(u.tv) A Cork Circuit Court judge has been returned for trial by judge and jury on a charge of possessing child pornography, following an appearance at Tralee District Court.
(BBC) A doctor convicted of handling child pornography has been struck off the medical register. He had been jailed for four months in February at Bristol Crown Court after admitting 22 counts of making an indecent photograph or pseudo-photograph of a child. He was struck off the medical register by the professional conduct committee of the General Medical Council in London.
(Computer Weekly) An influential computer crime group representing businesses, police, government departments and the Crown Prosecution Service has called for tougher prison sentences to deter computer hackers. The Internet Crime Forum has urged the Home Office to amend the Computer Misuse Act to increase the maximum prison sentence for the least-serious hacking offences from six months to five years.
(Computer Weekly) The government will ask IT professionals to join the police force as special constables to help police track down hackers and virus writers, if plans for a new national computer crime strategy being considered in Whitehall get the go-ahead.
(BBC) The number of complaints about text message and e-mail scams in the UK has skyrocketed. The independent watchdog, ICSTIS has reported an eight-fold rise in the number of complaints about services promoted by text message which con users into phoning premium numbers. see also Mobile spam: Is the next plague upon us? (Silicon).
(Chine Economy) China's Ministry of Culture has launched regulations to strengthen the management of online games and products to be sold or used on the Internet, including the approval for import of such products and for the launch of such websites.
(CNET News.com) A U.S.-based software antipiracy group has begun to target Asia-Pacific Web sites and users of peer-to-peer file-sharing networks, looking for those who trade in illegal software. The Business Software Alliance (BSA), whose members include large companies such as Adobe and Microsoft, has recently aimed its software-sniffing Web crawler specifically at Asia-Pacific sites. The action was prompted by the high rates of Internet-based piracy in the region, which is beginning to rival more traditional methods such as illegal discs.
(BSA) 2002 marks the eighth year of the annual Business Software Alliance Global Software Piracy Study and, since the inception of the study in 1994, significant success in combating software piracy is evident. Aided by considerable decreases in the piracy rates of each of the six regions defined by the study, the 2002 world piracy rate of 39% is 10 points below the piracy rate measured in 1994. 2002 also marks the first decline in the world software piracy rate since 1999, the year in which the piracy rate hit an all-time low of 36%.
(CNET News.com) Foes of federal copyright law are launching a public campaign to create a policy that they see as better in step with the Internet age. Lawrence Lessig is leading the charge. The goal of the petition is to convince Congress to require copyright holders to pay a $1 fee every 50 years in order to extend their copyrights. The way it is now, copyrights are automatically extended whether or not their owners are alive or want their work protected by copyright.
(Europa) Art 29 Data Protection Working Party - Working Document on Transfers of personal data to third countries: Applying Article 26 (2) of the EU Data Protection Directive to Binding Corporate Rules for International Data Transfers.
(Independent) Employers who intercept staff e-mails or check website visits face prosecution if they breach new rules on workers' privacy. A code of practice published today aims to end the "Big Brother" culture that has followed advances in surveillance systems.Employers will now have to justify intrusive monitoring and in most cases must tell employees when they are being monitored. Serious breaches of the rules could lead to company directors being fined under the terms of Data Protection Act 1998. The code, introduced by the office of the information commissioner, warns employers that they must take account of Article 8 of the Human Rights Act. The article creates a right to respect for private and family life and personal correspondence. see Employment: Part 3 - Monitoring at work.
(out-law.com) The UK Government claims that its plans for a national identity card have won public support. But its consultation results seem to ignore most of the responses and the Government refuses to explain why, according to human rights group Privacy International.
(CNET News.com) The U.S. House of Representatives voted to slap broad restrictions on Internet gambling by targeting credit cards and bank accounts that Americans use to pay offshore casinos. After spirited debate over amendments to the legislation, the House voted 319 to 104 for the final version, which did not include criminal penalties but did cover credit card payments. The Unlawful Internet Gambling Funding Prohibition Act would give federal regulators six months to devise regulations to restrict financial transactions related to Internet gambling. The regulations must be "reasonably designed to identify" and "reasonably designed to block" credit card and other financial transactions. see also US strikes blow at online casinos (BBC) .
(Telecom Asia) Australia faces the prospect of being a broadband desert. With less than 2% of the population using a broadband connection, Australia now ranks 23rd on the global league table of broadband connectivity, behind 18 OECD countries as well as Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore and Estonia. And it is sinking.
(CNET News.com) America Online said a "technical change" in its spam filters blocked e-mails from an undisclosed list of Internet services. Affected subscribers from Comcast's broadband cable service discovered the blocks as early as last Thursday, and they continued to report difficulties through Monday afternoon. By late that afternoon, AOL had fixed the problem, but was unable to provide information as to its nature.
(CNET News.com) The Federal Trade Commission is expected to ask Congress for sweeping new powers that would let it cooperate closely with other governments and prosecute domestic and overseas spammers more readily. A proposal, titled the International Consumer Protection Enforcement Act (ICPEA), drafted by the FTC would turn the agency's investigators into virtual spam cops, granting them the power to serve secret requests for subscriber information on Internet service providers, peruse FBI criminal databases and swap sensitive information with foreign law enforcement agencies. See also FTC seeks more power to fight spam (MSNBC).
(Heise) Nachdem die Verfügung einer Kantons-Richterin über die Sperrung von einigen, angeblich inkriminierten Websites aufgehoben wurde, hat sie in einem Schreiben an mehrere Provider gefordert, nicht nur die Websites selbst für die Kundschaft zu blockieren, sondern auch die gespiegelten Sites beim Schweizer Webhoster c9c.net. Für den Fall, dass die Provider ihrer Bitte nicht nachkommen sollten, drohte die Richterin ihnen mit der Eröffnung eines Strafverfahrens wegen angeblicher Beihilfe zur Verleumdung, Beschimpfung und übler Nachrede.
(Washington Post) Verizon Communications gave a music-industry trade group the names of four customers suspected of illegally downloading digital copies of songs, but promised to keep fighting the law that forced it to do so. The nation's largest telephone company was ordered to surrender the names to the Recording Industry Association of America by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia after the court rejected Verizon's request for a stay of the decision until Sept. 16, when Verizon is to challenge the law used by the RIAA to get the names.
(BBC) Mobiles are to be banned from swimming pools across Australia amid fears that camera phones are being misused. The ban will affect more than 300 gyms, pools and sports centres across the country run by the YMCAs of Australia. People using the pools and changing rooms of these places will no longer be able to take their mobile phones with them, although other areas of the building will not be affected The Royal Life Saving Society of Australia has also advised a further 3,000 public swimming pools to introduce a similar ban.
(Reuters) Four out of five children receive inappropriate spam e-mail touting get-rich-quick schemes, and almost half receive spam linking to pornographic materials, according to a study. A substantial number of the 1,000 children ages 7 to 18 interviewed for the survey by Symantec, an Internet security company, said they felt "uncomfortable and offended when seeing improper e-mail content."
(HKISPA) The Television and Entertainment Licensing Authority has provided funds to the Hong Kong Internet Service Providers Association (HKISPA) to implement the Internet Content Rating System Project. The project's objectives are (a) To further promote the awareness of the general public about undesirable contents on the Internet; (b) To translate and customize the system developed by the Internet Content Rating Association (ICRA) into Chinese for local adoption; (c) To promote the ICRA system to webmasters, content providers and Internet users; and (d) To set up a hotline to handle enquiries about this Project and complaints about obscene and indecent articles on the Internet
(This is Bradford) A pioneering system devised in Bradford to prevent pupils viewing pornographic and other unsuitable internet sites is being taken on by the district's schools. More than 25 Bradford schools took part in a year-long pilot broadband project which ensures pupils can surf safely. The MinervaNet system has been designed by school IT specialists and IT security experts ECSC, in conjunction with the Minerva Centre in Bradford - an IT and training education organisation.
(Federal Communications Commission) New technologies are changing the landscape of our communications arena almost daily. With an increasing number and variety of communications entering our homes each day, it can be hard for parents and caregivers to monitor, or even track, what children are watching and hearing. While technology has great potential to teach the nation's children, it also has the power to shape their lives and opinions. The FCC has an array of information to help parents deal with, decipher, and monitor the communications that their children can access.
(New York Times) A study, by the National Cyber Security Alliance highlights the gap between the assumptions of consumers make about the security of their broadband Internet connection and the reality. The result is a high risk of hacking, viruses and identity theft. Although nearly half of broadband users have young children who use a computer, only 3 percent have parental controls to shield their children from pornography. More than 40 percent of the users lack a firewall to protect their computers from intrusion. see also NCSA Press Release and Stay Safe Online.
(Guardian) Liberal Democrat peer Lord McNally launched a scathing attack on the press complaints commission, saying it had "all the power of a toothless poodle". He also backed calls for the press watchdog to be brought under the control of the new media super-regulator, Ofcom. Under Lord McNally's plans the PCC would remain a self-regulatory body but would come under the overall auspices of Ofcom. The advertising standards authority and Ictis, which regulates the use of premium phone lines, will both be monitored in this way. The House of Commons select committee will publish its report on privacy and the media next Monday and is expected to recommend that the PCC becomes answerable to Ofcom.
(Press Release) Oftel has set out proposals to continue with the current arrangements for the provision of conditional access services under the new EC regulatory regime. Oftel's proposals are subject to a consultation which runs until 7 July 2003.
(Europa) European Commission, Internal Market Directorate General, Brussels, 16 September 2003. This Conference aims to improve information on the security of modern payment products and systems in the Internal Market, and to discuss the security approach to enhance public trust and confidence in electronic payments. The Conference is a priority action under the Fraud Prevention Action Plan. About 450-500 participants will attend representing stakeholders from different EU institutions, national authorities and central banks, payment providers, retailers and consumer organisations.
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