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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 12:45 PM ET, 10/17/2012

U.S. Chamber of Commerce comments on robocall summit #thecircuit

Robocalls: The U.S. Chamber of Commerce asked the Federal Trade Commission to work with legislators as it moves ahead with an examination of automatic “robocall” technology.

“[It] is imperative that any discussion properly distinguish between illegal telemarketing calls and informational calls that benefit consumers, and address modernizing and improving America’s existing telecommunications laws,” said Bill Kovacs, the Chamber’s senior vice president of Environment, Technology & Regulatory Affairs in a statement.

Kovacs said that non-marketing calls about data breaches, recalls or late airline flights or other service-related alerts must be distinguished from illegal telemarketing calls,

He said he hopes the summit, which begins Thursday, will provide an “impetus for lawmakers and regulators to clarify the legal ambiguities that have stifled a critical means of communication for both consumers and businesses.”

Google CEO speaks on probes: Google chief executive Larry Page made his first public comments in months at the company’s annual Zeitgeist conference Tuesday, addressing the firm’s dealings with regulators.

As the Wall Street Journal reported, Page said that he was “hopeful” about the company’s ability to work out issues with antitrust regulators, but salso said that the “over-regulation of the Internet” presents a risk to the company.

Apple gets debate mention: Apple was the subject of a question in Tuesday night’s debate, when moderator Candy Crowley asked the candidates how to bring manufacturing back to America.

The “iPad, the Macs, the iPhones, they are all manufactured in China,” Crowley noted. “One of the major reasons is labor is so much cheaper here. How do you convince a great American company to bring that manufacturing back here?”

President Obama said that America needs to focus on making advanced manufacturing jobs, while Mitt Romney said that the U.S. needs to get tough on Chinese intellectual property abuses and make the U.S. more “attractive” to entrepreneurs.

Computer viruses on medical equipment: Government officials say that medical equipment is becoming “riddled” with malware, according to a report from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Technology Review. While there have been no reported injuries related to compromised equipment, the report said that the presence of viruses on monitoring equipment and in hospital systems is “clearly rising nationwide.”

FTC declined to participate in Google letter: The Federal Trade Commission declined to participate in European criticism of Google, The Washington Post reported Tuesday. European regulators took Google to task for its privacy policy, saying that it the policy did not provide a clear enough picture of how Google data are collected and used.

The FTC’s director of the Bureau of Consumer Protection, David C. Vladeck confirmed that he had been approached by European regulators on the matter, but declined to discuss his response or say whether the FTC is looking into any privacy issues regulators had raised.

By  |  12:45 PM ET, 10/17/2012

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