Would a Microsoft TikTok acquisition be anything less than completely crazy?

Bloomberg is reporting that President Donald Trump is planning to order Beijing-based ByteDance to divest ownership of its TikTok social-video app in the US. Trump and other politicians have claimed TikTok may be a conduit for the Chinese government to spy on or meddle with US citizens.

One of the companies said to be kicking the TikTok tires, according to various reports, is Microsoft.

First things first: Microsoft does due diligence on lots and lots of tech properties when they’re for sale or soon to be for sale. That doesn’t mean the Redmondians end up buying many/most of them. See Salesforce, Slack, Yahoo, and more for examples of companies Microsoft allegedly considered but took a pass on.

But before you (like me) immediately dismiss these TikTok rumors as sheer lunacy, it’s worth thinking this through. Even though Microsoft is all about business software and services, there are a couple of

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UK government aims fintech industry at Africa

The UK government is piloting a programme that will link tech communities in the UK and Africa to accelerate the adoption of financial services and create a platform for future trading.

If successful, the Department for International Trade (DIT) programme, known as Tech for Growth, will be expanded to countries in South East Asia and Latin America.

In the first 12 months, a UK-Africa Tech for Growth community will be set up to help increase access to financial services to the unbanked in Africa, with partnerships between British and African tech and finance firms promoted.

It will also try to increase financial technology (fintech) trading between the UK and Africa and work with African governments and regulators to grow their technology sectors.

Gerry Grimstone, UK minister for investment, said the UK offers expertise in tech and financial services, making it an ideal base for firms offering financial services technology.


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Telstra DNS falls over after denial of service attack

Image: Asha Barbaschow/ZDNet

Customers with Telstra’s default DNS settings found themselves seemingly unable to access the internet on Sunday morning, as the telco was facing a denial of service attack.

The attack kicked off some time before 10:30am on the Australian east coast.

“Some of our Domain Name Servers (DNS) used to route your traffic online are experiencing a cyber attack, known as a Denial of Service (DoS),” Telstra said on Twitter just before noon.

“Your info isn’t at risk. We’re doing all we can to get you back online.”

Customers that switched their DNS settings away from Telstra were able to mitigate the outage. At the same time, Telstra’s own outage site was misbehaving and returning 502 errors on occasion, and at other times, returning 404 errors.

At 12:05pm, Telstra said it had a handle on the attack.

“We’re blocking the malicious traffic attacking some of our

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UK government announces further funding for tech innovators to seize 5G opportunities

Following on from the launch of the programme earlier in 2020, the UK government has made its second commitment to help business take advantage of the UK’s growing 5G infrastructures, with projects in Liverpool, Brighton, Manchester, Sunderland, Preston and Suffolk testing what such networks’ capabilities can do for UK industries. 

The new schemes follow an announcement by UK Digital Secretary Oliver Dowden, unveiling a £200m investment in testbeds and trials across the country to explore new ways that 5G can boost business growth and productivity, improve the lives of people in rural areas and maximise the productivity benefits of new technologies.

In addition, the government introduced 5G Create, a new £30m Rural Connected Communities (RCC) competition designed to look at how 5G can create new opportunities in industries such as film, TV, video games, logistics and tourism. This will involve seven 5G research and development projects across the UK

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