US intelligence report warns of increased offensive cyber, disinformation around the world | Myanmar’s internet suppression | Quantum technology emerges from the lab to spark a mini start-up boom
Over the course of the next 20 years, nation-states will see a rise in targeted offensive cyber-operations and disinformation in an increasingly “volatile and confrontational” global security landscape, according to a new U.S. intelligence assessment. CyberScoop
To try to suppress protests, the junta has imposed increasing restrictions on internet access, culminating in a near total shutdown as of April 2. That has made it extremely difficult for people to access information, upload videos of protests, or organize. These tactics have also crippled businesses and limited access to medical information during the coronavirus pandemic. Reuters
Forty years after the renowned physicist Richard Feynman floated the idea for a quantum computer, the technology is starting to seep out of academic labs and into the real world. Several companies are making progress developing quantum computers and are selling access to the machines via the cloud. Software ventures are cropping up to write programs for the powerful new computers. And on Wednesday, the University of Chicago and partners launched the nation’s first program to support quantum-tech start-ups. The Washington Post
At the request of Switzerland’s Federal Department of Foreign Affairs, ASPI’s International Cyber Policy Centre translated the graphics and videos we produced on the UN cyber norms into three new languages.
Eleven norms of responsible state behaviour in cyberspace
Federal Department of Foreign Affairs FDFA
Digital technologies are transforming the economy, society and international relations. As an economic and research hub, Switzerland seeks to maintain its privileged position alongside some of the world's most competitive actors. It actively supports the UN's normative framework to promote responsible state behaviour in the digital space and promotes multilateral cooperation in this area.
We have now added materials in French, German and Italian to our repository of downloadable cyber norms materials, which can be found here.
Read Bart Hoogeveen's take on the recent adoption of the report by the UN open-ended working group on cybersecurity here.
Privacy watchdog probes Facebook data dump
The privacy watchdog is conducting initial inquiries into the latest Facebook data leak which exposed the personal information of 553 million users, including 7.3 million Australians. A user in a low-level hacking forum on Saturday posted personal data of over 500 million Facebook users, including phone numbers, full names, location, email address, and biographical information.
Craig Kelly Staffer Running Local Facebook Groups Without Disclosure
A senior advisor to controversial politician Craig Kelly is running dozens of local Facebook groups in the MP’s electorate without any disclosure of his employment.
China’s Techno-Authoritarianism Has Gone Global
Surveillance is a fact of life for Chinese citizens and, increasingly, for those who live in countries that have adopted Chinese surveillance technology, from Ecuador to Kyrgyzstan. Even more worrisome, this ecosystem of Chinese-based technologies carries with it a set of values that undergirds the Chinese state—a form of twenty-first-century authoritarianism that marries social control and efficiency.
Peter Thiel Calls Bitcoin ‘a Chinese Financial Weapon’ at Virtual Roundtable
Peter Thiel is “pro-crypto” and “pro-Bitcoin maximalist,” but he also thinks the cryptocurrency may be undermining America.
Tesla Says Its In-Vehicle Cameras Aren’t Activated in China
Tesla told Chinese consumers that cameras installed in its cars aren’t activated outside of North America, in response to privacy concerns about sensitive data being collected by in-cabin cameras and shared with the US automaker.
US intelligence report warns of increased offensive cyber, disinformation around the world
Over the course of the next 20 years, nation-states will see a rise in targeted offensive cyber-operations and disinformation in an increasingly “volatile and confrontational” global security landscape, according to a new U.S. intelligence assessment.
Quantum technology emerges from the lab to spark a mini start-up boom
The Washington Post
Forty years after the renowned physicist Richard Feynman floated the idea for a quantum computer, the technology is starting to seep out of academic labs and into the real world.
Suspected China Hack of Microsoft Shows Signs of Prior Reconnaissance
The Wall Street Journal
@dnvolz Robert McMillan
Investigators suspect that personal data taken in previous huge hacks or scraped off social-media sites aided the breach of Microsoft Exchange Server that began in January.
Your Local Police Department Might Have Used This Facial Recognition Tool To Surveil You. Find Out Here
@RMac18 @caro1inehaskins @bri_sacks @_loganmcdonald
Search through BuzzFeed News’ database to find out if the police department in your community is among the hundreds of taxpayer-funded entities that used Clearview AI’s facial recognition.
Details of sweeping effort to counter China emerge in U.S. Senate
Patricia Zengerle David Brunnstrom
Leaders of the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee introduced major legislation on Thursday to boost the country's ability to push back against China's expanding global influence by promoting human rights, providing security aid and investing to combat disinformation.
Chinese tech firms with ties to the military added to US blacklist
The Biden administration is keeping up the pressure on Chinese technology firms by adding more companies to a Commerce Department blacklist.
Myanmar’s internet suppression
To try to suppress protests, the junta has imposed increasing restrictions on internet access, culminating in a near total shutdown as of April 2. That has made it extremely difficult for people to access information, upload videos of protests, or organize. These tactics have also crippled businesses and limited access to medical information during the coronavirus pandemic.
New Zealand & The Pacific
CSIS confirms director has COVID-19, amid debate over workplace safety at intelligence agency
Amanda Connolly Mercedes Stephenson Sam Cooper Stewart Bell
The COVID-19 pandemic has hit Canada’s intelligence service, including director David Vigneault, who has contracted the virus, the agency confirmed on Wednesday.
Why Do A Bunch Of Nigerian Twitter Influencers Want This Alleged Money Launderer To Go Free? They’re Being Paid.
As an alleged money launderer who worked with the Venezuelan government and is fighting an extradition order to the United States, Alex Saab has some unlikely allies.
It's never been easier to start a social network. Succeeding is another story
Former President Donald Trump lost his most-prized megaphone when he was suspended from Facebook and Twitter earlier this year. Since then, he's largely stuck with canned press statements instead of social media. But if Trump gets his way, that may change — he's reportedly planning to launch a brand-new social media platform that presumably won't restrict his content. But Trump isn't the only one pushing the social networking envelope.
Twitter Held Discussions for $4 Billion Takeover of Clubhouse
Katie Roof @KurtWagner8 @scottdeveau
Twitter Inc. held talks in recent months to acquire Clubhouse, the buzzy audio-based social network, according to people familiar with the matter.
Google Has a Secret Blocklist that Hides YouTube Hate Videos from Advertisers—But It’s Full of Holes
Many well-known White supremacist and White nationalist terms and slogans were not blocked.
Intel’s Dystopian Anti-Harassment AI Lets Users Opt In for ‘Some’ Racism
Intel is launching an artificial intelligence application that will recognize and redact hate speech in real-time. It’s called Bleep, and Intel hopes it’ll help with one of gaming's oldest and most intractable problems—people can be real pieces of shit online.
Facebook dataset combats AI bias by having people self-identify age and gender
Facebook today open-sourced a dataset designed to surface age, gender, and skin tone biases in computer vision and audio machine learning models. The company claims that the corpus — Casual Conversations — is the first of its kind featuring paid people who explicitly provided their age and gender as opposed to labeling this information by third parties or estimating it using models.
Facebook hopes tiny labels on posts will stop users confusing satire with reality
Facebook is adding additional labels to posts from Pages that appear in users’ News Feeds in a bid to reduce confusion about their origin. These labels will include “public official,” “fan page,” and “satire page.” The company says it’s already started testing the deployment of these labels in the US, and will gradually add them to more posts.
Lawsuit alleges that, since 2017, civil rights groups have flagged hundreds of anti-Muslim Pages and Groups to Facebook, more than half of which stayed up
The Washington Post
Suit says the company made false claims to consumers by promising, at congressional hearings, that it quickly removes hate groups and hate speech.
Hackers Exploit Fortinet Flaw in Sophisticated Cring Ransomware Attacks
Industrial enterprises in Europe are target of campaign, which forced a shutdown of industrial processes in at least one of its victims’ networks, according to researchers.
Proctorio Is Using Racist Algorithms to Detect Faces
A student researcher has reverse-engineered the controversial exam software—and discovered a tool infamous for failing to recognize non-white faces.
Hackers scraped data from 500 million LinkedIn users - about two-thirds of the platform's userbase - and have posted it for sale online
Data from 500 million LinkedIn users has been scraped and is for sale online, according to a report from Cyber News. A LinkedIn spokesperson confirmed to Insider that there is a dataset of public information that was scraped from the platform.
Sharp Power and Democratic Resilience Series | China’s Exploitation of Emerging Technologies
National Endowment For Democracy
In the final thematic report of the Sharp Power and Democratic Resilience series, Dr. Samantha Hoffman describes how the People’s Republic of China (PRC) leverages emerging technologies to undercut democracies’ stability and legitimacy while expanding its own influence. The PRC’s development and global export of “smart cities” technology, for example, showcases the character of tech-enhanced sharp power and authoritarianism.
Securing the Subsea Network: A Primer for Policymakers
The United States’ position as the world’s leading hub in subsea networks can no longer be taken for granted. More of the world is coming online, and China is emerging rapidly as a leading subsea cable provider and owner. This guide for policymakers describes subsea cables' essential functions, planning processes, and common threats; explains the U.S. economic and strategic interests at stake; and offers recommendations for protecting U.S. centrality in subsea networks.
Governing through crisis. Conflict, crises and the politics of cyberspace
The Hague Program for Cyber Norms
In 2021, we want to place the conversation about cyber norms in the perspective of crises. How well equipped are the governance mechanisms and diplomatic processes that have been put into place to deal with crisis? What are the effects of a global crisis like Covid-19 on state behaviour(s), diplomatic behaviour and international cooperation in cyberspace? What strategies do states – and other actors – develop to deal with crises? How do states use crisis, or the opportunities shaped by crises, to further their own interests? Why do some states escalate and other de-escalate?