Techmeme
December 19, 2014, 9:05 AM

Top News

Rhiannon Williams / Telegraph:
Apple CEO Tim Cook is “deeply offended” by the BBC's labor abuse allegations  —  Apple goes to war with the BBC  —  Exclusive: Chief executive Tim Cook ‘deeply offended’ by allegations made by BBC's Panorama programme that Apple is failing to protect its Chinese factory workers
Richard Bilton / BBC:
BBC investigation finds Apple repeatedly not meeting its supply chain standards on workers' hours, ID cards, dormitories, work meetings and juvenile workers  —  Apple ‘failing to protect Chinese factory workers’  —  The undercover reporter filmed workers falling asleep on 12-hour shifts
Reuters:
Google will build Android Auto software directly into cars with Android M, no smartphone needed  —  Exclusive: Google aiming to go straight into car with next Android - sources  —  (Reuters) - Google Inc (GOOGL.O) is laying the groundwork for a version of Android that would be built directly into cars …
Kent Walker / Google Public Policy Blog:
Google concerned by reports that MPAA is secretly working with studios to resurrect SOPA  —  The MPAA's Attempt to Revive SOPA Through A State Attorney General  —  We are deeply concerned about recent reports that the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) led a secret …
Richard Lawler / Engadget:
Samsung to shut down its ChatOn messaging service Feb. 1, 2015 in all markets except U.S.  —  Samsung's ChatOn service will shut down next year (update)  —  After denying reports that its ChatOn service was close to being disbanded on a region-by-region basis, Samsung has announced in Korea that it's going away.
Douglas MacMillan / Wall Street Journal:
Uber Strikes Deal With Portland to Suspend Service for Three Months  —  Uber reached an agreement with Portland to suspend operations in the city for three months while regulators work to revise rules around taxis that currently prohibit ridesharing apps.  —  The city agreed to let Uber …
Robert McMillan / Wired:
Bots Now Outnumber Humans on the Web  —  Diogo Mónica once wrote a short computer script that gave him a secret weapon in the war for San Francisco dinner reservations.  —  This was early 2013.  The script would periodically scan the popular online reservation service, OpenTable …
Sarah Perez / TechCrunch:
Few Winners In Anonymous Social Networking, And Secret's Not One Of Them  —  Is anonymous social networking a flash-in-the-pan trend?  A winner-take-all category?  Which of the anonymous social networking apps around today are still thriving, and which are practically dead?
More: EngadgetTweets: @parmy
Casey Newton / The Verge:
Junio C Hamano / Gmane:
Vulnerability in Git, Mercurial allows for arbitrary code execution on OSX, Windows; affects Visual Studio, Github client app, among others  —  Subject: [ANNOUNCE] Git v2.2.1 (and updates to older maintenance tracks)  —  Newsgroups: gmane.linux.kernel, gmane.comp.version-control.git
Vindu Goel / New York Times:
Instagram purges spambots; popular accounts lose millions of followers, with the company losing the most at 18.9M  —  Millions of Fake Instagram Users Disappear in Purge  —  Social media services like Facebook and Twitter are always battling against spam or fake accounts that hijack hashtags …
Danny Yadron / Wall Street Journal:
Poll: 45% of Americans have been notified that payment card details were stolen in a data breach  —  Poll Shows Broad Impact of Cyberattacks  —  Just fewer than half of Americans say that a retailer, bank or credit-card company has told them or a household member that their payment card details …
More: The Hill and PYMNTS.com
Craig Timberg / Washington Post:
Critical vulnerabilities in SS7 telephony protocol found; tested techniques can decrypt cell phone calls and texts  —  German researchers discover a flaw that could let anyone listen to your cell calls.  —  German researchers have discovered security flaws that could let hackers …
Marc Rogers / Marc's Security Ramblings:
Why the Sony hack is unlikely to be the work of North Korea.  —  Everyone seems to be eager to pin the blame for the Sony hack on North Korea.  However, I think it's unlikely.  Here's why:1.  The broken English looks deliberately bad and doesn't exhibit any of the classic comprehension mistakes …
Sean Silcoff / Globe and Mail:
BlackBerry stock slips as revenue tumbles below expectations  —  BlackBerry Ltd. revenue plunged unexpectedly in the third quarter, but the company managed to eke out a slight profit on an adjusted basis.  —  The company earned $793-million (U.S.) in revenue in the quarter ended Nov. 29, down from $916-million in the previous quarter.
Todd Bishop / GeekWire:
Longtime Internet Explorer leader Dean Hachamovitch is leaving Microsoft  —  Dean Hachamovitch is leaving Microsoft.  And yes, of course, there is an IE shirt associated with this milestone, too.  The longtime Internet Explorer leader, who led the efforts to modernize and revitalize Microsoft's web browser …
More: Learning, The Verge, Neowin and Re/codeTweets: @maryjofoleyThanks:@mnickelsburg
Bloomberg:
China is Planning to Purge Foreign Technology and Replace With Homegrown Suppliers  —  China is aiming to purge most foreign technology from banks, the military, state-owned enterprises and key government agencies by 2020, stepping up efforts to shift to Chinese suppliers, according to people familiar with the effort.
Steve O'Hear / TechCrunch:
GameAnalytics Scores $5.5M Series A, Hires Ex-Aol European MD As CEO  —  GameAnalytics, a free analytics platform for games developers, has leveled-up its funding.  The Copenhagen-headquartered startup, which also has a sales office in London and a development hub in Berlin, has closed a $5.5 million Series A round.

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Katie Benner / Bloomberg View: