News

Guidelines aim to prevent overloading of mobile networks

As applications and devices associated with the "Internet of Things" grow, they threaten to overload mobile networks. New guidelines offer methods to make sure that doesn't happen.

Feds set up fake Facebook account using arrested woman's cellphone photos, DOJ rethinking practice

The Justice Department said it will review whether a Drug Enforcement Administration agent went too far when he used photographs and other personal information taken from a woman's cell phone to set up a fake Facebook account as part of an investigation.

FCC proposes changes to small business competitive bidding

Proposed changes to the Federal Communications Commission's competitive bidding rules would facilitate small businesses' chances to participate, according to a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking.

Franken urges DOJ to step up enforcement against mobile stalking apps

Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.), who has championed legislation to ban mobile apps that enable one person to spy on or stalk another, is urging the Justice Department to step up its efforts against such technology.

State Department takes internal networking, microblogging mobile

The State Department unveiled to its workforce Oct. 3 a mobile version of Corridor, the department's internal networking and microblogging tool. The move to help foreign affairs professionals better connect and collaborate via mobile is the latest step in what Eric Nelson, director of the State Department's office of eDiplomacy, describes as a march toward greater access to the department's information assets from mobile devices.

State Department tries to balance security with mobile access

The State Department is trying to satisfy demands for instantaneous mobile communications in every setting and provide more access to classified and sensitive networks at its facilities – priorities that can be at odds and impossible to do all the time, said a high-ranking departmental official.

White House officials propose spectrum allocation strategies

As wireless applications continue to multiply and make a mark on the economy, policy approaches to managing spectrum become more necessary, experts said. "I think we need to pursue a four-part strategy when it comes to spectrum," said Jason Furman, chairman of the President's Council on Economic Advisers.

ICE expands, enhances mobile app for public to help identify, find child predators

Federal law enforcement officials are releasing an enhanced version of a mobile app that they say will significantly expand the public's help in nabbing child predators and rescuing victims.

FCC helps TV broadcasters do their homework on incentive auction

As a way to better educate TV broadcasters about next year's spectrum auction, federal regulators said they've sent out information packages that explain the auction process, bidding options, compensation estimates and tax implications.

FBI keeps police mum on use of cellphone trackers

Police use of a device that lets officers zero in on the location of cellphones – and thereby persons of interest or suspects – is being kept under wraps by the FBI, according to a document released last month through a Freedom of Information Act request.

FCC proposal would give unlicensed users space in TV spectrum

The Federal Communications Commission has proposed to change rules that permit devices to operate on unused portions of the TV broadcast spectrum.

FBI director worried about law enforcement being denied access to encrypted devices

FBI Director James Comey has criticized Apple and Google for saying they would not give law enforcement officials access to their customers' smartphones even if they wanted to because those devices will be encrypted.

FCC proposals cut red tape for mobile deployments, seek info on new advanced tech

The head of the Federal Communications Commission has floated a draft order that would "immediately and substantially" cut red tape associated with deploying wireless infrastructure. It was one of several new developments that FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler wrote about in a blog post.

Mobile technology can enhance direct mail, says Postal Service IG

Mobile technology is helping direct mail become more interactive, particularly for advertisers, says the Postal Service inspector general in a Sept. 22 report (pdf) on mail innovation. Connected mail connects recipients to a digital experience via a mobile device.

NIST floats mobile device security model

The National Institute of Standards and Technology issued the second draft of a "building block" document federal agencies or enterprises could use to secure mobile devices that connect to the organization's network. The guide is customizable, as it takes a layered approach to security, and also practical and repeatable because it offers standards-based solutions using commercially available technology.  

FTC cracks down on 'systemic' privacy and security failures in mobile apps

When companies break their promises to keep consumer data secure or private, the Federal Trade Commission can bring legal action against them. Now, the agency is extending this practice to mobile applications.

Spotlight: FirstNet board approves resolutions on budget, acquisition

During a Sept. 17 meeting, the First Responder Network Authority board, approved three resolutions that advance the program toward its roadmap milestones. 

Mobile broadband is fastest growing technology in human history, says new UN report

Released Sept. 21, the annual report provides an updated look at the state of global fixed and mobile broadband advancements regarding access and affordability. It also provides rankings and individual data on countries.

Federal spectrum reuse process 'creaky' says, FCC commissioner

A top federal communications regulator said the process to repurpose government spectrum for commercial purposes is too slow, calling for a new way to keep up with consumer demands for more wireless airwaves.

Mobile apps lack adequate privacy information, say privacy enforcement authorities

Most mobile applications fail to explain to consumers what information is being collected and how it will be used, finds a recent global review of 1,211 popular apps.