Tag: national security

Khashoggi’s fate shows the flip side of the surveillance state

It’s been over five years since NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden lifted the lid on government mass surveillance programs, revealing, in unprecedented detail, quite how deep the rabbit hole goes thanks to the spread of commercial software and connectivity enabling a bottomless intelligence-gathering philosophy of ‘bag it all’. Yet technology’s onward march

Smart home makers hoard your data, but won’t say if the police come for it

A decade ago, it was almost inconceivable that nearly every household item could be hooked up to the internet. These days, it’s near impossible to avoid a non-smart home gadget, and they’re vacuuming up a ton of new data that we’d never normally think about. Thermostats know the temperature of

UK says Russia’s GRU was behind a spate of chaotic cyber attacks between 2015 and 2017

The UK has directly accused Russia’s military intelligence agency of being behind a number of cyber attacks that took place between 2015 and 2017, calling them “indiscriminate and reckless” with a range of target types including political institutions, businesses, media and even sport. It says the chaotic campaign of attacks

Unbiased algorithms can still be problematic

Creating unbiased, accurate algorithms isn’t impossible — it’s just time consuming. “It actually is mathematically possible,” facial recognition startup Kairos CEO Brian Brackeen told me on a panel at TechCrunch Disrupt SF. Algorithms are sets of rules that computers follow in order to solve problems and make decisions about a

China splits the internet while the U.S. dithers

There are few stories as important right now as the internet being ripped asunder by the increasing animosity between the U.S. and China. Eric Schmidt, the former chairman of Alphabet, said last week at a private event in San Francisco that “I think the most likely scenario now is not

Trump’s new cyber strategy eases rules on use of government cyberweapons

The Trump administration’s new cyber strategy out this week isn’t much more than a stringing together of previously considered ideas. In the 40-page document, the government set out its plans to improve cybersecurity, incentivizing change, and reforming computer hacking laws. Election security about a quarter of a page, second only

Facebook pilots new political campaign security tools — just 50 days before Election Day

Facebook has rolled out a “pilot” program of new security tools for political campaigns — just weeks before millions of Americans go to the polls for the midterm elections. The social networking giant said it’s targeting campaigns who “may be particularly vulnerable to targeting by hackers and foreign adversaries.” Once

UK warns of satellite and space program problems in case of Brexit ‘no deal’

The UK government says that access to satellites and space surveillance programs will suffer in the event of a “no deal” departure from the European Union . Britain has less than six months to go before the country leaves the 28 member state bloc, after a little over half the

UK’s mass surveillance regime violated human rights law, finds ECHR

In another blow to the UK government’s record on bulk data handling for intelligence purposes the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) has ruled that state surveillance practices violated human rights law. Arguments against the UK intelligence agencies’ bulk collection and data sharing practices were heard by the court in

Watchdog says 2020 Census systems are riddled with security flaws

With a census just two years away, the Census Bureau has a cybersecurity problem. That’s a key takeaway from the congressional watchdog, the Government Accountability Office, which oversees the government’s spending. In a new report published Thursday, the non-partisan agency said that the government’s Census Bureau has only a few