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Euronews: Vodafone Makes a Stand on Privacy

Paul Rainford

Also in today's EMEA regional roundup: Fewer French job cuts by AlcaLu; TeliaSonera profits hit by one-off costs; Zuckerberg heads to MWC.

  • Vodafone Group plc (NYSE: VOD) wants to be more transparent on the issue of data privacy, reports The Guardian, and is asking the governments in each of the countries where it does business for the right to tell its customers the number of times it has been asked to provide customer data and wire-tapping. According to Vodafone, current British law prevents it from sharing any of this sort of information. (See British Spooks Tap the Global Net and Prism in a Big Data World.)

  • It would seem the pressure being put on Alcatel-Lucent (NYSE: ALU) by French ministers has paid off: The vendor will now cut fewer jobs than originally planned in France, down from 900 to fewer than 700, according to Reuters, citing a report in Le Monde. On Wednesday AlcaLu announced a deal that sees it transferring around 170 of its 4G engineers to French engineering consultancy Altran. (See Alcatel-Lucent to Transfer 4G Engineers and Alcatel-Lucent to Cut 10,000 Jobs.)

  • Sweden's Telia Company has warned that one-off costs of $390 million relating to job cuts and goodwill writedowns will adversely affect its fourth-quarter profits, which are due to be announced at the end of the month. According to Bloomberg, the operator wrote down the goodwill value of its Danish and Lithuanian units by 1.17 billion Swedish kronor (US$180 million).

  • This year's opening keynote speech at Mobile World Congress 2014 in Barcelona (February 24-27) will be given by Facebook founder, Chairman and CEO Mark Zuckerberg. He will take to the stage on Monday February 24 at 18:00 CET (Central European Time). Light Reading and Heavy Reading will be at MWC in force, and will be hosting a breakfast focused on mobile network security on Wednesday February 26. See the Creating Trust In The Mobile Network event page for more details.

  • Nokia Networks has landed a 4G deal with Russia's VimpelCom Ltd. (NYSE: VIP). Under the terms of the five-year deal, NSN will roll out 4G gear in the central region of Russia, Siberia, and most of the Volga and Ural regions. Brrrr.

    — Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading

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    User Rank: Light Sabre
    1/16/2014 | 8:45:27 AM
    Nice Privacy Move Vodafone
    Good to see Vodafone communicating strongly on its privacy strategy.

    For months now, the operators have allowed those oh-so-nice, oh-so-privacy-respecting, folks from the OTT companies, folks like Eric Schmidt from Google, to somehow take the moral high ground on matters of excessive government intrusion.

    Hi Eric ! (Sorry, just talking to the image of Eric that flashed up at the top of the screen as I typed his name in. Or is that in the next release?)

    Trying to get carriers to respond in kind and communicate around the limits they want to see on government intrusion has been like trying to get blood out of a stone - mainly because the security traditions that the carriers are so steeped in demand...that's right...that they don't communicate publicly around it...

    Full marks to Vodafone for being among the first to realize that this is a mold that is in dire need of breaking. Telcos of the world unite and speak up. You have everything to lose if you don't - like revenue and brand loyalty for example.

    I'll be hosting a Light Reading breakfast on "Creating Trust In the Mobile Network" on the Wednesday of MWC in Barcelona next month. Up and to your right of this home page to the LR Events tab if you'd like to learn more and register. Hope to see you there.
    User Rank: Blogger
    1/16/2014 | 8:43:54 AM
    Re: Sartorial status
    I bet he DOES!!

    Come on Zukkie, don't let me down -- dress like a teen!!


    Will Jesse Eisenberg be in Barcelona too?
    User Rank: Light Sabre
    1/16/2014 | 7:27:52 AM
    Sartorial status
    Will Zuckerberg wear a hoodie for his presentation? Place your bets...
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