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HP Moscow offices raided in bribery investigation

Hewlett-Packard is cooperating with a U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission probe into allegations that the company bribed Russian officials in order to secure a 2003 computer contract. On Wednesday, the company said that its Moscow offices had been raided, reportedly as part of a multimillion-dollar bribery investigation, spearheaded by German authorities. Thursday afternoon, HP confirmed that US authorities are now involved. The investigation centers around the 2003 US$48 million sale of computer systems to the office of Russia’s prosecutor general, coincidentally, the same office that investigates corruption cases in the country.

China hardest hit by Conficker worm

China last year hosted more than one in four of the world’s computers infected with a major variant of the Conficker worm, according to an official report, highlighting the wide reach of malware inside the country. China had about 7 million Internet Protocol (IP) addresses infected with Conficker B at the end of last year, according to a recent annual security report posted on the Web site of China’s National Computer Network Emergency Response Technical Team. The huge figures gave China up to 28 percent of the world’s Conficker B infections depending on the week.

Judge in Google case threatened via Facebook

The Milan judge who convicted three Google executives for allowing the posting of a video showing the bullying of an autistic teenager has received hundreds of threatening and insulting messages via Facebook since the verdict was first announced on Feb. 24. Most of the critical messages originated outside of Italy, but the most threatening ones came from accounts inside the country, while a number of approving messages appeared to have been sent from Spain, the judge said in an interview with an Italian blogger. The judge said Italian law did not give him an alternative to a prison sentence in the event the Google executives were found guilty — one of the aspects most criticized by those sending him Facebook messages — but he insisted he had imposed “the minimum of minimum” sentences.

Google revenues, profits grew in first quarter

Google grew its revenue and profit in its first fiscal quarter, exceeding Wall Street expectations and prompting the Internet company to express a commitment for “heavy investment” in its core and newer businesses. Google’s revenue hit nearly US$6.8 billion in the quarter, ended March 31, up 23 percent compared to the first quarter of 2009. It has been a busy quarter for Google. In January, it shocked the world by saying it would stop censoring its search results in China, even if it meant being forced to leave the country. The following month it launched its Buzz social media service, which was promptly criticized for privacy lapses.

 

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