- The Washington Times - Monday, September 8, 2008

NEW YORK

The chief executive of NebuAd Inc., whose Web tracking technology raised a privacy backlash, has left to be chief financial officer at VeriFone Holdings Inc., a maker of payment processing equipment.

VeriFone said Tuesday that Robert Dykes will become senior vice president, effective immediately. He will become CFO after the company files its financial report for the latest quarter.

NebuAd has marketed a technology that allowed Internet service providers to track their subscribers’ Web-surfing habits and deliver ads presumed to meet their interests. Several U.S. ISPs tried out the technology, but most have withdrawn as privacy advocates and members of Congress raised concerns.

NebuAd said its new CEO will be Kira Makagon, who has been the company’s president. Mr. Dykes will remain chairman. NebuAd also said it would broaden its market to encompass “more conventional media channels.”

Mr. Dykes faces another challenge at VeriFone. The previous CFO, Barry Zwarenstein, stepped down after the San Jose, Calif., company uncovered a series of financial misstatements that exaggerated its profits during the first three quarters of fiscal 2007. The mess is under investigation by the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Carriers keeping up with Internet traffic

NEW YORK | International Internet traffic kept growing in the past year, but at a slower rate than before, and carriers more than kept pace by adding more capacity, a research firm says.

The findings by TeleGeography Research are important because some U.S. Internet service providers say they are struggling with the expansion of online traffic and are imposing monthly download limits on heavy users. The figures from TeleGeography don’t exactly correlate to average Internet usage by U.S. households but give an indication of wider trends.

TeleGeography said traffic grew 53 percent from mid-2007 to mid-2008, down from a growth rate of 61 percent in the previous 12 months.

Growth on long-haul lines in the U.S. was even slower, at 47 percent. The big increase came in regions where the Internet is less mature. Traffic between the U.S. and Latin America more than doubled.

Meanwhile, international Internet capacity on ocean-spanning optical fibers increased 62 percent. On average, Internet traffic now uses just 29 percent of the available bandwidth.

TeleGeography research director Alan Mauldin noted that the number of new broadband subscribers has been falling since 2001, but that the overall increase in Internet traffic remains high because of increasing demand for online video.

New door locks can be controlled online

DENVER | What if locking the front door of your home while you’re away were as easy as hopping on the Internet?

At the CEDIA Expo in Denver last week, Ingersoll-Rand Co.’s Schlage unit showed off door locks that can be wirelessly set or opened via the Internet, from a mobile phone or a computer.

The battery-operated locks have keypads that are locked and unlocked with 4-digit access codes (or old-fashioned keys, as a backup). Users who forget to lock a door and want to enter their code remotely can hop onto a Web portal or an application added to their mobile phones.

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