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Category Archives: Cybercrime

Avoiding A World War Web: The Paris Call for Trust and Security in Cyberspace

Lawfare: “On Nov. 11 [2018] at 11:00 a.m., more than 70 world leaders walked towards the Arc de Triomphe in Paris to commemorate the centenary of the end of the First World War and to honor the 19 million people who lost their lives in it. French President Emmanuel Macron delivered a charged speech denouncing nationalism and urging all leaders to pursue peace through multilateralism. On November 12th 2018 at the Internet Governance Forum, Macron unveiled France’s first international initiative to that end, the “Paris Call for Trust and Security in Cyberspace.” The Paris Call is not the first of its kind. In April 2018, Microsoft launched its “Digital Peace” campaign along with a “Cybersecurity Tech Accord” aimed at getting the internet and the technology industry to better protect their customers’ privacy and security against cyberattacks. Similarly, Siemens unveiled in May 2018 a “Charter of Trust” that seeks to develop adherence to security principles and processes, with the aim of developing a “global standard” for cybersecurity. Until those recent developments, norm-building initiatives were the prerogative of states. In 2015, the U.N.’s Group of Governmental Experts (GGE) recognized that international humanitarian law applied to cyberspace, though it then deadlocked when it closed at the end of 2017. Similarly, two blocs—one group led by the United States and another by China and Russia—reached a stalemate at the U.N. Disarmament Commission.

Approaching the issue from various stakeholders’ perspectives, the Paris Call is an attempt to move away from this international deadlock. Macron, at its unveiling at UNESCO, made the case for rebuffing what he described as a binary choice between “a Californian Internet and a Chinese Internet.” So far, he argued, these two opposite narratives have monopolized the debate and imposed two radically different yet unsatisfactory alternatives: either a model of mere technical governance led by Silicon Valley, or an overwhelming regulation led by authoritarian regimes. While the former does not address issues of privacy and malicious actors, the latter cracks down on human rights and could lead to a “balkanisation” of internet and of wider cyberspace…”

Paper – Common-Knowledge Attacks on Democracy

Farrell, Henry John and Schneier, Bruce, Common-Knowledge Attacks on Democracy (October 2018). Berkman Klein Center Research Publication No. 2018-7. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3273111 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3273111 /a> “Existing approaches to cybersecurity emphasize either international state-to-state logics (such as deterrence theory) or the integrity of individual information systems. Neither provides a good understanding of new “soft cyber”… Continue Reading

Half of all Phishing Sites Now Have the Padlock

Krebs on Security – “Maybe you were once advised to “look for the padlock” as a means of telling legitimate e-commerce sites from phishing or malware traps. Unfortunately, this has never been more useless advice. New research indicates that half of all phishing scams are now hosted on Web sites whose Internet address includes the… Continue Reading

What Do Lawyers and Hackers Have in Common

Via LLRX – What Do Lawyers and Hackers Have in Common – This commentary by Michael Ravnitzky is based on a thought provoking premise – “The activities of attorneys and the activities of hackers are not as different as you might expect, if you define hackers as creative, unconventional problem solvers. Each explores vast spaces… Continue Reading

UK Parliament seizes cache of Facebook internal papers

The Guardian – Documents alleged to contain revelations on data and privacy controls that led to Cambridge Analytica scandal – “Parliament has used its legal powers to seize internal Facebook documents in an extraordinary attempt to hold the US social media giant to account after chief executive Mark Zuckerberg repeatedly refused to answer MPs’ questions.… Continue Reading

The problem with social media has never been about bots. It’s always been about business models

Quartz – “Researchers have found that as many as 15% of Twitter accounts are bots, which drive two-thirds of the links on the site. But not all bots are bad. There are bots that make the internet more beautiful, more useful, even kinder. Here at Quartz, we have a whole department dedicated to making informative… Continue Reading

What Do Lawyers and Hackers Have in Common

Via LLRX – What Do Lawyers and Hackers Have in Common – This commentary by Michael Ravnitzky is based on a thought provoking premise – “The activities of attorneys and the activities of hackers are not as different as you might expect, if you define hackers as creative, unconventional problem solvers. Each explores vast spaces… Continue Reading

Passwords Aren’t Enough. The Key to Online Security is a Key

The Key to Online Security is a Key These physical devices by Yubico and Google are helping guard you against online hackers. Just don’t lose them [Paywall] “NO MATTER how much alphanumeric complexity you add to passwords, chances are they’re still not strong enough. Don’t worry, mine are even weaker. Against all advice, I’m only… Continue Reading

How to Tell if Your Account Has Been Hacked

Motherboard – How to check if your Gmail, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and other accounts have been hacked. “Hackers routinely target high profile victims like politicians or wealthy cryptocurrency investors. But you could become a target too. Maybe an abusive former partner wants to stalk you, or a run-of-the-mill cybercriminal wants to get into your bank… Continue Reading

Amazon Announces a Security Change That May Help Companies Using AWS to Avoid Data Breaches

Fortune: “Amazon is finally offering a simple way for its cloud services customers to lock down data stored at its Simple Storage Service (S3) with one fell swoop. This change should help companies in the Fortune 500 and mom-and-pops down the street avoid embarrassing breaches of data. Customers of Amazon Web Services (AWS) routinely leave… Continue Reading

Delay, Deny and Deflect: How Facebook’s Leaders Fought Through Crisis

The New York Times: “…When Facebook users learned last spring that the company had compromised their privacy in its rush to expand, allowing access to the personal information of tens of millions of people to a political data firm linked to President Trump, Facebook sought to deflect blame and mask the extent of the problem.And… Continue Reading

Report – American military advantage eroded

Providing for the Common Defense – The Assessments and Recommendations of the National Defense Strategy Commission November 13, 2018 / By: National Defense Strategy Commission. “The final report of the National Defense Strategy Commission is a compilation of the assessments of the National Defense Strategy and recommendations based on its analysis related not just to… Continue Reading