Hashtag Trending – Amazon engineer dunks on Ring, Apple and Broadcom in hot water, Avast fallout

An Amazon engineer criticizes home-security camera company Ring, saying it should be “shut down immediately”, Apple and its wifi chip company Broadcom have been ordered to pay $1.1B, and Avast shuts down its data-harvesting arm.

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An Amazon software engineer named Max Eliaser says the home-security company Ring should be “shut down immediately.” His comments are part of a post on Medium in which hundreds of Amazon employees shared their views on various company policies and products. The Ring, is of course, Amazon-owned, and Eliaser says that “the deployment of connected home security cameras that allow footage to be queried centrally are simply not compatible with a free society.” According to Business Insider, Amazon and Ring did not immediately respond to requests for comment. The story has caught fire on Reddit, whereas of this recording, has received more than 25,000 upvotes.

Apple and the wifi chip company it uses for iPhones have been ordered to pay $1.1 billion to a university for infringing patents. A jury handed down the verdict in favour of the California Institute of Technology (Caltech), which claims the Broadcom wifi chips used in millions of Apple iPhones infringed four of its data transmission patents. A Sky News story that’s picking up serious momentum on Reddit says that, according to court filings, Apple said it believed all the university’s claims against it came from the use of Broadcom’s chips in its devices. Apple called itself “merely an indirect downstream party”. Broadcom, according to the story, did not comment further.

And lastly, shortly after Avast’s popular antivirus software was revealed to be harvesting browsing data and selling it to advertisers, the company has said that it’s shutting down the subsidiary that made the process possible. In a blog post last week, the company’s CEO wrote that Avast is terminating its Jumpshot subsidiary’s data collection and operations “with immediate effect,” but doesn’t mention any plans to transfer the company’s “hundreds” of affected employees. The reports, which were the result of a joint investigation between Motherboard and PCMag, detailed how Avast was collecting user browsing data via its antivirus software.

That’s all the tech news that’s trending right now. Hashtag Trending is a part of the ITWC Podcast network. Add us to your Alexa Flash Briefing or your Google Home daily briefing.

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada
Alex Coop
Alex Coophttp://www.itwc.ca
Former Editorial Director for IT World Canada and its sister publications.

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