The U.S. government has basically killed ZTE's smartphone business by blocking access to Google's services. There are a lot of headlines that talk about the ban in different ways, but when you get right down to the nitty-gritty that is what you are left with. The short version is this: ZTE was caught (and admitted to) selling mobile equipment to Iran and North Korea, which are two of the very few countries that the U.S. considers the "enemy," and a company isn't allowed to do business with either if it wants to do business with U.S. based companies. A punishment was set for this, which ZTE agreed to, and the U.S. says that ZTE did not adhere to it so the Secretary of Commerce issued a denial order against the company that says in part: [ZTE] may not, directly or indirectly, participate in any way in any transaction involving any commodity, software or technology exported or to be exported from the United States. The long version of the events is an interesting read and I don't … [Read more...] about ZTE is DOA, but has the U.S. government gone too far?
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Normally when you think about sectors of the U.S. economy that are subject to government protections or emergency oversight, you think of financial institutions and automakers such as GM, which received bailouts in the wake of the financial meltdown in 2008 and 2009.Or, most recently, tariffs imposed by the Trump administration on foreign imports of aluminum and steel.But last week, the actions of a federal agency few San Diegans had ever heard of highlighted a larger discussion about the relationship between national security interests and the tech sector.The Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States on March 4 put the much-anticipated shareholder meeting of San Diego Fortune 500 company Qualcomm on hold. The committee said it will conduct a 30-day review “to investigate fully” the $117 billion hostile takeover bid by Singapore-based Broadcom to acquire Qualcomm.The reasons?General concerns about national security and specific anxieties whether a Broadcom … [Read more...] about Does the U.S. government need to protect American tech companies?
Huawei's big plans to make a breakthrough into the U.S. smartphone market have been crushed. There's no gentle way to say that, so I'll just say it. As CES 2018 was drawing to a close, AT&T and Verizon, which were both all but confirmed to be "official" carriers of the Mate 10 Pro, both announced that they wouldn't be selling any Huawei phones after pressure from the U.S. government because Huawei phones being used in the states would pose a security risk. The government really doesn't want us using Huawei products. This pressure became official soon after as a bill was sent to Congress that would ban any government business from being done on a network that used Huawei (or ZTE) networking equipment. In the same week, we learned that government officials were urging AT&T to stop doing business with Huawei altogether and to stop working on a 5G network with the Chinese company. Once again, national security concerns were stated as the reason behind the request. We're not done. … [Read more...] about Why does the U.S. government mistrust Huawei and not ZTE or Lenovo?
Almost 20 years ago, Chris Wysopal was among a group of hackers who testified before Congress, warning of the dangers of the internet.Unfortunately, the U.S. government is still struggling to act, Wysopal said. "You’re just going to keep ending up with the status quo," he said, pointing to the U.S. government's failure to regulate the tech industry or provide incentives for change.It’s a feeling that was shared by the experts who attended this week’s RSA cybersecurity show in San Francisco. The U.S. government needs to do more on cybersecurity, but what? Public and private sectorPerhaps, the need for U.S. action hasn't been more urgent. In last year's election, Russia was accused of hacking U.S. political groups and figures in an effort to influence the outcome.In addition, major internet companies, including Yahoo, have reported huge data breaches, one of which exposed details to a billion user accounts. The list of problems goes on and on. … [Read more...] about Here’s how the U.S. government can bolster cybersecurity
Twitter is suing the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and alleging the government is misusing an investigative tool as part of an internal witch-hunt to uncover who is behind a Twitter account critical of the immigration service.The lawsuit, filed on Thursday in California, comes on the heels of a report that visitors to the U.S. could soon be routinely asked to hand over email and social media account passwords to the immigration service.In its lawsuit, Twitter says that U.S. Department of Homeland Security and U.S. Customs and Border Protection have demanded it hand over information regarding the @alt_uscis Twitter account.The account is one of many established after the inauguration of President Donald Trump as dissent accounts of U.S. government agencies. The writers are critical of Trump and new leadership, and most claim to be insiders working in government or former staffers.On March 14, Twitter received a summons from the customs agency demanding the identity of the person … [Read more...] about Twitter sues the U.S. government for demanding it unmask critical ‘alt’ account