting one group - lawyers

The Lack of Loyalty
When we talk about the customer experience, we aren't trying to replicate Disneyland -- though those folks have done a great job of understanding the customer to the point that they've turned CRM on its ear, preferring to call it "CMR," for the "customer managed experience."

Windows Team Loses Key Exec
Brian Valentine is set to vacate his post as leader of the Windows Vista development team at Microsoft. He will begin working as a senior vice president with in mid-September. Valentine's team is now reporting to Jim Allchin, the co-president of Microsoft's platforms and services

Kids and Tech: How Much Is Too Much?
Incessant exposure to "all day TV," violent video games, instant messaging, and the always accessible cell phone interferes with the development of the psychological traits known to be essential to positive outcomes for children, according to Leah Klungness, Ph.D., psychologist in private practice and co-author of The Complete Single Mother.

The Operational Risk Management Rules of the Road
Operational risk, the new buzzword, is an emerging field driven by regulations such as the Basel II Accord and Sarbanes-Oxley, and by the desire to implement risk measurement and risk management practices in order to protect or enhance shareholder value. In layperson's terms, operational risk represents the losses that follow from acts undertaken -- or neglected -- in carrying out business activities.

Firms targeted in spam share scam
Spammers hoping to manipulate the stock market have begun approaching firms, offering to raise their share price in exchange for a percentage fee.

Digitial divide still separates white and minority students
Many more white children use the Internet than do Hispanic and black students, a reminder that going online is hardly a way of life for everyone.

Word flaw hit with zero-day attack
An "extremely critical flaw" in Microsoft Word 2000 is currently being exploited by malicious attackers, which could lead to remote execution of code on a user's system, security researcher Secunia advised Tuesday.

Word flaw hit with zero-day attack
An "extremely critical flaw" in Microsoft Word 2000 is currently being exploited by malicious attackers, which could lead to remote execution of code on a user's system, security researcher Secunia advised Tuesday.

Canadian man sentenced in Internet hate case
A Canadian man was sentenced to 16 months in jail followed by three years of probation for spreading hatred against Jews via the Internet.

Web designer jailed for 8 years over Bali bombings
An Indonesian who set up a militant Web site on behalf of the alleged mastermind of last year's deadly bombings in Bali was jailed for eight years on Tuesday.

Patient info on stolen computer
A medical lab is notifying patients that a computer with sensitive personal information was stolen from its Prospect Plains Road sample-collection center.

Phishing expedition at heart of AT&T hacking
When AT&T said in a press release this week that "unauthorized persons illegally hacked into a computer system and accessed personal data" from thousands of DSL customers, it wasn't telling the whole story.

Microsoft downplays latest malware warnings
With security vendors warning of new malware that exploits a recently patched flaw in Windows, Microsoft Corp. is saying that attacks are not on the rise.

Arrest over Indian call centre fraud
CALL centre employee has been arrested in eastern India for allegedly using the credit cards details of US customers to make online purchases.

Bank To Pay $50 Million For Buying Personal Data
A bank has been ordered to pay a $50 million settlement for buying more than 650,000 names and addresses from the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles.

Browser taps into Web privacy fears
The founder of Freeserve has unveiled his latest venture--a Web-browsing tool that claims to preserve the privacy of its users.

Germany cracks down terror Web sites
Germany plans to change its law to crack down on Web sites it says have become vehicles for radical Islamists to promote their causes.

Brazil judge orders Google to disclose users' data
A Brazilian judge has ordered the local office of Web search company Google to disclose the data of users of Google's social networking site Orkut accused of crimes like racism or child pornography.

Uptick in Windows attacks reported
Several security experts are warning of increased cyberattacks targeting Windows PCs, but Microsoft says all is calm on the attack front.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006
  Digital Rights Management Backlash: New Battles in the Old Content War
Despite the increasing acceptance of DRM, there has been a recent series of backlash cases involving alleged harm to users caused by DRM systems. The complaints in these cases are interesting because, while they explicitly or implicitly articulate policy concerns such as unwarranted limitations on "fair use," those ideas are not the basis of the claims.

Microsoft's Digital Rights Management System Hacked
Microsoft on Tuesday said that its Digital Rights Management system or DRM has been hacked. DRM protects digital files from copyright infringement and is commonly used on music downloading sites to restrict the use of music purchased and downloaded online.

Theft and fraud in a virtual world
Hey buddy! Wanna buy a Dragon Slaying Saber? How about a Judgment Mace? Shady dealings in virtual weapons have landed three men in court in Shanghai’s first criminal case of copyright violations involving an online fantasy role playing game, newspapers reported yesterday.

Innovation encouraged in copyright industries
China has created a favourable environment for copyright-based industries in government procurement and taxation and will do more to encourage innovation.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006
  AOL software labelled as 'badware'
Privacy watchdogs have slapped a health warning on the latest version of AOL's client software, AOL 9.0.

Education data at risk again.
The Education Department is a victim of data exposure for the second time in less than a month.

Microsoft to patch app that strips DRM technology
Microsoft Corp. plans to patch its Windows Media DRM system, despite calls from fair-use advocates who have championed the FairUse4WM application. That application, released earlier in the month, allows users to remove DRM (digital rights management) restrictions from Windows Media files.

Fine unlicensed software users, says BSA
Software industry lobby group the Business Software Alliance (BSA) has called for government to mandate stiff penalties for companies using unlicensed software.

New Security Threat: 'SMiShing'
Consumers, corporate end users and security-focused solution providers have two more reasons to be overwhelmed this week.

Prosecutors: Action followed poor review
A Chula Vista man pleaded not guilty yesterday to charges that he hacked into the computers of North County and San Diego health clinics, erasing patient and billing information.

Software Can Resurrect Cell Phone Info
Don't tell your mobile phone any secrets. It might not keep them.

NIST releases guidelines for sanitizing files
The National Institute of Standards and Technology has released a new publication that provides guidance on disposing of files. Special Publication 800-88, "Guidelines for Media Sanitization," gives agencies assistance to ensure that deleted or disposed files are unrecoverable.

NIST releases guidelines for sanitizing files
The National Institute of Standards and Technology has released a new publication that provides guidance on disposing of files. Special Publication 800-88, "Guidelines for Media Sanitization," gives agencies assistance to ensure that deleted or disposed files are unrecoverable,

Home Office admits to database breaches
The Home Office has admitted that the security of its ID and passport service database has been compromised several times, but denied that remote hackers were responsible.

Tool generates fake searches for privacy
A new tool seeks to make your searches more private by hiding them in plain sight. TrackMeNot periodically sends fake, innocuous queries to search engines, making it harder for someone to glean your actual search habits by reviewing the companies' logs that contain your queries.

Tests Reveal Fake Drugs From Canada
Testing revealed fake versions of Lipitor and other widely used prescription drugs ordered through websites linked to a Canadian pharmacy, the Food and Drug Administration said Wednesday.

Mxit cries foul about media claims
The cellphone messaging service Mxit is planning to take legal steps against certain newspapers and broadcast media who have described its product as a tool for child pornography and other vices.

New Bill may leave Constitution 'in tatters'
Proposed changes to the Films and Publications Act could leave the Constitution "in tatters", media representatives told the government on Thursday.

Mxit responds to pornography allegations
MXit, the killer application that enables text messaging between cell phones and computers at a fraction of sms costs, has recently been accused of exposing its young users to, amongst others, pornographic material. Allegations have also been made that the MXit application is ‘addictive’, ‘dangerous’ and ‘a drug’.

Companies can avert data-loss blunders
COMPANIES “are in the midst of a data-loss epidemic” with supposedly private data regularly being exposed to the public through carelessness, incompetence or malicious attacks.

BSA wants courts to fine unlicensed software users
Software industry lobby group the Business Software Alliance has called for the Government to mandate stiff penalties for companies using unlicensed software. The organisation says that it wants a "harder enforcement stick" to ensure compliance.

New York Times bars UK readers to avoid court wrath
The New York Times has withheld publication of an article from UK readers of its website in order to avoid prejudicing a trial. The publisher has used its advertising system to identify the location of UK readers and block the article from them, it said.

Britain to ban violent and extreme porn
Downloading or possessing violent and extreme pornographic material will become a criminal offence in the UK punishable by up to three years in prison under proposed new laws, believed to be the first of their kind in a western nation.

This email will self-destruct
People who want to open email from patent attorney Andrew Currier have to know the drill. First, they must answer a predetermined question, such as "Where did we first meet?" If they answer correctly, they will then be allowed to view the contents of the email -- but they can't alter it or forward it to anyone else.

Supreme Court of Appeal rules against Mittal Steel in access to information case
Mittal Steel has lost its appeal against a Pretoria High Court ruling ordering the company to release records of its labour relations practices, including minutes of management meetings, between the period 1965 to 1973.

Microsoft investigates Office video leak
Software giant Microsoft said it was investigating how two in-house training videos made by British comedian Ricky Gervais, creator of The Office television series, appeared on two web sites.

Judge rules for file swappers disclosure
A Dutch judge told cable operator and Internet broadband provider UPC, a unit of Liberty Global, on Thursday to give the name and address of one its clients to an anti-piracy agency.

Addicted maybe, but 'BlackBerries improve life'
Cellular telephones and wireless BlackBerry email devices may be addictive, but most business executives insist mobile technology has improved the balance between their work and home, a study said on Thursday.

Municipal telecoms are a gap in the market - expert
A telecommunications expert has called on the private sector to take advantage of public-private partnership opportunities presented by the new Electronic Communications Act.

Beware of Free (Including RIAA Legal Advice?)
"When someone offers you something for free, be suspicious," states a new video on copyright law by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).

Users able to circumvent Windows Media DRM
Microsoft is currently working on a fix for its Windows Media Digital Rights Management (DRM) technology as users have figured out a way to get around the copyright protection.

Google allows you to print novels free
Google made classic literary works available for free download in printable format as part of its controversial quest to make the world's books available online.

Zim bugging bill to drive out ISPs - critics
Internet service providers in Zimbabwe have warned they will be driven out of business if the government goes ahead with proposed bugging laws that will necessitate the purchase of expensive surveillance equipment, reports say.

Websites simply vanished
The biggest blackout in Spain's internet history shut down websites, e-mail and other services using the domain .es for at least two hours, reports said on Wednesday.

E-mail so last millennium
Young people see e-mail as a good way to reach an elder - a parent, teacher or a boss - or to receive an attached file.

'Don't fear the internet'
The rise of the internet is as revolutionary as the invention of the printing press, a senior Google Inc executive said on Saturday - but old media like television should not fear it.

Millions hooked on web chat
China's internet users are the world's number one online chatterboxes, each holding an average of almost seven chatroom accounts, Xinhua news agency on Thursday quoted a survey as saying.

Do Intellectual Property Rights Help or Hinder Innovation?
Careful. This isn’t exactly an easy question to answer. In fact, depending on who you talk to, intellectual property protection is often viewed as something that you either can’t live with, or can’t live without.

The Embargo Should Go
When they’re not praising the embargo system — under which science journals provide journalists with advance copies of newsworthy articles, but set strict timelines on when that information can be shared — science and medical journalists often bitterly complain that they are its prisoners.

The Digital Learning Challenge:Obstacles to Educational Uses of Copyrighted Material in the Digital Age - A Foundational White Paper
This foundational white paper reports on a year-long study by the Berkman Center for Internet and Society, funded by a grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, examining the relationship between copyright law and education. In particular, we wanted to explore whether innovative educational uses of digital technology were hampered by the restrictions of copyright. We found that provisions of copyright law concerning the educational use of copyrighted material, as well as the business and institutional structures shaped by that law, are among the most important obstacles to realizing the potential of digital technology in education.

Sun Acknowledges Security Hole in Patch Process
I have always dreaded security updates from Sun Microsystems to fix problems in their Java software. For one thing, the updates typically are huge and time consuming, the instructions for downloading and installing the fixes labrynthine, and when all is said and done you may still have older, vulnerable versions of the software scattered around the insides of your computer.

Tool generates fake searches for privacy
A new tool seeks to make your searches more private by hiding them in plain sight. TrackMeNot periodically sends fake, innocuous queries to search engines, making it harder for someone to glean your actual search habits by reviewing the companies' logs that contain your queries.

T-Mobile network hacker sentenced
A man arrested in 2005 for hacking into the computers of the US arm of mobile company T-mobile has been sentenced.

Amazon begins taking Vista orders
Online retailer Amazon has begun taking orders for Microsoft's long-delayed new operating system, Windows Vista.

Hackers steal AT&T customer info
Personal data, including credit card information, of thousands of AT&T customers was stolen by hackers over the weekend, the company reported late Tuesday.

Cell phones won't keep your secrets
The married man's girlfriend sent a text message to his cell phone: His wife was getting suspicious. Perhaps they should cool it for a few days.

Cisco probes irregularities in SA office
Cisco Systems has appointed a local law firm to investigate allegations that two senior managers of the US company's South African operation awarded a contract to a black-owned company and then later sought to buy shares in the empowerment company.

Broadband around the world: How does SA compare?
Telkom’s current ADSL advertising campaign promises the launch of a 4 Mbps DSL offering soon. But is this good enough?

EThekwini Municipality launches Broadband Internet trial
The EThekwini Municipality is launching a PowerLine Carrier (PLC) pilot in the Morningside – Berea Park area, promising speeds of 2 Mpbs and higher.

AOL tech chief resigns over issue of released data
AOL's chief technology officer and two other employees have been fired after the company revealed private search terms of more than 650 000 of its users on a public website, a source said on Monday.

Britain cracks down on Internet porn
Watching and possessing images of rape and sexual torture - online or offline - is to be made a criminal offence in Britain for the first time, punishable with a jail term of up to three years, the government announced.

SNO launches services as Neotel
Neotel officially brought competition to the fixed line telecoms industry today with the launch of its first services to the wholesale telecommunications market.

ICASA is clueless, says report
The country's communications regulator lacks understanding of corporate governance, as well as its government mandate, states an independent report, presented in Parliament yesterday.

Parliament roasts ICASA nominees
The second day of interviews for the vacant Independent Communications Authority of SA (ICASA) councillor posts saw six nominees taking a roasting from members of Parliament.

Friday, September 01, 2006
  Hacking Suit Against Law Firm Continues, Plaintiff Says
A Philadelphia-based patients' advocacy company agreed to settle its claim that a West Coast Web page archivist improperly secured copyrighted pages and thereby made them vulnerable to a third party's hacking. But Healthcare Advocates Inc.'s suit against the alleged hackers -- at a Valley Forge, Pa., law firm, Harding, Earley, Follmer & Frailey -- will proceed, says the plaintiff attorney, Scott Christie.

Google Offers Books in Public Domain for Free
Google Book Search now offers PDF files of scanned books that can be downloaded and printed for free, Google announced. Readers can find the books by choosing the "Full view books" option on the Google Book Search home page before they activate their search.

Microsoft Releases Trial of Parental-Control Software
Slightly later than planned, Microsoft released a trial version of a free parental-control tool for Windows XP. Windows Live OneCare Family Safety is designed to help keep Web content that parents deem inappropriate from reaching their children.

Email hoax case continues
A trial date has been set for the man who is allegedly at the centre of the ANC "spy" and hoax email saga, in which the organisation's senior officials were alleged to be planning the downfall of Jacob Zuma.

Microsoft to Fix Security Hole in DRM Application
The FairUse4WM application, exploiting a hole in the digital rights management scheme of Microsoft's Windows Media Player 10 and 11, could make it possible for a user to sign up for a temporary music site account and keep all the music he or she could download. However, "it is unlikely that the majority of consumers are even aware of this [DRM] program," said Joe Wilcox, senior analyst with JupiterResearch.

Sarbanes-Oxley Won't Apply, Says Euronext Chief
The CEO Europe's No. 2 stock exchange, Euronext, which is set for a merger with NYSE, resisted pressure for a vote on a rival bid from Germany's Deutsche Boerse. Jean-Francois Theodore also told a conference call that companies listed on the merged exchange will never be subject to the Sarbanes-Oxley reporting regulations that govern U.S. firms.

Mining the World's Data for What You Need
Accurate data mining in the future will take into account not just structured information, but unstructured information as well. This new generation of solutions will need to go deeper than keyword search -- it will require a deep understanding of language, to lend structure to unstructured data for use in downstream analysis and assessment.

Lawyers Can Use Online Match Services, Ethics Panel Says
Lawyers can pay a fee to participate in an online service that matches lawyers with potential clients, as long as the service exercises no discretion in those matchups, a State Bar of Texas ethics committee determined. The decision addresses "the fine line between solicitation and advertising when you use a nonlawyer, for-profit Internet service to obtain clients," says attorney Paul Koning.

T-Mobile Hacker Sentenced to One Year Home Detention
A hacker who infiltrated the network of T-Mobile USA and gained access to the personal information of hundreds of customers, including a Secret Service agent, was sentenced to one year of home detention. Nicholas Lee Jacobsen, 23, must also pay $10,000 in restitution to T-Mobile to cover losses caused by his acts, which took place in 2004.

Domain Name Market Predicted to Reach $2.5 Billion
Real estate prices might be falling in some areas -- but that's for physical real estate. Virtual real estate, in the form of Internet domain names -- the part after the "www" in a website's address -- is on a tear and showing no signs of slowing down. By some estimates, the market for registering and trading domain names could reach $2.5 billion this year.

Hackers Access Data on 19,000 Online AT&T Customers
AT&T said hackers broke into one of its computer systems and accessed personal data on thousands of customers who used its online store. The information that was illegally accessed includes credit card numbers and affects about 19,000 customers who purchased equipment for high-speed DSL Internet connections through AT&T's Web site, the company said.

Municipal WiFi Networks Popping Up All Over
A large number of uncertainties are associated with municipal WiFi at this stage, so municipalities are starting slowly. "Most of the cities are starting small and seeing what the true implementation hurdles are before rolling out the services completely," said Christopher Baum, research vice president at Gartner.

For Some, It's a Small Wikipedia World
Smaller Wikipedias face basic questions: How do you create an online encyclopedia in a language in which few native speakers have access to the Internet? What use is an encyclopedia when literacy rates among a language's speakers approach zero? And who should control the content in a local language if not enough native speakers are inclined, or able, to contribute?

Backing Up Your Web Site Data: An Overlooked Necessity
Choosing the right backup plan for your business should be done in consultation with an experienced professional who can help you design a solution that will allow you to restore your site to full functionality as quickly as needed. While often overlooked in the price-conscious shopping process, backups are critical to the long-term success of any Web operation.

Municipal telecoms are a gap in the market - expert
A telecommunications expert has called on the private sector to take advantage of public-private partnership opportunities presented by the new Electronic Communications Act.

Wiki site aims to boost patent review process
The U.S. patent system is supposed to ensure that the latest wireless e-mail technique or crustless peanut-butter-and-jelly sandwich granted protection is truly one of a kind.

African Languages Grow as a Wikipedia Presence
At the second annual Wikimania conference, held this year at Harvard Law School, there was what might be considered a quintessential Wikipedian moment: as Martin Benjamin, a researcher at Yale University, gave a talk about the Swahili dictionary he is creating online, Ndesanjo Macha was simultaneously sitting in the audience using a Wi-Fi connection and laptop to put the finishing touches on his Wikipedia entry, “Martin Benjamin,” in Swahili.

Icasa's ADSL flip-flop
South Africa’s telecommunications regulator has been roundly criticised by stakeholders for backpedalling on regulations aimed at bringing exorbitant ADSL pricing in line.

Law firm saves with document management system
Law firm SJ Berwin is saving £700,000 a year on storage costs and has increased productivity after installing a unified document management system bringing together e-mails and paper files.

Online trading overtakes traditional stockbroking
Share dealing is now dominated by the internet, a new report says, with investors preferring to go online rather than traditional face-to-face or over-the-phone stockbroking methods.

Times Withholds Web Article in Britain
If Web readers in Britain were intrigued by the headline “Details Emerge in British Terror Case,” which sat on top of The New York Times’s home page much of yesterday, they would have been disappointed with a click.







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