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In Brief:Companies feel unprepared for EU data protection rules 

A vast majority (82%) of all business and IT professionals responsible for data protection are concerned about compliance with the European Union’s GDPR, the General Data Protection Regulation, saying they expect to be insufficiently prepared when the regulation goes into effect in April 2018. The comes from a survey by Dimensional Research for Dell among business and IT professionals in the US, Asia-Pacific and Europe. Companies in the Benelux especially are not sufficiently versed in the consequences of the new privacy regulation.Among all respondents, more than 80 percent say they have little or no knowledge of the GDPR. Around 70 percent say either that their company is not prepared or that they are not sure about preparedness. Only 3 percent say their company has a plan.

***The Postal and Telecommunications Regulatory Authority of Zimbabwe (POTRAZ) has said it is working with local cellcos in an effort to lower prices for mobile data services. According to a report from TechZim, the country has the third most expensive data tariffs in Africa, and this is hindering both consumer access and businesses. The watchdog says it hopes its discussions with operators will lead to the introduction of cheaper data services within the next few months. The bulk of internet access in Zimbabwe is via mobile networks, with the country of more than 13 million people home to only around 100,000 fixed broadband subscribers by mid-2016. There are three mobile network operators: Econet Wireless, NetOne and Telecel.

***The number of Europeans who regularly use a mobile device for payments has tripled since 2015, reaching 54 percent this year from 18 percent, according to Visa’s 2016 Digital Payments Study, which looked at over 36,000 online consumers in 19 European countries. One year ago, 38 percent of the people surveyed said they had never used a mobile device to make payments and had no plans to do so. That number has now fallen to 12 percent. Developing markets passed traditional payment methods to adopt new technologies faster while developed markets, and in particular the Nordics, are evolving to new technologies at differing paces.

***Less than a month after turning down the offer of a 4G licence, Orange Egypt is now set to acquire a concession after re-opening negotiations with local authorities. According to Bloomberg, which cites comments made by Orange Egypt CEO Jean Marc Harion at a press conference in Cairo, the cellco will pay USD484 million for 20MHz of LTE-suitable spectrum, along with a further USD11.3 million for a licence allowing it to offer fixed voice connectivity over the network belonging to Telecom Egypt (TE). Orange has, however, postponed a decision on whether to acquire an international gateway licence.

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