Tag: may

VPN outfits expect to make a fortune out of Theresa May

teresa may evilVPN outfits are rubbing their paws with glee thanks to the UK government’s Investigatory Powers Bill.

Theresa May and her Conservative minions hope to save the UK from terrorists by insisting that ISPs keep detailed records of their customer’s online doings.

The Investigatory Powers Bill was approved by the House of Lords on 19 November and is due to become law before the end of 2016.

Now, several virtual private network (VPN) operators have seized on its introduction to promote their offerings.

For those who don’t know, VPNs digitally scramble a user’s internet traffic and send it to one of their own servers before passing it on to a site or app in a form they can make sense of. ISPs would only have a log to the VPN.

The VPNs can be based outside the UK in countries with no data retention laws.  Even if servers are confiscated, there would be nothing on them. To make matters worse for Mrs May, the UK government would find it difficult to prevent the use of such workarounds.

While the legislation specifically mentions connection service providers and not just ISPs, and the assumption is that VPNs based in the UK must give up their logs under this law. However that does not apply to foreign companies who can just ignore it.

Even if the UK government made VPN’s illegal, it could not stop those services being available.  Lots of businesses use VPNs to provide staff with remote access to their email and other work-related files would also make it difficult to restrict the technology’s use.


Apple, Amazon and Google face the wrath of May

239266C400000578-2853011-Amusing_Theresa_May_pulled_faces_to_amuse_a_police_officer-89_1417190867961Britain’s first unelected woman Prime Minister is ending the cosy relationship that her government had with Apple, Amazon and Google.

Theresa May has decided that the previous chancellor George Osborne’s moves to write off the tax which should have been paid by Google, Amazon and Apple was not a good idea. Osborne allowed the Google to go free by negotiating that Google should play back a tiny proportion of what it should have paid.

She names and shamed Google and Amazon, whose tax dodging arrangements recently led to a huge amount of parliamentary scrutiny, but Apple does the same sort of thing so it is probably going to be facing the wrath of May too.

May has handed her home secretary job to Amber Rudd—who will now be responsible for the government’s push for greater online surveillance laws.

This should place her at odds with the minister now in charge of withdrawing the UK from the European Union. David Davis, who has—for years—opposed the government’s attempts to bring in a so-called Snoopers’ Charter and is suing the government over DRIPA—legislation that was rushed through by the Tories after the European Court of Justice had ruled that the Data Retention Directive was invalid for failing to have adequate privacy safeguards in place.

Blighty brings in a new spying law

 snooperWhile people are a bit distracted about Europe, David “bacon sandwich” Cameron brought in a new spying law which will make it possible for the rich elite to keep the great unwashed from revolting.

The new surveillance law gives security agencies extensive monitoring capabilities in the digital age. Lawmakers voted 444-69 in favour of the Investigatory Powers Bill, which interior minister Theresa May said would help “keep us safe in an uncertain world”.

The bill will now go to the House of Lords upper house of parliament where it is expected to be rubber stamped. After all the Lords don’t want the riff-raff revolting, they are already revolting enough.

Several lawmakers, including the opposition Scottish National Party, voted against the bill, saying that the protections for privacy were not strong enough.

May insisted that the bill had been scrutinised using her extra best and strongest scrute.  A new privacy clause would require agencies to consider less intrusive means to achieve the same ends and special protections for lawmakers, lawyers and journalists.

“It provides far greater transparency, overhauled safeguards and adds protections for privacy and introduces a new and world-leading oversight regime,” May claimed.

Theresa May appoints her cat to assess Gary McKinnon

Comedy home secrety Secretary Theresa May has defended her decision to let her cat assess whether UK hacker Gary McKinnon really has Asperger’s Syndrome.

May appointed Mr Tiddles to provide crucial medical evidence, despite never gaining any medical degree, nor having any particular interest in mental illness before.

The Home Office has ordered that McKinnon undergo a further medical examination to see if there is any risk he might kill himself if he is stuck in a US jail.

May is reported to be “personally concerned” that McKinnon has not been examined by a Home Office-appointed medical assessor. Indeed, she is so concerned that she has personally appointed someone with no experience in looking at Asperger’s.

Tiddles is well known at the Home Office for his break-through methods in kitty litter distribution. He is understood to be qualified in getting under the feet of junior ministers.

He is known as May’s Mr Oddjob because he is always leaving odd jobs around the place.

When cornered by TechEye, Mr Tiddles said “mew” and ran underneath the sofa.

We made some of that up. What is scary is that it is 90 percent true. The untrue bit was appointing her cat.

In fact May has appointed Professor Thomas Fahy, who has as much experience with Asperger’s syndrome as Mr Tiddles.

McKinnon’s mother, Janis Sharp, said he had “no choice” but to refuse because the expert the Home Office had named to carry out the examination.

McKinnon had three medical examinations in April by three leading experts in Asperger’s and suicidal risk. Professor Simon Baron Cohen, Professor Jeremy Turk and Dr Jan Vermeulen all concluded that he was at extreme risk of suicide if extradited, and that he is unfit for trial. But that is not enough for May, she wants someone who knows nothing running the show.

To be fair this is Tory policy. After all, you have a Chancellor of the Exchequer who knows nothing about the economy, and you can get away with it, why not appoint someone who knows nothing about Asperger’s and suicide to do a report on someone with Asperger’s and how very well may kill themselves?

We understand Mr Tiddles hopes for a cabinet position in the next reshuffle. The cabinet is where there are the juiciest rats. 

Anyway, the Guardian reports that the crucial decision on whether to export McKinnon, complete with cuffs, will not be made until  October. The reason for this is because the Olympics are, to May, more of a priority.

Theresa May throws O'Dwyer to the wolves

British Home Secretary Theresa May’s plans to bring transportation back into UK law are gathering pace.

For the last year, May has been sending asylum seekers back to whatever country wants to torture them and is now starting her new plan to transport people back to the colonies.

While many people would think the approach is dragging the UK back to the 18th Century, May can point out that was a period when Britain had an Empire and before the Labour Party gave it away.

May’s latest candidate for transportation is TVShack founder Richard O’Dwyer, who she wants to be sent to the US to be tried, jailed and never to see the white cliffs of Dover again.

Despite widespread calls for her to engage her brain and tell the Americans to sling their hook, May is insisting on transporting O’Dwyer to the colonies.

In doing so, O’Dywer gets one of those quaint American trials which lets the wealthy off but forces sentences of millions of years on those who can’t afford representation.

O’Dywer faces a charge of copyright infringement, which means that he has managed to annoy private companies so much that they have asked their friends in government to mount a criminal investigation.

Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales’ started an anti-extradition petition last week. May, however, does not seem to mind that 200,000 voters thinking she is bowing down to America is a problem.

She pointed out that the UK courts found there were no statutory bars to his surrender under the Extradition Act 2003 and so she signed an order for his extradition to the US.

It is true that May’s transportation policy might be questioned by his appeal hearing later in the year. However, the judge’s hands are pretty much tied by a bizzare extradition process which allows for British citizens to be dragged into US kangaroo courts, while American citizens cannot be similarly treated in a UK court.

Wales pointed out that the case against O’Dwyer is thin and if it is prosecuted anywhere it is should be in the UK. No US citizen has ever been brought to the UK for alleged criminal activity that took place on US soil.

In countries like New Zealand, extradition of people on copyright charges have not been going so well. Kim Dotcom’s arrest has already been ruled illegal and judges are asking why he is being charged in the US when his business had little to do with that country.

Still, if Teresa May’s desire to bring in transportation goes ahead, it could lead to all British criminals ending up in Australia, New Zealand and the US. 

Display panel shipments on the up for May

Shipments of large-area TFT LCD display panels were up nine percent in May compared to the previous month, according to a shipment database report by DisplaySearch.

Shipments were at 58.8 million units in May, up from 53.9 million in April, or nine percent. The growth was even more substantial when compared to the same time last year, where shipments were 43.4 million units. The year on year growth was a very healthy 36 percent.

Notebook panels were the largest factor in the results, with shipments totalling 21.5 million units in May compared to 18.5 in April, a month on month growth of 16 percent. Shipments in May of 2009 were only 13.6 million units, showing a whopping 58 percent year on year growth.

TV panel shipments were up 44 percent from last year, from 12.2 million to 17.7 million units. This was also a five percent increase on April’s figures, which were 16.9 million.

Monitor panels also saw some reasonable growth, up to 18.8 million units from 16.6 million the year before, an increase of 13 percent. This is also a 6 percent increase on April’s total of 17.7 million units.

There was no growth for other types of  LCD panels, which remained at 0.9 million shipments.

The report also found that LG Display was the leading company, with a 24.1 percent market share, followed by Samsung at 22.4 percent, Chimei Innolux at 17.9 percent, and AU Optronics at 17.4 percent.

While Samsung was second in market share, it was first for revenue, leading at 26.3 percent. LG Display followed closely with 24.2 percent, AU Optronics with 17 percent, and Chimei Innolux with 15.1 percent.

David Hsieh, Vice President of DisplaySearch, said: “The May results indicate that although the TFT LCD industry is going through a panel price and inventory correction period this quarter, panel shipment momentum is not slowing down and has bounced back to reach record monthly highs after a monthly decline in April.”

DisplaySearch May figures

HTC rolling in cash as May figures released

Smartphone maker HTC must have made a smart move somewhere, because its revenue has grown significantly over the past few months, according to figures released by the company today.

HTC’s May 2010 revenues alone bring in NT$18.66 billion, up 49.51 percent from the same time last year. It also garnered a total of NT$74.37 billion between January and May of this year, up 34.06 percent on last year.

HTC’s revenues in 2009 had been slumping, but then the global recession made 2009 a bad year for a lot of companies. There is a pretty big spike in growth in January of this year, however, which suggests a massive turnaround as the shackles of the recession are loosened. The release of several new smartphones, including the Desire, Legend, Incredible, and Wildfire, not to mention the Nexus One it made for Google, may go a long way to explaining the May 2010 figures.

The growth is pretty phenomenal, but when we put it into context of overall smartphone growth and the huge increase in Android-based smartphone sales from the beginning of this year it’s easier to see why HTC is reeling in the money. The HTC Desire is one of the most popular iPhone competitors, while the company’s other devices have also been selling well.

Some charts of the figures, courtesy of Digitimes, can be seen below:

HTC Revenue

HTC Revenue