Facebook Braces Itself for Trump to Cast Doubt on Election Results | With Israel's Encouragement, NSO Sold Spyware to UAE and Other Gulf States | New ASPI ICPC report on vaccine disinformation
Facebook spent years preparing to ward off any tampering on its site ahead of November’s presidential election. Now the social network is getting ready in case President Trump interferes once the vote is over. NYT.
The Israeli spyware firm has signed contracts with Bahrain, Oman and Saudi Arabia. Despite its claims, NSO exercises little control over use of its software, which dictatorships can use to monitor dissidents. Haaretz.
The latest report in our series on COVID-19 disinformation and social media manipulation investigates how a false narrative about a vaccination trial that never happened was seeded into the information environment. ASPI ICPC.
ASPI ICPC New report: Pro-Russian vaccine politics drives new disinformation narratives
This latest report in our series on COVID-19 disinformation and social media manipulation investigates vaccine disinformation emerging – the day after Russia announced plans to mass-produce its own vaccine - from Eastern Ukraine’s pro-Russian media ecosystem. We identify how a false narrative about a vaccination trial that never happened was seeded into the information environment by a pro-Russian militia media outlet, laundered through pro-Russian English language alternative news websites, and permeated anti-vaccination social media groups in multiple languages, ultimately completely decontextualised from its origins. This false narrative has achieved widespread dissemination in multiple languages and across multiple communities, including into a prominent Australian anti-vaccination Facebook group
China’s great science swindle in secret project
Australian Strategic Policy Institute analyst Alex Joske, who released a report on Chinese talent recruitment programs last week, titled Hunting the Phoenix, said the Thousand Talents program was a major concern that needed better regulation by government and universities.
Cyber security 'should be mandated' in government procurement
Cyber security should be a mandatory government procurement requirement to create an industry-wide standard and lift cyber resilience across the economy, according to a new report. The report, by the Australian Strategic Policy Institute, calls for federal and state governments to strategically use their $20 billion annual technology spend to create a defacto benchmark for improved cyber security and hardened supply chains.
ASPI Cyber Policy @ASPI_ICPC#CyberDigest | Read the new ASPI ICPC report: Weaponised Deep Fakes, National Security and Democracy here https://t.co/2Voe7gkfGD |
Kids May Be Using Laptops Made With Forced Labor This Fall
Evidence of Hefei Bitland using forced labor first appeared in an August 2018 article in Xinjiang Daily, a state newspaper. The article explains that the plant uses Uyghur workers who are overseen by Communist Party minders and police. The Australian Strategic Policy Institute, or ASPI, a think tank in Canberra, included Hefei Bitland in a report on Uyghur forced labor published in March, as the novel coronavirus was spreading through the world.
Gloves off: Google turns to its users in fight against Australian regulations
Be warned, we are about to escalate this. That was the message when Google's Australian arm put in a courtesy call to Treasurer Josh Frydenberg's office on Monday morning. Two weeks after the Morrison government and Australian Competition and Consumer Commission unveiled the much-anticipated News Media Bargaining Code, the trillion-dollar digital advertising giant was about to kick off an aggressive public campaign against the sweeping new regulation.
Why did Google go nuclear over news?
Google is one of the most successful technology companies of the past 20 years. But its reputation as a good corporate citizen is being clouded by its aggressive response to government regulation, a pattern of behaviour being repeated in Australia.
Australian public servant condemns censorship after blogpost cost him his job
Three months after writing how Covid helped big tech, Josh Krook was given a choice: remove the post or be sacked.
Social media has provided a new marketplace for drugs and police are struggling to keep up
With so many in lockdown because of coronavirus, or with limited access to clubs and parties where small quantities of drugs are traditionally traded, selling drugs has become more digitised than ever. And social media is the perfect forum. The internet is embraced by dealers, and buyers, for its simplicity and global reach.
Hackers Leak Alleged Internal Files of Chinese Social Media Monitoring Firms
A group of hackers says they have obtained internal files from three Chinese social media monitoring companies. After leaking some of the documents, the group was banned by Twitter under its hacked files policy, however, Motherboard has been unable to confirm the authenticity of the documents.
Facebook Braces Itself for Trump to Cast Doubt on Election Results
Facebook spent years preparing to ward off any tampering on its site ahead of November’s presidential election. Now the social network is getting ready in case President Trump interferes once the vote is over.
Alex Kaplan @AlKapDCTrump this morning retweeted a QAnon account. https://t.co/6dhiyr35xH
WeChat users sue Trump administration over US app ban
A coalition of WeChat users in the US sued the Trump administration on Friday, challenging its ban of the messaging app, which they claimed had become an essential digital service for millions of Chinese-Americans. The complaint, filed in the federal court in San Francisco, claimed the ban breached users’ free speech rights under the First Amendment, as well as being targeted narrowly at a racial group and overstepping the president’s national emergency powers.
Beyond TikTok: Preparing for Future Digital Threats
War on the Rocks
By the end of September, the American social media landscape will undergo a profound transformation, and we cannot yet map this new terrain. President Donald Trump’s executive orders targeting Chinese-owned social media platform TikTok and messaging and payments app WeChat are aimed at confronting China’s tech enabled illiberalism. This is a worthy goal, but his fitful approach undermines this objective.
Threatened by Facebook Disinformation, a Monk Flees Cambodia
A smear campaign linked to the Cambodian government went viral on the social media platform, sending an activist Buddhist cleric into exile to protect himself.
Kashmir Internet Shutdown Continues, Despite Supreme Court Ruling
India has the potential to be a global leader in promoting democratic technology norms, but instead it leads the way with internet shutdowns.
Your data is not destined for China, assures TikTok’s UK boss
TikTok’s UK chief has strenuously denied the video-sharing app, which Donald Trump has threatened to ban, shares data with China.
EU risks being dethroned as world’s lead digital regulator
Donald Trump’s tussle with TikTok and Huawei holds a lesson for European politicians.
With Israel's Encouragement, NSO Sold Spyware to UAE and Other Gulf States
The Israeli spyware firm has signed contracts with Bahrain, Oman and Saudi Arabia. Despite its claims, NSO exercises little control over use of its software, which dictatorships can use to monitor dissidents.
As the Christchurch shooter faces sentencing, what has Australia learned about far-right terror?
The massacre drew authorities’ attention to Australian extremists, but Covid has given the toxic movements fresh impetus.
WHO Director-General Attacked on Twitter with CCP-Related Memes
Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO), tweets daily out of WHO headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland. But within minutes of many of his tweets going live, he is flooded with personal attacks, memes, and slurs.
Countering violent extremism: In-conversation with His Excellency Abdulla Al Subousi
ASPI is delighted to invite you to join Leanne Close, head of ASPI’s Counter-Terrorism Program in-conversation with HE Mr. Abdulla Al Subousi, United Arab Emirates Ambassador to Australia to talk about current counter-terrorism perspectives. Ambassador Al Subousi will discuss the persistent nature of ISIL in parts of Syria and Iraq, Al Qaeda and other violent extremist groups in the region. The conversation will also focus on extremists’ continued use of online environments encouraging supporters to commit terrorist actions, the recent UAE agreement with Israel, as well as other continuing conflicts and unrest in the Middle East, and how these events influence terrorist extremist propaganda and calls to violence. The Ambassador will discuss these issues, identify policy options for combatting terrorism, and take questions from our online audience.
Date: 25 August, 5:00pm - 5:45pm.
Register to attend here.
WDSN Careers Panel: Where to from here?
ASPI's Women in Defence and National Security Network is delighted to invite you to our second WDSN Careers Panel of 2020. While the pandemic makes our traditional WDSN events unfeasible, we are excited to bring you a panel of four distinguished women to talk about their career pathways in the defence and national security sector. In this panel our speakers will discuss their career pathways, and how they answered the question 'where to from here?' throughout their careers to date, and how they would tackle that question in the current environment of uncertainty.
Date: 26 August, 5:30pm - 6:30pm.
Register to attend here.
Assistant Professor in Intelligence and Security
University of Leiden
The Research Group Intelligence and Security studies intelligence from a political, historical, ethical, judicial, and methodological perspective. Our main goal is to improve our understanding of how intelligence and security services operate, how their methodologies can be complemented, and how they are and have been embedded in their broader political, bureaucratic, and societal context - in the Western world and, emphatically, beyond. Applications due 15th September 2020.
Professorship in Legal Tech
University of Zurich
The University of Zurich is seeking applications for a Professorship in Legal Tech to take effect from the beginning of the Spring Semester 2021 (1 February 2021), or by arrangement. The position is to be filled by an academic with an outstanding legal track record and excellent knowledge of information technology, whose research focuses on the impact of digital technologies in the field of law. Applications are due by 6 September 2020.