10 things in tech you need to know today

10 things in tech you need to know today
Alibaba founder Jack Ma in January 2018.Wang HE/Getty Images

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    1. Cruise raised $2 billion. Microsoft is among the backers for GM's self-driving car firm, which is now valued at $30 billion.

    2. EV maker Rivian raised $2.65 billion. The round was led by T. Rowe Price, and according to CNBC the firm hopes to bring all-electric pickups to market in 2021.

    3. India wants WhatsApp to reverse its new data-sharing policy. India's IT ministry sent an email to WhatsApp chief Will Cathcart asking the firm to "withdraw the proposed changes" to its terms of service that appeared to require users to share personal data like phone numbers and locations, TechCrunch reported.

    4. Exclusive: The UK government told TikTok who its new Chinese ambassador was before the appointment was confirmed. TikTok staff were asked by the government to be "discreet" about this "strictly confidential" information.

    5. Jack Ma briefly resurfaced. Ma appeared during a videoconference on Wednesday after weeks of speculation about his whereabouts, according to a 50-second clip released by the Global Times, a Chinese government-owned English-language newspaper.

    6. Google is investigating one of its AI ethicists. A Google spokesperson said Margaret Mitchell's account "had exfiltrated thousands of files and shared them with multiple external accounts."

    7. Parler is back online thanks to an unfussy Russian service. Parler's static webpage uses an internet protocol address owned by DDoS-Guard, which has been linked to racist, far-right, and conspiracy sites.

    8. SolarWinds hackers have expanded their data gathering. FireEye researchers said hackers are using the SolarWinds breach of companies' physical servers to move into their Microsoft cloud applications.

    9. SpaceX's first Starlink mission got delayed. The Falcon 9 rocket, holding 60 Starlink satellites ready to beam internet down to Earth, was scheduled for blast-off on Monday morning from Kennedy Space Center in Florida, but "unfavorable weather conditions in the recovery area" prevented the launch.

    10. Google backed a startup run by Tony Blair's son. Multiverse, founded by Euan Blair, raised $44 million in a round backed by Google Ventures.