Good morning! This is the tech news you need to know this Thursday.
- Dozens of high-profile Twitter accounts, including Obama, Biden, Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos, and Kanye, were hacked in a colossal bitcoin scam. The scammers may have made off with as much as $120,000.
- Twitter says the bitcoin hackers gained access to its "internal systems and tools." The company appeared to discount allegations that the attack was knowingly enabled by one of its employees, as one outlet had claimed.
- Apple won an appeal in an EU court against paying $15 billion in back taxes to Ireland. The EU ordered Apple to cough up the tax in 2016 after ruling that the firm had benefited from illegal state aid from Ireland, a low-tax regime.
- Airbnb has reportedly told employees it's resuming plans to go public as business slowly bounces back. Airbnb, which was reportedly losing money even before the pandemic, saw business plummet as travel ground to a halt.
- The US will impose visa restrictions on certain employees of the Chinese telecom giant Huawei, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced on Wednesday. Pompeo said the US is eyeing other tech firms as well, "whether it's TikTok or any of the other Chinese communications platforms, apps, infrastructure."
- The US Senate will consider banning TikTok on federal employees' phones. The US Senate subcommittee dealing with issues of homeland security is expected to vote on the bill at a hearing on July 22.
- Clearview AI, the facial recognition company that scraped billions of faces off the internet, was hit with a data privacy complaint in Europe. The complaint was filed by Zoé Vilain, the chief privacy and strategy officer at privacy app Jumbo, after she discovered her face was in Clearview AI's database.
- $1.6 billion challenger bank Monzo has launched paid premium accounts with an eye on profitability. Monzo Plus offers customers 1% interest and the ability to withdraw more cash abroad among other benefits.
- Swedish electric scooter startup Voi has raised an $30 million in funding, an extension to its previous $85 million Series B round. Voi says it was profitable in June, and hopes to be consistently profitable in 2022.
- PlayStation 5 production reportedly doubled as demand for gaming is surging due to coronavirus lockdowns. The reported increase amounts to 10 million PlayStation 5 consoles before March 2021.
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