Here is a quick round-up of this week’s technology headlines and related stories you may have missed:
- The European Parliament voted in favor of breaking Google into two separate entities: one that would handle its search business and the other that would market its other products like Android, YouTube, and Gmail. The vote, which is non-binding, is an attempt to put pressure on the European Commission to commence anti-trust action against the search giant, akin to what it did to Microsoft in 2004. This is the latest in a series of clashes between European politicians and U.S. information technology companies, with some believing that protectionism, not anti-trust or data protection, is at the heart of Europe’s battles with Google, Facebook, and others.
- Symantec, the computer security company, publicized its discovery of an advanced piece of malware it is calling Regin. The malware, which the threat actor deploys in encrypted modules to minimize detection and maintain persistence on the targeted network, is confirmed to have victimized small businesses and the telecommunications backbone in countries such as Russia, Saudi Arabia, Mexico, Ireland, and India. While Regin bears the hallmarks of a state-sponsored espionage campaign and has been characterized as the most advanced malware yet discovered, Symantec has not identified its authors. The Intercept reports that Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ), Britain’s signals intelligence agency, is likely behind Regin as it was found on the networks of Belgium’s primary telecommunications provider, which is also alleged to have been infiltrated by British spooks.
- The Centre for International Governance Innovation released a global survey on Internet security and trust, which sought the views of over 23,000 respondents in twenty-four countries, including Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, Kenya, Indonesia, Pakistan, South Africa, Sweden and the United States. Among its findings, the survey notes that more users are concerned with private companies monitoring their Internet activities (74 percent) than their own governments (61 percent).