UK selling spyware and wiretaps to repressive regimes around the world | US finalising federal contract ban for companies that use Huawei | AFP's use of controversial facial recognition technology
The British government is providing more than a dozen repressive regimes around the world with wiretaps, spyware and other telecommunications interception equipment they could use to spy on dissidents, public records show. Independent
The Trump administration plans to finalize regulations this week that will bar the U.S. government from buying goods or services from any company that uses products from five Chinese companies including Huawei, Hikvision and Dahua, a U.S. official said. Reuters
The AFP initially denied any ties to Clearview AI before later confirming officers had accepted a trial. The company provoked outrage in January, when the New York Times revealed the extent of its data collection and its use by law enforcement officials in the United States. ABC News
Cyber experts urge Australia to develop local capability to defend against hackers
The Sydney Morning Herald
Fergus Hanson, director of the International Cyber Policy Centre at the Australian Strategy Policy Institute, said Australia needed to increase its investment in human resources as a first step, while government procurement guidelines setting a minimum level of local content might also be needed. Mr Hanson said the government should also clearly set out which areas of cyber security it wanted to have a sovereign capability, so the business community could invest in those areas.
Spy vs Spy
Australian Foreign Affairs
Data Drive: How COVID-19 and cyberspace are changing spycraft In Australia, the intelligence community comprises not just those in the field but also those conducting analytical, technical, signals, operational and geospatial functions. Today, all of this work is being transformed by exponential changes in cyberspace and technology. Relatively cheap, everyday devices can be far more valuable sources of intelligence than a wiretap or a bug installed in a light fitting.
How has the pandemic changed the world of cyber espionage?
Australia has recognised the need to beef up its cyber capabilities to protect itself as the world emerges from the first six months of the coronavirus pandemic. Last week the Government announced a multi-billion dollar contribution towards increasing our cyber and information warfare powers over the next decade. Although, what has changed during the pandemic? Are our strategies up to date and can we keep up with how cyber espionage may have evolved over the last six months of global disruption. Guest: Danielle Cave, Deputy Director, Australian Strategic Policy Institute's International Cyber Policy Centre.
Alex Joske on China’s Influence Operations - The Wire China
The Wire China
Alex Joske is an analyst at the Australian Strategic Policy Institute, a government funded think tank based in Canberra, where his work focuses on the Chinese Communist Party’s global influence and technology transfer efforts. What follows is a lightly edited Q&A.
UK selling spyware and wiretaps to 17 repressive regimes including Saudi Arabia and China
The British government is providing more than a dozen repressive regimes around the world with wiretaps, spyware and other telecommunications interception equipment they could use to spy on dissidents, public records show. Despite rules saying the UK should not export security goods to countries that might use them for internal repression, ministers have signed off more than £75m in such exports over the past five years to states rated “not free” by the NGO Freedom House.
While America Looks Away, Autocrats Crack Down on Digital News Sites
The New York Times
Independent journalism is on the defensive, from Hungary to Malaysia. “The knowledge that the United States and other Western democracies are going to be on your case often deters authoritarian leaders from taking these kinds of actions,” said Representative Tom Malinowski of New Jersey, who was assistant secretary of State for democracy, human rights and labor in the Obama administration. Not any more.
Documents reveal AFP's use of controversial facial recognition technology
Documents obtained by the ABC reveal how the Australian Federal Police made use of Clearview AI - a controversial facial recognition technology that is now the focus of a federal investigation.
Inside TikTok’s dystopian Chinese censorship machine
Documents reveal how TikTok's Chinese version, Douyin, uses facial recognition to police foreigners. And that's just the start.
China launches global medical AI research platform
China launched a global medical artificial intelligence (AI) research platform at the recent World Artificial Intelligence Healthcare Conference in Shanghai.
Exclusive: U.S. finalizing federal contract ban for companies that use Huawei, others
The Trump administration plans to finalize regulations this week that will bar the U.S. government from buying goods or services from any company that uses products from five Chinese companies including Huawei, Hikvision and Dahua, a U.S. official said.
Navarro Says More U.S. Action on TikTok, WeChat to Be Expected
White House adviser Peter Navarro said he expects President Donald Trump to take “strong action” against Chinese-owned social media apps TikTok and WeChat for engaging in “information warfare” against the United States.
Is it time to delete TikTok? A guide to the rumors and the real privacy risks.
The Washington Post
Should you delete the TikTok app - or force your kids to? To answer that, we need to follow the data.
Google Search Upgrades Make It Harder for Websites to Win Traffic
To many web publishers and other businesses that have historically relied on the internet giant to send users to their sites, Google's subtle tweaks have siphoned off vital traffic and made it harder -- and costlier -- to reach customers online.
When Scholars Collaborate With Tech Companies, How Reliable Are the Findings?
The New York Times
Uber and Lyft hailed a Cornell paper’s conclusion that their drivers make solid wages. But others have questioned the researchers’ approach.
Big Tech firms back suing Trump administration over rule that could drive out foreign students
Google, Facebook, Microsoft and other tech companies are joining the U.S. Chamber of Commerce to push back on the Trump administration's bid to bar foreign students from staying in the U.S. if their colleges are only offering online classes in the fall.
Indonesia moves to beef up cyber security with data protection law
The Straits Times
Indonesia is pushing ahead with a data protection law following a series of high-profile data breaches in recent months at some of its biggest e-commerce companies. The legislation - due by the end of the year - will make it illegal to collect consumer data without permission and requires businesses to alert customers within days of knowing that their names, email and other information had fallen into the wrong hands.
South and Central Asia
India Seeks to Limit Facebook, Google Dominance Over Online Data
India needs a new data regulator to oversee the sharing, monetization and privacy of information collected online, an expert committee appointed by the government has recommended.
Sundar Pichai @sundarpichaiToday at #GoogleForIndia we announced a new $10B digitization fund to help accelerate India’s digital economy. We’re proud to support PM @narendramodi’s vision for Digital India - many thanks to Minister @rsprasad & Minister @DrRPNishank for joining us. https://t.co/H0EUFYSD1q
UK turns to ‘Five Eyes’ to help find alternatives to Huawei
@helenwarrell @alanbeattie @Dimi
Britain is stepping up efforts to persuade its “Five Eyes” security partners and other allies to collaborate on finding industrial alternatives to Huawei as a 5G supplier, ahead of its expected decision this week to curb the Chinese company’s role in UK networks.
Former MI6 chief claims there is 'close linkage' between Huawei and Chinese military
There is “close linkage” between Huawei and the Chinese military, a former head of MI6 has claimed, as he urged the Government to strip the firm from the UK’s mobile network. Sir Richard Dearlove insisted that there was a “strategic security reason” for the Government to U-turn on its decision to grant the telecoms giant access to Britain's 5G infastructure.
Nobody should be surprised about China's bullying tactics over Huawei and 5G
Nobody should be surprised that the instant Britain had second thoughts about allowing the Chinese electronics company Huawei into the UK’s 5G network, the Chinese government instantly resorted to hard-line bullying tactics.
Huawei: BT says 'impossible' to remove all firm's kit in under 10 years
BT's chief has said it would be "impossible" to remove Huawei from the whole of the UK's telecoms infrastructure before 2030.
Samsung: Huawei pricing not viable for profit-seeking company | Light Reading
Samsung has cast aspersions on Huawei's pricing strategy in the mobile network equipment market when asked by a UK parliamentary committee if years of unfair competition had driven some firms out of business.
Germany proposes first-ever use of EU cyber sanctions over Russia hacking
Berlin has officially called for the use of a new EU sanctions framework to target Russian individuals following the 2015 hack attack against the German parliament's IT system, an inquiry has revealed. The German government has officially proposed that the European Union impose sanctions on Russian individuals responsible for a large-scale hacking of the Bundestag five years ago, the German Press Agency reported Sunday.
Program Manager/Senior Analyst
ASPI’s International Cyber Policy Centre (ICPC) has an outstanding opportunity for a talented, proactive and super efficient program manager/senior analyst to join its growing centre. The successful candidate will need to have a proven track record of leading teams and experience in project management including financial and stakeholder management (which will include industry, the Australian Government, Parliament and foreign governments). To succeed in this position candidates should have exceptional communication and problem-solving skills and experience in research, policy analysis or policy development.
ASPI’s International Cyber Policy Centre has an outstanding opportunity for a talented and proactive allrounder to join its growing centre. The ICPC is looking for someone who is an excellent writer and researcher and who is a team player - you will need to juggle multiple research projects that could span the range of topics listed above. This is not an entry level position. Analysts in ICPC have between 5-15 years’ relevant work experience and, depending on experience, are involved in stakeholder and project management, fundraising and the management of small teams.