India's Tech Tax Complaints Deepen
Today in international tech news: India reopens tax queries into HP and Infosys. Also: A building in Wyoming may have played a big role in Tuesday's Internet outage in China; Facebook doles out a record bug bounty to a Brazilian engineer; and South Korea invests big in 5G technology.
01/23/14 3:52 PM PT
Perhaps foreshadowing a sequel to their much-publicized tiff with Nokia, tax authorities in India are claiming that Infosys and HP each owe oodles in unpaid taxes.
India is irked about deduction claims made for software and manpower that was, as The Register reported, "developed and deployed on clients' premises." If such deductions relate to clients' premises, they are disqualified; only work carried out on their own grounds are valid.
HP and Infosys challenged Indian tax claims a year ago and won, but the cases are being revisited. Among the new accusations: Infosys submitted expenses pertaining to landscaping.
There is no confirmation about how much the companies might be asked to pay back, but reports pin Infosys' tab at about US$68 million.
Random: Wyoming Building Played Part in Chinese Internet Outage
An unremarkable building in Wyoming may have been a key player in Tuesday's massive Internet blackout in China, which cut off access to some 500 million people.
Experts are floating the theory that China's zealous Web censors mistakenly redirected all Chinese traffic to a handful of sites that typically are blocked in China. Some of those sites, it turns out, are connected to a company based in Wyoming, in that now-famous building.
The problem originated in the Middle Kingdom's domain name system, according to the state-run China Internet Network Information Center. Roughly 75 percent of China's domain-name servers were affected.
Two thousand business entities were registered at the Wyoming address, Reuters reported in 2011. Among the entities was an outfit controlled by a jailed former Ukraine prime minister, whose business revolved around helping online poker operators circumvent gambling bans.
For its part, Chinese state media is suggesting that the Wyoming Internet address in question is implicated in a cyberattack.
[Source: The New York Times]
Facebook Doles Out Massive Bounty
Facebook paid Reginaldo Silva, a Brazilian computer engineer, $33,500 for finding an "XML external entities vulnerability," the biggest payout since Facebook started its bounty program in 2011.
Before Silva, the largest Facebook bounty was the $20,000 given to a British researcher who discovered a security flaw.
South Korea Investing in 5G
South Korea's science ministry announced Thursday that it was investing $1.5 billion in order to make 5G Internet a reality by 2020. Once operational, the 5G network would enable users to download an 800-megabyte film in one second (compared to 40 seconds it takes now on the nation's 4G network).
South Korea already has the world's fastest Internet speeds and is undoubtedly one of the world's tech-savviest nations. More than three-quarters of its 50 million people use smartphones; that number is 97 percent in the 18-to-24 cohort.
[Source: The Guardian]