The National Security Agency (NSA), which is behind some of the world’s most sophisticated mass surveillance operations, can’t say how many Americans it’s spying on in these endeavors. That’s not because it’s a secret, though that might be a reason too. It’s because the agency’s operations are so vast that it can’t even figure out the number. More →
Pete Ashdown, the CEO of small Utah ISP XMission, says that in 2010 he received a Foreign Intelligence Service Act (FISA) warrant that allowed the federal government to monitor the Internet activity of one of his customers. Ashdown was also given a gag order, preventing him from talking about key details relating to the warrant. In an article on BuzzFeed, he explained how the government “wanted to come in and put in equipment on my network to monitor a single customer.” Federal agents came in and set up a duplicate port that tapped into the customer’s traffic and allowed the government to see everything the person sent and received. The executive noted that the ending result was “a little box in our systems room that was capturing all the traffic to this customer.” More →
A five-month old ITC patent dispute between Research In Motion and Omaha-based Prism Technologies has been settled. Back in December of 2009, Prism had asked the ITC to block the importation of BlackBerry smartphones, servers and sofrware into the U.S. on the grounds that RIM was violating one of Prism’s patents. At the heart of the dispute was a Prism patent described as providing an “innovative way of controlling access to protected electronically stored data and information requested by a device using an Internet Protocol network.” The terms of the settlement were not disclosed, but documents filed with the ITC reveal that the companies have entered into a “license and settlement agreement.” More →
The recent resurrection of rumors that Sprint is working with Samsung on a WiMAX-enabled phone may have just been trumped by news from Korea earlier today. According to a report from The Korea Herald, KT is planning to offer a tri-mode Windows Phone built by Samsung that will operate on the KT’s WiMAX network. The most interesting part — KT supposedly claims it will be releasing this handset before 2009 is through. Dubbed the Samsung Prism, the phone will be a triple threat, operating on WCDMA, Wi-Fi and WiMAX networks. On the far less interest-piquing side of things, KT is reportedly also prepping the 3G-ready LG Lilac. Super. So what does all this mean for us here in the US? News that Samsung is partnering with a carrier to develop a WiMAX-enabled phone that comes straight from a carrier is far more interesting than previous guesses from analysts. Of course logic suggests dictates that Samsung will be among the first manufacturers to build handsets for KT’s WiMAX network, but the time frame is what interests us. A Korean release in 2009 could mean comparable handsets might reach our shores as early as 1H 2010.