Friday, September 22, 2017

Wireless carriers T-Mobile and Sprint are in active merger talks

A combined company would take the No. 2 spot behind AT&T in the highly competitive industry. A stock-for-stock deal is being discussed, with T-Mobile parent Deutsche Telekom emerging as the majority owner over Sprint owner SoftBank. Acquisition and merger talks for the mobile operators have been a popular subject of debate among industry experts since 2014, when Sprint first announced plans to acquire T-Mobile but later withdrew its bid over regulatory concerns — a hurdle they could face again if a deal moves forward. (CNBC)


That New England college is going to cost you: 

While nearly 70% of college graduates leave with loans, those with the highest debt tended to be from schools in the Northeast, while those with the lowest tended to come from the West Coast. Debt ranged from $36,367 in New Hampshire to $19,975 in Utah for the class of 2016. In the Northeast, students are more likely to attend private — and pricier — non-profit colleges, or pay more expensive out-of-state tuition. In the West, however, local students are more likely to attend one of the region’s many public universities. (Institute for College Access and Success)


Safeway employee beaten with baguette by Fremont man

A Fremont man went on a rampage that ended with him beating a Safeway employee with a loaf of French bread Sunday, according to police. The man, identified by police as 39-year-old Adam Kowarsh, allegedly entered the Safeway in Fremont “yelling and screaming” at about 11:49 p.m. Sunday (9/17), according to the Fremont Police Department. The man stormed into the back of the store and started yelling at employees, who told him he needed to pay for his items and leave. One employee attempted to calm Kowarsh, but Kowarsh responded by pushing him several times, then grabbing a loaf of French bread and hitting him in the face. The victim was struck multiple times, police said. “While the victim did not sustain major injuries, he wanted to press charges,” police said in a statement. Officers arrived on the scene and told Kowarsh to leave the store, but he was on a roll and continuing to yell, police said. More officers arrived and Kowarsh was handcuffed, led from the Safeway, and booked into Santa Rita Jail on suspicion of battery and a probation violation, police said. He was arraigned on Wednesday (9/20) and his bail is set at $5,000, according to county records. (SFGate)


Waymo put a price on its self-driving car secrets 

The Alphabet subsidiary wants Uber to pay $2.6 billion for just one of the trade secrets allegedly stolen by an ex-Waymo engineer who later went to work for the ride-sharing company. The lawsuit accuses Anthony Levandowski of downloading some 14,000 confidential files before leaving Waymo to start autonomous truck firm Otto — which was then acquired by Uber. The total price for the allegedly pilfered intellectual property wasn’t publicly disclosed. The case will soon go to trial; jury selection is set to begin October 10. (Reuters)


Hurricane Maria left all of Puerto Rico’s 3.4 million people without power

On Wednesday (9/20), the territory’s governor says it may take months to fully restore. Maria was the first Category 4 storm to make landfall on the island since 1932; although it later weakened to Category 2, it’s since strengthened again to Category 3 as it approaches Turks and Caicos and the southeastern Bahamas. The storm has left a trail of devastation in its wake, killing at least 10 — seven just in Dominica, the first island in its path and a victim of its full Category 5 force. (CNN)


Hackers broke into a system that houses nonpublic information about corporate filings

The Securities and Exchange Commission revealed recently that the breach was discovered in 2016, the SEC only learned last month that the hackers may have acted upon the inside information for financial gain. It’s the latest in a long list of cyberattacks this year, including the recent Equifax breach that compromised information of some 143 million customers. Such attacks are on the rise, according to digital security firm Gemalto: 918 breaches in the first half of the year compromised 1.9 billion data records, a 164% jump from the same period in 2016. (NY Times)


Facebook to turn over Russian 2016 election ads to Congress

Facebook has decided to turn over to congressional investigators copies of roughly 3,000 advertisements purchased by Russian-linked groups during the 2016 presidential campaign. The company confirmed yesterday afternoon (9/21) that it would release details associated with the advertisements, with Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg outlining other steps the company is taking to step up transparency for ads. Zuckerberg said the release was only one of the steps the company is taking to make the platform less vulnerable for those looking to use it as a tool for election interference. Zuckerberg noted that the company would be expanding its analysis of election interference into other former Soviet countries — something that Warner has been pressing it to do. He also said that Facebook will push to make its political ads more transparent. “Not only will you have to disclose which page paid for an ad, but we will also make it so you can visit an advertiser’s page and see the ads they’re currently running to any audience on Facebook,” he said. Facebook will also devote more resources to its security team and double the number of staff on its election integrity team, Zuckerberg said. (The Hill)


Finally Friday is upon us again! It’ delivers us:

*American Business Women’s Day 
*Autumn (Autumnnal Equinox @ 4:02 PM EDT)
*Bright Pink Lipstick Day 
*Car Free Day 
*Chainmail Day 
*Dear Diary Day 
*Elephant  Appreciation Day 
*Hobbit Day 
*Ice Cream Cone Day 
*International Day of Radiant Peace 
*Love Note Day (4th Friday)
*National BRAVE Day
*National Centenarian’s Day 
*National Doodle Day 
*National Leg Wear Day 
*National Rock n’ Roll Dog Day 
*National White Chocolate Day

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