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The goal of the "Free and Open Source Security Audit" (FOSSA) pilot
project is to increase the security of Free Software used by
European institutions. The FSFE has been following the project since
early 2014. Recently, the European Commission
published the first round of deliverables based on their
interviews with stakeholders. While the FSFE is in full support of
this European initiative, the implementation of the project leaves us
concerned. FOSSA's first analysis lacks an understanding of Free
Software; it includes several factual errors; and it was based on poorly
conducted general interviews. FSFE President Matthias Kirschner and
Representative Mirko Böehm, who were both interviewed for the project,
have summarised the most evident shortcomings in the recent
FOSSA publications. However, looking from another perspective: FOSSA is
still in its first stages and with the help of more Free Software
experts, we can get FOSSA going in the right direction. The FSFE will
continue to closely follow FOSSA's upcoming implementations. In case you have
any comments or feedback concerning the initiative, please do not
hesitate to share your thoughts with us on our
discussion list or directly to the attention of Matthias Kirschner.
This way, we will make sure that all relevant concerns will be communicated
to the EU.
The government of Italy is planning to
revise the provision in the Digital Administration Law that requires
public administrations to prioritise reusable, Free Software-based
software solutions. The changes also concern the publication and
maintenance of a list of open ICT standards that are used by public administrations. Following
this proposal would mean the government will no longer require the national agency
for the Digitisation of the Public Sector (AGID) to issue binding opinions on
interoperability, or to prioritise Free Software. Members of the
Italian Parliament have raised their concerns in regard to the proposed changes.
FSFE's General Counsel Carlo Piana has previously
Italian authorities on the guidelines of implementation of Digital Administration Law
, and contested the government's plans in his letter to Tech Economy (in Italian).
From August 1st, a new German law will allow users to freely choose
their router device. The FSFE wants to ensure everybody knows about their new
rights and is
asking users to report cases in which internet service providers (ISP) try to
avoid the new regulation. The new regulation was designed to eliminate
previous ambiguity around the practice of "compulsory routers"
imposed on the users by ISPs. However, it is necessary to ensure that
the new law is implemented.
If you are a client of a German internet provider, we ask you to exercise
your new right and start using an alternative device, ideally one that runs
Free Software. Please provide us feedback whether you had any issues about
running a new router and help us to collect it in our
In case you don't have an alternative device at hand, the FSFE can also provide some testing devices.
Please refer to our wiki page for more information on this.
The European Commission will reward existing IT solutions
that have been developed and shared by public administrations, and that
can be further reused across Europe due to the use of Free Software licenses.
Adullact, the French organisation for public administrations using free
software, set up Comptoir-du-Libre.org, a website that aims to
help public administrations’ IT decision-makers to switch to Free Software.
The city council of the Spanish city of Ciudad Real voted in favor of a
resolution to switch all 400 workstations of the city's administration
to Free Software (Spanish). The Open Knowledge Foundation Germany, in
cooperation with the German Federal Ministry of Education and
Research, started the Prototype fund, which supports Free Software
projects with a grant of up to €30.000, available for anyone with primary residence in Germany.
Thanks to all the volunteers,
Fellows and corporate donors who enable our work,
your editors Polina Malaja and Erik Albers, FSFE