Techmeme
December 17, 2020, 8:35 PM

Top News

Politico:
Sources: Energy Dept. and NNSA, which maintains the US nuclear weapons stockpile, have evidence that their networks were accessed as part of the SolarWinds hack  —  The Energy Department and National Nuclear Security Administration, which maintains the U.S. nuclear weapons stockpile …
Washington Post:
CISA issues an alert that says evidence suggests attackers used malware to access US systems, beyond SolarWinds vulnerabilities, but offers no other details  —  Federal investigators reported Thursday on evidence of previously unknown tactics for penetrating government computer networks …
The Intercept:
Microsoft Threat Intel docs suggest state-sponsored hackers, likely from Russia, breached Austin, TX's city network in Oct. and used it to stage other attacks  —  State-sponsored hackers believed to be from Russia have breached the city network of Austin, Texas, The Intercept has learned.
Catalin Cimpanu / ZDNet:
Thomas P. Bossert / New York Times:
Washington Post:
Twitter:
Twitter says it will start its new verification policy on January 21 and is developing profile labels to designate bots and memorial accounts  —  A couple of weeks ago, we announced that we're planning to bring back our public verification program in 2021, shared a draft of our new policy …
Sarah Perez / TechCrunch:
Twitter launches Spaces, its Clubhouse-like service, in private beta on iOS, limited to select individuals, largely from under-represented backgrounds  —  Last month, Twitter announced it would soon begin testing a new social experience on its platforms involving audio-only chat rooms …
Jack Morse / Mashable:
Twitter is testing “humanization prompts” which will show users' shared interest and mutual followers when replying to another user's tweet  —  Twitter wants you to remember that there are actual people on the other side of your replies.  —  The company began testing a new feature …
Jack Morse / Mashable:
New York Times:
A bipartisan group of 38 AGs sues Google for alleged antitrust violations in search, its third antitrust suit, including exclusionary contracts with Apple  —  More than 30 states said that the company downplayed websites that let users search for information in specialized areas.
Gilad Edelman / Wired:
A look at allegations in Texas AG's antitrust suit, accusing Google of giving Facebook special privileges in exchange for not supporting a competing ad system  —  A new antitrust case against Google alleges that the two companies made a deal to reduce competition in online advertising.
Jeff John Roberts / Fortune:
Coinbase says it has confidentially filed for an IPO  —  Cryptocurrency giant Coinbase announced on Thursday that is has confidentially filed for a public offering, becoming the latest in a parade of high-profile startups to pursue an IPO in 2020.  —  Founded in 2012 as a simple way for consumers …
Frederic Lardinois / TechCrunch:
GitHub says it is doing away with all non-essential cookies and will no longer feature “irritating” cookie banners on GitHub.com and its subdomains  —  Microsoft -owned GitHub today announced that it is doing away with all non-essential cookies on its platform.
Kevin Roose / New York Times:
Facebook rolls back a post-election change that boosted news from authoritative outlets, even as some staff asked for the “nicer news feed” to be made permanent  —  Facebook confirmed that it has in the past few days rolled back a change that lifted news from authoritative outlets …
Tom Warren / The Verge:
Facebook hits back at Apple with a second full-page newspaper ad, saying upcoming iOS 14 changes will “change the internet as we know it - for the worse”  —  Facebook isn't done criticizing Apple just yet  —  Facebook is stepping up its campaign against Apple's privacy changes with a second full-page newspaper ad today.
Bloomberg:
Maggie Fitzgerald / CNBC:
Robinhood agrees to pay $65M to settle SEC charges that the company deceived customers between 2015 and late 2018 about its source of revenue  —  The Securities and Exchange Commission on Thursday charged Robinhood with the deceiving customers about how the stock trading app makes money and failing to deliver best execution of trades.
CNBC:
The European Commission approves Google's $2.1B acquisition of Fitbit, on condition of compliance with a set of commitments related to privacy and user consent  —  - The Commission on Thursday set out a number of commitments that Google must follow over the next 10 years.
Catalin Cimpanu / ZDNet:
Avast found 28 malicious Chrome and Edge extensions with 3M+ downloads, many posing as third-party add-ons for Instagram and Facebook; 25 still remain in stores  —  Extensions could redirect users to ads, phishing sites, collect user data, or download malware on infected systems.
Sarah Perez / TechCrunch:
Walmart partners with TikTok to test live-streamed video shopping, during which users will be able to shop Walmart fashion without leaving the app  —  Walmart and TikTok announced this morning they will be partnering on the first pilot test of a new shoppable product experience on TikTok's social video app.
Dean Takahashi / VentureBeat:
Discord raises $100M led by Greenoaks Capital, bringing its total raised to $479.3M, and says it now has 140M MAUs  —  Discord has raised another $100 million in funding as the instant messaging app popularized by gamers has now hit 140 million monthly active users.
More: TechCrunchTweets: @deantak
Taylor Soper / GeekWire:
Rubrik, a data management startup last valued at $3.3B in 2019, acquires tech and IP assets from Igneous, which provides unstructured data management services  —  Rubrik, a Palo Alto, Calif-based cloud data management startup valued at more than $3 billion, has acquired technology and IP assets from Igneous …

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Sara Fischer / Axios: