A French prosecutor has launched a preliminary investigation of U.S. tech giant Apple over alleged deception and planned obsolescence of its products following a complaint by a consumer organization, a judicial source said on Monday.
The investigation, opened on Friday, will be led by French consumer fraud watchdog DGCCRF, part of the Economy Ministry, the source said. Apple acknowledged last month that it takes some measures to reduce power demands - which can have the effect of slowing the processor - in some older iPhone models when a phone’s battery is having trouble supplying the peak current that the processor demands.Read more
A business school in Paris will soon begin using artificial intelligence and facial analysis to determine whether students are paying attention in class. The software, called Nestor, will be used two online classes at the ESG business school beginning in September.
LCA Learning, the company that created Nestor, presented the technology at an event at the United Nations in New York last week. The idea is to use the data that Nestor collects to improve the performance of both students and professors. The software uses students’ webcams to analyze eye movements and facial expressions and determine whether students are paying attention to a video lecture.Read more
The French army’s list of potential threats just added an unlikely candidate: Pokemon Go. The virtual monsters of the Pokemon Go mobile game could lead to intrusions into army bases and even threaten national security, France’s defense ministry said in an internal memo.
The military is enforcing a ban on the game, which was developed by Niantic Inc. and mixes augmented reality with digital creatures, to stop staff from unknowingly sharing sensitive data like geographic coordinates or photos. "Our nation’s defense isn’t a game," said Valerie Lecasble, a spokeswoman for the ministry during a phone interview.Read more
The French data protection authority ordered Microsoft Corp to stop collecting excessive data on users of its Windows 10 operating system and serving them personalized ads without their consent.
The CNIL said the U.S. company had three months to stop tracking browsing by users so that Windows apps and third-party apps can offer them targeted advertising without their consent, failing which it could initiate a sanctions procedure. A number of EU data protection authorities created a contact group to investigate Microsoft's Windows 10 operating system following its launch in July 2015, the French privacy watchdog said.Read more
According to leaked documents France's Ministry of Interior is considering two new proposals: a ban on free and shared Wi-Fi connections during a state of emergency, and measures to block Tor being used inside France.
New bills could be presented to parliament as soon as January 2016. These proposals are presumably in response to the attacks in Paris last month. The new measure is justified by way of a police opinion, saying that it's tough to track people who use public hotspots. The second proposal is a little more gnarly: the Ministry of Interior is looking at blocking and/or forbidding the use of Tor completely.Read more
Researchers with Invincea are warning that Dridex activity has resumed. The advisory comes weeks after law enforcement announced that the Dridex botnet had been significantly disrupted as part of a global operation.
Director of security analytics at Invincea told that the security firm has recently seen a number of localized Dridex variants targeting victims based on language and region. Since Oct. 22, Invincea has seen 60 instances of French users being targeted with the Dridex trojan, the advisory said. Specifically, those users had been targeted with weaponized Microsoft Office documents pretending to be receipts from retail stores and hotels.Read more
Washington has been leading a policy of economic espionage against France for more than a decade by intercepting communications of the Finance minister and all corporate contracts valued at more than $200 million.
The revelations come in line with the ongoing publications of top secret documents from the US surveillance operations against France. The publications consist of seven top secret documents which detail the American National Security Agency’s economic espionage operations against Paris. NSA has been tasked with obtaining intelligence on all aspects of the French economy, from government policy to infrastructural development.Read more
At a moment when American lawmakers are reconsidering the broad surveillance powers assumed by the government after Sept. 11, the lower house of the French Parliament took a long stride in the opposite direction, overwhelmingly approving a bill that could give the authorities their most intrusive domestic spying abilities ever, with almost no judicial oversight.
As the authorities struggle to keep up with the hundreds of French citizens who travel to and from battlefields in Iraq and Syria to wage jihad, often lured over the Internet, the new steps would give the intelligence services the right to gather potentially unlimited electronic data.Read more
Bosses in France now have a legal right to keep close tabs on their employees to provide the highest level of security. The country's Supreme Court has officially allowed top brass to read their subordinates’ SMS messages sent from work phones.
According to the judgment, text messages sent or received through a work phone are assumed to be of a professional nature, in other words work-related. Only the warning personal at the beginning of the message will stop your boss from reading the message about your private life, which, for some reason, was sent to your work phone. All work-related messages can meanwhile be viewed and even taken to court.Read more
On human rights day Edward Snowden appeared by video link at an event organised by Amnesty International, le Monde, Mediaparte and Arte in Paris. The event, which was simultaneously translated, marks the first time Edward Snowden has spoken live to an audience in France.
Reacting to the release of the Senate Intelligence Committee’s report into CIA torture programmes, Edward Snowden told his audience that the things that we did as a result of this programme are inexcusable crimes. And what we see is quite dangerous in the United States debate.Read more