The Circuit: Nokia job cuts expected, debit card fees, online privacy bill

LEADING THE DAY: Nokia employees are expecting deep job cuts as the company prepares for its partnership with Microsoft.

According to a report from Bloomberg, as many as 6,000 jobs may be in danger — about 38 percent of the company.

The Finnish smartphone maker is adopting Microsoft’s Windows Phone 7 system for its phones and phasing out its own Symbian and MeeGo platforms.

Debit card fees: A group that includes Google, Facebook, Apple and Visa has asked lawmakers to hold off on implementing rules that would cap merchant debit card fees, Bloomberg reported. The group said the loss in revenue could lead to a security threat as banks and card networks may have to cut costs in the systems that protect consumer information. The rules are scheduled to be in place in July.

Kerry, McCain introduce privacy bill: Sens. John Kerry (D-Mass.) and John McCain (R-Ariz.) introduced a consumer privacy bill that would be the first to create rules about how Web firms collect information on consumers. The bill recommends opt-out measures but does not include do-not-track.

CNET reported Tuesday that the bill does not apply to the data collection practices of some government agencies.

Cisco closes Flip: Cisco has shut down its Flip camcorder division in an effort to restructure the company. The move signals Cisco is refocusing and moving away from consumer markets, as indicated in a memo from chief executive John Chambers last week. The company expects to cut 550 jobs as part of the restructuring plan, and more changes are likely in the coming months.

U.S. is fifth in technology use: According to the latest annual report from the World Economic Forum, the U.S. ranks fifth when it comes to technology use worldwide, behind Sweden, Singapore, Finland and Switzerland. Study co-author Soumitra Dutta told the New York Times that the U.S. falls behind on many measures linked to economic competitiveness and ranks 52nd worldwide when it comes to math and science education.

Apple sued over kids’ apps: A Pennsylvania father of two is leading a class action lawsuit against Apple, saying the company targets children and made it too easy for young app users to rack up ridiculous bills. A report from SF Weekly says that Garen Meguerian allowed his children to download free games from iTunes, only to find that they purchased in-game supplies without his knowledge. After an article from The Washington Post and scrutiny from the Federal Trade Commission, Apple tightened its app security policies to avoid surprise purchases.

Hayley Tsukayama covers consumer technology for The Washington Post.

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