The week in business tech – 28/11/2014

Brid-Aine Parnell

Friday 28 November 2014

In tech news this week, vloggers warned by the Advertising Standards Authority about ads on YouTube, Megaupload’s Kim Dotcom says he’s “officially” broke and BT is courted by both O2 and EE. Also in the headlines, newly discovered malware Regin appears to the be the work of Western intelligence agencies, Google manages to settle a potentially troublesome online abuse case and hackers hold Sony Pictures to ransom.

Video-blog honestly kids…
The Advertising Standards Authority has warned video bloggers, or vloggers, that they are breaking the law if they fail to be clear to their millions of fans when they’re advertising a product on behalf of a company and getting paid for it. The ASA said that it “pays to be honest”, both when it comes to the law and to keep their audiences happy.

My lawyers have left me, says Kim Dotcom
Megaupload founder Kim Dotcom has claimed he’s “officially broke” after spending $10m on his legal costs fighting extradition from New Zealand to face online piracy charges in the US. The internet entrepreneur’s legal team has stepped down, but his new site Mega isn’t in trouble, as its shares are held by his wife and children.

Which mobile operator would BT like to dance with?
British Telecom is in talks with not one, but two British mobile operators for potential mergers, acquisitions or other partnership deals. Telefonica came clean first, admitting there were talks to sell O2 to BT, while Deutsche Telekom and Orange later said they were also in “exploratory discussions” with the telecoms provider.

Regin could be government work
The newest malware on the block is Regin, which has actually been knocking around for years, but has only just been uncovered by Symantec. Research by Kaspersky Lab discovered that none of the so-called Five Eyes nations had been hit by the bug, leading to the suggestion that the malware originated with Western intelligence agencies.

Google gets out the backdoor on online abuse case
Google has dodged a potentially costly legal precedent by settling an online abuse case in the UK High Court outside of court. Daniel Hegglin was seeking an injunction to force the web giant to block all traces of online abuse directed against him in its search results. But the company opted to settle behind closed doors instead.

Hackers hold up Sony Pictures
A hacker group hijacked Sony Pictures’ computer system earlier this week, taking control of all its devices and threatening to release sensitive documents unless its “request” was met. The Guardians of Peace group later released a number of URLs hosting what appeared to be internal policy documents and passwords from Sony’s system.

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