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Investor Lawsuit Blames NSA For $12B Loss In IBM Value

timothy posted about a year ago | from the anyone-can-file-a-lawsuit dept.

IBM 204

Jah-Wren Ryel writes "IBM Corp has been sued by the Louisiana Sheriffs' Pension & Relief Fund which accused it of concealing how its ties to what became a major U.S. spying scandal reduced business in China and ultimately caused its market value to plunge more than $12 billion." While anyone can file a lawsuit, being sued by an institutional investor is a little different than being sued by John Q. Disgruntled.

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Interesting. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45690371)

This could get very interesting, if it proceeds, after IBM's lawyers start the investigation and discovery phase.

Re:Interesting. (1, Informative)

HornWumpus (783565) | about a year ago | (#45690417)

The word is Nazgul.

I was wondering (4, Interesting)

ganjadude (952775) | about a year ago | (#45690377)

when this would happen. You just had to know that someone would go after them for this. I wonder how it will hold up in court. The bigger question I have is what else will be found during discovery

Re:I was wondering (5, Interesting)

DavidClarkeHR (2769805) | about a year ago | (#45690553)

when this would happen. You just had to know that someone would go after them for this. I wonder how it will hold up in court. The bigger question I have is what else will be found during discovery

Well, they'll settle out of court if discovery is an option, and ... IBM isn't just someone. They're looking for ways to mitigate their (other) problems.

No, this is distinctly different than, say ... Facebook going after them. Or Microsoft. Or Apple. Or Samsung.When a company that is already 'losing ground' looks to blame others for their problems, that's a different scenario than a company that isn't threatened pursuing the same lawsuit. The outcome may be the same, which may be all that matters (to some, in theory), but the reasons are completely different. You wouldn't say that a police officer breaking a window to enter a home is the same as a criminal breaking a window to enter your home ... one is looking to profit, the other is looking to protect (again, in theory).

Re:I was wondering (5, Interesting)

cold fjord (826450) | about a year ago | (#45690907)

I expect that if lawsuits become a problem in this regard that a previous solution for a similar problem will be reused. Actually, that very solution may apply in this case in some regards.

Obama administration backs telecom immunity [sfgate.com]

Re:I was wondering (1)

timeOday (582209) | about a year ago | (#45691001)

It's seems like your comment is based on the premise that IBM is suing somebody. It's the reverse; IBM is being sued. (Or are you saying it's the Louisiana Sheriffs' Pension & Relief Fund that's losing ground and looking to place blame?)

Re:I was wondering (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45691191)

It's seems like your comment is based on the premise that IBM is suing somebody. It's the reverse; IBM is being sued. (Or are you saying it's the Louisiana Sheriffs' Pension & Relief Fund that's losing ground and looking to place blame?)

Relevant, concise and fast. I went for all 3, should have stuck with 2. - DCHR

Re:I was wondering (3, Insightful)

ColdWetDog (752185) | about a year ago | (#45690723)

The bigger question I have is what else will be found during discovery

REDACTED

Capitalism Democracy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45690395)

It does not seem like the normal democratic process through the legislature is making any real progress when it comes to protecting citizens' rights from invasion by the likes of the NSA, but perhaps the sheer force of capitalism will convince some corporations to think twice if such lawsuits were to succeed?

Re:Capitalism Democracy? (5, Insightful)

Xicor (2738029) | about a year ago | (#45690475)

i dont think you understand the underlying problem. American companies CANT say no to the government, because they get shutdown. dont you remember lavabit? he did say no to the NSA, and then they started prosecuting him for not giving them the information they wanted. it isnt really a matter of capitalism. as long as there is no oversight on things like the NSA, there will always be abuse. as long as there is no oversight on the NSA, companies cant really ever deny them access.

Re:Capitalism Democracy? (5, Interesting)

AJWM (19027) | about a year ago | (#45690587)

They don't always shut down the company.

Sometimes they just arrest the COB/CEO. You don't really imagine there was zero connection between Joe Nacchio [wikipedia.org] of Qwest refusing to give NSA customer records without a court order (this back in 2001) and his being arrested and jailed for insider trading, do you?

(He may have engaged in some questionable trades but nothing that other corporate execs have done without getting hit with such severe penalties.)

Re:Capitalism Democracy? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45690761)

NSA has been acting as the boot forever stomping on the human face. This kind of behavior can be stopped by Obama (he's further up the NSA's chain of command, but still in the chain of command) but he hasn't done so. I can only guess that he's a force behind illegal NSA activity to which he'll still claim he "didn't know" about, just as he's claimed ignorance on the ACA website, or NSA surveillance on European allies. He's still culpable for the NSA's illegal activity, will he claim he didn't know that he has broken his oath to uphold and defend the US Constitution?

Re: Capitalism Democracy? (1)

O('_')O_Bush (1162487) | about a year ago | (#45691357)

When did he fail to defend the Constitution?

Re:Capitalism Democracy? (2)

Kumiorava (95318) | about a year ago | (#45690775)

I don't think the problem here is that IBM worked with the NSA. Problem is that as a shareholder IBM should have said something more about it and keep shareholders informed about the risks towards the share price. At minimum IBM should have stated it is working closely with US government organisations in electronic surveillance programs, which may cause loss of business if political environment changes.

Re:Capitalism Democracy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45691089)

Except that I'm fairly certain (as a group of sheriffs should know) that when a government agency makes you do something especially in an ongoing basis, public disclosure isn't an option. Imagine if every wire tap was published to anyone that owned a share of the local teleco... I suspect that suddenly a few shares might be sold to those who don't report their income to the IRS.

Re:Capitalism Democracy? (1)

MrDoh! (71235) | about a year ago | (#45691343)

Even that wouldn't have allowed to be mentioned, as it'd then have invited more questions that they couldn't answer.,

Re:Capitalism Democracy? (1)

Bite The Pillow (3087109) | about a year ago | (#45690845)

Lavabit was a mom and pop store. Your paranoia does not extend to established business, which have the option to fight back but choose not to.

IBM would have survived saying no. They would have had an enormous expense in doing so.

Re:Capitalism Democracy? (4, Informative)

ShaunC (203807) | about a year ago | (#45691251)

Your paranoia does not extend to established business, which have the option to fight back but choose not to.

Oh how I pine for the day when I believed that shit. We were such a more innocent populace, weren't we? Go look up MKULTRA to start, and follow the Wikipedia links from there for a few hours. CEOs of companies, deans of universities, directors of hospitals, they were all in on it and that was the 1950s.

You think that sort of thing isn't going on now? The "option to fight back," oh good heavens, someone catch me before I pass out from laughter.

Re:Capitalism Democracy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45690917)

i dont think you understand the underlying problem. American companies CANT say no to the government, because they get shutdown. dont you remember lavabit? he did say no to the NSA, and then they started prosecuting him for not giving them the information they wanted. it isnt really a matter of capitalism. as long as there is no oversight on things like the NSA, there will always be abuse. as long as there is no oversight on the NSA, companies cant really ever deny them access.

All of the details in your comment are false, actually. Citation:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lavabit

Re:Capitalism Democracy? (2, Informative)

cold fjord (826450) | about a year ago | (#45690965)

i dont think you understand the underlying problem. American companies CANT say no to the government, because they get shutdown. dont you remember lavabit? he did say no to the NSA, and then they started prosecuting him for not giving them the information they wanted.

You've kind of scrambled the history there.

Companies do say no to the government all the time unless the government has the actual right or power to make a demand. In Lavabit's case, Lavabit was defying a court order that only became necessary when they didn't meet a much more limited request from the FBI, which the FBI has the power to make. And it was Lavabit's choice to do that - both the defiance, and the shutdown. Lavabit's owner had a bad business model predicated on making promises he couldn't legally keep and stay out of jail or in business. That was a failure waiting to happen.

In a way I find it ironic that so many people here defend Lavabit given the large number of complaints you see on Slashdot about corporations breaking the law, owning the government, etc. At the end of the day, Lavabit was just another corporation that wasn't willing to obey the law.

You can make a reasonable argument that the government has too much power in this regard, but that is a different discussion.

as long as there is no oversight on things like the NSA, there will always be abuse. as long as there is no oversight on the NSA, companies cant really ever deny them access.

You must have missed some discussions. The NSA has oversight, and lacks the power to issue warrants or court orders itself. Even when it obtains a warrant or court order those warrants and court orders can be challenged in court.

Re:Capitalism Democracy? (1)

Xicor (2738029) | about a year ago | (#45691389)

oh sure, they cant give court orders or warrants themselves... they just ask a 'secret court' to do it... we actually have no idea if this 'secret court' even exists. for all we know, the NSA has made it all up and decided to issue warrants on their own. just because the NSA isnt abusing its lack of oversight doesnt mean specific other parts that work with the NSA are not doing so.

Re:Capitalism Democracy? (2, Informative)

cold fjord (826450) | about a year ago | (#45691465)

The members of the FISA court are public record, they are judges from other courts that rotate through the FISA court. The function of the FISA court is documented. You seem disinterested in the facts of the matter.

THE FOREIGN INTELLIGENCE SURVEILLANCE COURT - 2012 Membership [fas.org]

Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court [fjc.gov]

Re:Capitalism Democracy? (3, Insightful)

Xicor (2738029) | about a year ago | (#45691405)

we should all have a right to disobey court orders and warrants issued from a secret court with no requirements to follow the constitution.

Re:Capitalism Democracy? (1)

0123456 (636235) | about a year ago | (#45691099)

American companies CANT say no to the government, because they get shutdown. dont you remember lavabit?

Yeah, right. The US government would totally have shut down IBM (or Google, Microsoft, Apple... etc, etc, etc) for not co-operating with a law that probably wouldn't even stand up in court.

Re:Capitalism Democracy? (3, Interesting)

Xicor (2738029) | about a year ago | (#45691401)

you clearly dont read the monthly posts from google telling everyone how many requests theyve been asked for and how many theyve given. in ALL instances, where there was a warrant issued (by a secret court with no oversight), google gave up information on people.

Let Me Get This Straight (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45690411)

Let me get this straight ... the sheriff's pension fund is suing IBM for not disclosing its associations with a clandestine operation being executed by the federal government? Is this the same type of local law enforcement agency that will prosecute an individual or company that exposes a clandestine operation being executed by law enforcement?

I guess money is money, and lawsuits are one of capitalism's tits. Too bad no one told this pension fund that the feds can (and will) pass a law retroactively absolving IBM of any wrongdoing (just like telecommunications companies got).

Re:Let Me Get This Straight (1)

jodido (1052890) | about a year ago | (#45690437)

Or a judge/judges will find some reason to throw the suit out. NSA's invulnerable legally.

Re:Let Me Get This Straight (1)

Xicor (2738029) | about a year ago | (#45690487)

they arent suing the NSA, they are suing IBM.

Re:Let Me Get This Straight (4, Informative)

Fjandr (66656) | about a year ago | (#45691181)

They may as well be suing the NSA, considering what would come out in discovery if this lawsuit is allowed to proceed. Or rather, what won't come out, in the interest of "national security."

Re:Let Me Get This Straight (1)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | about a year ago | (#45690495)

" NSA's invulnerable legally."

That's simply not true. There are a number of suits against them going forward right now.

Government (and, more to the point, people in government) are NOT immune from the law. The idea that they are (or even worse, should be) is absolute hogwash.

Re:Let Me Get This Straight (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45690551)

Government (and, more to the point, people in government) are NOT immune from the law.

Never heard of state sovereign immunity, eh?

Re:Let Me Get This Straight (1)

cold fjord (826450) | about a year ago | (#45690561)

They are likely to have sovereign immunity for their actions unless it has been waived, legislated away, or there is an existing precedent.

Re:Let Me Get This Straight (1)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | about a year ago | (#45691105)

"They are likely to have sovereign immunity for their actions unless it has been waived, legislated away, or there is an existing precedent."

The NSA is not even remotely "sovereign", in any sense of the term.

Re:Let Me Get This Straight (1)

Fjandr (66656) | about a year ago | (#45691205)

As a part of the Federal government it is.

Re:Let Me Get This Straight (2)

squiggleslash (241428) | about a year ago | (#45690707)

I was unaware that it is against US law for a US Federal agency tasked with intercepting communications of non-Americans to spy on China.

Re:Let Me Get This Straight (4, Insightful)

Jane Q. Public (1010737) | about a year ago | (#45691133)

"I was unaware that it is against US law for a US Federal agency tasked with intercepting communications of non-Americans to spy on China."

It isn't. But it *IS* illegal (despite their claims otherwise) to spy on Americans in the process of spying on China. UNLESS they can SHOW some kind of probable cause to believe that American is involved in spying.

That's what the FICA Court rules say, and that's what EFF has been saying all along.

And they haven't just been spying on a few Americans... they've been spying on everybody they had the ability to spy on... regardless of any even pretended connections to espionage. And that is CLEARLY illegal. It's not even a matter of debate.

Re:Let Me Get This Straight (1)

Fjandr (66656) | about a year ago | (#45691195)

They are immune from the law in most cases, except where they waive sovereign immunity.

Re:Let Me Get This Straight (1)

LordNimon (85072) | about a year ago | (#45690585)

Maybe they're suing IBM for allowing a clandestine operation to affect their stock price?

Re:Let Me Get This Straight (1)

Bite The Pillow (3087109) | about a year ago | (#45690861)

And to clarify, they would have been fine with participation. Only the effect on stock price is in question.

The NSA actions, IBM actions, none of that is part of this.

Failure to disclose risks to revenue, and major ones at that, is serious for public companies.

Re:Let Me Get This Straight (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45691283)

Right, had the operation made IBM money, they would have liked it. Oh wait, it probably did. IBM probably sold the NSA a ton of equipment, but they can't exactly publish that, can they?

Re:Let Me Get This Straight (1)

ChrisMaple (607946) | about a year ago | (#45691339)

If they're suing IBM then their action is futile and self-damaging. Money in any decision will go to 3 places, all of which hurt those suing. 1. Government 2. Lawyers 3. All stockholders in proportion to the shares they own. #3 means that IBM's money, which is owned by the stockholders, is transferred to the stockholders: no net gain, + administration costs, + time wasted in the lawsuits.

If they're suing the chief officers, the COs have little money compared to IBM, unless the COs have insurance against this sort of thing, in which case insurance companies get hurt to satisfy the greed of the plaintiffs. Furthermore, they have the additional legal hurdle that the company is presumed responsible for its actions, not the employees, in civil cases.

Nothing good comes of this for anyone.

Re:Let Me Get This Straight (1)

radarskiy (2874255) | about a year ago | (#45691209)

"Is this the same type of local law enforcement agency... "

It's not any kind of law enforcement agency. It is a financial institution. It just happens to specifically handle funds for people that work for local law enforcement.

Oh, the irony (4, Insightful)

swamp boy (151038) | about a year ago | (#45690427)

Subject/citizen, you should not be concerned about your rights when it comes to security and law enforcement. But, we need legal remedy for business decisions that impact our nice retirement funds. Yeah...

Good luck with that. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45690465)

You'd need to prove that the government's activities (and thus IBM's, as its actor) are illegal, and to do that you'll need to get the government to comply with various subpoenas regarding those programs. The government will assuredly throw up the "national security" flag and those subpoenas will go nowhere.

Re:Good luck with that. (0)

onepoint (301486) | about a year ago | (#45690483)

I'm willing to bank on your judgement. I would like to subscribe to your newsletter

no, failure to disclose risk to owners is illegal (1)

raymorris (2726007) | about a year ago | (#45691171)

I'm afraid you're mistaken. They have a legal duty to inform owners (stockholders) and potential owners about any significant risks. Suppose I'm selling you some stock in my tiny software company. Suppose Microsoft has threatened to sue my company out of existence. Should I tell you about the impending lawsuit before you invest your savings in a business that is at risk? Of course I should, and the law requires that I do so.

  The three questions are:
A) Did IBM executives know this posed a risk to IBM's business in China and elsewhere?
B) Did the executives inform the stockholders of the risk?
C) Does the law specifically grant an exception for this type of risk, allowing the company to keep it secret?

A and B are probably true, so IBM's lawyers will need to find something in the law that helps them argue C. To the extent it involves NSLs (national security letters), C probably applies because it would have been illegal for IBM to reveal significant information.

Re:no, failure to disclose risk to owners is illeg (1)

ShaunC (203807) | about a year ago | (#45691279)

They have a legal duty to inform owners (stockholders) and potential owners about any significant risks

Right up until they receive some sort of "National Security Letter" which supersedes any other legal duty they might have, and precludes them from telling anyone that they've even been served with such a thing. Your point "C" isn't, in my own opinion, some sort of blanket excuse.

that's the question for the judge and jury (2)

raymorris (2726007) | about a year ago | (#45691363)

That's the question that will be before the judge and jury - did court orders, NSLs, etc. prohibit IBM from revealing more than they did about ALL of the risky cooperation? It may be that a vague disclosure as suggested by TFA would have hurt the business, and therefore stockholders. It may be that some of the data sharing wasn't covered by gag orders, or maybe all of it was. We don't have the necessary facts to know. You and I haven't seen the gag orders (yet). Maybe the executive's hands were tied , maybe not. We don't yet have sufficient facts to know for sure.

LoL (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45690469)

Good luck with that.

For the sake of national security (5, Interesting)

Foxhoundz (2015516) | about a year ago | (#45690481)

I feel like the NSA and the rest of the intelligence apparatuses have gotten to a point where the security of this nation trumps any man made law. If this nation is of and for the people, who the hell is the NSA working for?

Re:For the sake of national security (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45690601)

Correction, by "security of this nation" you mean the "security of the upper class." They honestly don't give a fuck about anyone but themselves.

upper class are the stockholders who were hurt (1)

raymorris (2726007) | about a year ago | (#45691257)

Funny you should make that claim in the context of an article about the losses to stockholders caused by NSA. The "upper class" is the people who have a lot invested in these companies - the people who lost part of their savings. The upper class is the executives getting sued for complying with court orders. It's the "upper class" who are MATERIALLY harmed by the NSA's actions. The rest of us are merely offended by the violation of our rights, but not really materially harmed.

The NSA serves two masters, neither of which is the upper class. Mainly they serve the government politicians, of course. Secondly, though recognizing this fact doesn't support our righteous indignation, they serve the safety of the American people, at the cost of those same citizens' rights, and most of those citizens don't seem to mind. Spying has been going on for thousands of years because SPYING WORKS. Historically, spying on high value targets has done alot of good for the country. What's new is the technical ability to spy on EVERYONE, not just carefully selected targets. That brings up privacy questions that need to be answered by the public and our leaders, not by the people whose job is to collect as much useful information as possible.

Re:For the sake of national security (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45690615)

I feel like the NSA and the rest of the intelligence apparatuses have gotten to a point where the security of this nation trumps any man made law. If this nation is of and for the people, who the hell is the NSA working for?

The NSA is working for the government. The government != the nation. When Edward Snowden committed treason against the government, he aided the enemy of the government: the nation: the people of the United States.

Re:For the sake of national security (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45690677)

They are the government.

Re:For the sake of national security (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45690929)

Right but the government is supposed to work for the nation.

Re:For the sake of national security (4, Insightful)

game kid (805301) | about a year ago | (#45691373)

...and it's not doing so, which is why the Snowdens and Mannings who hide within, ready to spill the beans and grind them into flavorful Bochinche coffee, should have the nation's support, respect, and honor.

genuine spirits cannot be duplicated (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45690497)

each one of us is an original. spiritless nazi clones can only feign a conscious conscience

How about kidnappings of Americans, from America? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45690505)

Kidnapped from an American company, on American soil, with coworkers paid off to not tell you that you had been scopolamined?

Good luck telling that one to law enforcement, trust me they won't call you back, even if you know the dates and locations and kidnappers.

Re:How about kidnappings of Americans, from Americ (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45690623)

Dude, you are smoking some strange stuff... I guess you are a moon landing denier and Obama Birther too?

What sucks is that the idiot might be right (3, Insightful)

raymorris (2726007) | about a year ago | (#45691287)

He sounds like the crazy person who two years ago claimed that the government is tracking all of our emails and phone calls. He probably also believes Vince Foster didn't shoot himself in the back of the head and then drive to that park. That's what's so aggravating about this NSA stuff - it shows that sometimes crazy conspiracy theories are true.

Re:How about kidnappings of Americans, from Americ (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45690661)

What in the actual fuck are you going on about? Did you post this in the wrong article?

NSA/CIA Chilling effects, billion lost. (5, Interesting)

hackus (159037) | about a year ago | (#45690533)

I can't see how anyone is surprised here.

Would you purchase anything made by USA companies now if you want your data secure and safe?

I gave up starting a cloud storage busines for companies hosting apps/storage because there is no way to claim you have a secure and safe storage system when the goon squad can come in with grenades and machine guns and blow the place up looking for any sort of activity they feel is not "legal".

Secondly, the whole idea that companies outsource I.T. operations to reduce cost can't be made any more with any western institution. The result?

About 40 people I was going to hire to start this business won't see the light of day.

This is not just me either. In the investment circles I follow lots of people are leaving or simply shelving plans for any sort of real I.T. services expansion in the USA.

Those companies that are left and do hosting, Amazon, Google, Microsoft are doing so only because they already share all of their clients data with the NSA/CIA and are permitted to exist as a result.

The whoel thing is fascist and there is no competition under those sorts of conditions.

-Hack

Re: NSA/CIA Chilling effects, billion lost. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45690653)

Heck, I don't trust hardware made *anywhere* at this point. I may assemble a TTL computer out of muxes and demuxes at this point.

Re: NSA/CIA Chilling effects, billion lost. (5, Funny)

Bing Tsher E (943915) | about a year ago | (#45690807)

Be careful. That chip is labeled as being a 74LS245 but it's really a PIC16F84 programmed to act as one.

Re: NSA/CIA Chilling effects, billion lost. (2)

EETech1 (1179269) | about a year ago | (#45690961)

Unless you made the logic gates yourself, how can you be certain your binary adder is not just an arm chip emulating a logic gate, that turns your binary counter into a satellite link and secretly shift your bits to the NSA when it detects it's not hooked up to a logic analyzer?

Upgrade your tinfoil hat man for fscks sake!

Re: NSA/CIA Chilling effects, billion lost. (1)

ChrisMaple (607946) | about a year ago | (#45691369)

Have fun with your 2 MHz clock rate.

Re:NSA/CIA Chilling effects, billion lost. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45690655)

I can't see how anyone is surprised here.

Would you purchase anything made by USA companies now if you want your data secure and safe?

I gave up starting a cloud storage busines for companies hosting apps/storage because there is no way to claim you have a secure and safe storage system when the goon squad can come in with grenades and machine guns and blow the place up looking for any sort of activity they feel is not "legal".

Secondly, the whole idea that companies outsource I.T. operations to reduce cost can't be made any more with any western institution. The result?

About 40 people I was going to hire to start this business won't see the light of day.

This is not just me either. In the investment circles I follow lots of people are leaving or simply shelving plans for any sort of real I.T. services expansion in the USA.

Those companies that are left and do hosting, Amazon, Google, Microsoft are doing so only because they already share all of their clients data with the NSA/CIA and are permitted to exist as a result.

The whoel thing is fascist and there is no competition under those sorts of conditions.

-Hack

The whole thing is delusional if you think for one second that other governments do not participate in almost identical monitoring of their own citizens.

The only difference today is that information has not been leaked and made known to the public.

I can't see how anyone is still that ignorant.

Re: NSA/CIA Chilling effects, billion lost. (2)

Nocturna81 (1427457) | about a year ago | (#45691187)

That's not what he's claiming, he says that now that people know about the nsa shenanigans they won't buy "USA made" it goods. Nowhere does he say that other governments don't spy, but as long as we don't know for sure they look like the better deal over the USA.

Re:NSA/CIA Chilling effects, billion lost. (2)

couchslug (175151) | about a year ago | (#45690727)

What method of encryption would make such a storage business reasonably safe?

For example, could you offer encrypted storage of senstive items and not hold the keys yourself? If the customer loses theirs they'd be locked out of their stuff, but no one else could get to it either.

Find a model where you can't help the pigs, and even if you suddenly wanted to, no problem.

Re:NSA/CIA Chilling effects, billion lost. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45690831)

>Would you purchase anything made by USA companies now if you want your data secure and safe?

Never stopped anyone from buying Chinese products and everyone already damn well knew what they were up to. Zing!

Re:NSA/CIA Chilling effects, billion lost. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45691155)

I trust C more than U.

Re:NSA/CIA Chilling effects, billion lost. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45691207)

>Would you purchase anything made by USA companies now if you want your data secure and safe?

Never stopped anyone from buying Chinese products and everyone already damn well knew what they were up to. Zing!

I call your bluff with an example countering your claim:
Chinese communication products banned from Australian Government project [abc.net.au]

Re:NSA/CIA Chilling effects, billion lost. (1)

Jim Sadler (3430529) | about a year ago | (#45690833)

Spying that can not be done from within the US can usually be done from outside the US by agencies that do not officially relate to the NSA. In other words laws to limit such activity would only be meaningful if we have universal enforcement from other nations. It is the same as the torture of POWs. If they are not tortured by us it is all too easy to hand them over to a nation that is happy to torture them for us. Such nations do not have limits on the methods used. This is surely going on right now and certainly went on in Vietnam as well.

Re:NSA/CIA Chilling effects, billion lost. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45690875)

I gave up starting a cloud storage busines for companies hosting apps/storage because...

No, you gave it up because you understand that you are not qualified to run such a business.

Re:NSA/CIA Chilling effects, billion lost. (4, Funny)

Subm (79417) | about a year ago | (#45690943)

About 40 people I was going to hire to start this business won't see the light of day.

Where do you keep these candidates and why not let them have some sunlight even if you don't hire them?

Re:NSA/CIA Chilling effects, billion lost. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45691033)

Probably a http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_site >_>

6.4 percent (4, Insightful)

edibobb (113989) | about a year ago | (#45690535)

IBM stock price (and market cap) dropped only 6.4 percent. This is just one more stupid shareholder lawsuit, some lawyers trying to make money when a company's stop price drops. It's nice that /. can contribute to the hype.

Re:6.4 percent (4, Informative)

edibobb (113989) | about a year ago | (#45690555)

In addition, IBM shares recovered almost all their 6.4 percent loss within a month!

Re:6.4 percent (3, Insightful)

drnb (2434720) | about a year ago | (#45690731)

In addition, IBM shares recovered almost all their 6.4 percent loss within a month!

You don't understand. That recovery should have been an additional increase from the pre-decline price. These investors should not be even, they should be up 6.4%. Don't you understand that if stocks go down someone did something wrong and needs to be sued?

Re:6.4 percent (2)

edibobb (113989) | about a year ago | (#45690887)

I understand that stocks drop temporarily on bad news. Class action lawyers solicit clients who happened to sell when the price was down, incurring a loss. So much the better if this happened to be a institution. If an award or settlement eventually occurs, years down the road, the clients may recover part of their losses, which is likely to be much less than 6.4% of their investments, while the law firm will make hundreds of millions of dollars.

Re:6.4 percent (1)

whoever57 (658626) | about a year ago | (#45690849)

In addition, IBM shares recovered almost all their 6.4 percent loss within a month!

IANAL.

Some people sold their stock during the dip. If the dip was due to a risk that the management had an obligation to disclose earlier, then, those people who sold during the dip may be entitled to compensation.

Re:6.4 percent (1)

edibobb (113989) | about a year ago | (#45690903)

Yes, this is the party line of the class action lawyer. "May be entitled to compensation" and "let the courts decide" are terms commonly used in East Texas.

Re:6.4 percent (1)

Nivag064 (904744) | about a year ago | (#45690793)

"only 6.4 percent"

That is significant, more so as this is a start of a long term downward trend!

Re:6.4 percent (1)

edibobb (113989) | about a year ago | (#45690905)

Are you hallucinating? The downward trend for IBM began in March.

Re:6.4 percent (1)

Nivag064 (904744) | about a year ago | (#45691121)

Which year?

Not the point (1)

cultiv8 (1660093) | about a year ago | (#45690837)

This is the first lawsuit I've heard where investors are suing companies over NSA spying. I hope it's not the last.

Re:6.4 percent (1)

tokencode (1952944) | about a year ago | (#45690909)

As an investor in publically traded companies, you are supposed to have accurate information on which to base your decision to invest. If a company is knowingly misrepresenting the facts, they absolutely should be sued.

Re:6.4 percent (3, Insightful)

Todd Knarr (15451) | about a year ago | (#45691391)

Unfortunately for the investor, the NSA would have ordered IBM not to reveal that information. IBM's obligations to investors don't trump it's obligation to obey the law, even when the law is wrong-headed. And good luck suing the NSA.

Fatcat Pensioners. (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45690549)

1: Pot calling Kettle Black; The Sheriffs actively participated in illegal wiretaps and clandestine domestic operations and were even trained by the federal agencies on how to handle protests and riots. See: Katrina. They knew damn well who IBM was in bed with.

2: Predatory Societies always grow until they run out of livestock, then they turn on each other. A predator knows no other skill, and their skill can't make bread. They know what they are doing is immoral and they're doing it anyway because it's the only thing they know how to do.

3: We're about to find if NSA Gag letters are permissible in court, and indemnify executive management from failing to disclose them on 8-k and 10-k filings...

4: A rotten corrupt government doesn't produce pension funds for police; it STEALS your pension irregardless of who you are or who you work for then they try to pump and dump, crash and buy, cajole, mind-fuck and carrot and stick an ever greater percentage of the economy and people's lives under their control for whatever demented reason all while dangling numbers on a piece of paper in-front of your face. Now that you're riled up, as elected officials ya'll should start putting banksters and financial wizards in jail and properly protecting the productive side of the economy who pays your paycheck from the unproductive, self-destructive side. Your pension is gone, ya might as well ruin the lives of the people who stole it and have some dignity when you're a 70 year old mall cop.

5: IBM is now a mostly Indian company that produces services and products nobody wants; the only companies that stick with them are their institutional partners and even THEY are leaving them behind due to financial necessity. You can only sell so many computers and services with 50-150% markup because "there's magic inside we can't describe". Their days of coasting along on reputation are nearing a very abrupt end.

or to put it another way (0)

nimbius (983462) | about a year ago | (#45690593)

rampant pension mismanagement in neoconservative louisiana proves the free market is the cause of, and solution to, all of lifes problems if your jackboots march to the drum of Ayn Rand.

There is no opportunity in China ... (4, Insightful)

drnb (2434720) | about a year ago | (#45690685)

There is no real business opportunity for US or European companies in China. If your business is major infrastructure or major industry you will experience a decline in business once sufficient experience and technology has been transferred to Chinese partners. Ex GE moves some jet engine manufacturing to China to sell to Chinese airlines while the Chinese government is simultaneously releasing its 10 year plan to replace foreign designed aviation components with domestically "designed" components.

The NSA is a convenient public excuse for China doing what it had planned to do all along.

institutional investors (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45690711)

While anyone can file a lawsuit, being sued by an institutional investor is a little different than being sued by John Q. Disgruntled.

Umm... it is?

Not Really (1)

mlookaba (2802163) | about a year ago | (#45690915)

"While anyone can file a lawsuit, being sued by an institutional investor is a little different than being sued by John Q. Disgruntled. "

Not in this case. Men in black will make the case disappear or be dismissed for trumped up reasons.

Good luck with that.

Obama is responsible for the NSA (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45690925)

If people want to blame the NSA spying scandal on anyone, it should be Obama. He knew and approved of their actions. He should be held accountable.

Re:Obama is responsible for the NSA (1)

haruchai (17472) | about a year ago | (#45691015)

This goes back a lot further than the Obama administration.

Re:Obama is responsible for the NSA (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45691069)

He's expanding it.

Re:Obama is responsible for the NSA (1)

BlueStrat (756137) | about a year ago | (#45691253)

This goes back a lot further than the Obama administration.

So what? Who started it or how long it's gone on means precisely zip, zero, nada, aside from identifying additional guilty parties for the exercise of justice.

He's the asshole supposedly in charge NOW, with the power to stop it NOW.

That excuse is a tactic used by a 6-yo to escape the consequences of and blame for bad behaviors, actions, & decisions.

Strat

Re:Obama is responsible for the NSA (1)

Rob the Bold (788862) | about a year ago | (#45691211)

If people want to blame the NSA spying scandal on anyone, it should be Obama. He knew and approved of their actions. He should be held accountable.

And it's Congress' job to rein in the President. Congress won't rein in this president. They didn't rein in the previous one. They'll give a pass to the next one, too. Separation of powers was supposed to prevent one branch from "going rogue". That's broken now. Both parties have had opportunities in Congress to go after Presidents in the other party -- it hasn't happened, it's not gonna happen.

The gift that keeps on giving (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45691219)

As usual, Time Magazine's person of the year is chosen to avoid the uncomfortable truth. Yes, Snodown's kicked off the biggest institutional reform since the invention of the telephone. Slashdotters have wondered how the general public can be educated about domestic spying. It turns out, pissing off billionaires and lawyers with dollar signs in their eyes is the way to get some sense of balance back.

IBM is down cuz they lost govt contracts to AMZN (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#45691303)

When IBM tanked it was when it was revealed Amazon cloud was getting the big fat DC contracts that used to go to IBM without much challenge...China had nothing to do with it. Desperate attempt by some losers. Hell, I have IBM stock but I don't care since it still pays the same dividend, in fact the dividend has been going up. Who gives a fuck about the share price on bluechip buy n' hold dividend stocks...

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