Earlier this week, Brad Smith, General Counsel & Executive Vice President, Legal & Corporate Affairs at Microsoft blogged about need for the U.S. Government to address important privacy issues and others it has created. One year back, it was revealed that the US government did  surveillance of phone and Internet records, sometimes in partnership with others without any proper government orders. There were reports that the US government even hacked in to data centers of various companies to access data illegally as under the Fourth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, users have a right to keep their email communications private.  Microsoft wants the following five things the U.S. government still needs to do: Recognize that U.S. search warrants end at U.S. borders: We’re concerned about governmental attempts to use search warrants to force companies to turn over the contents of non-U.S. customer communications that are stored exclusively outside the United States. The U.S. government ...

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The deadline for installing secure operating systems on federal government computers will pass next month with the job incomplete, leaving hundreds of thousands of machines running outdated software and unusually vulnerable to hackers. Federal officials have known for more than six years that Microsoft will withdraw its free support for Windows XP on April 8, 2014.  Despite a recent rush to complete upgrades, an estimated 10 percent of government computers — out of several million — will still be running the operating system on that date, company officials said. That includes thousands of computers on classified military and diplomatic networks, U.S. officials said.  Such networks have stronger defenses generally but hold more sensitive material, raising the stakes for breaches if they occur. Security experts warn that hackers have been preparing for what Microsoft calls the “end-of-life” for Windows XP by stockpiling “vulnerabilities” that amount to skeleton keys that can give ...

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