Two new ASPI ICPC Reports on Quantum and Xinjiang | China threatens retaliations against Sweeden over 5G | North Carolina reels in fuel shortage after cyberattack
ASPI ICPC launches two new reports. The first - An Australian strategy for the quantum revolution - argues for a clear quantum strategy, political leadership and an organised policy & investment effort. Without those things, Australia will be left behind. The second - Family De-planning: the coercive campaign to drive down birth-rates in Xinjiang - provides new evidence documenting the effectiveness of the Chinese government’s systematic efforts to reduce the size of the indigenous population of Xinjiang through a range of coercive policies.
Beijing is giving Sweden one last chance to reverse its ban on telecommunications-equipment giant Huawei Technologies Co., a Chinese state media outlet said, before it could retaliate against rival Ericsson. Ericsson’s participation in the next round of China’s massive 5G build-out is linked to whether Stockholm changes its stance on Huawei, according to the Global Times, a Chinese Communist Party publication. The Wall Street Journal
Panic-buying has emptied 28 percent of North Carolina’s fuel stations and is exacerbating gasoline shortages across the Southeast, underscoring the real-world implications of a cyberattack that forced Colonial Pipeline offline last week. The Washington Post
NEW REPORT. An Australian strategy for the quantum revolution
The world is now at the precipice of another technological and social revolution—the quantum revolution. The countries that master quantum technology will dominate the information processing space for decades and perhaps centuries to come, giving them control and influence over sectors such as advanced manufacturing, pharmaceuticals, the digital economy, logistics, national security and intelligence. A new ASPI ICPC report - An Australian strategy for the quantum revolution - argues that Australia needs a clear quantum strategy, political leadership and an organised effort, including policy focus and public investment. Without those things, Australia will be left behind. The report focuses on analysis, and building policy recommendations, to help Australia better leverage the quantum revolution. The report also recognises that quantum is just one critical technology and that what’s needed is a step change in Australia’s current policy settings related to critical and emerging technologies more generally.
Australia is losing its quantum edge: ASPI
Australia is falling behind in the global quantum technology race despite its history of leadership in the field, according to a new Australian Strategic Policy Institute report, which calls for a “step change” in policy settings and investment. The policy recommendations include making quantum technology a key plank in a national technology strategy, a call for a new minister for critical and emerging technologies, and a new national quantum initiative involving states and the private sector.
NEW REPORT. Family De-planning: The Coercive Campaign to Drive Down Indigenous Birth-rates in Xinjiang
In this new ASPI ICPC report, we provide new evidence documenting the effectiveness of the Chinese government’s systematic efforts to reduce the size of the indigenous population of Xinjiang through a range of coercive birth-control policies. Using the Chinese government’s own publicly available statistics, we have compiled a dataset of county-level birth-rates across 2011-2019. We then marshal this data to analyse trends across nationalities and spatial regions in Xinjiang, before and after the 2016 crackdown, and comparatively with other countries as recorded in the UN population dataset. Finally, we place these statistics in context through our analysis of county-level implementation documents and other official Chinese language sources which have been previously overlooked.
Drop in Xinjiang birthrate largest in recent history: report. AP News
Xinjiang births plummeted after crackdown on Uyghurs, says report. The Guardian
Our new report was cited by the head of HRW during this special High-level virtual event on the situation in Xinjiang hosted by the US, UK and German governments and co-sponsored by many governments and civil society groups including Australia. UN Web TV
Osiris banking trojan shuts down as new Ares variant emerges
The creator of the Osiris banking trojan has shut down its operation in March, citing a lack of interest for banking trojans in the cybercriminal underground. The shutdown announcement was posted in a hacking forum thread where the Osiris author, an individual named Anubi, initially started advertising the trojan back in April 2018.
Home Affairs scores $42m to secure critical infrastructure
The federal government will provide $42.4 million to the Department of Home Affairs to secure critical infrastructure assets and help owners and operators respond to major cyber attacks.
Budget 2021-22: what’s in it for tech?
A $1 billion digital economy fund, patent and depreciation tax relief and cyber security form bedrock of Treasurer Frydenberg's technology investment.
Rex Patrick calls for government to launch cyber attacks on China
Australia must launch cyber retalitiations on China to punish Beijing for its own attacks, a key crossbencher says. Independent senator Rex Patrick on Tuesday said China must pay “a diplomatic price” for its cyber aggressions, demanding the government adopt an “offensive strategy” towards Beijing.
Biotech company pushing to begin Australian production of mRNA coronavirus vaccines
An international biotech company says it could manufacture mRNA COVID-19 vaccines — including Pfizer's — in Australia, but would need support and investment from the federal government.
Microsoft’s LinkedIn Accused by Noted China Critic of Censorship
A prominent critic of China based in the U.K. said Microsoft Corp.’s LinkedIn froze his account and removed content criticizing the country’s government, the latest in a series of allegations that the networking website had censored users -- even outside of the Asian nation -- to appease authorities in Beijing.
An escaped leopard is eluding its would-be captors in China. Officials sent hundreds of drones to find it.
The Washington Post
Officials in the Chinese city of Hangzhou said they have sent hundreds of drones airborne in search of a leopard that has been on the loose for more than three weeks.
Colonial Pipeline launches the restart of pipeline operations, as shortages remain in Southeast
The Washington Post
Panic-buying has emptied 28 percent of North Carolina’s fuel stations and is exacerbating gasoline shortages across the Southeast, underscoring the real-world implications of a cyberattack that forced Colonial Pipeline offline last week.
Trump's blog isn't lighting up the internet
Four months after former President Donald Trump was banished from most mainstream social media platforms, he returned to the web last Tuesday with “From the Desk of Donald J. Trump,” essentially a blog for his musings. A week since the unveiling, social media data suggests things are not going well.
Google Plans to Double AI Ethics Research Staff
Wall Street Journal
Alphabet Inc.’s Google plans to double the size of its team studying artificial-intelligence ethics in the coming years, as the company looks to strengthen a group that has had its credibility challenged by research controversies and personnel defections.
New Zealand & The Pacific
Police drone data risks ending up on servers Chinese government can access - reports
Police drones are at risk of the data they gather ending up in cloud servers the Chinese government can access, but this can be managed, and the benefits outweigh the risks. That is the conclusion in reports on police trials of drones released under the Official Information Act (OIA) .
China Threatens Retaliation Against Ericsson if Sweden Doesn’t Drop Huawei 5G Ban
Wall Street Journal
Beijing is giving Sweden one last chance to reverse its ban on telecommunications-equipment giant Huawei Technologies Co., a Chinese state media outlet said, before it could retaliate against rival Ericsson. Ericsson’s participation in the next round of China’s massive 5G build-out is linked to whether Stockholm changes its stance on Huawei, according to the Global Times, a Chinese Communist Party publication.
Amid US-China Competition over AI Capabilities, EU Projects Regulatory Power
Intended to create a unified set of rules across the EU, the Act marks one of the first serious attempts in the world at creating an overarching regulatory framework for AI.
German regulator bans Facebook from processing WhatsApp user data
Twitter Said It Restricted Palestinian Writer's Account by Accident
The impacted account belongs to Mariam Barghouti, who was on the ground reporting on protests against the expulsion of Palestinians from their homes in East Jerusalem.
International Cyber Policy Centre – Strategic engagement, program & research coordinator
ASPI’s International Cyber Policy Centre (ICPC) has an outstanding early career role for a talented and proactive individual to support senior centre staff on strategic engagement, program and research coordination.