government

FCC’s radical new proposal will overhaul set top box market

FCC’s radical new proposal will overhaul set top box market

Yesterday, a report surfaced claiming the FCC would soon propose a change involving set top boxes, and such a proposal was indeed made public today. According to the FCC, “Ninety-nine percent of pay-TV subscribers are chained to their set-top boxes because cable and satellite operators have locked up the market.” If the commission gets its way, its proposal will save consumers money currently spent on leasing boxes from providers, and will open the doors for more consumer options.

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Google teams with Fox News for final Republican debate

Google teams with Fox News for final Republican debate

Google has teamed with Fox News Channel ahead of the final Republican debate. This is the last debate ahead of the 2016 primaries, and with this Google partnership, people will have a trio of new options for staying up to date on the details. Says Google, it is integrating three additional elements into the debate, including Google Trends data, questions from YouTube stars, and a new way to get info from candidates.

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AG on encryption: we don’t want back doors, just back doors

AG on encryption: we don’t want back doors, just back doors

Encryption has become a very thorny subject of late, particularly in but not just limited to the US, which isn't that surprising considering most of the tech companies of the world call the country their HQ. Although it has since slightly weakened its formerly strong language, the US government stands by its position. Speaking at the World Economic Forum in Switzerland, US Attorney General Loretta Lynch reiterated that position. The US doesn't want encryption back doors. They just want access to encrypted systems through another door that isn't the front. So maybe a side door perhaps.

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Apple’s new EEO-1 filing paints different diversity picture

Apple’s new EEO-1 filing paints different diversity picture

Apple’s EEO-1 Federal Employer Information Report for 2015 was released quietly this past weekend, and in it we see a different snapshot of the company’s workforce diversity than the one last presented by Apple. Yes, the company has seen improvements in the realm of diversity among its employees. However, the numbers presented in the report aren’t quite the same as the ones we saw before, and they show relatively little change.

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U.S. Customs seizes cache of counterfeit wearables

U.S. Customs seizes cache of counterfeit wearables

Though it doesn't happen too often if you use a reputable service, ordering electronics online often comes with the risk of getting a counterfeit product. In some cases, the counterfeit nature of the product is immediately apparent and disappointing; other times it is done well enough to go undetected unless something catastrophic happens. The best way to avoid having those products in the marketplace, of course, is to catch them as they arrive, which is exactly what happened recently in Philadelphia.

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Volkswagen’s recall plan rejected in California

Volkswagen’s recall plan rejected in California

California’s Air Resources Board (CARB) has rejected Volkswagen’s proposal for how it will deal with the recall of its vehicles in the state. In addition, CARB has also made public its formal Notice of Violation regarding the auto maker’s violation of state air quality regulations. Says the California EPA, “Today’s actions do not preclude a recall, but allow for a broader array of potential remedies.”

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Chinese hoverboard maker raided by U.S. Marshals at CES

Chinese hoverboard maker raided by U.S. Marshals at CES

Things got a little extra interesting at CES yesterday when federal agents raided a Chinese hoverboard maker's booth over alleged patent infringement. The incident, which was caught on video, involved Chinese maker Changzhou First International Trade Co., which was showcasing a one-wheeled transportation device similar to ‘hoverboards’ and very similar in particular to the Future Motion Onewheel.

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Apple agrees to pay $347M in Italian tax probe

Apple agrees to pay $347M in Italian tax probe

Apple's tax practices have long been under criticism, with CEO Tim Cook even commenting during a recent 60 Minutes interview that accusations that the company goes to great lengths to avoid corporate taxes are "total political crap." However, that doesn't mean governments have to feel the same, with Italy saying that Apple failed to declare its full earnings in the country. The company has now agreed to a settlement in the investigation, and will pay 318 million euros, or roughly $347 million.

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Hoverboards may be legal in NYC soon due to new legislation

Hoverboards may be legal in NYC soon due to new legislation

Not too long after law enforcement publicly declared hoverboards to be illegal in New York City, a trio of politicians want to change that status. New legislation has been submitted that, if it passes, will reclassify hoverboards as something other than a motor vehicle, stripping away their banned status and instead opening them up for proper regulation. One of the senators behind the legislation made the sensible statement “they’re like skateboards.”

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North Korea’s Red Star OS targets illegal foreign media

North Korea’s Red Star OS targets illegal foreign media

North Korea has long been developing its own operating system called Red Star OS, a Linux distro with a design blatantly 'inspired by' Mac OS X. Thanks to German researchers Niklaus Schiess and Florian Grunow, the operating system has been laid bare more so than ever before; the pair managed to download Red Star OS from beyond North Korea and tasked themselves with analyzing it.

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U.S. voter database leak leaves millions exposed

U.S. voter database leak leaves millions exposed

A leaky database has been discovered that contains information on more than 191 million U.S. voters. The discovery was made by researcher Chris Vickery, who found his own personal information among millions of others’ in the misconfigured database. Despite efforts, the source of the database hasn’t yet been discovered and law enforcement, at least at this time, doesn’t appear too interested in taking down the list.

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Yahoo’s warning users of state-sponsored spying, too

Yahoo’s warning users of state-sponsored spying, too

Yahoo’s Chief Information Security Officer Bob Lord has announced that Yahoo will now inform its’ users when they’re the subject of a state-sponsored attack. The notifications will be provided if the company “strongly suspect[s]” an account has been targeted by a state-sponsored actor of some sort, giving the user a chance to protect his or her account.

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