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MP calls for the Computer Misuse Act to be strengthened -- and other news briefs

Short takes on this week's news

MP to raise bill to boost computer crime laws

Derek Wyatt, chairman of the All Party Internet Group, is to raise a 10 minute rule bill in the Commons next month calling for the Computer Misuse Act to be strengthened. The move follows a campaign by Computer Weekly, businesses and IT security professionals to increase sentencing for offenders and tighten the act's provisions against denial of service attacks.

Groove's Ozzie to be CTO at Microsoft

Microsoft has appointed Ray Ozzie, famed for developing Lotus Notes, as its chief technical officer, following its acquisition of Groove Networks last week. Groove will become part of Microsoft's information worker group. Ozzie will have responsibility for influencing corporate-wide communication and collaboration products and associated platform infrastructure, and will report to Microsoft chairman and chief software architect Bill Gates.

Tool helps councils plan e-services

A tool has been released to help councils measure and quantify how they could benefit from the Directgov citizens' portal. The benefits calculator, an interactive spreadsheet, has been produced by Environment and Community Online Residents' e-Services (Encore) National Project. The tool estimates how many extra online service users Directgov could drive to a council's website under different scenarios.

MoD awards contract for comms testing to BT

The Ministry of Defence has awarded BT a £5.9m contract to design, build and operate an extension to its communications testing system. BT will complete the work at the Land Systems Reference Centre, the MoD's test and reference facility at Blandford Camp, Dorset. The facility tests communication information systems to make sure they will work in battle.

Novell products target Windows customers

Novell is targeting Windows users with a new version of SuSE Linux bundled with 3,000 open source applications and tools. The SuSE Linux Professional 9.3 operating system comes with Openoffice, graphics and multimedia applications, development tools; internet tools, e-mail and instant messaging clients, an integrated firewall, spam blocker and virus scanner; and support for VoIP.

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