Legal & Security

22 November 2006

us: Libel ruling boosts net providers BBC

Bloggers and US internet providers cannot be liable for posting defamatory comments written by third parties, the California Supreme Court has ruled.

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au: Security firms clash over phishy e-mails ZDNet

Banks and security experts cannot agree if it is safe for banks to use e-mail for communicating with their customers because the medium has been hijacked by criminals who try and fool online banking users into divulging their log-in details.

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us: Web publishers receive immunity on defamation International Herald Tribune

The California Supreme Court said Monday that Internet publishers could not be held liable for posting defamatory comments written by others, a victory for online companies like Google and America Online.

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20 November 2006

us: Legal Precedent Set for Web Accesibility Internet Business Law Services

A federal district court judge recently ruled in September that a retailer may be sued if its website is inaccessible to the blind. The ruling was issued in a case brought by the National Federation of the Blind against Target Corp. (Northern District of California Case No. C 06-01802 MHP) The suit charges that Target's website is inaccessible to the blind, and therefore violates the Americans with Disabilities Act. (ADA), the California Unruh Civil Rights Act, and the California Disabled Persons Act.

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17 November 2006

us: Perspective: Rushing into court has its consequences by Eric J. Sinrod CNet

So there you are, a reputable company or person, and someone else is using your trademarks to direct Internet users to pornographic Web sites. You file a lawsuit and rush into court seeking immediate relief. Right? Actually, not always. Indeed, before asking for legal relief, it is important to line up all of your legal ducks. Otherwise, your first dealings with a judge can be met with a thud. A recent case involving Online Marketing Services and other companies and individuals were using its Pottery Barn trademarks to direct Internet traffic to sites containing explicit pornographic content, none of which was sponsored or endorsed by Williams-Sonoma bears this out.

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16 November 2006

uk: Crackdown on data theft The Guardian

Tough measures planned for firms that steal and sell personal details after prosecution exposes growing trade. Information commissioner signals crackdown on companies that steal and sell sensitive details of people's private lives.

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15 November 2006

us: Catching Up With Cybercriminals eCommerce Times

Last year for the first time, proceeds from cybercrime were greater than proceeds from the sale of illegal drugs, according to recent comments by Valerie McNiven, an adviser to the U.S. Treasury Dept. "Cybercrime is moving at such a high speed that law enforcement cannot catch up with it," she says.

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us: Satanic Barney on Web tests copyright laws Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Barney the purple dinorsaur's owner, Lyons Partnership, is in a legal squabble with a Web site creator who posted unflattering images of the children's character. The dispute is testing the boundaries of copyright law and free expression on the Internet.

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us: Could Online Poker Law Raise The Stakes on Free Linking? Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard Law School

The Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act rocked the online casino industry mere days after its passage this month, and, with the president expected to sign the bill on Friday, most commentary has focused on how it will impact the millions of Americans who enjoy playing poker and placing bets online. As in many other instances, this attempt to stamp out an online activity could also impact anyone who wants to link to or help you access sites online.

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13 November 2006

Google chief vows to protect users' privacy The Guardian

The Google chief executive, Eric Schmidt, yesterday vowed to resist attempts by US president George W Bush's administration to obtain private information on internet users. On the day when the Republican administration faced dispiriting results in the US mid-term elections, Dr Schmidt launched a stinging criticism of the government's attitude to privacy.

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us: LA police in YouTube beating film BBC

An investigation begins after a video of a man being beaten by Los Angeles police is posted on YouTube. There is also a BBC TV report that includes the video.

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12 November 2006

us: Online scams target the wealthy BBC

High-income earners in the US are the target of online "phishing" scams a study shows. The study, by analysts Gartner, found that people who earn more than $100,000 received nearly 50% more phishing e-mails than lower earners.

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11 November 2006

uk: ISPs 'should be responsible' for hacker attacks News Scientist

ISPs should be made legally liable for the damage caused by "denial of service" attacks carried out via their networks, a leading internet lawyer says.

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10 November 2006

uk: Internet groomer handed jail term BBC

A man is jailed for hacking into girls' PCs and blackmailing them into sending explicit images of themselves.

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Privacy chiefs vow to fight surveillance together The Register

A group of international data and privacy protection commissioners has decided to act together to challenge the surveillance society which they claim is developing. Commissioners from the UK, France, Germany and New Zealand will adopt common policies.

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Email viruses hitting Australians harder: report Sydney Morning Herald

One in 84 Australian emails contains a virus. This compares to one in 16 emails in India containing a virus with Ireland, Germany, Singapore and Spain next.

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de: Privacy Prevails: German ISP Forced To Delete IP Logs Torrent Freak blog

The highest appeal court in Germany has decided that T-Online, one of the largest German ISPs has to delete all IP logs to guarantee the privacy of their customers. This ruling makes it impossible for anti-piracy organizations to trace an infringing IP-address back to a customer of T-Online, once their dynamic IP address has changed. For the original story in German see http://www.spiegel.de/netzwelt/web/0,1518,446838,00.html.

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au: New Australian copyright rules 'restrictive': Google Sydney Morning Herald

Internet search engine Google has asked for more flexibility in new federal copyright laws, warning Australian businesses could be held back because the new rules are too restrictive.

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08 November 2006

us: Company fined $3m for adware use BBC

An online advertising company, Zango, is to pay US$3m for "unfairly and deceptively" downloading its software onto people's computers.

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04 November 2006

uk: Who's watching as we watch ourselves? The Guardian

Last week, footage of a girl being badly bullied in a New Zealand school playground had to be take down from YouTube, the hugely successful video hosting site now owned by Google. It was rightly removed because in a perverse act of glorification it had been uploaded by the gang that had committed the offence. But it could easily have been taken by an onlooker and used as evidence against the gang. Surveillance is now expanding too fast for its effects to be fully understood.

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Spy planes, clothes scanners and secret cameras: Britain's surveillance future The Guardian

It sounds like a scene from the Tom Cruise futuristic thriller Minority Report. A teenager enters a record shop and a scanner hidden in the doorway instantly reads data secreted in electronic tags embedded in his clothes. The scanner clocks the brand of clothing and where it was purchased, flashing to a database which analyses what type of person would have bought that line of clothing and predicts what other products that person would like to buy. In an instant, adverts for those products are beamed to eye-level billboards for the teenager to see.

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03 November 2006

uk: How to hide in a connected world BBC

As we enter a more connected world, where devices talk to each other and make sense of the masses of data we create, the issue of how much control we have over this process becomes more important.

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02 November 2006

Microsoft files a slew of counterfeiting suits International Herald Tribune

Microsoft said it had filed more than 50 lawsuits against individuals and companies worldwide, claiming that they had sold counterfeit copies of its programs using online auction sites, including eBay.

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us: IP Address-Level Security a Growing Concern Enterprise Networks & Servers

Earlier this year, the FBI published statistics on computer crime that indicated it was costing U.S. businesses $678 billion per year. The average company cost when you do the math is $24,000 in hard dollar losses.

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01 November 2006

ca: Public no pushover on Canadian snooping law by Prof Michael Geist The Star

The push for new Internet surveillance capabilities dates back to 1999, when government officials began crafting proposals to institute new surveillance technologies within Canadian communications networks along with additional legal powers to allow surveillance and access subscriber information. The initiative nearly became reality with the Liberal government's introduction of the Modernization of Investigative Techniques Act (MITA) last fall.

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