Friday 7 June 2013

Weekly Wrap Up: PRISM, The Information Showdown

Yesterday The Washington Post reported that Google, Apple, Facebook, Dropbox, AOL and Yahoo have been participating in the so-called ‘PRISM’ program which has provided the US Government’s National Security Agency with direct access to user’s data stored by these companies. And today, the Guardian reports that the UK Government’s NSA equivalent, GCHQ has also had access to the system since at least June 2010.

However this is all very confusing because the big Internet services deny having anything to do with PRISM, with some claiming to have never heard of it. Disgruntled spy leaking false documents or Corporate/ Government conspiracy of the century? We’re not sure yet, but Anonymous, the Internet activists, have just released the leaked documents for your viewing pleasure. News stories like this really show the power of the internet in terms of information spreading quickly but also the potential privacy issues on people if this story turns out to be true. It would be surprising if a company like Google is involved in the way that is alleged because of the huge reputational damage that it would have on the company. Their motto is “don’t be evil” after all. But perhaps their motto is wrong are they are just plain evil. Stay tuned.

This week Abchaps attended the Grant Thornton China event, the London Cleantech Cluster, a One Nucleus event, and The Social Stock Exchange's reception. We also had a team BBQ to celebrate the fourth start of Summer - hopefully it sticks around this time. And right now some of the team are down in Wiltshire on a Clay Shoot – lucky for some!

Investment management firm Brewin Dolphin has announced the appointment of David Howard as chief administration officer. Howard joins from Williams de Broe. Law firm Pinsent Masons has appointed Robbie Owen as a partner to head its infrastructure planning and government affairs division. He joins from Bircham Dyson Bell, where he was head of major projects. Canaccord Genuity Wealth Management has appointed Chris Colclough as head of portfolio management, previously senior investment manager at the firm. Investment managers Artemis has appointed Richard Pursglove as head of retail.

'Dash To Trash' - When investors flock to a class of securities or other assets, bidding up prices to beyond what can be justified by valuation or other fundamental measures.

There will be a lot of bare flesh this weekend in London Town and not just because of the heat wave, but because the London Naked Bike Ride will be in full swing tomorrow.

London Zoo Lates starts this Friday and every Friday until the 26th July.

The Rooftop Film Club in Peckham Rye is showing some absolute classics every night for the rest of June. Settle down to a great movie with equally great views of London.

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