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AP

BlackBerry is deepening its role in connected cars with new virtualization software, announced Wednesday, that allows for the isolation of certain systems in the car so that a glitch in one area doesn't make other ones vulnerable. BlackBerry is positioning QNX Hypervisor 2.0 — as key to ensuring connected car systems are more secure.

Why it matters: BlackBerry has been in the process of trying to reinvent itself as a software and services company. It stopped making its own phones last year, although it still licenses others to sell Android phones under BlackBerry brand.

Partners: BlackBerry already has a licensing deal with Ford to help power its connected cars' infotainment technologies, which includes Hypervisor. The company also announced that the product will be used by Qualcomm as part of certain digital cockpit solutions.

Toyota hiccup: Toyota reportedly went with another infotainment platform vendor for its popular Camry model, but BlackBerry said in a blog post earlier this week that it's still the leading supplier of the technology for more than 40 other carmakers and auto suppliers.

"Since cars have become connected, we can't have safety without security," said head of BlackBerry QNX John Walls on a call with reporters. "Consumers need to have confidence their systems are safe and secure, and we want people to know this is the type of software we are building."

He added that other automated industries like building and machinery will also increasingly adopt technologies such as this.

Go deeper

Ina Fried, author of Login
1 hour ago - Technology

Scoop: Google is investigating the actions of another top AI ethicist

Google CEO Sundar Pichai. Photo by Mateusz Wlodarczyk/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Google is investigating recent actions by Margaret Mitchell, who helps lead the company's ethical AI team, Axios has confirmed.

Why it matters: The probe follows the forced exit of Timnit Gebru, a prominent researcher also on the AI ethics team at Google whose ouster ignited a firestorm among Google employees.

2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Scoop: Joe Biden's COVID-19 bubble

Photo illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios. Photo: Joe Raedle/Getty Images

The incoming administration is planning extraordinary steps to protect its most prized commodity, Joe Biden, including requiring daily employee COVID tests and N95 masks at all times, according to new guidance sent to some incoming employees Tuesday.

Why it matters: The president-elect is 78 years old and therefore a high risk for the virus and its worst effects, despite having received the vaccine. While President Trump's team was nonchalant about COVID protocols — leading to several super-spreader episodes — the new rules will apply to all White House aides in "high proximity to principals."

Justice Department drops insider trading inquiry against Sen. Richard Burr

Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.) walking through the Senate Subway in the U.S. Capitol in December 2020. Photo: Stefani Reynolds/Getty Images

The Department of Justice told Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.) on Tuesday that it will not move forward with insider trading charges against him.

Why it matters: The decision, first reported by the New York Times, effectively ends the DOJ's investigation into the senator's stock sell-off that occurred after multiple lawmakers were briefed about the coronavirus' potential economic toll. Burr subsequently stepped down as chair of the Senate Intelligence Committee.