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Eurobites: BT Claims Victimhood in Italian Accounting Case

Also in today's EMEA regional roundup: Swisscom's six steps to the smart city; eir in TV sport play to mobile users; 3 has a bad weekend; more scary stuff about cybercrime.

  • BT Group plc (NYSE: BT; London: BTA) appears to be attempting to distance itself from the accounting scandal uncovered at its Italian business services subsidiary last October, Reuters reports. According to the report, BT has filed a criminal complaint with Italian prosecutors, accusing certain former executives and others of unlawful conduct and asserting that it is itself the victim of fraud rather than the perpetrator. In the wake of the Italian shenanigans, BT was forced to slash its earnings forecasts, sending its share price down nearly 20%. (See Dodgy Italian Job Savages BT Earnings, Share Price Tanks, BT's Patterson Feels Italian Heat, Eurobites: BT's Italian Bother Claims Sciolla's Scalp and BT Looks to Home Comforts Amid Italian Crisis.)

  • Swisscom AG (NYSE: SCM) has teamed up with the IMD business school to produce a study that is meant to act as a foolproof six-step methodology that cities across the world can use to successfully transform themselves from dumb urban sprawls to smart cities. Step 1 is: "Determine your starting point," which seems sensible, if a little, erm, redundant.

  • Ireland's eir is offering mobile customers on certain tariffs data-zero-rated access to eir Sport TV channels as part of their plans, bringing them content that includes the two eir channels as well as four BT Sport channels. The offer will apply to mobile plans costing from €35 (US$38) per month.

  • UK mobile operator Three UK suffered an outage over the weekend that left some of its customers unable to make calls or send texts, or, in some cases, sending their texts to the wrong recipients. As the BBC reports, the outage was blamed on a "temporary network issue." Predictably, customers fumed on Facebook and Twitter, with many muttering the "C" word ("compensation").

  • Another day, another cybercrime survey that provides depressing reading for everyone apart from cybersecurity experts. Reuters reports (citing Die Welt newspaper) that the German government clocked 82,649 cases of computer fraud, espionage and other cybercrimes in 2016, up 80% on the previous year.

  • To coincide with this week's NAB Show in Las Vegas, Ericsson AB (Nasdaq: ERIC) has unveiled a new "TV content discovery system," which corrals various TV/movie data sources and applications for the benefit of broadcasters, content owners and service providers. Partners in the "ecosystem" include ColorTV (a search and "deep-linking specialist"), Internet Video Archive (a video library) and XroadMedia (a provider of recommendation and targeting services).

    — Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading

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