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INTERNET GOV MONTHLY BRIEF (AUGUST 2020)

INTERNET GOV MONTHLY BRIEF (AUGUST 2020)
  • China tech firms face mixed appreciation worldwide;
  • USA “clean network plan” criticized;
  • EU-US Privacy shield invalidation follow up;
  • African Union launched its Audit Recommendations Tracking System;
  • Economic Commission for Latin America and Caribbean reviews data protection legislation;
  • Uncertainty over Brazil’s data law enforcement;
  • Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation published standards to enhance cybersecurity;
  • Australia released its Cybersecurity Strategy 2020;
  • Interpol assessment shows cybercrime increase in Africa;
  • Twitter accounts of prominent users hacked;
  • UNICEF outlines limitations of remote learning amid COVID-19 outbreak.
  • Frontex to introduce biometrics in entry-exit system at land borders.

CYBER GEOPOLITICS

CHINA TECH FIRMS FACE MIXED APPRECIATION WORLDWIDE

Donald Trump issued executive orders banning TikTok and WeChat from operating in the U.S. In response, TikTok sued the US Government over the Executive Order claiming it protects U.S. user data by storing it outside of China on servers in the U.S. and Singapore. Moreover, Taiwan’s officials has accused China of cyberespionage against Taipei’s government agencies attacking at least 10 government agencies and some 6,000 email accounts of government officials. Beijing has qualified Taiwan’s accusation of “malicious slander”

However, while facing several restrictions in western countries, Huawei continues its growth in Africa as several countries like South Africa, Kenya, Lesotho, Egypt, Nigeria, Uganda, Senegal, Morocco, the Democratic Republic of Congo and Gabon are at various stages rolling-out 5G. In addition, Russia open to partnering with China in its Huawei Technologies Co on 5G technology promising it would not follow the U.S. on the issue who demand countries not to cooperate on 5G with China.

USA CLEAN NETWORK PLAN CRITISIZED

Secretary of state Mike Pompeo has announced a “Clean Network plan” to offer a comprehensive approach to guarding citizens’ privacy and companies’ most sensitive information from aggressive intrusions by malign actors. In reaction, Internet Society has expressed its disappointment on the U.S. Program saying USA is considering policies that would fracture the internet.

PRIVACY – DATA PROTECTION

PRIVACY SHIELD INVALIDATION FOLLOW UP

After the Privacy Shield invalidation by European Court, the European Commission and the U.S. Department of Commerce released a joint statement  outlining the beginning of concertation to evaluate the potential for an enhanced EU-U.S. Privacy Shield framework to comply with the Court Justice of the European Union’s judgment in Data Protection Commissioner v. Facebook Ireland Limited, Maximillian Schrems (C-311/18). Also, Facebook, Inc. announced it is working to migrate to Standard Contractual Clauses for data transfers regarding advertisements and measurement products in light of the CJEU’s judgment. Moreover, European Center for Digital Rights filed 101 complaints against EU companies that continue to send website visitor data to Google LLC and Facebook, Inc. one month after the Court decision.

ECLAC TO REVIEW DATA PROTECTION LEGISLATION AS BRAZIL FACE UNCERTAINTY OVER DATA LAW ENFORCEMENT

The Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) has commissioned a study to review the data protection legislation of selected Caribbean countries to assess data privacy laws aligned with the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) as well as international best practice in the area of data sharing.

The President of the Federal Republic of Brazil has signed Decree No. 10,474 of 26 August 2020 approving structure of data protection authority while the Official Journal of the State of Pernambuco published Executive Decree 49.265 of 6 August 2020 establishing policy for personal data protection in accordance with LGPD.

Moreover, Brazil’s senate approved on August 26 a last-minute amendment to legislation that set August 27 the effective date for the LGPD to take effect. But, due to complex legislative proceedings there has been uncertainty over whether the law is actually in force or not. The LGPD, adopted in 2018 is Brazil’s first comprehensive data protection law inspired by the GDPR.

CYBERCRIME

INTERPOL ASSESSMENT SHOWS CYBERCRIME SHIFT TO CRITICAL INFRASTRUCTURE

AND INCREASE IN AFRICA

An Interpol assessment of the impact of COVID-19 on cybercrime has shown a significant target shift from individuals and small businesses to major corporations, governments and critical infrastructure. Also, the Organisation published a report on online organised crime in Africa, warning that it presents a serious security issue for law enforcement.  

TWITTER ACCOUNTS OF PROMINENTS USERS HACKED

Three people were charged for their alleged involvement in a massive Twitter hack earlier this month that took over the accounts of prominent users like Joe Biden, Barack Obama and Elon Musk and used them to promote a bitcoin scam.

CYBERSECURITY

ASIA AND AUSTRALIA ON MORE POLICIES TO ENHANCE CYBERSECURITY

The Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation published standards and process-based approach to enhance cybersecurity while Australia released its Cybersecurity Strategy 2020 outlining its approach to keep individuals, critical infrastructure providers, and businesses secure online. Also, the Cyber Security Centre and the Digital Transformation Agency have released new guidelines to enable the adoption of secure cloud services across the public and private sector.

DIGITAL ECONOMY

The UN Committee of Experts on International Cooperation in Tax Matters  released a proposed optional United Nations model tax treaty article that would grant additional taxing rights to countries where an automated digital services provider’s customers are located.

ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE

In Saudi Arabia, King Salman Bin Abdulaziz has approved Saudi Arabia’s Artificial Intelligence strategy, which is expected to contribute an estimated 500 billion riyals (US$133 billion) to gross domestic product (GDP) by 2030 while USA announced the establishment of 12 new research institutes focused on AI and quantum information science aiming to invest massively for the benefit of AI and quantum computing study.

INTERNET RESOURCES

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN)  announced the successful installation of an ICANN Managed Root Server (IMRS) instance in Monterrey, Mexico. There are now 35 IMRS instances installed in Latin America.

ONLINE EDUCATION

UNICEF launched a new report outlining the limitations of remote learning and exposing the deep inequalities in access stating that 1 in 3 children missed out on remote learning when COVID-19 shuttered schools globally.

DIGITAL IDENTITY

Frontex, the European Border and Coast Guard Agency announced its project to introduce biometrics and other technologies in its entry-exit system at land borders.

MORE NEWS

The African Union has launched its Audit Recommendations Tracking System (ARTS) digital platform which aims to fast-track implementation of all audit recommendations, enhance the overall effectiveness and efficiency of management planning.

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