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Timothy B. Lee

Timothy B. Lee

Timothy B. Lee covers technology policy, including copyright and patent law, telecom regulation, privacy, and free speech. He also writes about the economics of technology. He has previously written for Ars Technica and Forbes. You can follow him on Twitter or send him email.

Brian Fung

Brian Fung

Brian Fung covers technology for The Washington Post, focusing on electronic privacy, national security, digital politics and the Internet that binds it all together. He was previously the technology correspondent for National Journal and an associate editor at the Atlantic. His writing has also appeared in Foreign Policy, Talking Points Memo, the American Prospect and Nonprofit Quarterly. Follow Brian on Google+ .

Andrea Peterson

Andrea Peterson

Andrea Peterson covers technology policy for The Washington Post, with an emphasis on cybersecurity, consumer privacy, transparency, surveillance and open government. She also delves into the societal impacts of technology access and how innovation is intertwined with cultural development.

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Posted at 08:32 AM ET, 06/17/2011

The Circuit: Program fights cyber attacks; DVD rentals hard to find; Conn. AG wants Facebook tagging info

LEADING THE DAY: The National Security Administration and Internet service providers are working together on a pilot program to combat cyber attacks, The Washington Post reported. The program looks for known signs of a cyber attack, scanning e-mail and other traffic for malicious code. The program is voluntary, and officials said the government will not be “monitoring, intercepting or storing” private-sector communications.

Nevertheless, civil liberty advocates have said that the program must establish protections against government surveillance of private Internet traffic before it expands.

Customers frustrated as streaming video kills stores: Families looking for DVDs to entertain them on road trips this summer might be out of luck as brick-and-mortar rental stores continue to dwindle, The Washington Post reported. The rate at which technology become obsolete has caused frustration for consumers who buy expensive gadgets — such as in-car DVD players — only to find they can no longer use them.

Connecticut AG raises Facebook concerns: Connecticut’s attorney general has requested a meeting with Facebook to discuss its tag suggestions feature, Reuters reported Thursday.

“Consumers must be made aware that the digital images of their faces are being coupled by Facebook technology to the personal information in their Facebook profiles," Attorney General George Jepsen wrote in the letter to the social networking site. He suggested that simple changes such as making the feature opt-in would address his concerns.

A Facebook spokesperson told Reuters that the company has been in contact with Jepson’s office and is “eager” to provide information on the feature.

RIM takes a dive: Research in Motion shares fell after the company lowered its earnings outlook and said it will have to cut jobs. RIM’s forecast for this quarter is about $1 billion below analyst estimates, Bloomberg reported.

The company’s stock fell as much as 16 percent in late trading.

Google, Oracle: Oracle is seeking billions of dollars in damages from Google over a patent and copyright infringement suit outlined in San Francisco federal court Thursday, Bloomberg reported. Oracle claims that Google’s mobile Android platform uses elements related to the Oracle’s Java programming language.

In a statement to Bloomberg, Google said that Oracle’s estimates are improperly inflated and “based on fundamental legal errors.”

Streaming video piracy bill passes Senate Judiciary: A bill that would make streaming pirated video a felony passed the Senate Judiciary Committee Thursday. Peer-to-peer downloads of pirated material are already considered a felony.

The Motion Picture Association of America applauded the development, saying that it was a crucial step in the fight against piracy.

Facebook adding iPad app: Facebook looks to finally be adding an app to Apple’s iPad, the New York Times reported. While the social networking site does have an app that works on the popular tablet, it isn’t optimized and designed for a larger screen.

Citing anonymous sources briefed on Facebook’s plans for the app, the report says that the program is in its final stages of testing. Facebook CEO and co-founder Mark Zuckerberg is said to have been personally involved with the app’s development. Currently, Research in Motion is the only company whose mobile application store has a tablet-optimized Facebook tablet, made for the BlackBerry PlayBook.

By  |  08:32 AM ET, 06/17/2011

Tags:  IP, Google, RIM, Facebook, Netflix, Security

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