Cyber Security/Protection

Huawei 5G still contentious in U.K.

China's ambassador to Britain says Conservative politicians opposed to Huawei’s involvement in the 5G network are conducting “kind of a witch-hunt”. Reacting to a letter written by a group that includes former cabinet ministers who want “high risk” companies banned, the envoy insists that Huawei is a private company with no ties to the Chinese government. [node:read-more:link]

Huawei 5G in Canada

As Canada’s partners within the Five Eyes security coalition take different approaches to the use of Huawei 5G technology, Ottawa has yet to decide whether to permit its use and a new Angus Reid poll indicates that Canadians are divided. Some 56 per cent favour following the U.S., Australia and New Zealand in banning Huawei, 34 per cent like Britain’s limited use policy and 10 per cent evidently would have no issue with Huawei building the entire 5G infrastructure. [node:read-more:link]

ISPs face data-sharing orders

Internet service providers would be compelled to share data with the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency under the terms of a bipartisan bill currently before a U.S. Senate committee. A related bill has been approved by its equivalent committee in the House of Representatives. [node:read-more:link]

EU AI approach too definitive?

At least one element of the European Union’s recently-published draft principles for regulating artificial intelligence falls short of what the U.S. proposes, says Michael Kratsios, a senior White House technology officer. He says the EU white paper “in some ways clumsily attempts to bucket AI-power technologies as either high-risk or not compared with a broader spectrum approach. [node:read-more:link]

Pulp mills targetted by malware

The RCMP is investigating reports by a pulp-and-paper company in Richmond, B.C., that its systems have been infiltrated by malware. A spokesperson for Paper Excellence Canada Holdings Corp. says communications and some production capability have been affected.  [node:read-more:link]

Political division in the Five Eyes?

A planned British visit by an Australian parliamentary committee reportedly has been canceled due to differences over Huawei’s role in Britain's 5G network but Britain says the change in plans is because Westminster has yet to establish a counterpart committee. Australia has banned the Chinese company outright and is said to be disappointed by its intelligence partner's decision to allow Huawei limited access. [node:read-more:link]

Social security data vulnerable

Christopher Krebs, director of the U.S. Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, is receptive to concerns that widespread use of Social Security numbers leaves millions of Americans vulnerable to data theft. He suggested during a cybersecurity conference that there are more secure alternatives to the nine-digit identifier. A study five years indicated then that up to 80 per cent of registrants had already been hacked. [node:read-more:link]

Phishing on the rise

The number of “phishing” attacks against the public and private sectors evidently has increased since the COVID-19 outbreak began. Many are targeting employees working from home on virtual private networks as the coronavirus offers online thieves a “huge opportunity.” [node:read-more:link]

Cybercrime takes a hit

An international team led by Microsoft mounted a successful counterattack 11 March against one of the world’s hacker networks which had been stealing data, sending spam and gaining access to countless computers. Believed to be Russia-based, the organization also rented or sold access to the hacked computers to other cyber criminals. [node:read-more:link]

Quest for the “Holy Grail”

The head of the Canadian Centre for Cyber Security, Scott Jones, says it's working on a level of data encryption to enhance government information in the fact of reported increases in privacy breaches and software attacks. “We want encryption when it's being processed so you don't have to decrypt it to do it, and that's something called homomorphic encryption,” he says. “That’s the Holy Grail.” [node:read-more:link]

RCMP short of cyber resources?

Significant resourcing challenges” could compromise RCMP efforts to tackle terrorism and cybercrime, the force says in its latest annual planning report to Parliament. It also says the focus will be on high-priority investigations related to terrorism, foreign interference, organized crime, money laundering, and cybercrime. [node:read-more:link]

White House 5G national strategy

A formal framework for safeguarding 5G telecommunications in the U.S. has been released by the administration. Its seven-page policy document sets out President Donald Trump’s “vision for America to lead the development, deployment, and management of secure and reliable 5G communications infrastructure worldwide, arm-in-arm with closest partners and allies.” [node:read-more:link]

A perfect cyber storm

The huge numbers of employees working from home due to COVID-19 concerns, away from their employers’ IT resources, evidently are being targeted anew by fraudsters. False messages about employment insurance claims or from bogus health-related companies and government agencies are being used to steal personal data or to spread malware. [node:read-more:link]

The disinformation war

The Communications Security Establishment says it has taken down a number of fraudulent COVID-19 sites spoofing the Public Health Agency of Canada, Canada Revenue, and most recently, Canada Border Services Agency. The RCMP says fraudsters posing as the PHAC have told targets that they have tested positive for the virus and should provide credit card information to obtain prescription medicine. [node:read-more:link]

New orders for U.S. intel community

Last year’s SolarWinds cyberattack and its impact on U.S. agencies and IT companies is being assessed within a “full assessment” of alleged Russian involvement. The new White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki, a former State Department spokesperson, says the review ordered by President Joe Biden also will look into “Russian interference in the 2020 election, its use of chemical weapons against opposition leader Alexei Nevalny and the alleged bounties on U.S. soldiers in Afghanistan.” [node:read-more:link]


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