Daily Digest (4/27)

Apple-Google App Interface Due Tuesday; Nintendo Confirms 160,000 Accounts Breached in Hacker Attempts; Mass. Senator Says New App Should Not Infringe Privacy, Civil Liberties; White House Awards COVID-19 Tracking App Deal to Peter Thiel’s Palantir. Click below for more.

Apple-Google App Interface Due Tuesday

Google and Apple Inc. plan to present developers with the first version of a COVID-19 contact-tracing app on Tuesday.

European Commissioner for Internal Market and Services Thierry Breton acknowledged the launch of the app and its decentralized system during a recent telephone call with Apple CEO Tim Cook, TechCrunch reports.

The app was expected to be released by the middle of next month.

According to TechCrunch, Breton shared a photo from his office, which shows him having a video conversation with Cook.

Breton also told Les Echos, the French financial newspaper, that the Apple CEO said the interface would be available Tuesday to software developers building products for public-health agencies.

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Nintendo Confirms 160,000 Accounts Breached in Hacker Attempts

Nintendo said Friday that an impersonation of its “Nintendo Network ID” resulted in “an illegal login” to as many as 160,000 Nintendo accounts.

The video-game company said users’ nickname, birthdate, country-region and email address might have been viewed by hackers via login IDs and passwords that were “obtained illegally by some means other than our service.”

The logins have been used since the beginning of the month to gain access to the accounts.

Nintendo said some accounts had experienced fraudulent purchases — and the company is recommending that users enable two-factor authentication, The Verge reports.

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Mass. Senator Says New App Should Not Infringe Privacy, Civil Liberties

Massachusetts Democratic Sen. Edward J. Markey sent a letter to the White House outlining nine principles for federal guidance on coronavirus contact tracing in the United States.

In his Wednesday letter, Markey called on the government to implement a comprehensive coronavirus contact-tracing plan with important privacy safeguards. He is a member of the Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee.

“As states and private companies propose and implement contact-tracing tools and initiatives that involve both human workers and technological innovations, the federal government must provide leadership, coordination, and guidance to ensure that contact-tracing efforts are effective and do not infringe upon individuals’ civil liberties, including the right to privacy,” Markey wrote in his letter to Vice President Mike Pence.

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White House Awards COVID-19 Tracking App Deal to Peter Thiel’s Palantir

The White House has awarded California surveillance firm Palantir a contract to build a U.S. tracking database for COVID-19.

The Silicon Valley company, co-founded by investor Peter Thiel, will have a key role in helping the U.S. government track the spread of coronavirus, Gizmodo reports.

The company’s contract is with the Department of Health and Human Services for the agency’s new data platform, called HHS Protect Now.

Palantir will provide a major aspect of the analytics platform, The Daily Beast reports. The company’s data suites are expected to be a primary contributor to HHS Protect Now, if not the core element of the tool, according to reports.

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— By DPN Staff