The Circuit: Cybersecurity, next up on privacy, iPhone photo loophole

Republican senators plan alternative cybersecurity bill: Sens. John McCain (R-Ariz.), Kay Bailey Hutchinson (R-Tex.), Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), Saxby Chambliss (R-Ga.), Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) and Dan Coats (R-Ind.) said they will announce a cybersecurity bill on Thursday. The bill — the Strengthening and Enhancing Cybersecurity by Using Research, Education, Information and Technology Act (Secure IT Act) — is an alternative to the cybersecurity legislation offered by Sens. Joseph Liberman (I-Conn.) and Susan Collins (R-Maine), which could give the Homeland Security Department some regulatory power over companies with systems deemed crucial to national security.

NTIA wants to move forward on privacy: In a blog post, Lawrence Strickling of the National Telecommunications and Information Administration said that the group is soliciting public comment on the Consumer Privacy Bill of Rights and how discussions about privacy should be structured in the coming months.

The bill of rights was unveiled last week by the Obama administration and lists individual control, transparency, respect for context, security, access and accuracy, focused collection and accountability as the seven essential consumer Internet privacy rights.

Apple loophole may mean apps can read photo data: Apps may be grabbing even more data than you realized, even if you are among the few people who read all the terms and conditions. According to a report from the New York Times, app developers told the newspaper’s Nick Bilton that granting an app access to location services can, in some cases, give developers the right to copy a user’s entire photo library.

Just because the functionality exists, Bilton noted, it doesn’t mean that developers are using it. But he also pointed out that Apple doesn’t expressly forbid copying photos, meaning that a dishonest developer could take advantage of the loophole.

Interpol investigation leads to alleged Anonymous arrests: Interpol has arrested 25 people with suspected links to the loose hacking collective Anonymous, according to a statement from the international police agency. The alleged hackers are between the ages of 17 and 40.

On Tuesday, Interpol said that it begun looking for the hackers as part of “Operation Unmask,” an initiative that launched in mid-February. The investigation was launched after Anonymous members claimed credit for denial of service attacks on the Colombian Ministry of Defense, presidential Web sites and an electric company in Chile, as well as an attack on the Web site of Chile’s National Library, the Associated Press reported.

Apple tops $500 billion market cap: Apple has topped a value of $500 billion in market capitalization, breaking the milestone on Wednesday. Few companies have managed to keep a value that high, the Associated Press noted, but the gap between Apple and the second-place company on the stock market, Exxon Mobil, has continued to widen in the weeks running up to Apple’s expected release of the next iPad tablet computer.

Analysts suspect that Apple, which is sitting on $98 billion in cash, will soon issue a dividend to its stockholders.

Hayley Tsukayama covers consumer technology for The Washington Post.

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