Privacy Protection: Progress, Of Sorts
Reasonable minds can argue over the specifics in these bills, and they should. But whatever passes, and I do hope that happens soon, at least those bills form some sort of basis for nailing thieves and for holding accountable the companies that are the repositories of our most sensitive data. It also speaks to a beginning of a public policy of sorts.
Next Version of Google Talk Leaked
Screenshots and installation software for a major upgrade version of Google's instant messaging application, Google Talk, have apparently been leaked online. The new Google Talk appears to have "themes," color schemes and so on for how conversations look, and the equivalent of what rival AOL Instant Messenger calles "Buddy Icons." Here's a look at the screenshots.
Ethics Aren't Just For The Classroom
My colleague Paul McDougall has been taking quite a beating in the comments section of the InformationWeek Weblog for suggesting that it's a bad idea for executives to take massive gifts from vendors bidding on company business. Paul is making the crazy, wild-eyed assertion that bribery is, perhaps, ethically speaking, the nonoptimal solution. You might even say it's wrong.
Check Point Made The Right Move In Dropping Sourcefire Bid
The fastest way to obscurity in the security market is to worry about yesterday's problems. Check Point Software Technologies is looking to put its aborted bid to buy Sourcefire behind it. Once the deal came under the scrutiny of the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States, both companies would have been wrapped up in red tape for months. Unacceptable in the fast-moving world of IT security.
The Nerdy Way To Better Health
As junk food, alcohol, cigarettes, prescription drugs and inactivity increasingly take their toll on our health, people are looking for ways to get healthy. Of course, there's no getting around the need to consume fewer toxic substances and excercise more. The good news is that you can employ gadgets and computers to help you out -- and make getting healthy easier and more fun.
Microsoft Security Flaws Create A New Market
It's happened again: Someone other than Microsoft has ridden in on their white horse and delivered a patch designed to protect Microsoft customers while Redmond readies its next regularly scheduled download of fixes. Russian programmer Ilfak Guilfanov, senior developer with Belgian software maker DataRescue, opened the barn doors in January when he issued an unauthorized piece of workaround code to help companies
Globalization, Or Sailed Ships And Election-Year Politics
The car's left the driveway on the globalization of IT, but the United States apparently still thinks it has the keys. International deals of all sizes have been coming under increasing scrutiny over supposed security questions, and the atmosphere doesn't seem to be getting better anytime soon. Well, at least until after November.
Tips On Information And Records Retention Management
Knowing that proper information management can be the most effective means of reducing risks and bolstering regulatory compliance efforts, ARMA International, the not-for-profit professional membership association for records management professionals is offering some simple tips on setting your records and information management policies.
Oracle's BI Play
Oracle is pushing a new product line that it hopes will cover companies' BI needs from top to bottom.
When It Comes To Data, We Just Still Don't Get It
This whole information mismanagement thing is really starting to concern me. If we're to draw conclusions from recent developments, we, the nation that has mastered the art of creating an information economy while shipping most of the actual production of real goods overseas, appear to have no idea what we're doing with electronic data.
Justice Department Spreads Subpoenas
Search engines aren't the only companies being sent subpoenas. As part of its campaign to demonstrate the futility of Internet filtering, the U.S. Department of Justice has subpoenaed at least 34 Internet companies and software makers. The story is now posted on InformationWeek.com.
I discovered this thanks to a Freedom of Information Act request I filed with the Department of Justice. The DOJ complied, though r
Maybe It's Just That Nobody Gives A Cr-- Uh, Darn
Nonprofits and political organizations, including the Electronic Frontier Foundation, are campaigning against America Online's plan to give preferential treatment to some E-mail newsletters and other bulk mail, provided that the senders are willing to pay a fee.
Bennet Haselton, of the political group Peacefire.org, posted an explanation on Slashdot. It's thoughtful--but demonstrates why Peacefire and the EFF are missing the
It Takes An Indian Village To Buy An Intel Laptop
Intel Corp. has dropped the other shoe in its defense of its laptop processor business against whatever threat Nicholas Negroponte's One-Laptop-Per-Child project poses.
In December Intel Chairman Craig Barrett bad-mouthed the $100 laptop Negroponte, founder of MIT's Media Lab, plans to distribute in Third World countries, and earlier this month Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates, the other half of the "Wintel" combine, did the same thing.
Even though he dismissed Negroponte's design as "the $100 g
Big IT Takes Step To Influence Tech Policy In U.S.
Influencing public policy in Washington and throughout the country requires more than hiring K Street lobbyists to push a legislative agenda. Look at the success of the modern conservative movement in shaping public policy. Its roots date back to 1973 with the founding of the think tank, The Heritage Foundation. Big IT vendors are tearing a page out of the right-wing playbook by establishing their own think tank.
Oracle's Wookey Talks Up Fusion, Open Source
Most customers won't make the jump to Oracle Corp.'s Fusion applications for years, but the software maker says it has begun working with companies to make the transition.
Along with the transition, Oracle's focus has been on delivering industry-specific features, similar to tools from Microsoft Business Solutions and SAP AG.
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Data Security: Out To Lunch, Er, Dinner
It was just last week that InformationWeek published the latest exhaustive analysis of what's emerging as the IT story of the first decade of this century: complete corporate and government ineptitude when it comes to managing sensitive personal data.
More Madness In March
Say it one time out loud, and it still doesn't seem real. "George Mason is going to the final four." Say it a few times, and, it still sounds surreal but it is true.
March madness continues with one of the more surprising NCAA Basketball Tournaments in memory. Naturally, the country is riveted, and, though I have no figures to back this up, I am guessing productivity is plummeting. Most companies were antipating some issues with workers spending too much work time viewing games over the We
One-Gigabyte SD Card Costs Just $20
It's amazing how quickly the price of removable mobile storage drops. The price of Secure Digital (SD) cards is now so low you can buy one for $19.95 -- and shipping is free.
Confessions Of An Adware Purveyor
York Baur acknowledges that 180solutions' original approach to spreading adware among the Internet masses wasn't properly executed by the company. "Lots of criticisms have been levied against 180, but I think the only valid criticism was that we were perhaps naïve about the world of Web publishing earlier on in our history, and it has taken us through 2005 to truly take control of that ownership of that network and get practices that we think are poor cleaned up," says Baur, 180solutions' e
It Takes One To Know One, Stephen Toulouse
I am sorely tempted to heap ridicule on Stephen Toulouse, the program manager for the Microsoft Security Response Center who had the unmitigated gall to lecture Apple on how to do security alerts. But I won't. It's too easy. Mr. Toulouse doesn't need me piling on. He's self-satirizing. But I hope he and other Microsoft employees do learn a little lesson from this. Nobody from Microsoft has the right to tell anybody anything about secur
Goodmail Saga Continues, Dyson Tells It Like It Is
Applause goes out to Esther Dyson for her recent op-ed piece in the New York Times, You've Got Goodmail. She points out that Goodmail's service is like "FedEx for e-mail," except that Goodmail provisions its service atop the ISPs' services. So it's more like FedEx without its own planes. But I sort of like that analogy because the opposing forces seem to be conveniently overlooking some obvious facts h