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Government Panel Urges End to Phone Data Spying

January 23, 2014 9:21 am | by Stephen Braun, Associated Press | News | Comments

A sharply divided government task force that reviewed the National Security Agency's surveillance program for four months has urged President Barack Obama to shut down the agency's bulk collection of phone data and purge its massive inventory of millions of Americans' calling records, The Associated Press has learned.

Tech Industry: Obama's NSA Reforms 'Insufficient'

January 20, 2014 9:24 am | by Barbara Ortutay, Michael Liedtke, AP Technology Writers | News | Comments

Technology companies and industry groups took President Barack Obama's speech on U.S. surveillance as a step in the right direction, but chided him for not embracing more dramatic reforms to protect people's privacy and the economic interests of American companies that generate most of their revenue overseas.

NSA Phone Data Control to Come to End

January 17, 2014 9:51 am | by Julie Pace, AP White House Correspondent | News | Comments

Seeking to calm a furor over U.S. surveillance powers, President Barack Obama on Friday will call for ending the government's control of phone data from hundreds of millions of Americans and require intelligence agencies to get a secretive court's permission before accessing the records, a senior administration official said.

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Officials: Obama Likely to OK Phone Record Changes

January 15, 2014 9:05 am | by Julie Pace, Kimberly Dozier, Associated Press | News | Comments

President Barack Obama is expected to endorse changes to the way the government collects millions of Americans' phone records for possible future surveillance, but he'll leave many of the specific adjustments for Congress to sort out, according to three U.S. officials familiar with the White House intelligence review.

Wheeler, Pai Express Conflicting Opinions over Net Neutrality Decision

January 14, 2014 1:18 pm | by Andrew Berg | News | Comments

A rift appeared to emerge at the FCC Tuesday over a D.C. Appeals Court decision to strike down Net Neutrality rules. Chairman Wheeler and Commissioner Ajit Pai both released statements Tuesday that appeared at odds on how the Commission should respond to the ruling. 

Appeals Court Strikes Down Net Neutrality Rules

January 14, 2014 11:52 am | by Andrew Berg | News | Comments

A D.C. Circuit Court of Aopeals today struck down the FCC's Open Internet rules. The rules were aimed at ensuring that large Internet Service Providers (ISPs) couldn't discriminate against the types of traffic carried over their networks. 

US Spy Court: NSA to Keep Collecting Phone Records

January 6, 2014 9:28 am | by Kimberly Dozier, Stephen Braun, Associated Press | News | Comments

A secretive U.S. spy court has ruled again that the National Security Agency can keep collecting every American's telephone records every day, in the midst of dueling decisions in two other federal courts about whether the surveillance program is constitutional.

Report: NSA Intercepting Hardware, Faking Base Station Signals

December 30, 2013 9:37 am | by Raphael Satter, Associated Press | News | Comments

A German magazine lifted the lid on the operations of the National Security Agency's hacking unit Sunday, reporting that American spies intercept computer deliveries, exploit hardware vulnerabilities, and even hijack Microsoft's internal reporting system to spy on their targets.

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NSA Debate Shifts in Favor of Surveillance Limits

December 20, 2013 10:45 am | by Julie Pace, AP White House Correspondent | News | Comments

WASHINGTON (AP) — In a sharp and unexpected shift, the national debate over U.S. government surveillance seems to be turning in favor of reining in the National Security Agency's expansive spying powers at home and abroad. It's happened suddenly, over a span of just three days.

Verizon to Disclose Law Enforcement Requests for Customer Info in Report

December 19, 2013 4:22 pm | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

Verizon today announced its intent to early next year publish a transparency report detailing all the U.S. law enforcement requests for customer information the carrier received in 2013. The company plans to release the first report in early 2014 and then semi-annually after that.

Judge's Word on NSA Program Won't Be the Last

December 17, 2013 9:53 am | by Frederic J. Frommer, Associated Press | News | Comments

WASHINGTON (AP) — A federal judge made headlines Monday by declaring that the National Security Agency's bulk collection of millions of Americans' telephone records is likely unconstitutional. But even he realized his won't be the last word on the issue.

US Lawmakers Ask Trade Czar to Stem Data Threats

December 16, 2013 9:18 am | by Marcy Gordon, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

WASHINGTON (AP) — Members of Congress want the Obama administration to demand that U.S. allies back away from proposed restrictions on international data transmissions, saying those actions could hurt U.S. companies. Some nations are seeking to tighten the flow of data after reports this fall of the National Security Agency conducting massive information-gathering efforts abroad.

DOT Seeking Ban on In-Flight Cell Phone Use

December 13, 2013 2:53 pm | by Andrew Berg | News | Comments

The U.S. Department of Transportation is weighing in on the possiblity that cell phones could be allowed on planes. In a statement, U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx acknowledged the FCC's recent Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM), which suggests the issue isn't a technological one. 

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FCC Moves to Put Airlines in Pilot Seat on In-Flight Device Use

December 12, 2013 4:42 pm | by Andrew Berg | News | Comments

"Let me say up front that, I get it. I don’t want the person in the seat next to me yapping at 35,000 feet any more than anyone else," wrote FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler in a statement discussing today's Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) for new policies governing in-flight cell phone use. 

House Committee Passes Spectrum Incentive and FCC Reform Acts

December 11, 2013 4:52 pm | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

The House Energy & Commerce Committee today passed through H.R. 3674, the Federal Spectrum Incentive Act of 2013 and H.R. 3675, the Federal Communications Commission Process Reform Act. Both bills were introduced on Monday. Both bills now move onto the House for approval.

German Prosecutor: Still Weighing NSA Probe

December 11, 2013 9:37 am | by Associated Press | News | Comments

Germany's chief federal prosecutor says he hasn't decided whether to open an investigation into alleged surveillance by the U.S. National Security Agency but is suggesting that he's skeptical. Prosecutor Harald Range's office has been considering since June whether it has grounds to investigate reports of NSA surveillance in Germany, which later included allegations that Chancellor Angela Merkel's cellphone was monitored.

New Bill Offers Government Agencies Incentive for Clearing Airwaves

December 10, 2013 9:49 am | by Andrew Berg | News | Comments

U.S. Representatives Brett Guthrie (R-KY) and Doris Matsui (D-CA), co-chairs of the House Energy and Commerce Committee Spectrum Working Group, on Monday introduced legislation that offers financial incentives to government agencies for vacating their unused spectrum. 

Tech Firms Vie to Protect Personal Data, Profits

December 10, 2013 9:30 am | by Marcy Gordon and Michael LIedtke, AP Business Writers | News | Comments

Even as Silicon Valley speaks out against the U.S. government's surveillance methods, technology companies are turning a handsome profit by mining personal data and peering into people's online habits. The industry's profit machine has become tarnished by revelations that the National Security Agency trolls deep into the everyday lives of Web surfers.

Stephenson: New FCC Showing 'Bias Towards Action'

December 10, 2013 9:26 am | by Andrew Berg | News | Comments

AT&T is hoping for a more agile, fast-acting FCC under new Chairman Tom Wheeler’s direction. Randall Stephenson, CEO of AT&T, said in a remarks at the UBS Media & Telecom Investor Conference, that his company had filed its intentions with the FCC to move to an all-IP network but noted there was very little movement...

ACLU: Law Enforcement Getting Unfettered Access to Mobile Devices

December 9, 2013 11:06 am | by Andrew Berg | News | Comments

As major tech companies petition the White House for data collection reform, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) Monday released a press release that highlights the rising number of law enforcements requests for cell phone subscriber data in 2012. 

New Rules Hasten FCC Approval of Verizon's Vodafone Buy

December 4, 2013 4:18 pm | by Andrew Berg | News | Comments

The FCC Wednesday approved Verizon's petition for a declaratory ruling on its acquistion of Vodafone's 45 percent stake in the Verizon Wireless joint venture. The ruling, which involved the International Bureau, Wireless Telecommunications Bureau, and Office of Engineering and Technology, was the first time...

Report: HP Replaces Verizon Terremark as Obamacare Site Host

December 2, 2013 10:11 am | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

Verizon’s enterprise IT and cloud services acquisition Terremark is being replaced by HP as website host for Healthcare.gov, the federal health insurance marketplace. The Wall Street Journal spoke with people familiar with the matter who said the Department of Health and Human Services is in the process of moving the web operations over to HP’s data centers in a move that could take months to complete.

Pentagon Agreement Opens AWS Spectrum for Auction

November 26, 2013 11:02 am | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

The Pentagon and the incumbent TV broadcasters have agreed to a spectrum-sharing deal for the 2025-2110 MHz bands. The National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) is urging the FCC to make changes that would allow the Department of Defense (DoD) to move its operations from the 1755-1780 MHz spectrum and free up that spectrum for pairing with 2155-2180 MHz bands.

GOP Rep Warns FCC Against Spectrum Caps in Upcoming Auctions

November 18, 2013 10:42 am | by Ben Munson | News | Comments

Rep. Greg Walden (D-Ore.) has warned the FCC against limiting the participation of AT&T and Verizon in upcoming spectrum auctions through the use of spectrum caps. The Hill said that Rep. Walden, chairman of the House Communications and Technology subcommittee, told reporters that Congress might step in if it doesn’t like the FCC auction rules.

Report: AT&T Rakes in $10M a Year from C.I.A for Phone Records

November 7, 2013 9:58 am | by Andrew Berg | News | Comments

The C.I.A. pays AT&T over $10 million a year for phone records, according to a report from the New York Times, which cites government officals. The agreement is part of a voluntary contract between AT&T and the C.I.A. and does not involve the subpoenas or court orders which would traditionally compell an operator to comply with such an request. 

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