Marketplace Dynamics

  • Digital common sense: New survey shows Americans want a better privacy balance

     Posted by Brad Smith
    General Counsel & Executive Vice President, Legal and Corporate Affairs, Microsoft

    A new poll we’re releasing today shows it’s not just the Supreme Court that wants the right balance between public safety and the privacy concerns of technology users. The American public wants this as well.

    Since the Supreme Court’s decision in the Riley case last month, I’ve been blogging about the historic importance of its unanimous view that police need a warrant to search someone’s cell phone. The decision shifted the scales of justice in a profound way, in part because the Court noted that phones today are often a gateway to the email and pictures we now store in the cloud, and these deserve the same Constitutional protection we’ve traditionally had for things kept in our homes.

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  • Remembering the Third of July

     Posted by Brad Smith
    General Counsel & Executive Vice President, Legal & Corporate Affairs, Microsoft

    Amid the current public debates about government surveillance, this is a good day to step back and remember the Third of July.

    Of course, the first question you might ask is, what happened on the Third of July?

    Many Americans will recall, of course, that it was in Philadelphia at Independence Hall on July 2, 1776, that the colonies voted for their independence. And then it was two days later on July 4 that our Founders signed the Declaration of Independence.

    But on the day in between, on July 3, 1776, something interesting happened as well.

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  • Advancing our encryption and transparency efforts

     Posted by Matt Thomlinson
    Vice President, Trustworthy Computing Security, Microsoft

    In December, we announced our commitment to further increase the security of our customers’ data. We also announced our plans to reinforce legal protections for our customers’ data, and continue to increase transparency in how we engage with governments around the world. We are making positive progress on all of these fronts. 

    We are in the midst of a comprehensive engineering effort to strengthen encryption across our networks and services. Our goal is to provide even greater protection for data across all the great Microsoft services you use and depend on every day. This effort also helps us reinforce that governments use appropriate legal processes, not technical brute force, if they want access to that data. 

    As part of that, today we’re announcing three important milestones that honor our commitments to security and increased transparency.

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  • The privacy week that was

    Posted by Brad Smith
    General Counsel & Executive Vice President, Legal & Corporate Affairs, Microsoft

    Over time, privacy protection has advanced in key moments. These have involved judges and advocates who appreciated new technologies and found ways to ensure privacy prevailed in a changing world. This week’s unanimous decision by the Supreme Court in the case of Riley v. California ranks with other key historical moments.More than in any other recent decision, the Supreme Court this week advanced privacy in a digital era characterized by ubiquitous computing.

    As a result, the scales of justice shifted in a profound way toward a new ideal of privacy in a digital world. There is an important history for privacy that points in this direction and is worth appreciating.  But it’s important to start simply by saying this: it was not just a historic week, but a very good week for privacy. A scale implies balance. The Supreme Court’s decision strikes the right balance between public safety and the privacy concerns of users of mobile technology.

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  • Singapore leads the way on TV white spaces regulation

     Posted by Jessica Tan
    Managing Director, Microsoft Singapore

    On Monday, Singapore’s Infocomm Development Authority (IDA) announced a regulatory framework for unlicensed access to unused radio spectrum in the broadcast TV frequency bands, known as TV white spaces (TVWS).

    Radio spectrum is, more than ever, being identified by policy makers as a key asset in developing the digital economy and, more broadly, the overall economy. The remarkable growth in the use of smartphones and other wireless devices in recent years has exponentially increased demands on radio spectrum. Mobile traffic is predicted to increase 11-fold over the next five years globally, with wireless devices contributing the majority. Policymakers in many countries are actively looking to both maximise spectrum resources and increase the efficiencies made in their use.

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