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The Switchboard: Dutch privacy watchdog says Google violates data law

(Boris Roessler/EPA, file)

Published every weekday, The Switchboard highlights five tech policy stories you need to read.

Dutch privacy watchdog says Google breaks data law. Thomas Escritt at Reuters reports that Dutch privacy regulators have concluded Google's practice of building data profiles with information from many different services is a violation of the country's data protection laws. However, they haven't settled on any action at this time. Instead, the Dutch Data Protection Authority "asked Google to attend a meeting to discuss its concerns, after which it would decide whether to take any action against the cloud services, Internet search and advertising giant, which could include fines."

SpaceX's Thanksgiving rocket launch aborted twice at the last second. "Having originally been scheduled to celebrate Thanksgiving by taking to the stratosphere, SpaceX's launch was aborted at the last moment," Katie Drummond at The Verge reports.

Texas hacker debunks link between Bitcoin founder and online drug market. Robert McMillan at Wired has some nice color on the security researcher who claimed ownership of the Bitcoin wallet Israeli researchers thought may have been connected to the mysterious Bitcoin founder Satoshi Nakamoto. "Dustin Trammell is a noted security researcher with a love of cryptography and a penchant for all the color green, says Dragos Ruiu, the organizer of the CanSec West security conference, where Trammell has spoken in the past." A crypto fan and libertarian, Trammell became involved in Bitcoin very shortly after its initial launch, the researchers have since retracted their claims about his wallet's connection to Nakamoto.

Just who is Apple's most frustrated fanboi? Surprise – it's GOOGLE. Macs are the hardware of choice at Google, reports Jack Clark at The Register. However, the search and advertising giant "claims it has to develop much of its own tools for managing Macs at scale due to Apple's neglect of enterprise management platforms."

Thank an air traffic controller today. In case you missed it, on Wednesday our own Brian Fung made a convincing case for why you should have been thankful for your air traffic controller when you sat down for some turkey. "Even as the rest of us sit down to a big turkey dinner on Thursday, many of the nation's 27,000 air traffic controllers will still be on duty."

Andrea Peterson covers technology policy for The Washington Post, with an emphasis on cybersecurity, consumer privacy, transparency, surveillance and open government.



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Andrea Peterson · November 28, 2013

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