Sep 30, 2018

Tech news you might have missed this week

Photo: Jaap Arriens/NurPhoto via Getty Images

All eyes (and tweets) were on Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh's confirmation vote and hearings this week. Still, the tech industry managed to provide plenty of important news.

Catch up quick: The big news was the Facebook network breach, but other important developments got less attention. The major tech and telecom companies met with the Senate Commerce Committee Wednesday; Google's CEO will testify before the House on bias accusations; kids are already outsmarting parental iPhone time limits on iOS 12; and a report says a voting machine used in half of U.S. is vulnerable to attack.

Major tech and telecom companies met with the Senate Commerce Committee Wednesday

Why it matters: Companies including Google, Apple and AT&T expressed reservations about particularly strong steps lawmakers could take to ensure user data privacy. The companies are drawing lines in the sand for lawmakers who are under pressure to produce something, thanks to new privacy rules in Europe and a California privacy law that will go into effect in 2020.

Google CEO will testify before House on bias accusations

Why it matters: Google came under fire from members of both parties and from Google employees for not sending a top executive to join Twitter and Facebook at a recent Senate Intelligence Committee hearing. Though Google CEO Sundar Pichai adamantly denies bias in the algorithm, he agreed to answer questions some time after the midterm elections.

Kids are already outsmarting parental iPhone time limits on iOS 12

Why it matters: Yes, children are good at finding loopholes. But the flaw also leads back to the original argument for implementing time limits — it won't work unless users are actually willing to cut back on screen time.

Report: voting machine used in half of U.S. is vulnerable to attack

Why it matters: Election security has been a high-priority concern over the last two years, especially as we head to the midterms. Still, according to a new report, a voting machine used in more than half of the states is vulnerable, and "senior intelligence officials have described Russian efforts to interfere in the 2018 midterm elections as deep, real and ongoing," per the Wall Street Journal.

Go deeper

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 3:30 a.m. ET: 1,203,923 — Total deaths: 64,795 — Total recoveries: 247,273Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 3:30 a.m. ET: 312,237 — Total deaths: 8,502 — Total recoveries: 14,997Map.
  3. Public health latest: CDC launches national trackers and recommends face coverings in public. Federal government will cover costs of COVID-19 treatment for uninsured. The virus is hitting poor, minority communities harder and upending childbirth.
  4. 2020 latest: "We have no contingency plan," Trump said on the 2020 Republican National Convention. "We're having the convention at the end of August."
  5. Business updates: Restaurants step up for health care workers. Employees are pressuring companies to provide protections during coronavirus.
  6. Oil latest: Monday meeting among oil-producing countries to discuss supply curbs is reportedly being delayed amid tensions between Saudi Arabia and Russia.
  7. Education update: Many college-age students won't get coronavirus relief checks.
  8. 1 🏀 thing: The WNBA postpones start of training camps and season.
  9. What should I do? Pets, moving and personal health. Answers about the virus from Axios expertsWhat to know about social distancingQ&A: Minimizing your coronavirus risk.
  10. Other resources: CDC on how to avoid the virus, what to do if you get it.

Subscribe to Mike Allen's Axios AM to follow our coronavirus coverage each morning from your inbox.

World coronavirus updates: Confirmed cases top 1.2 million

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC and China's Health Ministry. Note: China numbers are for the mainland only and U.S. numbers include repatriated citizens and confirmed plus presumptive cases from the CDC

The number of novel coronavirus cases surpassed 1.2 million worldwide Saturday night, as Spain overtook Italy as the country with the most infections outside the U.S.

The big picture: About half the planet's population is now on lockdown and the global death toll was nearing 64,800, by Sunday morning, per Johns Hopkins data.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 55 mins ago - Health

U.S. coronavirus updates: Death toll surpasses 8,500

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins; Map: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios

Recorded deaths from the novel coronavirus surpassed 8,500 in the U.S. early Sunday, per Johns Hopkins data. The death toll in the U.S. has risen over 1,000 every day for the past four days, since April 1.

The big picture: President Trump said Saturday America's is facing its "toughest" time "between this week and next week." Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said U.S. deaths are expected to continue to rise during this period.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 1 hour ago - Health