Amazon kicks off competition for new HQ

Online retail powerhouse Amazon is constructing an eye-catching Spheres office building to feature waterfalls, tropical gardens and other links to nature as part of its urban campus on May 11, 2017 in downtown Seattle, Washington.Image copyright
AFP/Getty

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Amazon’s current headquarters in Seattle has fuelled an economic boom

Amazon says it wants to build a massive second headquarters in North America, sparking immediate competition from rival cities to attract what could be billions of dollars in investment.

Officials from Toronto, Texas, Maryland and Chicago were among those who said they planned to try to win Amazon’s new venture.

The e-commerce giant is seeking a base for as many as 50,000 workers.

It said it plans to spend $5bn (£3.8bn) on the project over 15-17 years.

Opportunities to compete for headquarters projects are nearly unheard of in the US at the scale Amazon envisions, experts said.

By comparison General Electric plans to move 800 people to a new headquarters in Boston.

“It is very rare,” said Craig Richard, vice-chair of the International Economic Development Council. “You don’t have a lot of these that happen so when the occasion arises… economic developers jump at it.”

Amazon boss Jeff Bezos said the headquarters would be a “full equal” to its headquarters in Seattle.

“Amazon HQ2 will bring billions of dollars in up-front and ongoing investments, and tens of thousands of high-paying jobs,” he added. “We’re excited to find a second home.”

The firm said it is looking for a site in a city area with more than one million people. It wants a location with access to mass transit that is close to major highways and an international airport.

The firm also said incentives offered by local governments would be a “significant” factor in the decision.

Locations such as Austin, Boston, Dallas, Denver, Phoenix, and Toronto shot to the top of list of potential places. Austin is home to Whole Foods, the grocery chain that Amazon recently acquired.

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Getty Images

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Amazon has received millions in subsidies as it expanded its warehouse network

Deciding to build a second headquarters speaks to Amazon’s massive growth as well as the breadth of its business, which includes logistics, retail, media and cloud computing, analysts said.

It is unusual for a firm to opt to conduct a headquarters search in the public eye.

But Amazon has a long history of seeking government support for expansions. The firm won more than $240m in subsidies in the US between Jan 2015 and Dec 2016 for its warehouse network, according to a study by the non-profit Good Jobs First.

‘Upping the ante’

Greg LeRoy, executive director of Good Jobs First, said a public competition is a negotiating tactic designed to yield better offers.

“Amazon may already know where it wants to go but even if it does, it can stage an auction to up the ante with that place it likes the best,” he said.

The firm may also be sending a political message by not limiting the search to the US, analysts say.

Mr Bezos is among several corporate leaders to have broken with US President Donald Trump on issues such as climate change and immigration.

“It’s natural for a US company to say we’re thinking about creating a new US location,” said Gregg Wassmansdorf, a senior managing director at Newmark Knight Frank, who has worked on corporate relocations.

“It takes a little more intention to say we’re looking at a North American option.”

Amazon said officials should submit proposals – including economic incentive packages – by October 19. The firm plans to settle on the location next year.

Mayors such as John Tory of Toronto issued messages touting their towns, calling his city a “prime candidate”.

Skip Twitter post by @JohnTory

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Officials elsewhere said they were not deterred by the prospect of tough negotiations over a possible incentive package.

“We know it will be a big number but we’re going to be aggressive in going after it,” said Steve Pennington, managing director for business and industry sector development at the Maryland Commerce Department. “I think everyone will be very aggressive.”

Article source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-41192159

‘Serious’ security flaws found on official UK tax site

HMRC buildingImage copyright
Oli Scarff

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Reporting the website flaws took far longer than finding them

The UK tax office must improve its handling of website security problems, says an expert who spent 57 days trying to report a bug.

The researcher, called Zemnmez, found two separate flaws on HMRC’s online tax service.

He said finding who to report the issues to was more challenging than finding the bugs.

HMRC said it had addressed the problems and was looking at improving ways for people to get in touch.

Zemnmez said exploiting either flaw could have let attackers view or modify tax records or harvest key details from Britons.

“I spent days reaching out to half a dozen different government social media accounts attempting to find where the right place to go was and got nothing meaningful in response,” he told the BBC.

The UK’s National Cyber Security Centre – contacted through friends with intelligence connections – was key in helping get the security problems solved, he added.

Common weakness

Clues that the HMRC site was vulnerable to attack were picked up by Zemnmez as he was using the site to check his taxes.

His expertise and experience in finding similar bugs on other websites suggested that the way the HMRC log-in system interacted with his browser left it vulnerable to some well-known attacks.

After a short period of experimentation, he found that it was possible to use the HMRC site as a “forwarding service” and send a victim to any site an attacker wanted.

“This could be used to coax the victim into revealing financial information, credentials and usernames and passwords,” he said.

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maciek905

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Finding the flaws involved digging in to the code of the HMRC site

This type of bug is known as an open redirect vulnerability and is a common weakness found on lots of different sites, he added.

The second security issue took longer to uncover, said Zemnmez, but was potentially more damaging as, if exploited, it could give an attacker control over a victim’s information, potentially letting them modify it.

Ironically, he said, the code vulnerable to this serious bug was found in a website script used to digitally fingerprint users for fraud protection.

Exploiting this bug would have been much trickier for cyber-thieves, he said, adding that it was likely that anyone interested in attacking the HMRC site would use more straightforward methods to get people to hand over information.

‘Very frustrating’

In response, an HMRC spokesman said: “HMRC has addressed the vulnerabilities mentioned in this article and we undertake regular testing of our systems.”

He added: “HMRC takes the protection of customer data very seriously and invests heavily to secure our services.”

Zemnmez said that although finding the security issues was straightforward, tracking down people in government that could help fix them proved to be “very frustrating”.

While trying to report the issues he found, Zemnmez discovered that the UK government does run a “responsible disclosure” programme that seeks reports of problems with government sites and services.

However, he said, the fact that it was invitation-only limited its usefulness.

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Carl Court

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The National Cyber Security Centre advises UK government on security

“I understand the significant difficulties involved in these programmes,” he told the BBC. “If a programme were opened to the public to disclose issues without very significant and robust preparation, it would quickly become totally overwhelmed by the volume of reports, both valid and invalid.”

Despite this, he said, there should be a way for government to handle reports from seasoned security experts who let them know about problems with the most sensitive official systems.

The HMRC said it was in close contact with the NCSC about the way it handled security.

It said: “HMRC is working with the NCSC to ensure that there is a single route for reporting security vulnerabilities to government.

“HMRC is also working to ensure that our internal processes are better streamlined to ensure that those reporting vulnerabilities are contacted in good time.”

Article source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-41188008

Massive Equifax data breach hits 143 million

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About 143 million US customers of credit report giant Equifax may have had information compromised in a cyber security breach, the company has disclosed.

Equifax said cyber-criminals accessed data such as Social Security numbers, birth dates and addresses during the incident.

Some UK and Canadian customers were also affected.

The firm’s core consumer and commercial credit databases were not accessed.

Security checks

Equifax said hackers accessed the information between mid-May and the end of July, when the company discovered the breach.

Malicious hackers won access to its systems by exploiting a “website application vulnerability”, it said but provided no further details.

The hackers accessed credit card numbers for about 209,000 consumers, among other information.


  • Time Warner users exposed in data breach
  • UK data protection laws to be overhauled
  • Verizon: Yahoo data breach may hit deal
  • Shoddy data-stripping leads to cyber-leaks
  • US suffers biggest ever voter data breach

Equifax chief executive Richard Smith said the incident was “disappointing” and “one that strikes at the heart of who we are and what we do”.

“I apologise to consumers and our business customers for the concern and frustration this causes,” said Richard Smith, Equifax chairman and chief executive.

“We pride ourselves on being a leader in managing and protecting data, and we are conducting a thorough review of our overall security operations.”

It said it was working with law enforcement agencies to investigate and had hired a cyber-security firm to analyse what happened. The FBI is also believed to be monitoring the situation.

The company said it would work with regulators in the US, UK and Canada on next steps. It is also offering free credit monitoring and identity theft protection for a year.

Equifax said it had set up a website – www.equifaxsecurity2017.com – through which consumers can check if their data has been caught up in the breach. Many people trying to visit the site reported via social media that they had problems reaching it and that security software flagged it as potentially dangerous.

The UK’s Information Commissioner (ICO) said reports about the data breach and the potential involvement of UK citizens gave it “cause for concern”.

It said it was in contact with Equifax to find out how many British people were affected and the kinds of data that had been compromised.

“We will be advising Equifax to alert affected UK customers at the earliest opportunity,” said the ICO in a statement.

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Reuters

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Data on 200 million US voters went astray in a massive data breach earlier this year

The breach is one of the largest ever reported in the US and, said experts, could have a significant impact on any Americans affected by it.

“On a scale of 1 to 10, this is a 10,” said Avivah Litan, a Gartner analyst who monitors ID theft and fraud. “It affects the whole credit reporting system in the United States because nobody can recover it, everyone uses the same data.”

Security expert Brian Krebs said Equifax was just one of several credit agencies that had been hit by hackers in recent years.

“The credit bureaus have for the most part shown themselves to be terrible stewards of very sensitive data,” wrote Mr Krebs. “and are long overdue for more oversight from regulators and lawmakers.”

Credit rating firm Equifax holds data on more than 820 million consumers as well as information on 91 million businesses.


Recent massive data breaches

  • Yahoo one billion records exposed
  • 711 million online spambot accounts
  • 412 million Friend Finder Networks
  • 200 million US voter records

Article source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-41192163

New Jaguar models to be electric in 2020

Media captionJaguar Land Rover boss says free trade is ‘crucially important’

Every new Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) vehicle line launched from 2020 will be electric or hybrid, the company has announced.

The carmaker said that the first of the new models would be a fully electric vehicle, the Jaguar I-Pace, to go on sale in 2018.

JLR chief executive Ralf Speth said the move was aimed at “giving customers even more choice”.

The firm, Britain’s biggest carmaker, is owned by India’s Tata.

In July, Chinese-owned firm Volvo said all its new models would have an electric motor from 2019, one year earlier than Jaguar’s deadline.

However, both Volvo and JLR will still be manufacturing earlier models that have combustion engines.

“The internal combustion engine is state of the art,” Mr Speth said. “We will see this internal combustion engine, petrols and diesels, for many years to come.”

Jaguar said it had also engineered an electric version of the classic Jaguar E-type car, known as the E-type Zero. However, it was intended as a concept car and would not be available for sale.

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JLR

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Jaguar has engineered an electric version of the classic Jaguar E-type car

Mr Speth was asked about how he viewed the Brexit talks. He said: “I trust that, at the end of the day, politicians are interested in a better society for their inhabitants.”

He pointed out that the company sources 40% of its components from the European Union, which is also its most important export market.

“It is crucially important that there is free and fair trade for Jaguar Land Rover.”

Analysis: Theo Leggett, business correspondent

Jaguar Land Rover, like Volvo before it, is making a virtue out of a necessity.

Emissions regulations are getting much tighter in many key markets. In 2021, for example, the EU is bringing in tougher standards for CO2 emissions – and the way the rules have been drawn up means it will be very much in a carmaker’s interests to have some zero emissions models in its fleet.

European politicians, meanwhile, seem to be trying to outdo one another in their opposition to petrol, and especially diesel.

As a result, a big push towards electrification is already under way. Most major manufacturers are currently working on high performance electric models. But it is still a small market, and the infrastructure for dealing with large numbers of battery powered cars is not yet in place.

For the next few years, then, the focus is likely to be on hybridisation – fitting electric motors to cars that also have conventional engines in order to make them more efficient.

The chances are that within a few years most new car models will be hybrids of one sort or another; meanwhile manufacturers will continue to produce older designs with conventional engines.

Change is coming anyway – but why not grab some politically useful PR along the way?

Jaguar’s latest announcement comes as the car industry seeks to show its green credentials in the wake of the Volkswagen emissions testing scandal and as governments take action aimed at limiting climate change.

“One thing is clear the future will be electric,” Mr Speth said.

“Every new Jaguar Land Rover model line will be electrified from 2020, giving our customers even more choice.”

“We will introduce a portfolio of electrified products across our model range, embracing fully electric, plug-in hybrid and mild hybrid vehicles.”

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Nick Dimbleby/Jaguar Land Rover

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The Jaguar I-Pace will be on sale next year

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JLR

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Jaguar has attempted to imagine what cars will be like after 2040 with its Future-Type

The company has also attempted to imagine what cars will be like after 2040 with its Future-Type, a concept car that will have a voice activated steering wheel.

“This steering wheel doesn’t just stay in your car – it lives in your home and becomes your trusted companion,” Jaguar said in its press release.

‘Fallen behind’

UK car industry expert Prof David Bailey, of the Aston Business School at Aston University, said the move was an important shift.

“Jaguar Land Rover have been lagging behind. They’ve been too slow to see the potential of electric cars – they’ve been focusing very much on light-weighting their cars and developing the internal combustion engine,” he said.

“They’ve fallen behind and they’re playing catch-up, so this is a significant step and it is to be welcomed.”

JLR will be showing off some of its innovations to the public at a three-day Tech Fest, opening on Friday at Central Saint Martins art school in London’s King’s Cross area of London.

Article source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-41179332

Google’s Street View cameras get quality boost

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Google

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The new Street View cameras produce brighter images than the old ones

Google has redesigned its Street View camera system so that it can take clearer images and capture more data about shops and buildings.

The new hardware takes clearer panoramic photos, while two high definition cameras capture detailed images of shops and street signs.

Data such as shop opening hours can be spotted by machine-learning algorithms and included in search results.

It is the first major update to the Street View hardware in eight years.

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Google

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The older cameras struggled with bright sunlight, and seams in the photos were often visible

Google said the improved cameras would produce brighter and more colourful images, with less-noticeable seams where the images had been “stitched together” to produce a 360-degree panorama.

It said it had captured images of more than 10 million miles of road, and more than 80 billion photos, since launching Street View, in 2007.

It has previously improved the quality of the cameras on its Street View vehicles, but the company told Wired that people were now asking “harder and deeper questions” such as “What’s the name of the shop on the corner?”

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Getty Images

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Then: A Street View car in Amsterdam, 2008

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Google

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Now: The new system is more compact

While the old Street View cars used 15 cameras to capture panoramic images, the new vehicles will use just seven.

The cars are also equipped with a laser radar system to help judge depth.

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Google

“This upgrade is important because of the pace of change in technology,” Chris Green, technology analyst at the consultancy Lewis, told the BBC.

“People are increasingly using tools like Street View to find out exactly where places are and what a place looks like to find their way.

“People want more clarity. Broadband speeds are improving and people expect a more high-definition experience.”

Article source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-41082920

Clothes that grow with your child win Dyson prize

Clothes that grow with your child have won the UK’s annual James Dyson prize for innovation.

The prototype garments fit children aged between six months and three years, and were created by engineering graduate Ryan Yasin.

His creation is now being considered for a worldwide prize.

Article source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-41174551

Life Is Strange: Before The Storm tackles depression

A screenshot of Chloe and Rachel from Life is Strange: Before the StormImage copyright
Square Enix

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Life is Strange: Before the Storm aims to encourage its players to consider mental health issues

Square Enix is seeking to overturn taboos surrounding depression in its game Life is Strange: Before the Storm.

The narrative adventure explores a teenager’s issues with grief and loneliness, letting players step into her shoes.

The first episode of the three-part story has just been released.

It is the latest game to seek to destigmatise mental health issues – a topic that some critics believe has been mishandled by many past titles.

Challenging taboos

The new game is a prequel to 2015′s award-winning Life Is Strange.

Like its predecessor, it focuses on the social and familial pressures that can affect people as they move from being teenagers into adulthood.

But while the earlier title involved time travel and communicating diplomatically with other characters, Before the Storm takes the opposite approach.

There is no changing the past, and the plot is more about dealing with what is, rather than what could be.

Players take the role of Chloe Price, who is depressed after both the death of her father and her best friend moving away.

Players can answer back in situations, and face the consequences – either the dialogue helps get Chloe out of an unpleasant situation, or it makes matters worse.

“Through her shoes and through her eyes, we can look at what’s going on with teenagers today,” Zak Garriss, lead writer of the game’s developer, Deck 9 Games, told the BBC.

“Mental health is not what we talk a lot about in most cultures. There’s a taboo around depression.

“We want to challenge that taboo and say, ‘It’s OK to not be OK.’”

Bringing hope

Chloe eventually makes another friend – Rachel Amber – who helps her through her pain.

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Square Enix

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Sometimes change isn’t always bad – Chloe’s friendships help her move on

The developers hope the story will inspire people to face painful emotions upfront and open up about how they are feeling.

“[In] the story of Chloe being trapped and being in prison, you can see how everything can change in a blink of an eye,” said Mr Garriss.

“When you are really suffering, it feels like you’re going to feel that way forever.

“You never know what will change in the blink of an eye, and I think that’s the most important thing for people who are struggling with depression and loneliness to remember.”

Video games have been criticised in the past for depicting extreme cases of mental illness, often involving homicidal mental asylum inmates, or treating sanity as a kind of depletable resource, as if it was some kind of energy meter needing to be topped up.

However, there have been other notable efforts to deal with the issue in more sympathetic ways.

Often it is smaller-budget fare that has attempted this – past examples include:

  • the top-down graphic adventure Actual Sunlight about an overweight man with depression
  • the text-based role-playing title Depression Quest, in which the player makes choices about how to handle the condition
  • the line-art horror title Neverending Nightmares, which was inspired by its developer’s own case of obsessive-compulsive disorder

More recently, Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice featured a character affected by psychosis.

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Ninja Theory

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Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice involves a Celtic warrior sent on a vision quest during the Viking age

To help ensure her hallucinations appeared realistic, the title’s developers interviewed several mental health patients as well as getting advice from a practising psychiatrist.

Big following

What makes Life Is Strange: Before The Storm notable is that it is being released by one of the industry’s biggest publishers.

Square Enix is responsible for hit franchises including Final Fantasy, Dragon Quest and Kingdom Hearts.

But the Japanese company has highlighted that its Life is Strange series has attracted more Twitter followers than its more famous and established brands.

“The traditional way that mental health professionals expect younger people to come to them – that doesn’t appeal to them,” psychotherapist Dr Aaron Balick said.

“Younger men and boys are the least likely to walk into the counsellor’s office. If you can appeal to the audience and meeting people on their level, then it’s a really good approach.

“If you can appeal to them through the means they’re already engaged in, that’s a really good start.”

Article source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-41152814

UK universities targeted by cyber-thieves

BatteriesImage copyright
JEAN-PIERRE CLATOT

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Attackers went after work on improving batteries and alternative fuels

British universities are being hit by hundreds of successful cyber-attacks every year, reports the Times.

More than 1,152 intrusions into UK university networks had been recorded in 2016-17, it said.

And thieves were interested in defence technologies as well as research into novel fuels and better batteries.

The newspaper used data gleaned from Freedom of Information requests to gauge the extent of cyber-attacks on the educational institutions.

Tempting targets

The requests revealed that Oxford, Warwick and University College London had all suffered breaches that sought to steal research data and documents.

The newspaper said thieves were either stealing on behalf of foreign powers or looking to get at valuable data they could sell to the highest bidder.

The number of recorded attacks had doubled in two years, it added.

“Universities drive forward a lot of the research and development in the UK. Intellectual property takes years of knowhow and costs a lot,” Carsten Maple, director of cyber-security at the University of Warwick, told the paper.

“If someone can get that very quickly, that’s good for them.”

Mr Maple said the digital defences deployed by UK universities needed to be tightened up.

The information received by the Times revealed attackers used many different techniques to extract either data or cash from the UK’s higher education organisations.

Ransomware, phishing and denial of service attacks, which bombard sites with data, had all been employed against universities, it found.

Some organisations were being hit by more than 1,000 attacks a month, it said.

“It is no surprise that universities are suffering from an increase in security breaches,” said Dr Anton Grashion, head of security practice at Cylance.

“Their network environments are some of the most challenging networks to manage, with usually smaller security and staffing budgets.”

The open networks many universities ran made them a “tempting and easily accessible” target, he added.

Article source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-41160385

ECHR court reverses ruling on sacking over private messages

European Court of Human RightsImage copyright
Google

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The European Court of Human Rights is in Strasbourg

A Romanian man should not have been fired for sending private messages at work, Europe’s top human rights court has ruled.

Bogdan Mihai Barbulescu was sacked for sending the messages via the Yahoo messaging system in 2007.

His employer had used surveillance software to monitor his computer activity.

A Romanian court ruled in 2016 that the firm was within its rights but this has now been overturned.

Mr Barbulescu successfully challenged the original decision.

Some of the communications he had sent were “intimate in nature” and were sent to his brother and his fiancee, the court heard.

However, his right to privacy had not been “adequately protected”, the apex body of the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) has now ruled.

The ECHR also said it was not clear whether Mr Barbulescu had been warned that his communications would be monitored, and that the original court had not established specifically why the monitoring had taken place.

As it is the highest court there can be no further appeal.

  • Employers ‘can read private messages’

“…although it was questionable whether Mr Barbulescu could have had a reasonable expectation of privacy in view of his employer’s restrictive regulations on internet use, of which he had been informed, an employer’s instructions could not reduce private social life in the workplace to zero,” said the court in its decision.

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Getty Images

In a question and answer section on its website, the ECHR says the ruling does not mean that firms cannot now monitor employee communications at work, and that they can still dismiss employees for private use.

“However, the Court considers that States should ensure that, when an employer takes measures to monitor employees’ communications, these measures are accompanied by adequate and sufficient safeguards against abuse,” it said.

Catrina Smith, employment partner at the legal firm Norton Rose Fulbright said it would not have a huge impact on UK employment regulation.

“What it will do, for companies who thought they had a bit more leeway than they did, is confirm the fact that they don’t,” she said.

“It will hopefully remind employers that they need to think about these issues and be very clear with employees about what is and isn’t permissible.

“Employees also need to be smarter about the way in which they use both personal and work devices.”

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Getty Images

Ms Smith added that in the UK both the Data Protection Act and the Interception of Communications Act set out clear guidelines for employers regarding what they can monitor.

“You have to make sure the employee understands that [monitoring] might happen and you have to have a good reason for doing so,” she said.

“It’s all about having a dialogue and having an agreement about what is and isn’t personal.”

There also needs to be clear guidelines about the use of personal devices for work purposes, she added.

“In the old days if you took papers home, they still belonged to the employer,” she said.

“You need to have clear understanding of the amount of ownership an employer has over information held on a personal device.”

Article source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-41160853

Jailed YouTuber: ‘Not proud’ of prank

Media captionYouTuber Daniel Jarvis is “not proud” of his part in a fake robbery at a major London gallery

A YouTuber jailed for his part in a prank on the public says he is “sorry if he frightened people”.

Daniel Jarvis, 27, is a member of the Trollstation YouTube channel, which has about a million subscribers.

In 2016, he and three others were jailed for a total of 72 weeks after pleading guilty to two counts of threatening behaviour causing fear of unlawful violence.

They staged a fake robbery at London’s National Portrait Gallery in 2015.

Speaking in an exclusive interview with Stephen Nolan on BBC Radio 5 live, Jarvis said: “I’m not proud. It wasn’t meant to be that extreme.

“We were going to go in there and be stupid, dumb, criminals, falling over each other.”

The pranksters set off an alarm inside the gallery after carrying in fake paintings, dressed as robbers, causing members of the public to flee.

The video has been viewed nearly one million times on YouTube.

“When the alarm was so loud, it caused too much panic, which was our fault,” Jarvis said.

“I can’t change the past. I don’t like hurting people or making people upset. I do these videos to make people laugh and make them happy.”

Image caption

YouTube Prankster Daniel Jarvis

‘Warped’ stunt

In court, magistrates warned such “warped” stunts could lead to fatalities.

The prosecutor said the pranksters had caused a stampede in which people had been trampled and one person had fainted.

The prank was also criticised for its timing – just a week after the Tunisian beach massacre, in which 39 people were killed

“A terrorist attack happens in this world every day. This has got nothing to do with terrorism,” Jarvis told BBC Radio 5 live.

“I don’t like harming people or making people upset. I hate people crying. I like to see people happy and love making people happy. It wasn’t a nice feeling to see people scared.”

Trollstation has built a reputation for filming staged pranks around London.

In March 2016, a fifth member of the channel was imprisoned following a bomb hoax.

Judge Snow said the men had caused “high levels of fear of violence” and a “risk of death or injury” during the stampede from the National Portrait Gallery, and sought to “humiliate” the victims by “recording their terrified reactions to upload on to the internet”.

One of Jarvis’s most successful pranks saw him dressed up as a soldier in the Queen’s Guard.

He then arranged for his friend to approach him and, uncharacteristically for a soldier in the Queen’s Guard, he retaliated.

That video has 25 million views on YouTube.

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Metropolitan Police

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CCTV footage shows the fake robbery in progress

‘A lot of pressure’ for views

Jarvis said he had felt the burden of providing videos for fans.

“It is a lot of pressure, if you haven’t done a good video in a while and if you’ve not done an extreme video,” he said.

In 2015, he disrupted the diving World Series at the London Aquatic Centre – where Tom Daley was participating – by diving from a 10m board.

Speaking about that prank, Jarvis said: “It made a lot of people laugh, it made a lot of people happy.”

Jarvis was challenged about the responsibility that comes with having such a massive, and impressionable, online following.

“It’s not that anything can go. You’ve got to be respectful,” he said.

In June, a woman from Minnesota was charged over the fatal shooting of her boyfriend, in what authorities say was a social media stunt gone wrong.

Jarvis said he wouldn’t do anything that extreme in the chase for YouTube views.

“Even on the news, extreme stuff goes off.,” he said. “I’m not into extreme stuff like that. I wouldn’t do anything too dangerous.”

___________

Follow Calum Macdonald on Twitter @CalumAM

Article source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-40869278