EU Investigating Apple’s Purchase of Shazam

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The EU has launched an investigation into Apple’s acquisition of music identification service Shazam. It’s concerned that the deal could shrink consumer options for mobile music streaming services within the EEA (European Economic Area). In February, multiple countries, including Austria, France, Iceland, and Spain, requested that the European Commission assess the acquisition to determine whether it’s allowed under a European Union merger law. The deal, according to the commission, “may have a significant adverse effect on competition in the European Economic Area.” That request is now being acted on, with…

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Uber expands privacy settlement with FTC

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Uber is expanding the proposed settlement it made with the Federal Trade Commission last August pertaining to data mishandling, privacy and security complaints that date back to 2014 and 2015. In August, Uber agreed to 20 years of privacy audits. That proposed settlement happened prior to Uber’s disclosure of the massive 2016 data breach that affected some 57 million riders and drivers. Now, Uber will be subject to “additional requirements,” according to the FTC. “After misleading consumers about its privacy and security practices, Uber compounded its misconduct by failing to…

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Twitter Bans Cryprtocurrency ads.

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Twitter has began blocking cryptocurrency-related ads. The move follows other social media platforms like Reddit back in 2016, and more recently, Facebook and Google, which have already banned cryptocurrency ads. “We are committed to ensuring the safety of the Twitter community. As such, we have added a new policy for Twitter Ads relating to cryptocurrency,” the company says. “Under this new policy, the advertisement of Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) and token sales will be prohibited globally.” Rumors initially circulated a week ago that Twitter would ban such ads. Earlier this…

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Laundered Bitcoin Billions Linked to UK Company

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A UK company has been linked to the laundering of 650,000 stolen bitcoins worth £4.5bn.The coins were taken by hackers from Tokyo-based Bitcoin exchange Mt Gox, leaving tens of thousands of customers out of pocket. It’s not clear who is in control of the London-based firm Always Efficient LLP. Mt Gox operator Mark Karpeles apologised to investors and said he was co-operating with the investigation. The FBI has charged a Russian national with laundering the stolen bitcoins. Mt Gox matched up those who wanted to buy the crypto-currency with dollars,…

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Amazon acquires Ring for $1 billion to help boost your home security

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Amazon has acquired Ring, a Santa Monica, California-based maker of connected video doorbells and security cameras, for $1 billion. That will see the E-Commerce giant push further into the home security business: it previously acquired Blink, which makes similar products. Plus, it already offers a Cloud Cam that’s designed for use inside your house, and to allow couriers into your home to drop off parcels as part of its Key program. GeekWire notes that while neither firm has shared details on the way forward, it’s expected that the Ring brand…

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Mobile Commerce enabler DOCOMO Partners with Safaricom to Launch first App Store Integration with M-PESA.

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Global mobile commerce enabler, DOCOMO Digital has partnered with Safaricom to give customers the option to pay for content on the Google Play Store using M-PESA. The integration, which is powered by DOCOMO Digital’s mobile commerce enabling platform using Google Play’s payment API, allows M-PESA customers to use the mobile money service to pay for goods and services from the app store. The service is available to more than 27 million M-PESA customers in Kenya with an Android smartphone or tablet. From today, customers matching this criteria can purchase content…

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BitPesa, Kenyan Bitcoin Payments Startup, Acquires European Money Transfer Platform

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BitPesa, Kenyan bitcoin payments startup, has acquired TransferZero, Spain-based online money transfer platform, in a bid to further accelerate its growth across the world. BitPesa, which raised two funding rounds last year to take its total secured investment to around the US$10 million mark, launched in Kenya in 2013 and also operates in Nigeria, Tanzania, Uganda, the DRC, the UK and Senegal. TransferZero was founded in 2016 and was the first fintech company licensed by the Bank of Spain as an authorized payment institution. The company is a partner of…

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FNB is Africa’s Leading Bank

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First National Bank (FNB) announced yesterday that it was named Africa’s leading bank in The Banker’s, Top 500 Banking Brands Report 2018. Ranked 141st in the global banking table, with a brand valuation of $1.4bn, FNB grew its brand value by 23% in the past year. “Banking has evolved from being more than just banking to a lifestyle offering, that touches on the personal and emotional level of our customers. The success lies in FNBs ability to operate in challenging market conditions with changing consumer perceptions and dynamics. We fundamentally…

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Facebook bans all crypto-currency ads

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Facebook has said it will block any advertising promoting crypto-currency products and services. The company said it was open to emerging technologies but many companies were not acting in “good faith” when extolling the virtues buying into virtual currencies. Recently, a wave of new currencies have emerged, seeking to piggyback Bitcoin’s huge increase in value. Facebook urged users to report any ads the company’s security measures missed. It admitted it would not always catch every ad for a crypto-currency. “We want people to continue to discover and learn about new…

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Tesla responds to Model 3 production issues

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Well-known are Tesla’s Model 3 EV delays, including in the company’s own earnings report and quarterly delivery numbers. A fresh report from CNBC on Thursday claimed that Model 3 production was even more delayed than it appeared, with specific continued issues around battery manufacturing. CNBC also suggested that the company is “not close” to mass-production of the batteries required for its $35,000 trim level Model 3. Tesla initially responded to the news outlet pointing them to prior comments made by Tesla CEO Elon Musk and CTO JB Straubel regarding its current…

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