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UK government puts £5bn on the table in trawl for public sector networks services
Thursday, 21 October 2021 22:40

HTTP/2 200 date: Fri, 22 Oct 2021 01:00:05 GMT content-type: text/html; charset=UTF-8 link: ; rel=preload; as=script;,/bea9b94002d2e721422add584a7f2257d5de42ae/javascript/_.js>; rel=preload; as=script;,/default/6722acdbdc365069edd7f1a74756c9c64ecb0143/scaffolding.css>; rel=preload; as=style;,/default/6722acdbdc365069edd7f1a74756c9c64ecb0143/design.css>; rel=preload; as=style;,/5e49edbd1875f214e0decae1e24b200066780fa8/style/fonts/arimo/arimo-700.latin.woff2>; rel=preload; as=font; crossorigin;,/5e49edbd1875f214e0decae1e24b200066780fa8/style/fonts/arimo/arimo-400.latin.woff2>; rel=preload; as=font; crossorigin; cache-control: max-age=0 expires: Fri, 22 Oct 2021 01:00:04 GMT vary: Accept-Encoding x-reg-bofh: pfy02us x-clacks-overhead: GNU Terry Pratchett, Lester Haines x-content-type-options: nosniff cf-cache-status: DYNAMIC expect-ct: max-age=604800, report-uri="https://report-uri.cloudflare.com/cdn-cgi/beacon/expect-ct" server: cloudflare cf-ray: 6a1ec9626b365aa4-MEL alt-svc: h3=":443"; ma=86400, h3-29=":443"; ma=86400, h3-28=":443"; ma=86400, h3-27=":443"; ma=86400 UK government puts £5bn on the table in trawl for public sector networks services • The Register

I dream of wires, say Whitehall’s big buyers


The UK's central government procurement agency is chumming the waters around the market's swimmers, hoping to tempt suppliers into providing a range of computer network services and kit with a £5bn tender.

The buying spree, which will officially begin when a framework agreement starts in fiscal 2023, involves a large spread of hardware, software and services around IT networks. Included are categories such as networking, internet and intranet software packages, network interfaces, network operating system software development services and so on.

Crown Commercial Service, the cross-government buying organisation that sits within the Cabinet Office, has launched what is known as a "prior information notice" to start talking to suppliers before it forms the official competition to be on the framework: a group of contracted suppliers from which a huge number of public sector bodies can buy.

These might include central government departments, local authorities, health, police, fire and rescue, education and devolved administrations.

Although the government cannot dictate the use of the framework, the procurement notice said: "It is intended that this commercial agreement will be the recommended vehicle for all Core Network access and infrastructure requirements, including all aspects of Communications services."

Crown Commercial Service, which takes a 1 per cent fee on all business transacted via the frameworks it organises, is holding a pre-market engagement workshop in November with industry experts and suppliers interested in potentially bidding for the resulting framework contracts. The government buying body will decide the structure of the competition and the division of lots after that date.

The new arrangement, called Network Services 3, is set to replace – you guessed it – Network Services 2, which comes to an end in August 2022, except this time it will not include mobile voice and data services.

The government has set out a budget for spending on the resulting framework, which is set to be £70m for 2023/2024, £200m for 2024/2025, £240m for 2025/2026, and £288m for 2026/2027. Readers may notice that doesn't come anywhere near to the £5bn maximum value for the framework. The reason is that supply contracts signed during the term of the framework may extend beyond its end.

"The spend profile indicates anticipated spend for the four-year term of the framework agreement. Please note that spend will continue on call-offs once the framework agreement has expired," the procurement notice said.

Although the tender addresses all the UK, in Scotland, public bodies are procuring their own wide-area network services. The Scottish government is re-tendering the deal giving public bodies access to wide-area network services in contracts that could be worth up to £350m.

Set to start from March 2023, the new deal will replace the existing Scottish Wide-Area network (SWAN) procurement arrangement that is supported by more than 90 public-sector organisations within the country, according to a tender notice published in August. ®

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A strings of demands was issued by the government watchdog to Amazon, Apple, Facebook, Google, PayPal, and Square, said CFPB Director Rohit Chopra, and more could be sent to others. In addition, the agency is also looking into Chinese payment providers WeChat Pay and Alipay, saying the duo are "combining messaging, e-commerce and payment functionality into super-apps," which America's internet goliaths may try to imitate.

“Big Tech companies are eagerly expanding their empires to gain greater control and insight into our spending habits,” said Chopra in a statement [PDF]. “We have ordered them to produce information about their business plans and practices.”

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The yet-unnamed high-performance design is within reach of Intel's Rocket Lake family, introduced in March, and Arm's Cortex-A78 design, announced last year, in terms of single-core performance, James Prior, senior director of product marketing and communications at SiFive, told The Register.

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Google is cutting the fee it charges Play Store app developers for digital subscriptions from 30 per cent during the first 12 months to 15 per cent at all times.

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The revised price structure, which takes effect January, 2022, puts more pressure on Apple to further trim its iOS fee schedule, already dented by legal and regulatory pressure. Apple currently follows Google's old model of 30 per cent for auto-renewable subscriptions, dropping to 15 per cent after a year.

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Anders Grunnet-Jepsen, formerly chief technology officer of the RealSense group, has started a job as head of advanced development at Luminar.

"I will be moving across the country from Silicon Valley to Orlando to work for Luminar where I will head up development of their amazing next generation Computer Vision and Lidar products focused on making cars and trucks safer," Grunnet-Jepsen said in a note sent via a Luminar representative.

Continue readingWe regret to inform you there's an RCE vuln in old version of WinRAR. Yes, the file decompression utility Update to v6.02 – or don't, but on your head be it

A remote code execution vulnerability existed in an old and free trial version of WinRAR, according to infosec firm Positive Technologies.

While a vuln in version 5.7 of WinRAR may not seem like an immediate threat given that version was first released two years ago and has been superseded since, simple shareware/free-to-use software has a habit of being used long after its due date.

The vuln, tracked as CVE-2021-35052, has since been patched. Users should check their installed versions of WinRAR and update if it isn't v 6.02 or later, though the practicality of the attack seems limited unless your device or network is first compromised by other means.

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It wasn't immediately clear what went wrong, although South Korean President Moon Jae-in, speaking from the Naro spaceport, said the payload did not stabilize in orbit after separation. It appears the rocket's third-stage engine stopping running after 475 seconds, about 50 seconds earlier than planned, leading to the failed deployment.

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HTTP/2 200 date: Fri, 22 Oct 2021 01:00:05 GMT content-type: text/html; charset=UTF-8 link: ; rel=preload; as=script;,/bea9b94002d2e721422add584a7f2257d5de42ae/javascript/_.js>; rel=preload; as=script;,/default/6722acdbdc365069edd7f1a74756c9c64ecb0143/scaffolding.css>; rel=preload; as=style;,/default/6722acdbdc365069edd7f1a74756c9c64ecb0143/design.css>; rel=preload; as=style;,/5e49edbd1875f214e0decae1e24b200066780fa8/style/fonts/arimo/arimo-700.latin.woff2>; rel=preload; as=font; crossorigin;,/5e49edbd1875f214e0decae1e24b200066780fa8/style/fonts/arimo/arimo-400.latin.woff2>; rel=preload; as=font; crossorigin; cache-control: max-age=0 expires: Fri, 22 Oct 2021 01:00:04 GMT vary: Accept-Encoding x-reg-bofh: pfy02us x-clacks-overhead: GNU Terry Pratchett, Lester Haines x-content-type-options: nosniff cf-cache-status: DYNAMIC expect-ct: max-age=604800, report-uri="https://report-uri.cloudflare.com/cdn-cgi/beacon/expect-ct" server: cloudflare cf-ray: 6a1ec9626b365aa4-MEL alt-svc: h3=":443"; ma=86400, h3-29=":443"; ma=86400, h3-28=":443"; ma=86400, h3-27=":443"; ma=86400 UK government puts £5bn on the table in trawl for public sector networks services • The Register

I dream of wires, say Whitehall’s big buyers


The UK's central government procurement agency is chumming the waters around the market's swimmers, hoping to tempt suppliers into providing a range of computer network services and kit with a £5bn tender.

The buying spree, which will officially begin when a framework agreement starts in fiscal 2023, involves a large spread of hardware, software and services around IT networks. Included are categories such as networking, internet and intranet software packages, network interfaces, network operating system software development services and so on.

Crown Commercial Service, the cross-government buying organisation that sits within the Cabinet Office, has launched what is known as a "prior information notice" to start talking to suppliers before it forms the official competition to be on the framework: a group of contracted suppliers from which a huge number of public sector bodies can buy.

These might include central government departments, local authorities, health, police, fire and rescue, education and devolved administrations.

Although the government cannot dictate the use of the framework, the procurement notice said: "It is intended that this commercial agreement will be the recommended vehicle for all Core Network access and infrastructure requirements, including all aspects of Communications services."

Crown Commercial Service, which takes a 1 per cent fee on all business transacted via the frameworks it organises, is holding a pre-market engagement workshop in November with industry experts and suppliers interested in potentially bidding for the resulting framework contracts. The government buying body will decide the structure of the competition and the division of lots after that date.

The new arrangement, called Network Services 3, is set to replace – you guessed it – Network Services 2, which comes to an end in August 2022, except this time it will not include mobile voice and data services.

The government has set out a budget for spending on the resulting framework, which is set to be £70m for 2023/2024, £200m for 2024/2025, £240m for 2025/2026, and £288m for 2026/2027. Readers may notice that doesn't come anywhere near to the £5bn maximum value for the framework. The reason is that supply contracts signed during the term of the framework may extend beyond its end.

"The spend profile indicates anticipated spend for the four-year term of the framework agreement. Please note that spend will continue on call-offs once the framework agreement has expired," the procurement notice said.

Although the tender addresses all the UK, in Scotland, public bodies are procuring their own wide-area network services. The Scottish government is re-tendering the deal giving public bodies access to wide-area network services in contracts that could be worth up to £350m.

Set to start from March 2023, the new deal will replace the existing Scottish Wide-Area network (SWAN) procurement arrangement that is supported by more than 90 public-sector organisations within the country, according to a tender notice published in August. ®

Similar topics


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America's Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) said on Thursday it is probing some of the biggest names in the electronic payments industry, requesting detailed information from them on how they collect and use people's spending data.

A strings of demands was issued by the government watchdog to Amazon, Apple, Facebook, Google, PayPal, and Square, said CFPB Director Rohit Chopra, and more could be sent to others. In addition, the agency is also looking into Chinese payment providers WeChat Pay and Alipay, saying the duo are "combining messaging, e-commerce and payment functionality into super-apps," which America's internet goliaths may try to imitate.

“Big Tech companies are eagerly expanding their empires to gain greater control and insight into our spending habits,” said Chopra in a statement [PDF]. “We have ordered them to produce information about their business plans and practices.”

Continue readingWe're closing the gap with Arm and x86, claims SiFive: New RISC-V CPU core for PCs, servers, mobile incoming As it appears Intel's attempt to gobble the upstart collapses

SiFive reckons its fastest RISC-V processor core yet is closing the gap on being a mainstream computing alternative to x86 and Arm.

The yet-unnamed high-performance design is within reach of Intel's Rocket Lake family, introduced in March, and Arm's Cortex-A78 design, announced last year, in terms of single-core performance, James Prior, senior director of product marketing and communications at SiFive, told The Register.

San Francisco-based SiFive didn't provide specific comparative benchmarks, so you'll have to take their word for it, if you so choose.

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Employees have been told to declare whether they’ve been vaccinated or not by October 24, Bloomberg reported this week. Staff who choose not to disclose their vaccination status will be subjected to COVID-19 testing whenever they enter the office, it's said.

The iGiant has again and again pushed back the date it wants its staff to return to their desks as the coronavirus continues romping around the planet. Although it hoped workers could go back to their campuses this autumn, now the plan is to get them working at least three days a week at their office desks from some time in January 2022.

Continue reading

Google is cutting the fee it charges Play Store app developers for digital subscriptions from 30 per cent during the first 12 months to 15 per cent at all times.

Previously, Android developers selling digital subscriptions in their apps endured the 30 per cent rate during the first year, after which the fee percentage would be halved.

The revised price structure, which takes effect January, 2022, puts more pressure on Apple to further trim its iOS fee schedule, already dented by legal and regulatory pressure. Apple currently follows Google's old model of 30 per cent for auto-renewable subscriptions, dropping to 15 per cent after a year.

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Anders Grunnet-Jepsen, formerly chief technology officer of the RealSense group, has started a job as head of advanced development at Luminar.

"I will be moving across the country from Silicon Valley to Orlando to work for Luminar where I will head up development of their amazing next generation Computer Vision and Lidar products focused on making cars and trucks safer," Grunnet-Jepsen said in a note sent via a Luminar representative.

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While a vuln in version 5.7 of WinRAR may not seem like an immediate threat given that version was first released two years ago and has been superseded since, simple shareware/free-to-use software has a habit of being used long after its due date.

The vuln, tracked as CVE-2021-35052, has since been patched. Users should check their installed versions of WinRAR and update if it isn't v 6.02 or later, though the practicality of the attack seems limited unless your device or network is first compromised by other means.

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At 5pm local time (UTC+9), the rocket, named Nuri, or KSLV-II, left its launchpad at Naro Space Center, destined for low-Earth orbit with a 1.5-ton dummy payload. But while all the three stages of the Korea Space Launch Vehicle II worked and the initial payload separation was fine, the dummy satellite was not placed into orbit as planned.

It wasn't immediately clear what went wrong, although South Korean President Moon Jae-in, speaking from the Naro spaceport, said the payload did not stabilize in orbit after separation. It appears the rocket's third-stage engine stopping running after 475 seconds, about 50 seconds earlier than planned, leading to the failed deployment.

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It comes after last month's preview of the code editor that runs entirely in the browser, and will doubtless have some users pondering the difference between this and Microsoft-owned GitHub's github.dev, which also pops a development environment into the browser. One of the biggest of those differences is a lack of compulsory integration with the VS source-shack; this is unavoidable with github.dev (the clue is, after all, in the URL.)

VSCode.dev, on the other hand, will permit the opening up of a file from a local device (if the browser allows it and supports the File System Access API) in what looks for all the world like an instance of Visual Studio Code, except surrounded by the gubbins of a browser.

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Although Amazon Chime has a relatively small market share in the crowded videoconferencing market, the Chime SDK is convenient for developers building applications that include videoconferencing or messaging, competing with SDKs and services from the likes of Twilio or Microsoft's Azure Communication Services. In other words, this is aimed mainly at corporate developers building applications or websites that include real-time messaging, audio or videoconferencing.

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Continue reading

Source: https://bit.ly/3aYQs34