The Upload: Your tech news briefing for Wednesday, July 1

Court says NSA can keep collecting phone records... Vandals cut cables again... Leap second largely trouble-free

Court says NSA can keep collecting phone records even after Congress told it to stop

The National Security Agency just doesn't want to stop collecting records of U.S. telephone calls. Congress told it to stop -- but left a loophole in the USA Freedom Act so the courts could let it carry on. Now a U.S. surveillance court has approved a request from the FBI to extend the telephone records dragnet until Nov. 29. As the judge noted in his order: "The more things change, the more they stay the same."

Vandal cuts cable after opening manhole: FBI looks into it

The FBI is investigating another incident of damage to fiber-optic cables in the Bay Area. A vandal is reported to have opened a manhole in Alameda County and cut three cables. A separate incident in Portland, Oregon, also resulted in cables being severed, the Los Angeles Times reported.

Leap second poses few problems... except in Brazil

Traffic flows on the Internet were barely inconvenienced by the leap second introduced to keep electronic clocks in sync with the earth's gradually-slowing rotation yesterday. Although the different approaches to dealing with the leap second had the potential to disrupt communications between servers and routers, just half a percent of the world's networks -- many of them in Brazil -- suffered problems, and most were quickly back on line, PC World heard.

Zuckerberg's online Q&A goes offline because people liked it too much

And another outage: When Marc Zuckerberg took questions from an audience of Facebook friends, his company's servers struggled to cope. The problem was "an overload of likes," one employee told the New York Times, which managed to catch some of Zuckerberg's answers before the servers buckled.

Amazon wants to make cryptography simpler for app developers

Potentially saving the world from another online security disaster like last year's Heartbleed, Amazon Web Services has released as open source a cryptographic module for securing sensitive data passing over the Internet. The software, s2n, is a new implementation of Transport Layer Security (TLS), a protocol used to encrypt data between browsers and web servers.

Cisco plans to buy security-as-a-service provider OpenDNS

Cisco Systems has offered to buy Internet security service provider OpenDNS in order to beef up its Security Everywhere initiative. With its cloud-based service, OpenDNS prevents customers from connecting to IP addresses associated with criminal activity, botnets and malicious downloads.

Microsoft could write off two-thirds of the $7.9 billion it spent on Nokia's phone division

After buying Nokia's mobile phone business for $7.9 billion, Microsoft write off up to $5.5 billion of that as early as today, Computerworld reports. Stephen Elop, the former Microsoft exec who left to lead Nokia and returned to Microsoft after the acquisition, was ousted last month.

Say 'R': Industry forms consortium to help diagnose meaning of data

Microsoft, Google, Hewlett-Packard and Oracle are among the companies forming a new consortium to support the R language, an open-source environment for statistical computing and graphics. The R Consortium will be hosted by the Linux Foundation.

Watch now

Google's cute little self-driving cars are now allowed on the streets around Mountain View. Catch a glimpse of them in the wild with IDG.TV.

One last thing

It's the title of an essay in BusinessWeek explaining programming to non-programmers in BusinessWeek: What is code?

Join the CSO newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags U.S. Federal Bureau of InvestigationAmazon Web ServicesU.S. National Security Agencyhardware systemslegalR ConsortiuminternetFacebookCisco SystemsGoogleMicrosoftsecurity

More about Amazon Web ServicesCiscoFacebookFBIFreedomGoogleIDGLinuxMicrosoftMountain ViewNational Security AgencyNokiaNSAOracleQTransport

Show Comments

Featured Whitepapers

Editor's Recommendations

Solution Centres

Stories by IDG News Service staff

Latest Videos

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: The Human Factor - Your people are your biggest security weakness

    ​Speakers: David Lacey, Researcher and former CISO Royal Mail David Turner - Global Risk Management Expert Mark Guntrip - Group Manager, Email Protection, Proofpoint

    Play Video

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: Current ransomware defences are failing – but machine learning can drive a more proactive solution

    Speakers • Ty Miller, Director, Threat Intelligence • Mark Gregory, Leader, Network Engineering Research Group, RMIT • Jeff Lanza, Retired FBI Agent (USA) • Andy Solterbeck, VP Asia Pacific, Cylance • David Braue, CSO MC/Moderator What to expect: ​Hear from industry experts on the local and global ransomware threat landscape. Explore a new approach to dealing with ransomware using machine-learning techniques and by thinking about the problem in a fundamentally different way. Apply techniques for gathering insight into ransomware behaviour and find out what elements must go into a truly effective ransomware defence. Get a first-hand look at how ransomware actually works in practice, and how machine-learning techniques can pick up on its activities long before your employees do.

    Play Video

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: Get real about metadata to avoid a false sense of security

    Speakers: • Anthony Caruana – CSO MC and moderator • Ian Farquhar, Worldwide Virtual Security Team Lead, Gigamon • John Lindsay, Former CTO, iiNet • Skeeve Stevens, Futurist, Future Sumo • David Vaile - Vice chair of APF, Co-Convenor of the Cyberspace Law And Policy Community, UNSW Law Faculty This webinar covers: - A 101 on metadata - what it is and how to use it - Insight into a typical attack, what happens and what we would find when looking into the metadata - How to collect metadata, use this to detect attacks and get greater insight into how you can use this to protect your organisation - Learn how much raw data and metadata to retain and how long for - Get a reality check on how you're using your metadata and if this is enough to secure your organisation

    Play Video

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: How banking trojans work and how you can stop them

    CSO Webinar: How banking trojans work and how you can stop them Featuring: • John Baird, Director of Global Technology Production, Deutsche Bank • Samantha Macleod, GM Cyber Security, ME Bank • Sherrod DeGrippo, Director of Emerging Threats, Proofpoint (USA)

    Play Video

  • 150x50

    IDG Live Webinar:The right collaboration strategy will help your business take flight

    Speakers - Mike Harris, Engineering Services Manager, Jetstar - Christopher Johnson, IT Director APAC, 20th Century Fox - Brent Maxwell, Director of Information Systems, THE ICONIC - IDG MC/Moderator Anthony Caruana

    Play Video

More videos

Blog Posts

Market Place