Tech

U.N. Members Seek New Cyber Discussions Amid Rising Ransomware Attacks
Tech

U.N. Members Seek New Cyber Discussions Amid Rising Ransomware Attacks

The future of United Nations-led efforts to create rules around how nations should behave in cyberspace is unclear, researchers and experts say, even as countries respond to a growing number of ransomware attacks. U.N. member states in a cyber discussion group struck an agreement in March on a set of so-called norms, or nonbinding principles that include a prohibition on attacking critical infrastructure in other countries. Russia and France, however, proposed two competing groups to replace that forum, which was scheduled to end this year. “There’s a total confusion as to where the next step is and what this process leads us to,” said Stefan Soesanto, a senior researcher at the Center for Security Studies at the ETH Zurich university. There is no formal way for U.N. members to enforce no...
Tech Boom Floods Israel’s Silicon Valley With Cash, Exposing Divisions
Tech

Tech Boom Floods Israel’s Silicon Valley With Cash, Exposing Divisions

TEL AVIV—Nir Zohar started at Wix.com in 2007 as office gopher. Today, he is chief operating officer at the Tel Aviv-based website designer, with a shareholding worth at least $56 million at current valuations. The 43-year-old, who routinely wears shorts and a T-shirt to work, is one of a generation of Israelis who have become millionaires through the country’s red-hot technology industry, and who are transforming Tel Aviv.
Ryder Cup on Course With Tech Overhaul
Tech

Ryder Cup on Course With Tech Overhaul

Organizers of this week’s Ryder Cup are leaning on a multiyear technology overhaul to deliver real-time golf scores and stats, live crowd and course maps, and other data services, bringing advanced analytics to a tradition-bound sport.Ahead of the three-day tournament, which started Friday at Whistling Straits golf club in Wisconsin, tech crews from the PGA of America got to work setting up the physical and digital gear to provide connectivity, Wi-Fi and other underlying tech systems on-site, including more than 450 Wi-Fi access points and 650 internet protocol televisions. “When we run a major championship, we build a small town to support it,” said Kevin Scott, the group’s head of technology. “Nobody would ever think there was this much technology in golf,” he added, “but it’s a lot of t...
Virus Research Has Exploded Since Covid-19 Hit. Is It Safe?
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Virus Research Has Exploded Since Covid-19 Hit. Is It Safe?

Laboratories around the globe increasingly are experimenting with emerging viruses, sometimes giving them new capabilities, as they seek to identify dangerous ones and find ways to combat them. While the goal is to protect health, some of the projects carry the chance of a misstep that could unleash an epidemic, some scientists say.
China Declares Crypto Transactions Illegal, Sending Bitcoin Lower
Tech

China Declares Crypto Transactions Illegal, Sending Bitcoin Lower

China’s central bank said all cryptocurrency-related transactions are illegal, reinforcing the country’s tough stance against digital rivals to government-issued money. In a statement posted on its website on Friday afternoon, the People’s Bank of China said the latest notice was to further prevent the risks surrounding crypto trading and to maintain national security and social stability.
China’s Online Game Companies Fall in Line With Restrictions on Entertainment
Tech

China’s Online Game Companies Fall in Line With Restrictions on Entertainment

Hundreds of Chinese online game companies have vowed to self-regulate and combat user addiction, the country’s state-backed gaming industry association said, falling in line with a government effort to restrict negative influences from entertainment on China’s youth. More than 200 companies—among them China’s largest game publishers, Tencent Holdings Ltd. and NetEase Inc. —promised to go a step beyond the playing limits on youth set by China last month, according to the industry association. They agreed to implement controls to prevent young players from circumventing game-time regulations and to weed out harmful and illegal content, the group said Thursday.
U.S. Officials Call for Fines Against Companies That Don’t Report Hacks
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U.S. Officials Call for Fines Against Companies That Don’t Report Hacks

Top U.S. cyber officials on Thursday urged Congress to add more teeth to any legislation forcing firms that operate critical infrastructure to disclose hacks, calling for a narrow reporting window after a breach and fines against companies that don’t comply.Such mandates could help federal agencies and critical economic sectors to respond to incidents, security experts say. But many businesses and some lawmakers are wary of the tighter regulation and potential penalties for which the Biden administration is advocating. Jen Easterly, director of the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, on Thursday said quicker disclosures by hacking victims would allow U.S. officials to analyze the data and identify other potential targets. “To that end, cyber incident reporting must be timely,...
Chip Shortage Is Focus of White House Meeting
Tech

Chip Shortage Is Focus of White House Meeting

WASHINGTON—Auto makers, technology companies and semiconductor producers met Thursday with Biden administration officials amid a global chip shortage, as the federal government pitched a program for companies to reveal more information about their supply chains. The goal is to “understand and quantify where bottlenecks may exist,” the White House said in a statement after the meeting. Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo asked business leaders to respond to the voluntary request for information in the next 45 days.
Voters Want to Curb the Influence of Big Tech Companies, New Poll Shows
Tech

Voters Want to Curb the Influence of Big Tech Companies, New Poll Shows

WASHINGTON—American voters have deep-seated concerns about the power wielded by big technology companies and want the federal government to take a stronger stand in regulating them, according to a new poll. The poll conducted for the privately funded Future of Tech Commission found that 80% of registered voters—83% of Democrats and 78% of Republicans—agreed the federal government “needs to do everything it can to curb the influence of big tech companies that have grown too powerful and now use our data to reach too far into our lives.”
Salesforce Boosts Sales Outlook
Tech

Salesforce Boosts Sales Outlook

Business software company Salesforce.com Inc. boosted its full-year sales forecast Thursday as Covid-19 continues to help accelerate companies’ shift to cloud-based services. The San Francisco-based company, which is the market leader in sales software, raised its revenue guidance for the fiscal year that ends Jan. 31 to a range between $26.25 billion and $26.35 billion, a jump from its previous estimate of $26.2 billion to $26.3 billion.