Facebook to halt Instagram Kids project amid pressure | Japan names China, Russia, N. Korea as threats in cyberspace | EU says U.S. trade, tech council to boost its clout, set rules for 21st century
Facebook Inc. said it would suspend plans for a version of its Instagram app tailored to children, a concession after lawmakers and others voiced concerns about the photo-sharing platform’s effects on young people’s mental health. The Wall Street Journal
The Japanese government adopted on Monday a draft cybersecurity strategy for the next three years, naming China, Russia and North Korea as cyberattack threats for the first time. The Mainichi
The U.S.-EU Trade and Technology Council (TTC) will give Europe more clout and set standards and rules for the 21st century, the EU’s trade and digital chiefs said, underscoring global concerns about China’s growing power. Reuters
China reshuffles PLA in the West
On 22 September, the Australian Strategic Policy Institute (ASPI) released a report by Nathan Ruser and Baani Grewal. They summarized: "The Chinese military's activities on the contested border have been one of the key drivers behind the shift in the Indian public's and government's assessments of India's relationship with China. The result has been a faster convergence in regional security and strategic policy directions." One example of this is the revival of the Quad security partnership. The ASPI report, featuring 3D satellite imagery, focuses on Doklam. They presented five key findings
Explore this new multimedia project - a 3D deep dive into the India-China border - here
Facebook to Halt Instagram Kids Project Amid Pressure From Lawmakers, Parents Groups
The Wall Street Journal
Facebook Inc. said it would suspend plans for a version of its Instagram app tailored to children, a concession after lawmakers and others voiced concerns about the photo-sharing platform’s effects on young people’s mental health. Instagram head Adam Mosseri said Monday that the social-media service is pausing its work so that it can listen to concerns and do more to demonstrate the value of the kids version, which was to be ad-free and allow parents to monitor children’s activity.
Pausing “Instagram Kids” and Building Parental Supervision Tools
We believe building “Instagram Kids” is the right thing to do, but we're pausing the work. We’ll use this time to work with parents, experts and policymakers to demonstrate the value and need for this product. We’ll continue to build opt-in parental supervision tools for teens.
New wave of ‘hacktivism’ adds twist to cybersecurity woes
At a time when U.S. agencies and thousands of companies are fighting off major hacking campaigns originating in Russia and China, a different kind of cyber threat is re-emerging: activist hackers looking to make a political point.
China vows further curbs on 'disorderly expansion' by tech firms
The Strait Times
China will take further steps to rein in Internet companies, a senior cyberspace official said, citing the shared economy, online healthcare and smart delivery as areas of concern. Vice-Minister Sheng Ronghua told the World Internet Conference on Monday (Sept 27) that curbing monopolistic behaviour and the "disorderly expansion of capital" were top priorities for the Cyberspace Administration of China. Mr Sheng also listed self-driving vehicles and platform economies as areas that required stronger regulation.
Read our report ‘Reining in China’s technology giants’ - here
China’s Tech Tycoons Pledge Allegiance to Xi’s Vision
China’s embattled tech tycoons lined-up to pledge their support for President Xi Jinping’s “common prosperity” policy and market-roiling regulatory onslaught on the digital sector, at the country’s annual internet conference.
Crypto Exchange Giants Cut Back on China Users as Ban Widens
Two of the world’s largest Bitcoin exchanges have halted new registrations for Chinese users and one will retire current accounts, taking actions to comply with Beijing’s latest crypto ban.
China’s release of ‘Two Michaels’ vexes country’s online nationalists
The Washington Post
“The discussion online is that Meng was innocent, but the facts of Kovrig and Spavor’s crimes are irrefutable. The U.S. side releasing Meng was justified, but was China forced into this compromise?” one user wrote on Weibo, China’s Twitter-like platform.
More TikToks? Consumer Apps Developed in China Find Customers Overseas
China’s software engineers and product managers are starting to crack the code and are beginning to rival Silicon Valley in developing consumer apps for overseas customers. For example, Asia Innovations Group, a startup backed by Kleiner Perkins and Palantir co-founder Joe Lonsdale, earlier this year sold equity to investors at a pre-investment valuation of $2 billion after tailoring social media apps built in Beijing to emerging markets in the Middle East, Southeast Asia, India and Latin America.
Gaming Company Fined for Letting Minors Play Past Their Curfew
Du Xinyu, Fang Yun
The $15,000 fine is the first of its kind since China introduced its strictest gaming limit for underage players.
Xinjiang: A Terror Such as the World Has Never Seen
Nowhere in the world and in history has technology ever been used to create such a perfect totalitarian system of surveillance and repression.
U.S. to open program to replace Huawei equipment in U.S networks
The U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) on Monday said it would open a $1.9 billion program to reimburse mostly rural U.S. telecom carriers for removing network equipment made by Chinese companies deemed national security threats like Huawei and ZTE Corp.
CISA, FBI, and NSA release CONTI ransomware advisory to help organizations reduce risk of attack
The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), and National Security Agency (NSA) published a cybersecurity advisory today regarding increased Conti ransomware cyberattacks. The advisory includes technical details on the threat and mitigation steps that public and private sector organizations can take to reduce their risk to this ransomware.
Data from Oath Keepers leaked online after alleged hack
A hacker claims to have stolen and leaked reams of data from the Oath Keepers, the far-right militia group whose members were present at the Jan. 6 Capitol riot.
Inside Jake Sullivan’s Middle East trip
Tomorrow, Sens. JEANNE SHAHEEN (D-N.H.) and ROB PORTMAN (R-Ohio) — both members of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee — will introduce legislation that would authorize the U.S. Development Finance Corporation to provide financing to European allies to strengthen their 5G networks and digital infrastructure. The goal is to safeguard European telecommunications from growing threats emanating from China and Russia. The “Transatlantic Telecommunications Security Act,” obtained exclusively by NatSec Daily, if passed would provide support for building or improving telecommunications infrastructure while replacing covered Huawei telecommunications equipment or services.
Japan names China, Russia, N. Korea as threats in cyberspace
The Japanese government adopted on Monday a draft cybersecurity strategy for the next three years, naming China, Russia and North Korea as cyberattack threats for the first time. The strategy, expected to be endorsed by the Cabinet soon, said the situation in cyberspace contains the "risk of rapidly developing into a critical situation" and that the three states are suspected of being involved in hostile cyber activities. It also said Japan will take "tough countermeasures using every effective means and capability available," including diplomatic responses and criminal prosecutions.
South and Central Asia
The growing strategic importance of outer space
With China’s emergence as a major space power, there is a new urgency for democratic powers to come together to secure their national interests as well as promote sustainable order in the skies above.
Vietnam: Draft Decree on Cybersecurity Administrative Sanction
On 20 September 2021, the Ministry of Public Security ("MPS") released the Draft Decree on Penalties for Administrative Violations in Cybersecurity (“Draft Decree”) to gather public opinion (without a specified deadline). This Draft Decree, tentatively taking effect on 1 December 2021, will potentially impact on both local and international businesses' operation in Vietnam.
London is buying heaps of facial recognition tech
The UK’s biggest police force is set to significantly expand its facial recognition capabilities before the end of this year. New technology will enable London’s Metropolitan Police to process historic images from CCTV feeds, social media and other sources in a bid to track down suspects. But critics warn the technology has “eye-watering possibilities for abuse” and may entrench discriminatory policing.
UK clears Facebook’s purchase of CRM maker, Kustomer
The U.K.’s competition watchdog has cleared Facebook’s acquisition of Kustomer, a maker of CRM tools.
EU says U.S. trade, tech council to boost its clout, set rules for 21st century
The U.S.-EU Trade and Technology Council (TTC) will give Europe more clout and set standards and rules for the 21st century, the EU’s trade and digital chiefs said, underscoring global concerns about China’s growing power.
U.S.-EU Trade Summit in Pittsburgh Aims to Deepen Economic Ties
The Wall Street Journal
Senior U.S. and European officials meet in Pittsburgh on Wednesday, aiming to show that closer trans-Atlantic ties have value—in dollars and euros.
What is the US-EU Trade and Technology Council? Five things you need to know
The new EU-US venue is being dubbed the Trade and Technology Council (TTC). Plenty of issues confront the democracies and market economies of the West, including authoritarian regimes' potential misuse of economic policy tools, as well as technological innovation, to suppress human rights and distort competition and investment. At the same time, the US and EU have a shared history of bilateral disagreements on trade and technology that they can no longer ignore. Pressing global challenges such as climate change are demanding enhanced efforts at trans-Atlantic cooperation as well.
Google Hits Back at EU Attack on Its Mobile Money-Making Machine
Google goes to court this week intent on reversing a record-breaking $5 billion European Union fine and antitrust order that struck at the heart of the U.S. tech giant’s ability to make money.
Finland Reports Widespread Espionage Around Politics, High Tech
Finland is a target of a broad range of unlawful intelligence gathering and operations intended to sway public opinion, the Finnish Security and Intelligence Service said.
In Russia, Apple and Google Staff Get Muscled Up By the State
When US tech companies opened offices there, it was supposed to mitigate oppression. Instead those workers are now vulnerable to threats from local authorities.
Military leaders saw pandemic as unique opportunity to test propaganda techniques on Canadians, Forces report says
Canadian military leaders saw the pandemic as a unique opportunity to test out propaganda techniques on an unsuspecting public, a newly released Canadian Forces report concludes. The federal government never asked for the so-called information operations campaign, nor did cabinet authorize the initiative developed during the COVID-19 pandemic by the Canadian Joint Operations Command, then headed by Lt.-Gen. Mike Rouleau.
With Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor free, Ottawa now faces a decision on Huawei 5G ban
The Globe and Mail
Matthew McClearn, @alexposadzki
Now that Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor have been freed from captivity in China, a decision regarding a Huawei ban looms for the Canadian government.
‘More of China, less of America’: how superpower fight is squeezing the Gulf
Caught between Washington and Beijing, Middle East states struggle to balance relations.
Gender and Women in Cyber
Apple ‘Still Investigating’ Unpatched and Public iPhone Vulnerabilities
Apple apologized for the delay in responding to the researcher, but experts think Apple needs to do better.
Facebook Spending $50M Researching How to Not Ruin Metaverse Like It Ruined the Real World
Facebook says it will spend $50 million to “responsibly” develop a virtual world presumably devoid of all of the things it has made worse in the real world.
Facebook Grew Marketplace to 1 Billion Users. Now Scammers Are Using It to Target People Around the World.
@CraigSilverman @ACInvestigates @peterelkind
ProPublica identified thousands of Marketplace listings and profiles that broke the company’s rules, revealing how Facebook failed to safeguard users.
LinkedIn is testing a new, paid ticketed events service
LinkedIn earlier this month unveiled a new push around creators to bring more original content (and engagement) to its platform, but that’s not the only effort they are making to bring more activity to its networking site. TechCrunch has learned and confirmed that LinkedIn is also running a test around events — specifically, paid events.
Goldman Sachs, Ozy Media and a $40 Million Conference Call Gone Wrong
The New York Times
The digital media company has raised eyebrows for its claims about its audience size for years. Then came the strange voice on the phone.
How Tesla’s ‘Self-Driving’ Beta Testers Protect the Company From Critics
Every so often, a clip of a Tesla running experimental beta driver assistance software goes viral. But who are the people behind the wheel? And why does it matter?
Workers are putting on pants to return to the office only to be on Zoom all day
The Washington Post
Pandemic-era safety procedures have created a new dynamic at work, in which many employees say they’re operating at work the same way they were at home.
Party Capital: A blueprint for national security due diligence on China
This report presents a systematic analysis of Chinese state-business relations to develop a novel, operational framework for national security due diligence in China’s commercial sector. To do so, we draw not only on the most recent scholarship in international political economy but also on original analysis of high-scale, low-cost data from publicly available sources.
What’s Working and What Isn’t in Researching Influence Operations?
The field has come a long way since I got started in 2014. But certain pathologies still remain entrenched and hamper effective dialogue and cooperation between key stakeholders.
Events and Podcasts
Ransomware: Impacts and Insights
Join the Cyber Project as we explore the grave impacts of ransomware on our national (and international) security. We will explore recent lessons from attacks on the healthcare and financial industries, discuss recommendations from the Ransomware Task Force, and ask what role the US government should take to combat the threat, especially through the Department of Defense.
Exploring the Applications of Facial Recognition Technology
CSIS invites you to a discussion on the applications of facial recognition technology featuring Diane Sabatino, Deputy Executive Assistant Commissioner at U.S. Customs and Border Protection, and Jake Parker, Senior Director of Government Relations at the Security Industry Association. The event will begin with opening remarks from John Boyd, Assistant Director for the Office of Biometric Identity Management at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.
WEBINAR: Fake news and Disinformation in Australia: Report launch and Panel discussion
Digital Media Research Centre
QUT Digital Media Research Centre and the Global Disinformation Index (GDI) are launching a report profiling the risk of disinformation in Australia’s media ecosystem, highlighting the weaknesses as well as opportunities for improvement in the Australian media.
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.