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Euronews: Data Breach at Swisscom

Paul Rainford

Also in today's roundup: Regulators' body unimpressed with EC proposals; fiber linkup in Tanzania; Brits flock to 4G.

  • Swisscom AG (NYSE: SCM) has admitted that it has suffered a major data security breach, with four data tapes bearing backup files of internal Swisscom data -- and possibly customer data too -- from 2008 to 2010 turning up under mysterious circumstances in the editorial offices of a Swiss newspaper, Neue Zürcher Zeitung (NZZ). Three of the tapes have now been returned to Swisscom for analysis, and the Federal Data Protection Commissioner has been notified. And, surely, some Swiss heads have been knocked together...

  • The Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications (BEREC) has expressed its concerns about the European Commission's proposals for regulation intended to help create a single European telecom market. In an official statement, the body expressed the view that the proposed regulation is "being rushed through the European legislature without proper explanation," and that the proposals "risk undermining legal certainty." It is also worried that the measures will lead to a shift in the balance of power between the Commission, member states, and the national regulatory authorities. (See Continental Shift.)

  • Liquid Telecom , which operates a pan-African fiber network stretching from north of Uganda to Cape Town, has signed a partnership agreement with Tanzania Telecommunications Company Ltd (TTCL) to interconnect with its fiber network in Tanzania.

  • Brits are mad for 4G, with one in five mobile users planning to upgrade to it in the next 12 months, according to a report in the Daily Telegraph citing a study by Deloitte. This, says the study, is a faster take-up rate than that seen in other countries. EE , which launched 4G services almost a year ahead of its rivals, said earlier this month that it had garnered more than 1 million 4G subscribers. (See Euronews: Vodafone, O2 Begin UK 4G Rollouts and Euronews: EE Sees 4G Take-up Double in Q2.)

  • BT Group plc (NYSE: BT; London: BTA) has ticked off three more towns in its UK government-supported £2.5 billion (US$3.3 billion) rollout of high-speed fiber broadband: The Scottish towns of Ayr, Irvine, and Bo'Ness have all gone live with the fiber-to-the-cabinet (FTTC) variant of the technology.

    — Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading

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    User Rank: Light Sabre
    9/18/2013 | 9:46:30 AM
    Re: Is ANY data safe?
    Security is a matter of degree, not an absolute. Every additional layer of security improves data safety, but there are no guarantees. But it seems that the biggest breaches do involve relatively simple stuff, like mislaying a box of backup "tapes" or storing sensitive data on laptops that can be lost or stolen.
    User Rank: Blogger
    9/18/2013 | 7:26:39 AM
    Is ANY data safe?
    We've become used to takes of intricate hacking by the NSA and GCHQ this year -- this is a reminder that legacy media can prove just as big a headache for those responsible for security.

    This looks like it's going to be something of an ongoing embarrassment for Swisscom... it'll  be interesting to see what the fallout is at the carrier but also in the media.
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