Techmeme
January 22, 2020, 5:00 PM

Top News

Stephanie Kirchgaessner / The Guardian:
UN special rapporteurs say they are “gravely concerned” about the alleged hacking of Jeff Bezos' phone by Saudi's MbS, calling for further investigations  —  ‘Grave concern’ expressed at evidence of possible ‘effort to silence Washington Post’  —  UN experts are demanding …
VICE:
Leaked FTI Consulting report: investigators found a suspicious encrypted file on Jeff Bezos' iPhone, causing data transfers to jump by ~29,000%, but no malware  —  A report investigating the potential hack of Jeff Bezos' iPhone indicates that forensic investigators found a suspicious file but no evidence of any malware on the phone.
Stephanie Kirchgaessner / The Guardian:
Madhumita Murgia / Financial Times:
Google says it found five separate flaws in Apple's Intelligent Tracking Prevention tool for Safari that lets users' browsing behavior be tracked  —  Google researchers have exposed details of multiple security flaws in its rival Apple's Safari web browser that allowed users' browsing behaviour …
Miles Parks / NPR:
In a first for the US, a district encompassing Greater Seattle will let 1.2M voters cast votes on smartphones in a February 11 election  —  Toggle more options  —  A district encompassing Greater Seattle is set to become the first in which every voter can cast a ballot using a smartphone — a historic moment for American democracy.
Anna Nicolaou / Financial Times:
Amazon says Amazon Music has 55M users across six different price tiers, including a free tier, “nearly all” of which are paying subscribers  —  Amazon's music streaming service has eclipsed 55m users, making the ecommerce group a serious contender in the market that has been historically dominated by Spotify and Apple.
Catalin Cimpanu / ZDNet:
Microsoft will forcibly install the Bing extension in Chrome for Office 365 ProPlus users starting mid-February, to change the default search engine to Bing  —  Microsoft will change the default search engine in Chrome from Google to Bing for its Office 365 ProPlus customers starting mid-February.
Andrew J. Hawkins / The Verge:
GM's Cruise unveils Origin, its first driverless vehicle with no steering wheel or pedals, says it will share more info about its production plans in the future  —  The Origin is the GM subsidiary's first attempt to build an fully autonomous car from the ground up
Bloomberg:
Sources: ByteDance is seeking a US-based CEO for TikTok and has interviewed candidates; current head Alex Zhu may still manage product and engineering in China  —  - Video app has come under fire in U.S. as security threat  —  Chinese internet giant ByteDance Inc. is seeking …
Mary Ann Azevedo / Crunchbase News:
Email collaboration startup Front raises $59M Series C led by a group of CEOs from Atlassian, Okta, Qualtrics, and Zoom, following its $66M Series B in 2018  —  Front, an email collaboration startup, announced this morning it has closed on a $59 million Series C that quadruples its valuation.
Michael Hayes / OneZero:
FOIA docs: law enforcement in over 11 states, including CA, FL, and NY, spent $4M+ over the past decade on software and devices that can break into smartphones  —  While the FBI requests ‘backdoor’ iPhone access, documents indicate law enforcement already has easy access to encrypted devices
Bloomberg:
Source: the new low-cost iPhone, which looks like iPhone 8 and has a 4.7" screen, will enter production in February and may be announced as early as March  —  - New model will look similar to 2017's iPhone 8 with Touch ID  — Apple expected to launch the 4.7-inch phone as early as March
Natasha Singer / New York Times:
UK government proposes sweeping changes to privacy protections for those under 18, requiring platforms turn on heightened privacy settings by default and more  —  New rules will require online services to overhaul how they treat the personal details of children in the country.
William D. Cohan / Fast Company:
Interview with Manhattan DA Cyrus Vance Jr., on his $10M smartphone forensics lab and balancing public safety while working under Apple and Google's rules  —  The Trump administration wants Apple to create a backdoor into the iPhone.  District Attorney Cy Vance Jr. has spent millions trying to find other ways in.

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Joshua Fruhlinger / Thinknum:
Joseph Menn / Reuters: