Posted by Brad Smith & Horacio GutierrezExecutive Vice President & General Counsel and Corporate Vice President & Deputy General Counsel, Microsoft
July 18 marked the effective date for the International Trade Commission’s order excluding from the U.S. market Motorola’s Android devices that implement Microsoft’s ActiveSync technology. In addition, Microsoft has secured two injunctions against Motorola devices in Germany for its infringement of other Microsoft patents.
Over the last few weeks, with the imminence of the ITC exclusion order, Google mounted a public relations and lobbying campaign deflecting attention from its refusal to honor its promise to standards bodies to license standards-essential patents on fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory (FRAND) terms, a practice that has prompted regulators on both sides of the Atlantic to investigate its conduct. Unfortunately, we have no reason to believe that Google’s diversionary tactics will cease any time soon, and in fact expect more of them in the future.
Posted by Mike HintzeChief Privacy Counsel, Microsoft
For any technology company, continuous innovation is essential to stay relevant. But new features and functionality are not enough. Increasingly, consumers want innovations that help them keep their personal information secure and private. And policymakers and regulators are looking to industry to take the lead on creating new tools and policies that enhance privacy and data protection. To explore these issues in more detail, last week we hosted our latest “@Microsoft Conversations on Privacy” in our Washington, D.C. office. Our theme was “Empowering Consumers with Privacy Innovations,” and the discussion explored some of the many privacy-enhancing technologies that organizations are developing to assist their customers. We also examined the expectations that regulators and policymakers have for companies to help enhance consumers' data protection, and heard feedback on the progress made in this area to date.
Posted by Brad SmithGeneral Counsel & Executive Vice President, Legal & Corporate Affairs, Microsoft
This week privacy authorities from all 27 European Union member states adopted a long-awaited Opinion clarifying what companies must do to safeguard the private information of Europe’s citizens when these companies use cloud services. Known as the Article 29 Working Party, the Opinion from these experts is essential reading for every business considering moving to the cloud.
In issuing this Opinion, European regulators provided the strongest endorsement to date for the European Model Clauses, a set of contractual safeguards that cloud service providers can use to demonstrate their commitment to the world’s most stringent data protection requirements.
Posted by Jeff MeisnerEditor, Microsoft on the issues
In this edition of The Week in Tech Policy, we have stories on cybersecurity, college affordability and STEM education and the H-1B visa program.
Bipartisan Policy Center: Improved information sharing on cyberthreats needed. In a report issued on July 19, the Bipartisan Policy Center’s Cybersecurity Task Force called for Congress to “pass legislation that encourages industry to share information about cyber threats spotted on their computer networks with the government,” Hillicon Valley reported late last week. “The task force notes that privacy rights should be respected and Congress should be able to find a middle ground on the various privacy safeguards baked into each bill. The report lists the type of information that should be shared with the government, including malware threat signatures, malicious IP addresses and details about a cyber incident,” Hillicon Valley reported. The release of the report comes at a time when both Democrats and Republicans have fielded competing visions and bills related to cybersecurity.
Posted by Jeff MeisnerEditor, Microsoft on the Issues
Last week, Brad Smith, Microsoft’s general counsel and executive vice president of Legal & Corporate Affairs, joined Jeffrey Wadsworth, CEO of Battelle Memorial Institute, and others at the U.S News STEM Solutions 2012 summit. During the opening panel, moderated by basketball icon and current Global Cultural Ambassador Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, participants spoke to the challenges, successes and needs surrounding STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) education in the United States.
Brad spoke about the need for a more transformative approach to the advancement of STEM education, his involvement in rethinking the role business plays in education, and the types of partnerships needed to improve STEM learning outcomes for students. He also spoke about the importance of combining philanthropy with advocacy work, as well as the importance of the business community using its voice to advocate needed policy changes in state capitals and in Washington D.C.