Stories by Philip Willan

E-voting comes of age in Italy with Venice independence referendum

A successful online poll to measure support for the independence of Italy's northeastern Veneto region has demonstrated the sophistication of the area's IT businesses and the maturity of e-voting technology, according to the man who organized the unofficial referendum.

Italian police investigate Skype use for 'porno blackmail'

Italian police in Genoa have opened an investigation into the use of Skype to trap victims into online sexual indiscretions, which are recorded and used as a pretext for extortion.

Apple locked iPhone code blocks Italian murder probe

The access code locking the iPhone 5 of an Italian murder victim is depriving police of information that might help them solve the crime, but Apple has so far resisted requests for help in unlocking the device, a Milan prosecutor confirmed Friday.

Italian Supreme Court upholds acquittals in Googe video bullying case

Italy's Supreme Court ended the prosecution of Google executives for allowing the posting of a video showing the bullying of a handicapped boy, three years after they were convicted of violating privacy laws.

NSA spies on Italians from roof of US Embassy in Rome, magazine reports

The U.S. National Security Agency has been spying on Italian communications from installations on the roof of the U.S. Embassy in Rome and the country's consulate in Milan and even mounted an operation to capture information from inside the Italian embassy in Washington, D.C., the Italian weekly magazine L'Espresso claimed Friday.

Police arrest Anonymous suspects in Italy

Italian police arrested four suspected hackers Friday, accusing them of having taken control of the Italian branch of the Anonymous network.

Milan court overturns Google privacy convictions

A Milan appeals court Friday overturned the conviction of three Google managers for violating Italy's privacy laws by allowing the posting of a video showing the bullying of a handicapped student.

Italian party uses Internet to select parliamentary candidates

Italy's innovative 5-Star Movement last week organized an online vote to choose its candidates for next year's national election in what it said was the first such exercise ever to be attempted.

Italians find Google's Irish tax 'sandwich' indigestible

Tax police in Milan have launched a special investigation into Google Italy for a suspected tax evasion scheme involving affiliates in several countries.

Italian consumer associations launch Apple guarantee lawsuit

Two Italian consumer associations are launching a class action lawsuit against Apple for failing to respect Italy's national warranty regulations, the lawyer coordinating the action confirmed Wednesday.

Vatican launches social network challenge to Facebook

An Italian startup backed by the Vatican Thursday launched a global portal for Catholic websites intended to provide reliable information for people seeking the truth about the Christian religion.

Allegations over fake Twitter followers stir Italian political storm

A communications expert claimed last week that more than half of the Twitter followers of the rising star of Italian politics were fake, sparking a fierce controversy over the use of Internet as a political instrument.

Trentino joins Italy's open source alliance

The Autonomous Province of Trentino - Alto Adige this week joined the ranks of Italian regional administrations that are turning their backs on proprietary software in favor of free and open source alternatives.

Italy goes after Apple over warranty issue

In a case that could have implications for Apple's business across the European Union, Italy's competition and markets authority has opened new proceedings against Apple for failing to respect the country's consumer law that gives a free two-year warranty for electronic products, a spokeswoman for the Antitrust Authority confirmed Tuesday.

Italian court upholds Apple warranty fine

An Italian court has upheld a €900,000 (US$1.2 million) fine imposed on Apple by Italy's competition authority for allegedly violating consumer protection laws, Italian media reported late Friday.The Regional Administrative Tribunal (TAR) of Lazio rejected Apple's appeal against the fine imposed by the Antitrust Authority last December for "unfair commercial practices that damage the consumer."The court found that Apple Italy was not fully applying a two-year guarantee that is obligatory under European law and was providing unclear information on its own additional commercial warranties, the online edition of the Corriere della Sera newspaper reported.An Apple Italy spokesman was not immediately available for comment.The Antitrust fine applies to Apple Sales International, Apple Italia and Apple Retail Italia and concerns their alleged failure to inform customers of their right to a 24-month warranty from the vendor under European Union regulations and insufficiently clear information on the company's own AppleCare Protection Plan and its partial duplication of the existing legal warranties.A campaign to force Apple to modify its behavior in Italy was spearheaded by the Milan-based consumer association Altroconsumo.

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