Article from Issue 150/2013

Jailbreak Spat

  • White House goes on record in support of freedom to jailbreak cell phones
  • News Bites

10 RHEL 6.4 Released

  • Yahoo ends telecommuting,
  • Canonical UDS
  • LG purchases WebOS from HP

11 Passwords Passé

  • FIDO alliance seeks new authentication methods
  • Largest Mersenne prime discovered

Break on Jailbreak?

In October of last year, the US Librarian of Congress rescinded an exemption to the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) that allowed consumers to circumvent the security of their own mobile phones for purposes of switching service providers or altering the onboard software. This subtle bureaucratic procedure, which happened without much debate and without a vote from any elected body, made it impossible for mobile phone users to jailbreak their own phones without facing possible criminal penalties.

 As expected, an outcry ensued among the FOSS and open platform communities, leading to a online petition filed with the White House “We the People” initiative that garnered 114,000 signatures.

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