In a direct slap in the face to consumers, tech industry giants including Microsoft, AT&T, and Verizon are frantically engaged in an effort to kill pro-consumer provisions in a data breach notification bill currently being considered by the Indiana State Senate.
The bill would require that the state attorney general act as a single point of contact for data breaches. Any company that suffered a breach impacting one or more Indiana consumers would be required to notify the AG's office. The bill would also make Indiana the only state in the country to to require the attorney … Read more
IBM's researchers in the San Francisco Bay Area have been at the forefront of data storage for decades.
An IBM team invented the first hard drive (the IBM 350, which was part of a machine called RAMAC) 52 years ago in San Jose, Calif. The relational database came out of IBM's labs in the area, too.
Now, scientists at IBM Almaden are trying to come up with breakthroughs that will help computers sift through the "exabytes" of data that have become an inevitability for many corporations and government agencies. (An exabyte is a quintillion bytes, or … Read more
The obvious answer to my question above is, "No." But sometimes the obvious is, well, not so obvious.
This is already happening. Ask VCs what they're investing in and you'll find few traditional, proprietary software companies. The only companies who seem to continue to make a living in this fashion are the behemoths who leave customers little choice but to buy from them.
For now.… Read more
XAware, an open-source data integration developer, announced Tuesday that it raised a $7.4 million third round of funding.
That translates into a total of $26.4 million to date in venture funding for XAware, which develops open-source software tools and components designed to reduce complexities in accessing and integrating data from a variety of sources.
VSpring Capital, an existing investor, led the third round, which included contributions from hedge fund GMT Capital and existing investors Sequel Ventures, ITU Ventures, and BMJP. Back in 2002, ITU Ventures led XAware's first round of funding, which raised $2.1 million.
"… Read more
Maybe they were pulled voluntarily due to embarrassing content, or involuntarily due to inappropriate material--either way, sometimes social-networking profiles get deleted. And a recent controversy in the U.K. has left some Web users wondering exactly what happens to them.
Here's how it started. A few Facebook members pointed out that the site keeps profile data intact after users delete their accounts so that they can be subsequently "un-deleted" if the addictiveness factor of Facebook proves to be too much. But what if they don't come back? We all know by now that Social Ads, the … Read more
You've got to hand it to Microsoft. The company knows how to go against the grain. Just at the moment that the rest of the planet has discovered that there is huge value in opening up, Microsoft has been stalking the web, demanding payment from startups that want to allow users to import their MSN contact lists to other web services, as Fortune notes.
Here's the "deal":If the company wants to offer other IM services (from Yahoo, Google or AOL, say), Messenger must get top billing. And if the startup wants to offer any other IM service, it must pay Microsoft 25 cents a user per year for a site license.
However, if a company wants to force its users to abandon 73% of their friends (assuming it's roughly a three-way race between AIM (53 million active users), MSN (27 million active users), and Yahoo! (22 million active users), then they can use MSN for free! Wow! Dave Rosenberg calls this "bizarre and stupid." I think he's being overly generous.… Read more
On the surface, it looks like we actually made some improvements in protecting private data in 2007. According to the Privacy Rights Clearinghouse, the number of publicly disclosed data breaches actually decreased, from 346 incidents in 2006 to 310 in 2007. Unfortunately, there are still more clouds than sunshine. In 2007, the 310 data breach incidents resulted in a total of 162 million records exposed, more than three times as many as in 2006 (when there were about 50 million).
Here's another frightening data point: Five of the 10 biggest data breaches occurred in 2007, including the record setter. … Read more
Google and Facebook are joining ranks on DataPortability Workgroup. As the ReadWriteWeb put it, "Good bye customer lock-in, hello to new privacy challenges." While the process of opening up data may well take a long time, it's instructive that the web is doing what the offline software industry has thought tantamount to corporate suicide: Opening up.
Data has been the web's lock-in point, as Tim O'Reilly, in particular, has championed. Some believe this is the only way to make a buck: Remove customer options such that they're forced to continue doing business with a … Read more
There's been plenty of talk about data portability over the past few weeks, what with Facebook taking issue with a Plaxo script that imported user data from one social network to the other. But the news has mostly dealt with tiffing and squabbling--until now.
A group called the DataPortability Workgroup announced Tuesday that representatives from Facebook, Google, and Plaxo have signed on as members. The group, spearheaded by Chris Saad of start-up Faraday Media, is a sort of alliance of Web thinkers devoted to "(putting) all existing technologies and initiatives in context to create a reference design for … Read more