It isn’t uncommon for companies to scan through the Internet looking for information on potential hires. Young job seekers, however, have found ways to avoid having prying eyes find private data by applying a wide-range of privacy settings to their Facebook accounts. Now, the Associated Press reported on Tuesday that numerous employers are asking potential hires to hand over login credentials to their email accounts, social networking websites and other online services. The ACLU immediately blasted the practice, calling it “an invasion of privacy” and insisting that “people are entitled to their private lives.” Sen. Richard Blumenthal echoed these concerns and is now drafting a bill to make such actions illegal. Read on for more. More →
Facebook on Thursday acquired 750 patents from IBM in an effort to boost the company’s defense and counter new lawsuits, according to Bloomberg. The patents reportedly cover various technologies relating to software and networking. The acquisition would more than double the size of Facebook’s portfolio, which currently includes at least 56 issued patents and 503 filed U.S. patent applications. The patent acquisition comes after Yahoo, a business partner of Facebook, filed a massive patent infringement lawsuit against the social networking site. More →
Megaupload founder Kim Dotcom, who was recently arrested and charged with racketeering, copyright infringement and money laundering, may be able to reclaim his seized assets due to a botched court order, according to a report from the New Zealand Herald. Police raided Dotcom’s home on January 19th and seized, among other valuable assets, his cash, cars and mansion. New Zealand police have admitted to making a “procedural error” when filing documents to seize Dotcom’s property, however. A court has ruled that the incorrect restraining order is “null and void” and has “no legal effect.” The publication states there is no guarantee Dotcom will get his assets back though, as his lawyers must first prove a lack of good faith when the procedural error was made. More →
A German judge has suspended a patent infringement suit filed by Apple against Samsung covering the company’s slide-to-unlock patent, Reuters reported on Friday. The Mannheim court said that it will await a decision in a separate lawsuit covering the same patent in Munich before it makes its ruling. The lawsuit relates to the “slide-to-unlock utility model” and comes two weeks after the same court dismissed a suit covering similar technology. The Cupertino-based company recently filed a separate complaint against Motorola in Germany, also covering its slide-to-unlock patent. Since April, Samsung and Apple have filed more than 30 lawsuits against one another throughout various countries around the world.
Yahoo has filed a massive patent infringement lawsuit against its business partner, Facebook, AllThingsD reported on Monday. The search company claims that Facebook’s News Feed, advertising methods, privacy settings and more infringe its patents. “Facebook’s entire social network model, which allows users to create profiles for and connect with, among other things, persons and businesses, is based on Yahoo’s patented social networking technology,” Yahoo’s lawsuit said. The company claims that Facebook has been “free riding” on Yahoo’s intellectual property and royalty payments alone will not be enough. Read on for more. More →
Samsung on Wednesday confirmed that it has filed another lawsuit against Apple in South Korea, according to a report from Reuters. Since last year, the two companies have been involved in heated legal battles throughout 10 different countries, racking up more than 30 separate complaints that have been filed. The newest lawsuit targets the iPhone 4S and iPad 2, and Samsung claims both devices infringe three of the company’s “utility” patents, which involve methods of displaying data, a device’s user interface and short text messages. Apple’s former CEO Steve Jobs vowed to destroy Android, and since then the Cupertino-based company has been involved in numerous patent disputes with Motorola, HTC and Samsung, the top three Android vendors in the world. More →
Interpol on Tuesday announced that 25 suspected members of the hacker group “Anonymous” have been arrested in a raid across Europe and South America. The suspected members ranged in age from 17 to 40 and are accused of planning coordinated cyber-attacks against various government institutions, such as Colombia’s defense ministry and presidential Web sites, Chile’s Endesa electricity company and national library and other targets. The arrests were the result of an ongoing investigation by local and federal police agencies, which searched 40 locations in 15 cities and seized 250 pieces of technology equipment since mid-February. “This operation shows that crime in the virtual world does have real consequences for those involved, and that the Internet cannot be seen as a safe haven for criminal activity, no matter where it originates or where it is targeted,” Acting INTERPOL Executive Director of Police Services Bernd Rossbach said. Read on for Interpol’s press release.
Apple on Wednesday defended itself in a Shanghai court against Proview International, which claims Apple is violating a trademark it holds on the “iPad” name, the New York Times reported. Proview’s allegations have prevented the Cupertino-based company from selling its popular tablet in numerous smaller Chinese cities, however Apple Stores in Beijing and Shanghai continue to sell the device. The four-hour session at the Pudong New Area People’s Court ended without any ruling from the district judge, though both sides reportedly presented new evidence in the case. Apple claims it acquired the iPad trademark from Proview in 2009. “We bought Proview’s worldwide rights to the iPad trademark in 10 different countries several years ago,” the company said in a statement. “Proview refuses to honor their agreement with Apple in China and a Hong Kong court has sided with Apple in this matter. Our case is still pending in mainland China.” Proview claims that Apple is using the iPad name illegally, however, as the subsidiary that licensed the trademark to Apple was not authorized to do so. More →
On Friday, the Chinese company that claims to hold the trademark on the “iPad” name, threatened to sue Apple in the U.S. for $2 billion dollars, reports the AFP. Proview Technology claims it owns the Chinese rights to the iPad name and the company’s lawyers are looking to prevent Apple from importing or exporting the popular tablet in China. “Right now we are selecting from three American law firms to sue Apple in the United States for $2 billion in compensation,” said the chairman of Hejun Vanguard Group, a company working with creditors to restructure Proview. Proview’s chief executive Yang Rongshan has repeatedly denied allegations that the company is extorting Apple in order to pay off its debt.”We own [the iPad trademark] in China,” Rongshan said. “If you were in my position… you would try to protect your rights.” Apple has said that it previously licensed the iPad trademark and Proview is failing to honor its earlier agreement. More →
Apple on Thursday was granted an injunction on multiple Motorola devices that make use of its slide-to-unlock patent, FOSS Patents reports. The ruling came from Judge Peter Guntz of Munich’s Regional Court in Germany, and it allows Apple to enforce a permanent injunction against a number of Motorola’s Android devices at anytime. The court evaluated three different embodiments, two of which Apple won. The Cupertino-based company was unsuccessful on the third embodiment, which involved the Motorola XOOM. Both companies are expected to appeal the court’s ruling. More →
On Monday, Chinese officials seized 45 iPads in response to a trademark complaint from Proview International, the owner of the “iPad” name in China. Proview has now asked the Chinese government to block the import and export of the popular tablet, reports Bloomberg. “We are applying to customs to stop any trademark- infringing products from imports to China and also for exports,” said Roger Xie, a lawyer representing Proview. “Apple wants to postpone and continue infringement of the iPad in China.” Apple maintains that it has purchased rights to the iPad name in 10 countries from Proview, including in China. “Proview refuses to honor their agreement with Apple in China,” said Carolyn Wu, Apple’s Beijing-based spokeswoman. “Our case is still pending in mainland China.” The iPad is manufactured by Foxconn in Brazil and in China, so an export ban on the popular tablet would have significant ramifications for Apple. More →
A court in the Hague in has denied Apple’s request to ban the Samsung Galaxy Tab in the Netherlands. In August a Dutch judge banned Samsung’s local subsidiaries from selling the Samsung Galaxy S and Samsung Galaxy S II, but the Hague court has reportedly now ruled that Samsung’s Galaxy Tab 10.1 is unique enough to be sold alongside Apple’s iPad. Samsung and Apple are currently locked in a number of legal battles around the globe including in France, Japan, the United States and Germany, among others. Samsung was forced to create a tweaked Galaxy Tab 10.1N tablet in Germany to gain the court’s blessing to sell the product in the country. Apple has repeatedly accused Samsung of creating “copycat” products that confuse customers into believing they are purchasing an Apple device. More →
A judge with the United States International Trade Commission (ITC) ruled Monday that HTC is guilty of infringing Apple’s patents in several devices. The ITC also ordered a ban on the import of several of HTC’s smartphones although it is unclear which models are affected. The ban will take effect on April 19th. “Notice is hereby given that the U.S. International Trade Commission has found a violation of section 337 in this investigation and has issued a limited exclusion order prohibiting importation of infringing personal data and mobile communications devices and related software,” the ITC said in its determination. “The Commission has determined that exclusion of articles subject to this order shall commence on April 19, 2012.” Raed on for more.