European Central Bank preparing for Russian cyber-attacks | Binance - a Crypto exachage - seeking $200mil stake in Forbes | Australia deploys diplomatic teams to garner support for AUKUS
The European Central Bank is preparing banks for a possible Russian-sponsored cyber attack as tensions with Ukraine mount, two people with knowledge of the matter said, as the region braces for the financial fallout of any conflict. Reuters
Binance, the world’s biggest cryptocurrency exchange, is making a $200 million strategic investment in Forbes. That would make Binance one of the top two biggest owners of Forbes. The crypto company will also get two directors out of nine total board seats. CNBC
Australia is bulking up specialised diplomatic teams in both Canberra and Vienna to win international acceptance for the AUKUS nuclear submarine project as it braces for a massive "disinformation" campaign from China and Russia. ABC News
Big data and its role in your life
ABC Radio National
Michael Mackenzie and Miah Hammond-Errey
Data brokers and tech companies know even more about you now than they did before the pandemic. But what is happening to our information and what are the risks for us as individuals? Guest: Miah Hammond-Errey, Senior Analyst at Australian Strategic Policy Institute’s International Cyber Policy Centre.
Australia deploys diplomatic resources to fight 'disinformation' on nuclear submarine plan
Andrew Greene and Stephen Dziedzic
Australia is bulking up specialised diplomatic teams in both Canberra and Vienna to win international acceptance for the AUKUS nuclear submarine project as it braces for a massive "disinformation" campaign from China and Russia.
Fake, international Facebook accounts behind the Convoy to Canberra protests
Facebook accounts with fake pictures of non-existent people — based in countries such as India and Canada or anonymously requesting donations — are helping run the Convoy to Canberra by creating Facebook groups for the protests.
Satellite ground station opens in Peterborough, SA, to boost Australian space communication capability
A South Australian country town is now the home of a vital piece of communication infrastructure that will boost Australia's space capability.
Australia’s Pine Gap ‘hugely important’ to western monitoring of China, says former British spy chief
The former British spy chief Sir Richard Dearlove has described the Pine Gap surveillance base in central Australia as “hugely important” to western intelligence collection about China’s “rather alarming” activities.
New funding to advance women in STEM
Ministers for the Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources
The investments will ensure the continued success of the Superstars of STEM program, as well as backing the important work of the Women in STEM Ambassador, including the national awareness raising initiative – Future You.
China Wants to Put Data to Work as an Economic Resource—But How?
In April 2020, the State Council formally designated data as a factor of production, joining land, labor, capital, and technology. Ever since, the concept of "market-based allocation of factors" has made its way into industrial policies at national and provincial levels, with the allocation of data resources a major focus.
China resumes R&D push with record US$441b outlay in 2021
South China Morning Post
Beijing has put ‘new breakthroughs in original innovation’ back on the fast track after Covid-19 dip. Areas receiving the biggest support included ‘space exploration, nuclear physics, quantum science and biological engineering’.
Tencent-led NFT standards project approved by UN agency
South China Morning Post
Many Chinese tech companies now offer NFTs built on their consortium blockchains. These are different from public blockchains used to support cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin and ethereum, and are a mix of public and private blockchains that are overseen by centralised organisations with no public participation.
Algorithms Become a Point of Emphasis in China’s Antitrust Efforts
Council on Foreign Relations
That Chinese policymakers have become increasingly focused on the specific technologies enabling tech giants’ competitive advantages signals a new chapter in China’s diversifying antitrust strategy.
China's ZTE boosts chip capabilities amid Huawei's crackdown woes
Lauly Li and Cheng Ting-Fang
China's No. 2 telecommunications equipment maker ZTE has been quietly boosting its chip design capabilities as a U.S. crackdown continues to hobble its bigger domestic rival, Huawei Technologies, Nikkei Asia has learned.
The Decentralization of Disinformation
Jason Koebler and Anna Merlan
Disinformation online isn’t going away. Alex Jones, Milo Yiannopoulos, and other conspiracy-minded characters from the past few years have been driven from platforms like Twitter, but their message persists. They still have fans and their ideas still reach the public.
A Movement to Fight Misinformation... With Misinformation
New York Times' The Daily
Birds Aren’t Real, a conspiracy theory with an apparently absurd premise, has become surprisingly popular in the past few years. But its followers were in on the joke: The movement’s aim was to poke fun at misinformation … by creating misinformation.
South & Central Asia
Indian activist charged with terrorism was targeted by hackers linked to prominent cyber espionage attacks, new report finds
The Washington Post
Niha Masih and Gerry Shih
In early 2021, India was jolted by revelations that a jailed human rights activist and vocal government critic was targeted by hackers who planted incriminating evidence on his laptop before he was arrested on terrorism charges. New findings shed light on what amounted to a concerted, nearly decade-long effort to surveil a group of dissidents.
With Russian troops poised on the border with Ukraine, 'information warfare' has already begun
Conflicting reports of how likely Russia is to invade have left many people unsure what to believe. “The information space is absolutely polluted,” said Russia analyst Ivana Stradner, a Jeane Kirkpatrick visiting research fellow at the American Enterprise Institute.
European, U.S. regulators tell banks to prepare for Russian cyberattack threat
John O'Donnell and Huw Jones
The European Central Bank is preparing banks for a possible Russian-sponsored cyber attack as tensions with Ukraine mount, two people with knowledge of the matter said, as the region braces for the financial fallout of any conflict.
Russia Has Taken Over Spanish-Language Airwaves on Ukraine
Russia’s state-owned media organizations unleashed a tidal wave of disinformation at Spanish-language speakers in January, according to analysis provided to Foreign Policy, in an effort that researchers believe is aimed at muddying support among Hispanics in the Western Hemisphere for Ukraine.
ASML Warns Chinese Rival May Be Infringing its Trade Secrets
Debby Wu and Cagan Koc
ASML Holding - a semi-conductor manufacturer - has warned that an affiliate of a China company it previously accused of stealing its trade secrets has begun marketing products that could infringe on its intellectual property rights.
Binance, led by the world’s richest crypto billionaire, is taking a $200 million stake in Forbes
Binance, the world’s biggest cryptocurrency exchange, is making a $200 million strategic investment in Forbes. That would make Binance one of the top two biggest owners of Forbes. The crypto company will also get two directors out of nine total board seats.
Nasa fears SpaceX plan for 30,000 satellites could hamper space missions
Nasa noted there was currently a total of 25,000 objects being tracked on-orbit – and about 6,100 below 600km. SpaceX’s Gen2 expansion “would more than double the number of tracked objects in orbit and increase the number of objects below 600km over five-fold”, it added.
TikTok shares your data more than any other social media app — and it's unclear where it goes, study says
Tom Huddleston Jr.
The study found that YouTube mostly collects your personal data for its own purposes. But TikTok, which is owned by Chinese tech giant ByteDance, mostly allows third-party trackers to collect your data — and from there, it’s hard to say what happens with it.
Events and Podcasts
Indigenous Technologies: Innovations Powering the Continuation of our Oldest Civilisations
The Sydney Dialogue
Indigenous technology entrepreneurs are blending their ancient cultures with new technologies in ways that are transforming the oldest civilisations on earth and challenging perceptions about the way new and emerging technology can be harnessed. In this panel discussion, Indigenous tech entrepreneurs and thought leaders will look ahead at how the world’s oldest societies will co-exist in a technology fuelled future. Streaming on Monday 14th February at 12pm AEDT.
Global Perspectives on Influence Operations Investigations: Shared Challenges, Unequal Resources
Carissa Goodwin and Dean Jackson
Despite the shared nature of these challenges, investigators in the Global South face the greatest shortfalls of capacity, funding, attention, and other support. And those in unstable or authoritarian countries face unique threats to their safety and freedom.
ICPC Senior Analyst or Analyst - China
ASPI’s International Cyber Policy Centre (ICPC) has a unique opportunity for exceptional and experienced China-focused senior analysts or analysts to join its centre. This role will focus on original research and analysis centred around the (growing) range of topics which our ICPC China team work on. Our China team produces some of the most impactful and well-read policy-relevant research in the world, with our experts often being called upon by politicians, governments, corporates and civil society actors to provide briefings and advice. Analysts usually have at least 5 years, often 7-10 years’ of work experience. Senior analysts usually have a minimum of 15 years relevant work experience and, in addition to research, they take on a leadership role in the centre and tend to be involved in staff and project management, fundraising and stakeholder engagement.
ICPC Data Analyst
ASPI’s International Cyber Policy Centre (ICPC) has an outstanding opportunity for talented Data Analysts to join its growing centre. ASPI’s ICPC undertakes complex research on some of the most challenging issues at the intersection of technology and public policy. How do we develop international norms to deter information operations and coercive diplomacy, how should we build international cooperation on the development of emerging critical technologies, what is the right balance between regulation and innovation? We deliver empirical research that is policy-relevant and we’re looking for people who can help us analyse data at scale.