Stories by Grant Gross

FCC eyes new rules to protect consumers as voice networks transition to IP

The Federal Communications Commission will consider new rules to ensure real consumer choice as the U.S. shifts from copper-based networks to IP networks, agency officials said Friday.

FCC: A range of net neutrality options remain on the table

The U.S. Federal Communications Commission said Friday that it remains open to a range of options for new net neutrality rules, following a news report saying it is leaning toward a controversial approach that regulates one piece of broadband service.

Republican gains in Congress would have limited impact on big tech issues

Anticipated Republican gains in the U.S. Congress after next Tuesday's election have limited implications for tech-related issues like net neutrality and reform of National Security Agency surveillance programs, with some observers expecting no huge changes.

FTC: Operator of dating sites lured customers with fake profiles

If you've ever wondered whether some user profiles on Internet dating sites are too good to be true that's because they are, according to the U.S. Federal Trade Commission.

Study blames backbone business deals for broadband congestion

Business relationships between major broadband providers and Internet backbone providers appear to be the cause of major drags on performance from early 2013 to early this year, according to a new study from a think tank advocating for strong net neutrality rules.

FTC: AT&T promised unlimited data, but throttled mobile customers

AT&T has misled millions of its mobile customers by promising unlimited data plans, then charging them and reducing their data speeds after they reach a monthly cap, the U.S. Federal Trade Commission said in a complaint announced Tuesday.

The ratings: Most net neutrality groups get poor grades for funding transparency

After a spate of news stories about alleged "astroturf" advocacy in a contentious U.S. net neutrality debate, the IDG News Service looked into the funding transparency of several think tanks and advocacy groups involved in the issue. Several disclose limited or no information about their funding, we found.

Advocacy groups accused of obscuring corporate ties in net neutrality debate

A spate of recent news stories have revealed that a wide variety of lobby groups have financial ties to broadband carriers and trade associations, accusing them of faking grassroots opposition to strong net neutrality rules.

Secretive funding fuels ongoing net neutrality astroturfing controversy

The contentious debate about net neutrality in the U.S. has sparked controversy over a lack of funding transparency for advocacy groups and think tanks, which critics say subverts the political process.

Court shuts down alleged PC tech support scam

A court has shut down a New York tech support vendor after the U.S. Federal Trade Commission accused the company of scamming computer users into paying hundreds of dollars for services they did not need.

Senator wants Whisper to explain how it tracks users, shares their data

Social media app Whisper, a supposedly anonymous way for users to post online confessions, is now facing privacy questions from a U.S. senator after reports that it tracks locations of users and has shared their information with other companies.

Akamai sees record-setting spikes in size and volume of DDoS attacks

The size and volume of distributed denial-of-service attacks has exploded in the past year, with a 389 percent increase in average attack bandwidth between the third quarter of 2013 and the third quarter of 2014, according to an Internet security report from Akamai Technologies.

Accused text-message spammers to pay $9 million in settlement

A group of companies that allegedly promised mobile phone users supposedly free gift cards and electronic devices in a "massive" text-messaging spam operation will pay more than US$9 million to settle complaints from the U.S. Federal Trade Commission.

Lawmakers call on FCC to reclassify broadband for net neutrality

The U.S. Federal Communications Commission should reclassify broadband as a regulated public utility in order to achieve net neutrality, but take a "light touch" while doing it, a U.S. lawmaker said Wednesday.

Digital rights groups ask ITU to stay out of net neutrality debate

The International Telecommunication Union should resist calls to adopt rules allowing countries to charge fees for Internet traffic coming from outside their borders, said 21 digital rights groups from 11 countries.