China fines ride-sharer DiDi $1.2bn for data privacy abuse – why is China leading the world in this?

The Cyberspace Administration of China has fined ride-sharing company DiDi global ¥8.026 billion ($1.2 billion) for more than 64 billion illegal acts of data collection that it says were carried out maliciously and threatened national security. Yes, we do mean billion. As in a thousand million. The Administration enumerated DiDi’s indiscretions as follows: 53.976 billion Read more about China fines ride-sharer DiDi $1.2bn for data privacy abuse – why is China leading the world in this?[…]

Google forced to allow some Android apps to use third-party payments in the EU

Android developers who distribute apps on the Google Play store can now use third-party payment systems in many European countries. The measure applies to the European Economic Area (EEA), which comprises European Union states as well as Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway. However, the policy will not apply to gaming apps, which still need to use Read more about Google forced to allow some Android apps to use third-party payments in the EU[…]

Russia fines Google $374M over Ukraine invasion portrayal

A Russian court fined Google $374 million on Monday for its failure to remove prohibited content, according to the country’s internet watchdog Roskomnadzor. The Tagansky District Court of Moscow took exception to YouTube content it claimed contained “fakes about the course of a special military operation in Ukraine” and discredited Russia’s armed forces. The court Read more about Russia fines Google $374M over Ukraine invasion portrayal[…]

UK court okays $1.1b Play Store lawsuit against Google

A London court on Tuesday authorized a lawsuit that seeks to have Google pay £920 million ($1.1 billion) for overcharging customers for app store purchases. Filed as a class action on behalf of 19.5 million UK citizens, the suit alleges Google charged commission fees up to 30 percent on app sales. Consumer rights advocate Liz Read more about UK court okays $1.1b Play Store lawsuit against Google[…]

Apple Pay illegally profited by walling off contactless payments, lawsuits in EU, US allege

A proposed class-action lawsuit filed on behalf of payment card issuers accuses Apple of illegally profiting from Apple Pay and breaking antitrust laws. Iowa’s Affinity Credit Union is listed as the plaintiff in the complaint, filed today in the US District Court for the Northern District of California. The lawsuit alleges that by restricting contactless Read more about Apple Pay illegally profited by walling off contactless payments, lawsuits in EU, US allege[…]

Ubisoft Teaches Customers They Don’t Own All That DLC They ‘Bought’

While we were just discussing how everyone occasionally gets reminded that for many digital goods these days you simply don’t actually own what you’ve bought, all thanks to Sony disappearing a bunch of purchased movies and shows from its PlayStation platform, this conversation has been going on for a long, long time. Whereas the expectation Read more about Ubisoft Teaches Customers They Don’t Own All That DLC They ‘Bought’[…]

Google files a lawsuit that could kick Tinder out of the Play Store because Match refuses to pay illegally forced fees

Google has counter-sued Match seeking monetary damages and a judgement that would let it kick Tinder and the group’s other dating apps out of the Play Store, Bloomberg has reported. Earlier this year, Match sued Google alleging antitrust violations over a decision requiring all Android developers to process “digital goods and services” payments through the Read more about Google files a lawsuit that could kick Tinder out of the Play Store because Match refuses to pay illegally forced fees[…]

BMW Heated Seats Subscription Is Real And It Costs $18 Per Month. Also heated steering wheel, paid separately. In a car you own and paid for the heated seats and wheel.

[…] On its ConnectedDrive Store in South Korea, BMW owners can pay a monthly fee to have a creature comfort such as heated seats. It costs ₩24,000 or approximately $18 at current exchange rates. Alternatively, you can get a one-year plan for $176 or a three-year subscription for $283. The BMW ConnectedDrive Store is a Read more about BMW Heated Seats Subscription Is Real And It Costs $18 Per Month. Also heated steering wheel, paid separately. In a car you own and paid for the heated seats and wheel.[…]

You Don’t Own What You’ve Bought: Sony Removes 100s Of Movies Bought Through PS Store

We have done many, many posts explaining how, unfortunately, it seems the idea of a person owning the things they’ve bought has become rather passe. While in the age of antiquity, which existed entire tens of years ago, you used to be able to own things, these days you merely license them under Ts and Read more about You Don’t Own What You’ve Bought: Sony Removes 100s Of Movies Bought Through PS Store[…]

Amazon offers to share data, boost rivals to dodge EU antitrust fines

Amazon (AMZN.O) has offered to share marketplace data with sellers and boost the visibility of rival products on its platform, trying to persuade EU antitrust regulators to close their investigations without a fine by the end of the year, people familiar with the matter said. The world’s largest online retailer is hoping its concessions will Read more about Amazon offers to share data, boost rivals to dodge EU antitrust fines[…]

European Union passes landmark laws to rein in big tech, but worres about enforcement

[…] the European Union has passed a pair of landmark bills designed to rein in Big Tech’s power. The Digital Markets Act and Digital Services Act are intended to promote fairer competition, improve privacy protection, as well as banning both the use of some of the more egregious forms of targeted advertising and misleading practices. Read more about European Union passes landmark laws to rein in big tech, but worres about enforcement[…]

Scaling the cost of government programs using a cost-per-person price tag improves comprehension by the general public

Government policies often are presented with hefty price tags, but people often zone out as more zeros are added to the total cost. A new study from Carnegie Mellon University suggests that rescaling the cost of programs can increase a person’s understanding of funding choices, which may improve how people participate in the policy debate. Read more about Scaling the cost of government programs using a cost-per-person price tag improves comprehension by the general public[…]

DeGiro online broker fined EUR 2 million for failing to report unusual transactions

On 23 December 2021, the Netherlands Authority for the Financial Markets (AFM) appears to have imposed an administrative fine of 2 million euros on the DeGiro of the German company flatexDEGIRO Bank AG (FlatexDeGiro) because the online broker reported unusual transactions too late and incorrectly to Financial Intelligence. Unit – Netherlands (FIU). DeGiro did this Read more about DeGiro online broker fined EUR 2 million for failing to report unusual transactions[…]

Coinbase Is Selling Data on Crypto and ‘Geotracking’ to ICE

Coinbase Tracer, the analytics arm of the cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase, has signed a contract with U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement that would allow the agency access to a variety of features and data caches, including “historical geo tracking data.” Coinbase Tracer, according to the website, is for governments, crypto businesses, and financial institutions. It allows Read more about Coinbase Is Selling Data on Crypto and ‘Geotracking’ to ICE[…]

‘Cryptoqueen’ On FBI’s Most Wanted List – on the run with $2.5 billion ponzi-ing suckers

FBI officials and federal prosecutors announced Ignatova’s new designation in a press conference Thursday. Ignatova was charged in 2019 with wire fraud, securities fraud, and conspiracy to commit money laundering for her part in the OneCoin crypto company that prosecutors alleged was just a ponzi scheme. Michael Driscoll, the FBI’s assistant director-in-charge for New York Read more about ‘Cryptoqueen’ On FBI’s Most Wanted List – on the run with $2.5 billion ponzi-ing suckers[…]

No anti money laundering Checks For Most Transfers To Unhosted Crypto Wallets, EU Policymakers Decide

The European Union (EU) finally agreed on landmark anti-money laundering rules for crypto transactions Wednesday, despite industry concerns over the law harming privacy and innovation. The final proposals will mean customer identity needs to be verified for even the smallest crypto transfers, if it’s between two regulated digital wallet providers – but payments to unhosted Read more about No anti money laundering Checks For Most Transfers To Unhosted Crypto Wallets, EU Policymakers Decide[…]

Apple’s insider trading prevention guy pleads guilty to … insider trading

One of Apple’s most senior legal executives, whom the iGiant trusted to prevent insider trading, has admitted to insider trading. Gene Levoff pleaded guilty to six counts of security fraud stemming from a February 2019 complaint, according to a Thursday announcement from the US Department of Justice on Thursday. Levoff used non-public information about Apple’s Read more about Apple’s insider trading prevention guy pleads guilty to … insider trading[…]

Google to pay $90m to settle Play Store lawsuit

Google is to pay $90 million to settle a class-action lawsuit with US developers over alleged anti-competitive behavior regarding the Google Play Store. Eligible for a share in the $90 million fund are US developers who earned two million dollars or less in annual revenue through Google Play between 2016 and 2021. “A vast majority Read more about Google to pay $90m to settle Play Store lawsuit[…]

Too Little, Too Late, WTO Finally Eases Patent Rights On COVID Vaccines

In what definitely feels like a case of way too little, way too late, the WTO last week finally decided to grant the TRIPS waiver on COVID vaccines, allowing others to make more of the vaccine without violating patent rights. The WTO has long had this ability to issue a patent waiver as part of Read more about Too Little, Too Late, WTO Finally Eases Patent Rights On COVID Vaccines[…]

Popular blockchains can be centralised fairly easily | Trail of Bits study funded by DARPA

[…]Over the past year, Trail of Bits was engaged by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) to examine the fundamental properties of blockchains and the cybersecurity risks associated with them. DARPA wanted to understand those security assumptions and determine to what degree blockchains are actually decentralized. […] The report also contains links to the Read more about Popular blockchains can be centralised fairly easily | Trail of Bits study funded by DARPA[…]

Hashed Takes $3.5B Hit, Delphi Digital Discloses Loss After Terra’s LUNA Collapse

The collapse of the tokens linked to the Terra ecosystem, stablecoin terraUSD (UST) and Luna (LUNA), has led to some major investors coming clean and detailing their losses. Two more backers of Terra are disclosing exactly how their balance sheets have been affected. Delphi Digital, a research firm and boutique investor, said in a blog Read more about Hashed Takes $3.5B Hit, Delphi Digital Discloses Loss After Terra’s LUNA Collapse[…]

Melvin Capital shutters down after trying to kill Gamestop

Melvin Capital, once one of Wall Street’s most successful hedge funds which then lost billions in the meme stock saga, will shut down after it was hit again by this year’s market slump. Gabe Plotkin, widely regarded as one of the industry’s best traders after posting years of double digit returns, told investors that the Read more about Melvin Capital shutters down after trying to kill Gamestop[…]

Apple will allow some apps to automatically charge you higher subscription prices

Apple has announced an update to its subscription policy that’s supposed to make auto-renews seamless but could also lead to surprise charges. Under the old policy, the tech giant will ask users to opt in before they’re charged for a subscription that has recently raised its price. Going forward, however, it will allow developers to Read more about Apple will allow some apps to automatically charge you higher subscription prices[…]

Amazon (AMZN) Europe Unit Pays No Taxes on $55 Billion Sales in 2021

Amazon.com Inc.’s main European retail business reported 1.16 billion euros ($1.26 billion) of losses in 2021, which allowed the company to pay no income tax and receive 1 billion euros in tax credits, corporate filings seen by Bloomberg show. The Luxembourg-based business recorded sales of 51.3 billion euros last year, up 17% from 43.8 billion Read more about Amazon (AMZN) Europe Unit Pays No Taxes on $55 Billion Sales in 2021[…]