Want to Sell Fighter Jets to India? Make Them There.

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The Indian government is requiring that most of the planes it buys under the new contract be assembled in India. In other defense deals, the Modi government is taking a less strict approach, encouraging — but not mandating — foreign arms manufacturers to team up with local companies to make parts, or entire products, within the country.

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi arriving on Thursday at the defense conference in Chennai, where he spoke about “the strategic imperative to make in India, to make for India and to supply to the world from India.” Credit Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

In essence, India wants foreign companies to transfer key technologies to their local partners so they can eventually do it all themselves.

“Today we live in an interconnected world where the efficiency of supply chain is a key factor in any manufacturing enterprise,” Mr. Modi said on Thursday in a speech at India’s defense exposition, held every two years, this time in the southeastern coastal city of Chennai. “Therefore the strategic imperative to make in India, to make for India and to supply to the world from India is stronger than ever before.”

Throughout the show, potential bidders for the fighter aircraft contract were showing off their capabilities in hangar-sized, air-conditioned tents.

Boeing, which intends to submit a bid to supply its F/A-18 Hornets, announced that it would partner with the government-owned aircraft maker Hindustan Aeronautics Limited and one of India’s largest conglomerates, Mahindra Group, to build the planes locally. At a booth at the show, it was offering visitors a chance to fly a Hornet simulator.

Lockheed, a leading rival, has partnered with Tata Sons, another Indian conglomerate, to pitch its F-16s. As part of the bid, the American company will offer to move its sole F-16 production line, currently in Greenville, S.C., to India to make the planes at a joint factory with Tata.

About 250 South Carolina workers could lose their jobs with the move, which would not occur for several years. But Lockheed said there was little other demand now for F-16s, which were originally designed in the 1970s, and that India’s large order would support jobs at American parts suppliers.

The Trump administration — which is threatening a trade war with China in part over that country’s demand that American companies transfer technology to Chinese firms — has been more supportive of the concept in India.

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A display for Brahmos missiles, a Russian-Indian joint venture. Credit Arun Sankar/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

“The U.S. is going to be very forward-leaning in technology, the transfer of technology, and indigenous production that we can offer to India,” Kenneth Juster, the United States ambassador to India, told a panel at the conference in Chennai on Wednesday.

He added that the United States planned to offer India “certain technology and platforms that we have offered to no other country in the world.” A fighter jet deal could lead to even more cooperation, he said.

Such sharing of sensitive technology is something the Russians have historically been reluctant to do, said Sameer Patil, director of the Center for International Security at Gateway House, a Mumbai think tank.

“Now the hope is that the private sector would get some technology transfer because the American partners have more confidence in the Indian ones,” he said.

The Trump administration sees weapons sales and technology transfers as part of a strategy to rely more on New Delhi to counterbalance Beijing in Asia.

At this point, India’s military is vastly outspent by China’s. Beijing unveiled a defense budget this year that was three times larger than New Delhi’s. However, India is investing in its navy, creating its own fleet of nuclear-powered submarines that American officials hope can help counter China’s navy, which has made vast inroads into the Indian Ocean.

After India gained independence in 1947, it decided to rely primarily on government-owned military suppliers for its needs. But those companies have a mixed record on quality, execution and technological innovation.

In some cases, the Indian military has not wanted to buy locally made products, the country’s defense minister, Nirmala Sitharaman, acknowledged on Wednesday. “It is their final call that I have to respect,” she said at a news conference.

So over the last few years, India has been encouraging the growth of private defense suppliers, from large industrial houses like Tata and Mahindra to hundreds of small and medium-sized companies.

The government is also requiring that foreign defense suppliers reinvest 30 percent of the value of their Indian contracts back in the country, a target that Mr. Modi said has largely been achieved during his tenure.

To help win an Indian contract for AH-64 Apache helicopters, Boeing started a joint venture with Tata to build the Apache fuselages in the central Indian city of Hyderabad. The factory will eventually be the sole supplier of that part for Boeing’s worldwide operations.

“It saved us money, gave Indians a capacity they didn’t have before, and it opened the doors for a $3.1 billion sale for us,” Pratyush Kumar, president of Boeing India, said in an interview.

Tata, a 150-year-old conglomerate with interests in everything from truck manufacture to management consulting, has a lot to learn about the defense business, according to Banmali Agrawala, its president of infrastructure, defense and aerospace. Partnerships like the ones with Boeing and Lockheed, he said, were important steps.

“We want to make sure whatever we do is globally competitive and meets global standards,” he said. “Let’s first gain some expertise by plugging ourselves into the global supply chain.”

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After Cambridge Analytica, Privacy Experts Get to Say ‘I Told You So’

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The outcry over data privacy has been so strong that it pushed Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s chief executive, into testifying on Capitol Hill this week over the company’s failures to protect users’ information. Protesters rallied outside the Capitol during his testimony. Someone even arrived at one of the hearings dressed as a Russian troll.

In their own lives, privacy experts are now fielding a spike in calls from their relatives asking them for advice about protecting their personal data. Engineers are discussing new privacy projects with them. Even teenagers are paying attention to what they have to say.

For many of the developers, this is the right time to push ahead with testing more privacy solutions, including more advanced advertising blockers, peer-to-peer browsers that decentralize the internet, new encryption techniques, and data unions that let users pool their data and sell it themselves. Others want to treat tech giants more as information fiduciaries, which have a legal responsibility to protect user data.

And for the first time, many privacy experts think internet users will be more willing to put up with a little more inconvenience in return for a lot more privacy.

“This is the first blink of awakening of the world to a danger that’s been present for a long time, which is that we are exposed,” Mr. Searls said. “Cambridge Analytica is old, old news to privacy folks. They’re just the tip of the crapberg.”

John Scott-Railton, who researches digital rights and privacy at the Citizen Lab at the University of Toronto, said he recently thought back to all the PowerPoint presentations and papers he had given and seen that cautioned about how third parties might access and abuse user data.

“It didn’t stick until now,” he said. “Now it’s changed, or at least people nod along when we talk about it.”

Neema Singh Guliani, legislative counsel at the American Civil Liberties Union, recalled years of efforts by the A.C.L.U. to get Facebook to monitor how third parties were using data. Yet few paid attention at the time, even though the group specifically called out Facebook’s quizzes in 2009. (Cambridge Analytica used a third-party quiz app from an independent researcher to harvest Facebook users’ data.)

The social network has said it will investigate many third-party apps that have had access to large amounts of Facebook users’ information. Nonetheless, the A.C.L.U. is pushing for users to have tighter control over what Facebook apps can do and arguing that Facebook ought to audit its developers. The organization also believes that more privacy protections should be enshrined in law.

“We’re having the conversation now that we should have had over a decade ago,” Ms. Singh Guliani said.

Some privacy experts are prepared for disappointment. There have been privacy scandals before that did not lead to sea changes. For example, Google once collected private Wi-Fi information as it was building out Google Maps. The outrage over that did not have a lasting effect on the Silicon Valley company’s massive data collection effort.

But this Facebook scandal seems to be enduring even in the new frenetic news cycle.

“This has kept the national attention for what, three or four weeks now?” said Allie Bohm, policy counsel at Public Knowledge, a nonprofit in Washington that works to promote an open internet. “It really feels like, hey, we could get some stuff done.”

One of the reasons it has always been hard to get consumers interested in security and privacy is that the harms were vague and hard to understand. With Facebook and Cambridge Analytica, the harms are identifiable and frightening, said Ashkan Soltani, an independent researcher specializing in privacy and a former chief technologist of the Federal Trade Commission.

“Much like a car accident, the harms on social media are low-probablility events with extremely variable outcomes,” he said. “‘So what if my boss saw me doing a keg stand?’ But all of a sudden the ‘so what if’ becomes more serious — ‘I get denied insurance or my information is used by a nation state actor to manipulate me.’”

Cambridge Analytica’s work, which included using Facebook data to build psychological profiles of voters, tapped into an anxiety many Americans already had over the outcome of the 2016 presidential election.

“This one stuck because it was Trump, and we’re looking for someone to blame,” said Bruce Schneier, a cryptographer who runs the Schneier on Security blog and wrote “Data and Goliath: The Hidden Battles to Collect Your Data and Control Your World.” “If Hellmann’s mayonnaise did this, we’d be impressed.”

Privacy experts said this shift in public opinion was what they had been waiting for, because it is the only way to bring about change. Facebook will not willingly change its policies without pressure from shareholders or regulators, they added.

Historically, public opinion is “the crucible” for era-defining industry change, said Shoshana Zuboff, a professor at Harvard Business School and the author of a forthcoming book about tech platforms and power.

“If you go back to the rapaciousness and lawlessness of Gilded Age capitalism, it was the slow burn of public opinion that gradually gathered force and ultimately became the driving force that provided cover for dramatic new legislative and regulatory efforts,” she said. “Public opinion gave the Gilded Age a beginning, a middle, and an end.”

For Rohit Ghai, president of the cybersecurity firm RSA, whose SecurID technology has become an industry standard for companies protecting access to their internal systems, the change is evident even inside his home in San Jose, Calif.

He previously tried to talk to his 13-year-old daughter about data privacy and social media — even providing examples of how much the tech companies know about people and what they can do with that information. She shrugged him off.

Then the Cambridge Analytica revelations happened. For once, Mr. Ghai said, his teenager came to talk to him.

“She just asked me about Mark Zuckerberg,” he said. “That’s a sign.”

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Congress Grilled Mark Zuckerberg. But How Will It Regulate Facebook?: DealBook Briefing

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The biggest unanswered question, according to Kevin Roose of the NYT, is this: Does Congress have the political will to regulate tech companies?

Elsewhere in Facebook news: Elon Musk thinks social media needs regulations. Brian Chen’s reaction to what data Facebook had collected about him: “Yikes.” How the company targets you for advertising. Craig Newman argues in Another View that companies should be graded on their data security. And Cambridge Analytica’s interim C.E.O. is stepping down.

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Credit Tom Brenner/The New York Times

Businesses will miss Paul Ryan in Washington

The House speaker’s unexpected plan to retire has upended Republican politics in many ways, as the midterm elections approach. But it will also remove a voice for the business community in D.C.

Mr. Ryan has long been a champion for the kind of tax cuts favored by corporate chieftains like the Kochs, who in turn have donated to his efforts. Mr. Ryan was one of the biggest fund-raisers in the G.O.P., amassing $54 million for this year’s midterms alone. It’s unclear whether the claimants to his position can match that.

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Credit China Stringer Network/Reuters

Jack Ma on what a trade war would cost the U.S.

The Alibaba Group co-founder asserted in a WSJ op-ed today that the U.S. risked throwing away a huge opportunity to make money in China, because his home country may soon become an enormous consumer. From his piece:

“It is therefore ironic that the U.S. administration is waging a trade war at a time when the largest potential consumer market in the world is open for business.”

Yet economists point out that China is still an offender on intellectual-property theft and restricting its market to foreign companies — even as they worry that tariffs will backfire. (The Fed is worried, too.) But Larry Kudlow has urged calm, even as he didn’t rule out tariffs coming before negotiations with Beijing.

Elsewhere in trade: While the U.S. wants a Nafta deal by next month, Mexican negotiators are still balking at some Washington demands.

The political flyaround

• Robert Mueller corner: President Trump discussed firing Rod Rosenstein, who as deputy attorney general is the special counsel’s boss, again yesterday. Steve Bannon is urging the White House to do so. The Senate Judiciary Committee plans to vote on a bill to protect the special counsel in coming weeks.

• Why the publisher of the National Enquirer became entangled in the investigations into Michael Cohen: multiple accusations of payouts protecting Mr. Trump.

• The Fed and the Office of the Comptroller of Currency have proposed loosening the “supplemental leverage” ratio for big banks, potentially letting them hold less capital in reserve, but regulators were divided. (WSJ)

• Mike Pompeo, nominated for secretary of state, didn’t disclose last year that he owned a Kansas business that imported equipment from China. (McClatchy)

• Something must have mellowed John Boehner’s opposition to marijuana legalization: He’s joining the board of Acreage, a cannabis producer. (Bloomberg)

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Credit Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

Is Les Moonves’s job in danger if CBS resists a Viacom deal?

CBS shares fell yesterday after CNBC reported that Shari Redstone has considered replacing the company’s much-lauded C.E.O. if merger talks with his corporate siblings collapse.

She seems to be trying to dial back that threat: National Amusements, the Redstone family holding company that controls CBS and Viacom, said in a statement that it has “tremendous respect” for Mr. Moonves, “and it has always been our intention that he run a combined company.”

But in a deal process that is playing out unusually publicly, consider the gantlet thrown.

Elsewhere in Viacom: John Paulson’s hedge fund has become a top-25 shareholder there.

Elsewhere in media: A British regulator says Disney must bid for all of Sky if its deal with 21st Century Fox goes through. As Fusion Media Group faces steep budget cuts, Penske Media and IAC are reportedly circling some of its properties. AT&T pushed back on the Justice Department’s star witness at the Time Warner deal trial. Netflix withdrew from the Cannes film festival, after a rule change penalizing streaming films, and was sued by a shareholder over bonuses.

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Credit Toru Hanai/Reuters

Is SoftBank playing soccer?

After the NYT reported that a group of Middle Eastern and Asian investors has sought to essentially buy two new soccer tournaments from FIFA, the FT reports that one of the potential investors is Masa Son’s Japanese tech giant. What?

Through its $100 billion Vision Fund, SoftBank has pushed into businesses as wide-ranging as augmented reality, online commerce and dog walking. But the rationale for an investment like this one appears more elusive, other than being a play for lucrative sports content.

In other SoftBank news: Reuters points out that Mr. Son doesn’t have long to complete new merger talks between Sprint, which he controls, and T-Mobile USA — a wireless spectrum auction begins in November.

Elsewhere in deals: Starboard Value criticized Carl Icahn’s settlement with Newell Brands and touted its own board candidates. The parent of British Airways may bid for all of Norwegian Air Shuttle. Toys “R” Us has gotten several bids of more than $1 billion each for its Asian business. MuleSoft investors have sued to block the company’s $6.9 billion sale to Salesforce. FirstGroup, the owner of the Greyhound bus service, has rejected a takeover bid by Apollo Global Management. Zuora, a billing software maker, raised $154 million in its I.P.O.

The tech flyaround

• WeWork’s purchase of Naked Hub, a Chinese co-working space start-up, signals its ambitions to expand in China. (Bloomberg)

• Tesla faced criticism for blaming the driver of a Model X that crashed last month while its driver-assistance program was on. (Bloomberg)

• The S.E.C. is reportedly preparing a crackdown on initial coin offerings. (Fox Business)

• Why Chinese ecommerce companies are building physical stores. Pinduoduo, a Chinese group-buying discount site, has reportedly raised $1 billion from existing investors like Sequoia Capital China at a $15 billion valuation. And the NYT Magazine’s Letter of Recommendation extols the pleasures of AliExpress.

• Revolut, a popular payments app, has reportedly raised money from DST Global at a $1.4 billion valuation. (Recode)

• JPMorgan Chase has invested in AccessFintech, a start-up offering software to improve banks’ trading. And OneChronos, whose founders include a former Goldman Sachs trader, wants to use A.I. to create complex trades more cheaply.

• Japan has a new source of rare earth metals, used in batteries and electric vehicles: deposits in its waters. (WSJ)

• Reddit’s C.E.O. said that racist posts weren’t against the company’s rules. Outcry ensued. (The Verge)

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Israel Hernandez Credit Stephen Crowley/The New York Times

Revolving door

• HNA Group has hired Israel Hernandez, a former Commerce Department official in the Trump administration, as its head of international corporate affairs. (FT)

Andrew Tyrie, a former British lawmaker, has been appointed the head of the Competition and Markets Authority. (FT)

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John Paulson Credit Fred R. Conrad/The New York Times

Quote of the day

“It is safe to say it is one of the largest tax bills on earned income in history.”

Henry Bregstein of the law firm Katten Muchin Rosenman, on the $1 billion John Paulson owes the I.R.S. for his hugely profitable bet against subprime mortgages.

The speed read

• China is emerging as a world leader in cell therapies, which could help its biotechnology industry challenge the U.S. (FT)

• Elizabeth Holmes has written to Theranos shareholders asking for more money and saying the company may have to default on a $100 million loan from Fortress Investment Group. (BuzzFeed)

• Fidelity Investments is making its advice fees more transparent. (WSJ)

• Trading in volatility may be creating a feedback loop that makes markets more unstable. (FT)

• A start-up, Truework, aims to take on Equifax in the business of answering verification requests on behalf of employers. (NYT)

• A California court has awarded a woman $6.4 million in a revenge porn case, one of the biggest such judgments ever. (NYT)

• The $105 billion blunder at Samsung Securities continues to rock markets in South Korea and the government has been petitioned to ban short selling after employees sold the so-called “ghost stock” they were issued. (Bloomberg)

We’d love your feedback. Please email thoughts and suggestions to bizday@nytimes.com.

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Victims of Madoff Ponzi Scheme to Receive Millions More in Compensation

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Half of the $4 billion the Justice Department hopes to distribute to victims comes from the government’s aggressive move to seize the assets not only of Mr. Madoff and his family, but also of the wealthy investors who over the years cashed out billions from the fund, profits that turned out to be fictions. The other half came from J.P. Morgan Chase, which was accused of having ignored red flags while it acted as Mr. Madoff’s bank.

The practice of seizing assets, known as civil asset forfeiture, has become more prevalent under Attorney General Jeff Sessions, a practice that has drawn criticism from the left and the right. But it has benefited victims of Mr. Madoff’s financial scam.

“In one of the most notorious and unconscionable financial crimes in history, Bernie Madoff robbed tens of thousands of individuals, pension plans, charitable organizations and others, all the while funding a lavish personal lifestyle,” Mr. Sessions said in a statement. “We continue to work to compensate those he defrauded.”

In December 2008 Mr. Madoff told his sons that the investment advisory business he founded in 1960 had been a massive fraud. After his family notified the authorities, he ultimately pleaded guilty to 11 counts of criminal financial activity and was sentenced to 150 years in prison. Both of his sons have since died and his wife, Ruth, is estranged.

The firm’s collapse claimed thousands of victims including pension funds, foundations, a philanthropy established by the Holocaust survivor Elie Wiesel, and wealthy individuals like the actors Kevin Bacon and Kyra Sedgwick.

The Justice Department has approved more than 39,000 petitions for compensation.

In a separate effort, a court-appointed trustee, Irving Picard, has repaid about $11 billion to victims who filed a class-action lawsuit against Mr. Madoff. Much of that money has come from the process of winding down the financial firm and redistributing the assets to customers.

Not long after Mr. Madoff was arrested, Mr. Picard began liquidating the disgraced financier’s firm. Mr. Picard cannot give investors the fake profits they had been misled to believe they had earned, but he hopes to return most of their principal.

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The Shift: Facebook Is Complicated. That Shouldn’t Stop Lawmakers.

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“It’s never an issue of the members being able to do it — their staff is often incredibly dedicated and can dig into these issues,” said Ashkan Soltani, a former chief technologist at the Federal Trade Commission. The challenge, Mr. Soltani said, is that there’s a “lost in translation” problem of trying to condense complex, multifaceted issues into easily digested sound bites that will play well with constituents.

“This isn’t just about news,” Mr. Soltani said of Facebook’s issues. “It’s not just about privacy and commercialization, it’s not just about political speech. It’s all of those things and more.”

If Congress wants to rein in Facebook’s enormous power — and the questions lawmakers asked left little doubt that it does — then the first step is identifying what, specifically, they think is wrong with Facebook.

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Offices at the Facebook campus in Menlo Park, Calif. Congressional hearings this week proved that a groundswell of support is building on Capitol Hill to regulate Facebook and other internet companies. Credit Jason Henry for The New York Times

Is it that Facebook is too cavalier about sharing user data with outside organizations?

Is it that Facebook collects too much data about users in the first place?

Is it that Facebook is promoting addictive messaging products to children?

Is it that Facebook’s news feed is polarizing society, pushing people to ideological fringes?

Is it that Facebook is too easy for political operatives to exploit, or that it does not do enough to keep false news and hate speech off users’ feeds?

Is it that Facebook is simply too big, or a monopoly that needs to be broken up?

All of these are concerns lawmakers brought up during this week’s hearings, and they would all require different and narrowly tailored regulatory solutions.

For example, Congress’s goal may be to stop outside companies from getting access to people’s Facebook data — avoiding another scandal like the one involving Cambridge Analytica, the political consulting firm that improperly obtained data on up to 87 million Facebook users. Lawmakers could propose a bill that would prevent large social media platforms from opening themselves up to outside developers. (They should note, though, that Facebook has already limited the data available to outside companies, so this would not necessarily have the intended effect.)

Congress could address the issue of data collection by adopting European-style data protection policies, requiring stronger user controls for personal information or requiring social networks to delete certain types of user data automatically after a given time.

If it wanted to, Congress could address the issue of hateful content by adopting strict hate speech laws like the ones that exist in Germany, which make social platforms liable if they fail to remove hate speech in a timely manner.

It could address the problem of transparency in political ads by passing the Honest Ads Act, a bill that would subject online political ads to similar disclosure standards as TV and radio political ads. (Mr. Zuckerberg has already indicated that he supports the measure, so this should be an easy one.)

Or, if it decides that Facebook is just too darn big, Congress could spearhead an effort to break it up.

All of these are theoretically possible outcomes, depending on which of Facebook’s many issues lawmakers decide to address. Lawmakers do not need to be computer scientists, or to come up with an omnibus bill to address all of Facebook’s flaws in one fell swoop. It could pick off one issue at a time, consult with the experts and take a piecemeal approach.

But first, it needs to understand which pieces need fixing, and how to carry out fixes without creating unintended consequences. And it needs to demonstrate that it has the political resolve to push these changes through, even as the tech industry furiously lobbies against them, as it undoubtedly will.

Perhaps the most dispiriting exchange all week was when Senator Lindsey Graham, Republican of South Carolina, asked Mr. Zuckerberg about Facebook’s market power, and the notion that it is too dominant for any other social network to compete with.

“Is there an alternative to Facebook in the private sector?” Mr. Graham asked.

Mr. Zuckerberg dodged the question, saying that people use lots of apps to communicate.

“You don’t feel like you have a monopoly?” Mr. Graham wondered.

“It certainly doesn’t feel that way to me,” Mr. Zuckerberg said.

By raising the issue of Facebook’s lack of competition, Mr. Graham was circling around an important point. Facebook has, indeed, taken steps to acquire or crush multiple apps that have posed a competitive threat. It even runs a service called Onavo, which allows it to keep tabs on which other apps its users are using and functions as a kind of early-warning system for possible competitors.

But when it came time to draw the conclusion his questions had been leading to — that Facebook’s primary problem was its size, and that regulation should address its anticompetitive tendencies — Mr. Graham pulled his punches, even asking Mr. Zuckerberg for advice about regulating his own company.

“Would you work with us in terms of what regulations you think are necessary in your industry?” Mr. Graham asked.

This week’s hearings proved that a groundswell of support is building on Capitol Hill to regulate Facebook and other internet companies. But until Congress stops asking these companies how they want to be regulated and starts making its own decisions about what problems it wants to fix, its targets will continue to slip through its fingers.

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Investigators Focus on Another Trump Ally: The National Enquirer

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Now the tabloid company has been drawn into a sweeping federal investigation of Mr. Cohen’s activities, including efforts to head off potentially damaging stories about Mr. Trump during his run for the White House. In one instance, The Enquirer bought but did not publish a story about an alleged extramarital relationship years earlier with the presidential candidate, an unusual decision for a scandal sheet.

The federal inquiry could pose serious legal implications for the president and his campaign committee. It also presents thorny questions about A.M.I.’s First Amendment protections, and whether its record in supporting Mr. Trump somehow opens the door to scrutiny usually reserved for political organizations.

A search warrant federal prosecutors in New York served to Mr. Cohen this week requests, among other things, all communications between him, Mr. Pecker and Dylan Howard, the business’s chief content officer. The company was in touch with Mr. Cohen, The New York Times previously reported, as it pursued its deal to acquire the rights to a former Playboy model’s story about an affair with Mr. Trump.

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Donald J. Trump in 2014 with his close friend David J. Pecker, chairman of American Media Inc., which publishes The Enquirer. Credit Patrick McMullan/PatrickMcMullan.com

The company is also facing a Federal Election Commission complaint claiming that the $150,000 payment to the woman, Karen McDougal, represented an illegal campaign contribution. A.M.I. is in the process of responding.

A.M.I. has denied any wrongdoing while also saying its cooperation with investigators will not extend beyond its constitutionally protected status as a news organization.

“It’s easy to look down at the work product of celebrity magazines and assume they are not entitled to same protections as the mainstream media,” said Cameron Stracher, a lawyer for A.M.I. “But the First Amendment was designed to protect all speech against government intrusion.”

In A.M.I., Mr. Trump has had an unusually powerful media backer, one that complements the supportive prime-time slate at Fox News.

The Enquirer had an average paid circulation of about 260,000 copies weekly in the second half of last year. That was a 13 percent drop from the previous six-month average, according to publisher data provided to the Alliance for Audited Media that was obtained by The Times.

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Mr. Trump with Karen McDougal, a former Playboy model who claims they had an affair. Mr. Pecker’s company suppressed the story during the presidential campaign.

But most of its sales come over the counter at $4.99 a copy. The Enquirer provides a useful platform for a politician seeking votes from average Americans, in a place candidates have gone to show their familiarity with everyday life: the supermarket checkout lane.

The family that controlled A.M.I. before Mr. Pecker took it over in 1999, the Popes, moved early on to secure prime placement for The Enquirer, The Globe, Us Weekly, OK! and other titles in magazine racks at grocery store cash registers.

In a statement, the company said, “If A.M.I. was ‘helpful’ to the president during the campaign, it was because the audience of The National Enquirer was one of the most supportive of his candidacy during the campaign.” It added that Enquirer covers featuring Mr. Trump increased sales.

“We covered him for a business reason,” the statement said.

Mr. Pecker, a Bronx native who has reveled in upsetting the Manhattan magazine establishment since the early 1990s, has been open about his view that A.M.I. has good reason to connect itself to Mr. Trump. As he told The New Yorker last year, he considered an attack on Mr. Trump an attack on A.M.I. — implying they were one in the same.

He said that after A.M.I. bought Ms. McDougal’s story and agreed to feature her in health and fitness columns in non-gossip magazines like Hers and Flex, it expected her loyalty to the company and Mr. Trump. “Once she’s part of the company, then on the outside she can’t be bashing Trump and American Media,” he said.

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The president’s lawyer Michael D. Cohen. A search warrant served to him this week requested, among other things, communications involving A.M.I. Credit Amir Levy/Reuters

Mr. Pecker has been supportive of Mr. Trump’s presidential aspirations since his run as a Reform Party candidate in 2000, when George magazine — part of the company Mr. Pecker ran then, Hachette — featured a friendly profile. The Enquirer was early to promote Mr. Trump’s potential bid in 2011.

As Mr. Trump ramped up his campaign in 2015, he, Mr. Cohen, Mr. Howard and Mr. Pecker engaged in more serious discussions about how A.M.I. could be helpful, according to several people familiar with the efforts.

In one early interaction, Mr. Cohen helped arrange an ultimately abandoned attempt to buy and bury a potentially damaging photograph of Mr. Trump at an event with a topless woman — what is known in the tabloid world as a “catch and kill” operation.

One person close to the campaign at the time recalled a meeting at Trump Tower in February 2015 between Mr. Pecker and Mr. Trump about how A.M.I. could help surface embarrassing information about Bill and Hillary Clinton, his Democratic rival, during a general election. The person, who requested anonymity to discuss private matters, said Mr. Cohen was also present. A.M.I. declined to say whether the meeting took place, and Mr. Cohen did not respond to a request for comment.

There are several intersections between Mr. Trump’s world and Mr. Pecker’s. The former casino executive, David R. Hughes, joined A.M.I.’s board in 2013, when he was the chief financial officer of Trump Entertainment Resorts (he is no longer a Trump employee). After the 2016 campaign ended, a media adviser, Justin McConney, landed at A.M.I. as its audience development director (he has since left).

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Dylan Howard, A.M.I.’s chief content officer, was involved in the effort to buy and bury Ms. McDougal’s story. Credit Splash News

One of A.M.I.’s top financiers, the billionaire Leon G. Cooperman, was critical of Mr. Trump during the campaign but has more recently compared him favorably to Ronald Reagan. Last July, he accompanied Mr. Pecker to a White House dinner with Mr. Trump, along with another A.M.I. financial backer, Anthony Melchiorre, of Chatham Asset Management.

At the center of the campaign finance inquiries will be whether the ties between Mr. Cohen, Mr. Howard, Mr. Pecker, Mr. Trump and others led A.M.I. to act more like a political supporter than a news organization.

The group that brought the federal election complaint, Common Cause, claims the payment for Ms. McDougal’s story was not a “legitimate press function” and therefore was not protected by rules exempting news organizations from campaign finance regulations.

The question represents tricky terrain for federal officials, given the protection journalists have under the First Amendment. “We always worry when investigators are making those judgment calls about whether your editorial process is legitimate or not, or is this legitimate journalism or not,” said Alexandra Ellerbeck, the North America program coordinator for the Committee to Protect Journalists.

Yet even the staunchest defenders of the press say fraudulent activity is not protected by journalistic freedoms.

“We are not, as media organizations, immune from the civil and criminal laws of the country,” said Sandra S. Baron, a senior fellow at Yale Law School and the former executive director of the Media Law Resource Center.

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Zuckerberg Faces Hostile Congress as Calls for Regulation Mount

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“The American people are concerned about how Facebook protects and profits from its users’ data,” Mr. Walden said. “Does Congress need to clarify whether or not consumers own or have any real power over their online data?”

Whether Congress can actually mobilize to put new controls into place is an open question. This week, two privacy bills were introduced to coincide with the hearings. One would make it harder to collect data on students who use classroom technology like tablets and laptops. Another would require companies to obtain clear permission from users before collecting and sharing their data.

At least three lawmakers have said privately that they are drafting new privacy laws for internet companies. Representative Marsha Blackburn, Republican of Tennessee, for instance, is pushing a bill she introduced last year that would require broadband providers and internet companies like Facebook to get permission before sharing user data. And late Wednesday, Facebook said it would drop its opposition to the California Consumer Privacy Act, a state ballot measure meant to offer consumer protections for personal information.

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Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s chief executive, testified before the House Energy and Commerce Committee on Wednesday, a day after appearing before a joint Senate committee. Credit Lawrence Jackson for The New York Times

House members repeatedly pummeled Facebook over its user settings, many of which are currently set to share information — and not to keep that data private — by default. By contrast, European rules that will take effect next month are expected to push companies to make privacy the default option.

On Wednesday, Ms. Blackburn pressed Mr. Zuckerberg about whether he would support her legislation, asking: “Who do you think owns an individual’s presence online? Who owns their virtual you? Is it you or is it them?”

With more contrition and promises to work harder to protect consumers, Mr. Zuckerberg stayed close to the prepared talking points he has used since the breach came to light. “It will take some time to work through all of the changes we need to make, but I’m committed to getting it right,” he said.

Mr. Zuckerberg also revealed that his own personal data had been compromised by third-party actors, though he did not identify which company was responsible. He said Facebook was considering legal action against Cambridge Analytica.

His testimony did little to mollify lawmakers, who called for new regulations that would limit Facebook’s ability to collect data on users without permission and to make privacy policies clear to better empower consumers.

“This incident demonstrates yet again that our laws are not working,” said Representative Frank Pallone Jr. of New Jersey, the top Democrat on the House committee.

Despite the consensus that legislation is needed, there is no clear path forward on any of the proposals. The regulation most likely to pass after the hearings is a Senate bill that would require social media companies to disclose funding of political ads on their sites.

Facebook and Twitter have recently announced their support of the bill, called the Honest Ads Act, which is modeled after disclosure rules for broadcasters. Several internet companies, including Facebook, had lobbied aggressively to defeat any new rules for online political ads, but have since changed their positions.

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Representative Greg Walden of Oregon, who leads the House Energy and Commerce Committee, grilled Mr. Zuckerberg over the company’s handling of sensitive data. Credit Lawrence Jackson for The New York Times

For many lawmakers, even defining what Facebook is and how to place it within the regulatory ecosystem was a challenge.

“What exactly is Facebook?” Mr. Walden asked, listing industries like advertising, publishing and even telecommunications, asking whether the company was a “common carrier in the information age.”

The definitions matter. If Facebook is viewed as a telecommunications service that is more like a utility, it may be regulated by the Federal Communications Commission. If lawmakers define Facebook as a publisher, it could also fall under regulations at that agency.

Mr. Zuckerberg was careful not to put his company in a clear regulatory category.

“I consider us to be a technology company,” Mr. Zuckerberg replied. Facebook should be responsible for what it publishes, he said, but it was not a news media company. “The primary thing we do is have engineers that write code and build services for other people.”

But the hearings helped create a foundation for new rules in the future, experts said. Congress showed an increasing ease — particularly from important Republicans in both chambers — to regulate Silicon Valley.

“Longer term, we saw growing comfort on both sides of the aisle for privacy legislation,” said Alan Davidson, a former internet policy official in the Obama administration and a former executive at Google. “So this is not the last we’ve heard from Washington.”

For Mr. Zuckerberg, who has been warmly welcomed by world leaders in China and India, it was clear that Facebook had few friends in Washington, particularly in the House. The company has invested heavily in its lobbying of Congress and the administration. Lobbying expenditures in 2017 increased 32 percent to $11.5 million from the previous year. But it has struggled to shake impressions among some Republicans that the site and its employees have a liberal bias. Democrats who were once close to Silicon Valley have become vocal critics of social media platforms for allowing fake political news and foreign interference in the 2016 presidential election.

On Wednesday, House lawmakers from both parties took an aggressive stance toward Mr. Zuckerberg, pointing fingers, interrupting and chastising him for repeated failures — and apologies — over privacy.

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Mr. Zuckerberg, composed but noncommittal about making sweeping privacy changes, acknowledged during the hearing that it was “inevitable that there will need to be some regulation.” Credit Lawrence Jackson for The New York Times

Representative Jan Schakowsky, Democrat of Illinois, used a sizable chunk of her limited speaking time to list Mr. Zuckerberg’s past apologies.

Representative Bobby L. Rush, Democrat of Illinois, repeatedly pointed a finger at Mr. Zuckerberg when asking, in a raised voice, “Why is the onus on the user to opt in to privacy and security settings?”

Representative John Sarbanes, Democrat of Maryland, cut off Mr. Zuckerberg several times as he tried to answer a question about Facebook employees who sit with political campaigns as “embeds” and seek to get the campaigns to use the site for advertising.

The second day of marathon hearings came after more subdued questioning from the Senate. But some key Republican senators also signaled a desire for regulations on Silicon Valley.

Senator Lindsey Graham, Republican of South Carolina, said after the hearing on Tuesday that Facebook was a “virtual monopoly” and that “continued self-regulation is not the right answer when it comes to dealing with the abuses we have seen on Facebook.”

The hearings also revealed lingering suspicion of Facebook among Republicans. Out in the hall during a break in the hearing, Representative Billy Long, Republican of Missouri, expanded on his remarks about Facebook’s treatment of Diamond and Silk, two pro-Trump video personalities who have complained about being censored by the platform. The online personalities were brought up numerous times on Wednesday.

“It seems like they take down a lot more conservative content than they do liberal,” Mr. Long said.

Mr. Long said that he needed more answers about the particular situation, and that he hoped Mr. Zuckerberg could ensure that the company’s thousands of moderators were not biased against conservatives.

“He better hope he does it, not us,” Mr. Long added. “Or Congress is going to get involved, and regulate a private industry.”

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Mark Zuckerberg Has a Lot of Homework to Do

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To Representative Fred Upton, Republican of Michigan …

Political ad rejection

The Facebook chief said he would follow up on the circumstances behind the company’s rejection of a political ad from a candidate for Michigan state senate.

To Representative Eliot Engel, Democrat of New York …

Artificial intelligence tools

Mr. Zuckerberg said he would get back to Mr. Engel on artificial intelligence tools and other procedures being deployed to identify fake accounts that spread misinformation.

To Representative Gene Green, Democrat of Texas …

Application of European data protection rules

Mr. Zuckerberg’s homework for Mr. Green was answering how Facebook would apply the European Union’s coming General Data Protection Regulation privacy rules to users in the United States.

To Representative Steve Scalise, Republican of Louisiana …

Data for security; Facebook censorship

Mr. Zuckerberg told Mr. Scalise he would come back with details about data that is mined for security purposes and whether it is sold, as well as whether Facebook employees responsible for the perceived censorship of the pro-Trump video personalities Diamond and Silk faced repercussions.

To Representative Cathy McMorris Rodgers, Republican of Washington …

Content reviewers’ treatment of users

The Facebook chief said he would offer Ms. Rodgers more detail on how Facebook is ensuring fair treatment of users by content reviewers.

To Representative G.K. Butterfield, Democrat of North Carolina …

Racial diversity in technology

Mr. Zuckerberg said he would circle back on an idea to convene a meeting of chief executives of technology firms to boost racial diversity in the industry. He added that he would get back to Mr. Butterfield with data on employee retention broken out by race.

To Representative Morgan Griffith, Republican of Virginia …

More rural broadband

Mr. Zuckerberg promised to look into the progress on extending broadband into rural areas.

To Representative Debbie Dingell, Democrat of Michigan …

Numbers of Facebook buttons; response to regulators

Facebook’s chief said he would follow up with the number of Facebook “like” buttons and “share buttons” on non-Facebook pages. He also said he would get back to the Congresswoman on the time frame within which Facebook would respond to regulators’ requests for transparency.

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Economists Say U.S. Tariffs Are Wrong Move on a Valid Issue

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WASHINGTON — President Trump’s economic advisers insist that the economics profession is solidly behind the administration’s threat to impose tariffs on hundreds of billions of dollars of Chinese imports. Many top economists say, no, they’re not.

Across the ideological spectrum, trade experts and former top economic advisers to presidents say Mr. Trump is right to highlight issues on which China is widely viewed as an offender, such as intellectual-property theft and access to its domestic market. But many of those experts say that Mr. Trump’s planned tariffs would backfire — by raising costs to American businesses and consumers, and by inviting retaliation against American exporters — and that he would better serve his purposes by enlisting international allies in a pressure campaign against Beijing.

“Many economists have said, yeah, there’s some legitimate issues here,” said Laura D. Tyson, an economist at the Haas School of Business of the University of California, Berkeley, who headed the Council of Economic Advisers under President Bill Clinton. “I haven’t seen any who have said the appropriate response is a series of tariffs on a bunch of goods, most of which don’t have any real link to the underlying issue.”

One of the president’s biggest mistakes in trade policy, Ms. Tyson and many economists say, was his decision early last year to pull the United States out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership. Proponents of that agreement say it would have unified a dozen countries against the Chinese on trade issues.

“I don’t think the way the administration is going about it is a particularly strategic one,” said David Autor, a Massachusetts Institute of Technology economist whose research suggests that opening trade with China cost the United States two million jobs in the late 1990s and early 2000s. “The first way to go about it should have been to sign TPP, which was set up as a bulwark against China.”

Mr. Trump has long railed against Chinese trade practices, and he has long criticized previous presidents for their approach to the issue. This year, he has pushed aggressively on the issue, levying tariffs on imported steel and aluminum that were largely viewed as a shot at Chinese oversupply of those metals, and then separately proposing as much as $150 billion in tariffs on other imports from China.

His advisers have stressed that economists largely agree with Mr. Trump that the Chinese are stealing American intellectual property and restricting access to their market in ways that put American companies at a disadvantage.

“No free-market guy, no free-trade guy disagrees on this subject,” Larry Kudlow, the new director of the National Economic Council, said on CNN’s “State of the Union” on Sunday. “The guild, if you will, the brethren of the economic profession have all agreed that something has to be done.”

Peter Navarro, the director of Mr. Trump’s Office of Trade and Manufacturing Policy, told NBC’s “Meet the Press” on Sunday that “what we have here is a situation where every American understands that China is stealing our intellectual property, they’re forcing the transfer of our technology when companies go to China, and by doing that, they steal jobs from America, they steal factories from America, and we run an unprecedented $370-billion-a-year trade deficit in goods. This is an unsustainable situation.”

Many economists do in fact agree that China needs to be confronted on several trade issues, though very few share Mr. Trump’s fixation on the United States’ trade deficit with China.

“I think the basic issue that the Trump administration is pointing to — the lack of intellectual-property protection — is a serious one, particularly for the United States,” said N. Gregory Mankiw, a Harvard economist who headed President George W. Bush’s Council of Economic Advisers. “It’s a completely serious and appropriate issue for the administration to be concerned with.”

What worries Mr. Mankiw and others is Mr. Trump’s threat of tariffs, which administration officials have portrayed both as a bargaining chip and as a policy Mr. Trump would certainly carry through on.

Economic forecasters are just beginning to predict how tariffs would affect growth. Goldman Sachs analysts wrote this week that the currently proposed tariffs would cut less than 0.1 percentage points off American growth this year, but also said that “it is harder to rule out continued escalation to a level that does ultimately have a first-order impact on the economy” if the United States and China could not find compromise.

Because tariffs would raise prices for American businesses and consumers that buy imported goods, “you’re hurting yourself if you follow through with it,” Mr. Mankiw said. “It just seems to me to be a not very smart threat to be making, given that it would not be rational to follow through with it.”

Economists who don’t like tariffs but favor action against China largely say the United States should be forming a multinational coalition to confront the Chinese.

“Any good strategy has to include getting other countries on your side,” said Jason Furman, an economist at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government who headed the Council of Economic Advisers under President Barack Obama. “If it’s the United States versus China, we’re similar-sized economies. If it’s the United States and the world versus China, that’s not something China can win.”

Mr. Furman, Mr. Mankiw and others said the United States should continue to press its case against China before the World Trade Organization — a strategy that Mr. Navarro and other advisers to Mr. Trump say has not produced favorable results in the past. The economists who disagree with the administration’s approach also stress, frequently, that joining the Trans-Pacific Partnership would have given the United States leverage in this dispute.

Since Mr. Trump quit the pact, 11 other countries have forged ahead on it. He said this year that he would reconsider joining the agreement if it was renegotiated to benefit the United States more substantially.

“It’s obviously a terrible mistake” to have quit the agreement, said Austan Goolsbee, an economist at the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business and another past chairman of Mr. Obama’s Council of Economic Advisers. “This was a coalition of the vast majority of the economies of Asia outside of China, agreeing to principles exactly of the form that we’re now saying that we want. We would be in a lot better situation if we had all of those people on our side.”

Mr. Trump’s unilateral approach, including his tariff threats, has drawn qualified support from at least one unlikely high-profile economist: Martin Feldstein, of Harvard, a chairman of President Ronald Reagan’s Council of Economic Advisers.

Mr. Feldstein began a syndicated op-ed column last month, on the subject of Mr. Trump’s steel and aluminum tariffs, by declaring, “Like almost all economists and most policy analysts, I prefer low trade tariffs or no tariffs at all.” But he went on to criticize China’s intellectual-property policies and predict that the United States “cannot use traditional remedies for trade disputes or World Trade Organization procedures to stop China’s behavior.”

American negotiators, Mr. Feldstein wrote, would use tariff threats “as a way to persuade China’s government to abandon the policy of ‘voluntary’ technology transfers.”

“If that happens, and U.S. firms can do business in China without being compelled to pay such a steep competitive price,” he continued, “the threat of tariffs will have been a very successful tool of trade policy.”

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