Holder Slaps Tech Sector on Mobile Device EncryptionDeparting Attorney General Eric Holder said that new forms of device encryption, including those expected to be included in Apple’s iOS 8 and Google’s Android L, could put children at increased risk, the Washington Post reported. Holder warned that the inability to decrypt mobile device data could jeopardize investigations into time-sensitive crimes like kidnapping.“It is fully possible to permit law enforcement to do its job while still adequately protecting personal privacy,” Holder said. “When a child is in danger, law enforcement needs to be able to take every legally available step to quickly find and protect the child and to stop those that abuse children. It is worrisome to see companies thwarting our ability to do so.”Many privacy advocates claim that companies like Google and Apple are just adding the same type encryption that has historically been found in personal computers. Many individuals now use their personal mobile devices as their “computer.”
FCC Overturns Sports Blackout Rule, Wants Comcast Programming ContractsIn a unanimous decision, the Federal Communications Commission on Tuesday announced that it would repeal the sports blackout rule, which commissioners called “outdated.” The rule prohibited satellite and cable operators from airing particular sports events on local broadcast stations. This often prevented local consumers from watching their teams’ games.Separately, the FCC is asking media companies for their programming agreements with Comcast in order to aid in its review of the cable company’s proposed merger with Time Warner Cable. The information in the agreements, along with additional documents and data pertaining to the deal negotiations, would allow the Commission to assess the leverage the combined cable company would have over its media partners, the agency said.
However, the agency has received pushback from media companies like CBS, 21st Century Fox, Disney, and Viacom. They say their programming contracts contain “extremely sensitive business data and information, and highly proprietary and scrupulously protected terms and conditions,” reported The Wall Street Journal.