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Andrea Peterson

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Posted at 08:57 AM ET, 07/22/2011

The Circuit: FCC pauses on merger; Apple, Hulu; FTC chair backs data security standard

LEADING THE DAY: The Federal Communications Commission has stopped the “shot clock” on the merger between AT&T and T-Mobile, saying it will wait for more information from AT&T that it expects to receive later this month, The Washington Post reported.

The FCC said that AT&T is relying on new models to support approval of its merger. They will presented on July 25.

This is not the first time the agency has stopped the clock on a merger to wait for additional information, the Post reported. It did so last year as it considered the merger between Comcast and NBC.

Apple to bid for Hulu?: A report from Bloomberg said that Apple may be throwing its hat into the ring on bidding for Hulu, the joint-venture online video streaming site currently owned by Disney, NBC Universal and News Corp. Such a high-profile acquisition would be uncharacteristic of the company, but would also allow Apple to greatly expand its video offerings and add a streaming, subscription-based model to its ecosystem.

FTC chair backs data security standard: Federal Trade Commission chairman Jon Leibowitz said Thursday that he believes there should be a national standard for data breach notifications. A federal law, he said, would be preferable to the patchwork of state laws that currently govern the issue. Leibowitz did not, however, take a position on the SAFE Data Act, which passed the House subcommittee on manufacturing and trade earlier this week, The Hill reported.

The bill, written by Rep. Mary Bono Mack (R-Calif) would require companies to notify the FTC and consumers of data breaches, but has drawn criticism from Democrats for not being strong enough on consumer protection.

Microsoft reports earnings: Microsoft reported a 30 percent increase in profit for the year as it announced its fourth-quarter and fiscal year earnings Thursday. The company saw revenue increases in four of its five main areas. Revenue in the division that includes the company’s Xbox operations rose 45 percent for the year, though the company saw a slight dip in its yearly numbers from its Windows division.

Lawmakers question Groupon policy: Reps. Ed Markey (D-Mass.) and Joe Barton (R-Tx.) have sent a letter to Groupon asking for information about its revamped privacy policy. Citing a Post report, Markey and Barton raised concerns about the daily deals site’s intention to share some social and geolocation data with its business partners. Lawmakers have asked Groupon to respond within 15 business days.

Anonymous claims NATO attack: Hacker collective Anonymous claimed an attack on NATO’s systems Thursday, The Washington Post reported, releasing restricted NATO documents. NATO spokesman Damien Arnaud told the Post that the organization is investigating the matter. Anonymous claims to have taken one gigabyte of information, saying that it will not release some items because it would be “irresponsible.”

Anonymous and LulzSec — a related hacking group known for its prominent hacks of government contractors, PBS and the Senate — posted a statement responding to the FBI arrests of several hackers earlier this week, saying they were not afraid of being arrested.

By  |  08:57 AM ET, 07/22/2011

Tags:  Security, Cybersecurity, Privacy, Groupon, Microsoft, FTC: Apple, Hulu, Online video, FCC, AT&T, T-Mobile

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