Techmeme
December 17, 2021, 10:00 AM

Top News

The Citizen Lab:
Two Egyptians living in exile had their iPhones compromised in June 2021 using Predator spyware built by North Macedonian developer Cytrox  —  Key Findings  — Two Egyptians—exiled politician Ayman Nour and the host of a popular news program (who wishes to remain anonymous) …
Zack Whittaker / TechCrunch:
Meta bans seven surveillance-for-hire groups, including Cytrox, removing over 1,500 Facebook and Instagram accounts and alerting 50K users who were targeted  —  Cytrox is one of seven surveillance companies now banned from Meta's platforms  —  While NSO Group was taking flak for hacking …
Zachary Basu / Axios:
The US bans investing in eight Chinese companies, including DJI and Megvii, for their alleged involvement in surveilling Uyghurs and other minority groups  —  The Treasury Department has added eight Chinese companies — including DJI, the world's largest commercial drone manufacturer …
Washington Post:
The Biden administration is concerned with US investments in Chinese companies developing “dual use” tech that could have civilian and military applications  —  Last year, a fast-rising artificial intelligence company in China won a little-noticed contract from a Chinese military academy …
Tom Warren / The Verge:
Microsoft is moving some settings, including for networks, devices, and app uninstalls, to the Settings app, heralding the end of the Control Panel  —  One more step to simplifying Windows  —  Microsoft is finally signaling the end of the legacy Control Panel in Windows 11.
Paul R. La Monica / CNN:
The CFPB probes buy now, pay later practices of Affirm, Afterpay, PayPal, Klarna, and Zip, citing concerns over customers' debt accumulation and data harvesting  —  New York (CNN Business)Regulators in Washington may crack down on the industry behind “buy now, pay later,” …
Kyle Orland / Ars Technica:
Legacy, an NFT-powered game by Peter Molyneux's 22cans studio and Gala Games planned for next year, raises $54M in virtual land NFT sales in less than a week  —  But are these games a brave new world or a FOMO-driven gold rush bubble?  —  On Saturday, Peter Molyneux's 22cans studio …
Mark Gurman / Bloomberg:
Job listings show Apple is hiring engineers for a new office in Irvine, California to develop wireless chips that could replace Broadcom and Skyworks components  —  - Company seeks engineers for location in Irvine, California  — Apple is poised to attract employees from Broadcom, Skyworks
Wall Street Journal:
Sources: Oracle is in talks to acquire electronic medical records company Cerner, in a deal that could be worth ~$30B, which would make it Oracle's biggest yet  —  An agreement, which could potentially be worth $30 billion, would rank as biggest ever for software giant
Kris Holt / Engadget:
Sidewalk Labs plans to shut down, fold its products into Google, and spin out Canopy Buildings; CEO Dan Doctoroff says he is stepping down for health reasons  —  Alphabet's smart city project is winding down and Google will take over its products.  Sidewalk Labs CEO Dan Doctoroff announced …
Manish Singh / TechCrunch:
Pakistan-based CreditBook, a bookkeeping app for small merchants, raises an $11M pre-Series A led by Tiger Global, the firm's first investment in the country  —  Two years ago, a group of entrepreneurs in Pakistan began surveying the market to understand why financial services weren't reaching …
Joe Miller / Financial Times:
Sara Fischer / Axios:
Spotify acquires Australian company Whooshkaa, which helps radio broadcasters turn existing content into podcasts and sell ads around them  —  Spotify on Thursday said it acquired Whooshkaa, a podcast technology platform that specializes in technology for radio broadcasters to turn existing content into podcasts.
Tim O'Reilly / O'Reilly Media:
A look at the cycles of decentralization and recentralization, and why we won't understand what Web3 consists of until after the next bubble pops  —  There's been a lot of talk about Web3 lately, and as the person who defined “Web 2.0” 17 years ago, I'm often asked to comment.
Thomas Brewster / Forbes:
Corellium, which makes Android and iOS virtualization software, over which it is being sued by Apple, raises a $25M Series A from Cisco Investments and others  —  None of the funds from Paladin Capital and Cisco Investments will be going on Corellium's copyright fight with Apple, as the startup looks to expand.
Madhumita Murgia / Financial Times:
Palantir plans to shift UK data processing from the US to the UK, hire 250 UK-based employees, and open an England office in 2022  —  Defence-oriented American firm among first to localise data operations fully as companies Balkanise their activity  —  Palantir, a data analytics firm best known …

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Andrew J. Hawkins / The Verge:

Earlier Picks

Orla McCaffrey / Wall Street Journal:
Aisha Malik / TechCrunch:
Todd Spangler / Variety:
Washington Post:
Liza Lin / Wall Street Journal:
Dean Takahashi / VentureBeat:
Henry Mance / Financial Times: