Exclusive: Google can ward off EU antitrust probe into Fitbit deal with data pledge – sources (Reuters)

Reuters: Exclusive: Google can ward off EU antitrust probe into Fitbit deal with data pledge – sources. “Google may be able to stave off a full-scale EU antitrust investigation into its planned $2.1 billion bid for fitness tracker maker Fitbit (FIT.N) by pledging not to use Fitbit’s health data for its ads, people familiar with the matter said.”

Neowin: Google Chrome’s new feature tests promise up to 28% battery usage improvements

Neowin: Google Chrome’s new feature tests promise up to 28% battery usage improvements. “Google is testing a change to its Chrome browser that will let it consume anywhere between 13% to 28% less battery on devices. The update relates to tweaking the JavaScript timer wake up frequency for the tabs that have been hidden or inactive for five minutes or more, resulting in lesser power consumption.”

Purdue University: Google fixes smartwatch security problem discovered by Purdue researchers

Purdue University: Google fixes smartwatch security problem discovered by Purdue researchers. “Purdue University researchers uncovered a serious vulnerability in Google’s Wear OS smartwatches. If left unpatched, the vulnerability could have allowed an attacker to crash specific apps, make the app or the watch unresponsive, or cause the watch to reboot continuously beyond the user’s control.”

BNN Bloomberg: Google Campus Security Singled Out Black, Latinx Employees

BNN Bloomberg: Google Campus Security Singled Out Black, Latinx Employees. “Google’s campus security system subjected Black and Latinx workers to bias and prompted complaints to management, according to people familiar with the situation, leading the company to scrap a key part of the approach. The internet giant encouraged employees to check colleagues’ ID badges on campus, and asked security staff to do the same. This went beyond the typical corporate office system where workers swipe badges to enter. The policy was designed to prevent unauthorized visitors and keep Google’s open work areas safe.”

NBC News: Thousands of contracts highlight quiet ties between Big Tech and U.S. military

NBC News: Thousands of contracts highlight quiet ties between Big Tech and U.S. military. “On Wednesday, newly published research from the technology accountability nonprofit Tech Inquiry revealed that the Department of Defense and federal law enforcement agencies including Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the FBI, the Drug Enforcement Agency and the Federal Bureau of Prisons, have secured thousands of deals with Google, Amazon, Microsoft, Dell, IBM, Hewlett Packard and even Facebook that have not been previously reported.”

Outlook India: Google to provide quick facts about images you search

Outlook India: Google to provide quick facts about images you search. “Google on Wednesday announced a new feature that will make it easy to find quick facts about what people see on Google images in the form of a Knowledge Graph. Starting first in the US, the feature would include people, places or things related to the image from the Knowledge Graph’s database of billions of facts, helping users explore the topic more.”

How to clean up Google Chrome when it’s slow: Notifications, search engine, more (9to5 Google)

9to5 Google: How to clean up Google Chrome when it’s slow: Notifications, search engine, more. “These days, you can’t get hardly anything done without a good, working web browser, but what do you do when Google Chrome starts acting up? Here’s a guide for how to clean up some of Google Chrome’s most common issues including slow loading, excess notifications, using the wrong search engine, and more.”

BNN Bloomberg: Google, Amazon Funnel Over $20 Million to Virus Conspiracy Sites

BNN Bloomberg: Google, Amazon Funnel Over $20 Million to Virus Conspiracy Sites. “Digital advertising platforms run by Google, Amazon.com Inc. and other tech companies will funnel at least $25 million to websites spreading misinformation about Covid-19 this year, according to a study released Wednesday. Google’s platforms will provide $19 million, or $3 out of every $4 that the misinformation sites get in ad revenue. OpenX, a smaller digital ad distributor, handles about 10% of the money, while Amazon’s technology delivers roughly $1.7 million, or 7%, of the digital marketing spending these sites will receive, according to a research group called the Global Disinformation Index.”

Irish Times: Too easy for fraudsters to post scam ads on Facebook and Google, Which? claims

Irish Times: Too easy for fraudsters to post scam ads on Facebook and Google, Which? claims . “Facebook and Google lack effective controls to prevent fraudsters from posting scam adverts, according to a Which? investigation. It is possible for bogus adverts devised by bad actors to appear within a matter of hours, the consumer group has warned, after carrying out a test of its own. While both tech giants have improved ad transparency and toughened rules in recent years, Which? said it is still possible for false advertising to slip through the net.”

New York Times: A Bird? A Plane? No, It’s a Google Balloon Beaming the Internet

New York Times: A Bird? A Plane? No, It’s a Google Balloon Beaming the Internet. “The balloons, which hover about 12 miles up in the stratosphere — well above commercial airplanes — will initially provide a 4G LTE network connection to a nearly 31,000-square-mile area across central and western Kenya, including the capital, Nairobi. Loon, a unit of Google’s parent company, Alphabet, launched 35 balloons in recent months in preparation for Tuesday’s start. It is collaborating with Telkom Kenya, the East African nation’s third-largest carrier.”

Reuters: Indonesia imposes 10% VAT on Amazon, Google, Netflix and Spotify

Reuters: Indonesia imposes 10% VAT on Amazon, Google, Netflix and Spotify. “Indonesia imposed a 10% value-added tax on sales by technology firms including Amazon, Netflix, Spotify and Google on Tuesday, as spending patterns shift with increased remote working as a result of the coronavirus crisis, which has hit state finances.”

Bloomberg: Google, Deutsche Bank Agree to 10-Year Cloud Partnership

Bloomberg: Google, Deutsche Bank Agree to 10-Year Cloud Partnership. “The contract is set to last at least 10 years and Deutsche Bank expects to make a cumulative return on investment of 1 billion euros ($1.1 billion) through the alliance, according to people with knowledge of the matter, who asked not to be identified disclosing private information. The companies also plan to make joint investments in technology and share the resulting revenue, which could lead to engineers from both firms developing products together, they said.”

Stuff NZ: Hacker renames high school on Google search page as ‘strip club’

Stuff NZ: Hacker renames high school on Google search page as ‘strip club’. “End of term high-spirits over the weekend saw a Marlborough high school’s Google My business profile changed to ‘strip club’. On Saturday, a Google search of Marlborough Girls’ College, in Blenheim, revealed the profile had been renamed ‘Marlborough Girls’ Strip Club’.” Why, in the year 2020, is it still so easy to do this?