Capping our list of top IT news stories this week, Microsoft and the European Commission reached accord on the ongoing antitrust case against the company. While this will free up some room in future top-news lists, we expect that we’ll continue to have no end of bad news related to phishing scams, of which there was plenty this week as well. Thankfully, Oracle CEO Larry Ellison added some levity to the mix, though his brand of joking undoubtedly fell flat at Salesforce.com.
1. Microsoft, EU Reach Accord on Antitrust Microsoft and the European Commission agreed to terms to end the decade-long Web-browser antitrust case against the company. “I think this is a trustful deal we are making. There can’t be a misunderstanding because it is the final result of a long discussion between Steve Ballmer and me,” said Competition Commissioner Neelie Kroes.
3. Operation Phish Phry Hooks 100 in U.S. and Egypt: Good news came in the War on Phishing with word that U.S. authorities broke up a huge scam, indicting 53 people on an assortment of charges, while Egyptian authorities arrested 47 people allegedly involved in the same scam. Alas, those arrests scarcely took a drop from the great sea of phishers out there.
4. DOJ tries to step in front of IBM mainframe steamroller: The U.S. Department of Justice in the Obama administration continues to signal that it means business when it comes to antitrust — next up is, apparently, IBM, with the agency opening a preliminary investigation into whether the company abused its mainframe computer monopoly.
6. Click Forensics: Bahama Botnet Stealing Traffic from Google: A sophisticated network of compromised computers known as the Bahama botnot is causing click fraud for online advertisers, but in what is perhaps an even cheekier aspect of its nefarious work, the botnet is stealing Web traffic, and therefore revenue, from Google.
7. UK’s High Court Rejects Appeal for UFO Hacker: Gary McKinnon cannot appeal his extradition to the U.S. to the U.K.’s Supreme Court, the U.K. High Court ruled in a decision that leaves the British hacker with fewer legal options. McKinnon has admitted that he broke into U.S. military and NASA computers, saying he was looking for evidence of UFOs.
8. Ellison Mocks Salesforce.com’s ‘Itty Bitty’ Application: Oracle CEO Larry Ellison turned his trademark sarcastic sense of humor toward Salesforce.com, calling its software an “itty bitty” application that relies on Oracle’s middleware. In an interesting twist, Salesforce.com CEO Marc Benioff is supposed to speak at Oracle OpenWorld next week. Although the CEOs had a falling out sometime ago, Salesforce.com is a sponsor of the Oracle show this year and Benioff’s speech may have been seen as an indication that the hatchet had been buried. But, maybe not.