China suspected of cyber attack on WA Parliament during state election | Russia, Iran ran influence operations aimed at 2020 elections, US says | Brazil needs vaccines. China is benefiting
Western Australia's parliamentary email network was hit by suspected Chinese hackers earlier this month as part of a massive global cyber-attack involving Microsoft software. ABC News
The governments of Russia and Iran sought to influence the U.S. presidential elections in 2020 and exacerbate societal tensions throughout the nation last year, the U.S. intelligence community said in a declassified assessment released Tuesday. CyberScoop
The Trump administration had been warning allies across the globe to shun Huawei, the Chinese telecommunications giant, denouncing the company as a dangerous extension of China’s surveillance system. Brazil, ready to build an ambitious 5G wireless network worth billions of dollars, openly took President Trump’s side, with the Brazilian president’s son — an influential member of Congress, himself — vowing in November to create a secure system “without Chinese espionage.” Then pandemic politics upended everything. The New York Times
Semiconductors as a ‘shield’ for Taiwan?
Taiwan has another tool in its arsenal—and it’s one that could make the PRC continue to hesitate to use coercive force and that could help persuade the United States to intervene if Beijing tried to invade Taiwan. As emerging and critical technologies like 5G and the internet of things become more essential to state power, the development and production of the microprocessor chips that lie at the heart of high-tech products have become more important. Enter Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC), the world’s largest chip foundry, which is now a big part of the Taiwan flashpoint between China and the US.
After nearly two decades in the dark, Facebook releases its human rights policy
Facebook today released a Corporate Human Rights Policy for the first time in its 17-year history, becoming the latest Big Tech company to publicly articulate its commitments to upholding human rights.
Our Commitment to Human Rights
China suspected of cyber attack on Western Australia's Parliament during state election
Western Australia's parliamentary email network was hit by suspected Chinese hackers earlier this month as part of a massive global cyber-attack involving Microsoft software.
102yo grandmother scammed out of aged care bond in $375,000 email hack
Australians have lost more than $7 million to email scams so far this year, but what happened to the Pun family shows just how brazen fraudsters have become.
Rupert Murdoch's News Corp strikes deal as Facebook agrees to pay for Australian content
Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp says a landmark three-year agreement with Facebook to pay for its Australian content will transform the terms of trade for journalism.
Investors value China's Ant Group at over $200 billion after IPO halt - sources
Some of Ant Group’s global investors have valued the Chinese fintech firm at over $200 billion based on its 2020 performance, said people with knowledge of the matter, offering a more sober estimate after the shelving of its IPO and forced restructuring.
Alibaba browser pulled from Chinese app stores
Sun Yu @rwmcmorrow
Chinese internet companies have pulled an Alibaba internet browser from their app stores a day after President Xi Jinping warned that Beijing’s crackdown on big tech companies was just beginning.
Huawei records biggest jump in patent ownership in 2020
Huawei says it recorded its biggest ever annual jump in the number of patents it owns last year as the company ramped up its research and development effort to answer Beijing’s call for homegrown innovation. The Chinese national champion was blacklisted by the US in 2019 because of concerns over national security, cutting off its access to many essential components and clobbering its sales of smartphones around the world. In the last three months of 2020, its smartphone sales were down 41 per cent from the same period the previous year.
Huawei to start charging royalties to smartphone makers using its patented 5G tech
Huawei will begin charging smartphone makers a royalty to use its patented 5G technology as the Chinese technology firm looks to open a new revenue stream, even as other parts of its business have taken a hit due to U.S. sanctions.
Chinese companies are making their own semiconductors
After years of a state-led drive to achieve "semiconductor independence," many Chinese companies have started 2021 with a chip side-gig.
China Signal Users Report Difficulty Accessing Messaging App
Signal, an encrypted messaging app that competes with the likes of Facebook Inc.’s WhatsApp, appears to have been blocked in China, the latest move by Beijing to crack down on social media platforms.
Russia, Iran ran influence operations aimed at 2020 elections, US says
The governments of Russia and Iran sought to influence the U.S. presidential elections in 2020 and exacerbate societal tensions throughout the nation last year, the U.S. intelligence community said in a declassified assessment released Tuesday.
Mercer-Backed Parler Casts Its Reboot as Fight for Free Speech
Conservative donor Rebekah Mercer has been writing checks to finance the social media platform Parler’s reboot, while the company’s leaders have attempted to rally employees by saying they’re engaged in an existential battle against threats to the U.S. and free speech, according to internal recordings of company meetings held in recent months.
Government plans for fresh AI strategy
The government wants to “unleash the power of AI” and be “the most pro-tech government ever”, according to digital secretary Oliver Dowden.
Twitter hacker pleads guilty, sentenced to 3 years
A Florida teenager has admitted to orchestrating the hijacking of celebrity Twitter accounts last year as part of a plea deal that will see him serve three years in a juvenile facility, prosecutors said Tuesday.
Stop whining about Big Government
The New York Times
Who leads innovation? If you’re picturing a Silicon Valley billionaire, you’ve got it all wrong, says the economist Mariana Mazzucato. Ms. Mazzucato — who counts the pope, the billionaire Bill Gates and the U.S. congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez among her readers — says governments should act more like venture capitalists, rather than let the private sector hog all the glory and the rewards. Her message to Elon Musk after he received $5 billion in support from the U.S. government is simple: “Say thank you.”
NZ & Pacific Islands
Extremely sensitive': Another NZ government-backed business linked to blacklisted Chinese company
LearnCoach is the latest Kiwi company to come under the spotlight of Stuff Circuit’s investigation into New Zealand business and political links to the Chinese tech giant iFlytek.
Defence review: UK could use Trident to counter cyber-attack
@dansabbagh @jessicaelgot @patrickwintour
Britain is prepared to launch nuclear weapons if the country was faced with an exceptionally destructive attack using cyber or other “emerging technologies”, according to the integrated defence review. The stark statement marks a change from existing UK policy, which had been that Trident missiles could only be launched against another nuclear power, or potentially in response to extreme chemical or biological threats.
Brazil Needs Vaccines. China Is Benefiting.
The New York Times
The Trump administration had been warning allies across the globe to shun Huawei, the Chinese telecommunications giant, denouncing the company as a dangerous extension of China’s surveillance system. Brazil, ready to build an ambitious 5G wireless network worth billions of dollars, openly took President Trump’s side, with the Brazilian president’s son — an influential member of Congress, himself — vowing in November to create a secure system “without Chinese espionage.” Then pandemic politics upended everything.
Two cryptocurrency portals are experiencing a DNS hijack at the same time
Two cryptocurrency portals are currently dealing with DNS hijacking attacks that are redirecting visitors to fake versions of their websites where crooks are trying to collect seed phrases and private keys from visitors so they can access wallets and steal their funds.
How Did the Exchange Server Exploit Leak?
Data Breach Today
A Taiwanese computer security researcher indicated on Friday that exploit code he developed and privately shared with Microsoft in early January ended up in hostile hands...The exploit was used to attack tens of thousands of Exchange email servers before Microsoft deployed software patches on March 2. Microsoft is now investigating whether one of its partners is at fault.
‘Disturbing’ Technology: Chatbots That Resurrect the Dead
@EdinaRl @lilianedwards @MarisaMcV
Our research has looked at the surprisingly complex legal question of what happens to your data after you die. At present, and in the absence of specific legislation, it’s unclear who might have the ultimate power to reboot your digital persona after your physical body has been put to rest.
These global projects expand the reach of fact-checks
Today, we are announcing the 11 projects that were selected through an extensive review process that included a 17-person project team and an expert jury reviewing the highest-scoring applicants.
Operation Diànxùn: Cyberespionage Campaign Targeting Telecommunication Companies
In this report the McAfee Advanced Threat Research (ATR) Strategic Intelligence team details an espionage campaign, targeting telecommunication companies, dubbed Operation Diànxùn.
ASPI Webinar: Are you ready for the new critical infrastructure law?
With amendments to the Critical Infrastructure Act currently before parliament, impacted industry sectors are racing to get ready. ASPI's International Cyber Policy Centre is delighted to invite you to a panel discussion on 18 March at 4pm where representatives from Home Affairs, the cybersecurity sector and industry will discuss the impact of the changes and answer your questions. Register here.
Program - Canberra - Cyber Conference
Australian Cyber Conference
The Australian Cyber Conference 2021 – Canberra (16-18 March) - will provide business leaders with insights and best practices taught by the industry’s top experts through keynotes, panel sessions and live demonstrations – both in person and virtually. ASPI's International Cyber Policy Centre staff Dion Devow & Huon Curtis are speaking on Indigenous Pathways into Cyber and STEM Careers at 2pm on 18 March.