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Internet Governance Weekly Brief (W13Y20): US National Strategy to secure 5G; Brazil-EU Cyber Cooperation; EU considers tracking data to fight COVID-19…

Internet Governance Weekly Brief (W13Y20): US National Strategy to secure 5G; Brazil-EU Cyber Cooperation; EU considers tracking  data to fight COVID-19…




US National Strategy to secure 5G /

“Fifth generation wireless technology, or 5G, will be a primary driver of our Nation’s prosperity and security in the 21st century.  This new technology will provide consumers, businesses, and governments with remarkably fast network connections that will enable tens of billions of new devices to harness the power of the Internet, transforming the way we live, work, learn, and communicate….”

Brazil-EU Cyber Cooperation: Swinging Bridges on the Road to Stability in Cyberspace /

“The February 20 Brazil-EU Cyber Dialogue signaled the most recent step taken by Brasília and Brussels to collaborate on advancing responsible state behavior in cyberspace. While there have sometimes been differences in the two parties’ approaches to this challenge, their cooperation is crucial in the current geopolitical climate where cyber threats will continue to proliferate….”

Washington Pushes for More Sanctions on Russian Businessman /

“Eleven members of the U.S. House of Representatives have urged the European Union to impose sanctions on Russian oligarch Yevgeny Prigozhin, the latest attempt by lawmakers to combat alleged election meddling by the Kremlin in the U.S. and allied countries as well as possible disinformation about the coronavirus pandemic….”

FBI Shuts Down Hacker Platform, Arrests Administrator /

“The Federal Bureau of Investigation recently took down a Russian-based online platform where various cybercrime products and services were being sold, the Department of Justice announced on Tuesday….”

Chinese state-owned telcos remain reluctant on big 5G investments /

“China’s three largest mobile telcos are approaching the country’s 5G expansion with caution in a sign of how government ambitions for a swift rollout are clashing with industry’s desire to keep a tight rein on spending and reward investors….”


Singapore and Australia ink digital-economy pact, renew cybersecurity tie-up /

“SINGAPORE and Australia on Monday finalised an agreement which creates an over-arching framework for deeper cooperation in the digital economy between the two countries….”


Mexico’s economy ministry hit by cyber attack /

Mexico’s economy ministry detected a cyber attack on some of its servers on Sunday but did not consider sensitive information to have been compromised, and beefed up safety measures, it said in a statement.

Coast Guard Announces New Cyber Guidelines for Maritime Transportation Security Act-Regulated Facilities /

“A few months after a ransomware attack at a Maritime Transportation Security Act-regulated facility shut down operations for 30 hours, the Coast Guard today announced the issuance of new guidelines for confronting cyber risks at MTSA-regulated facilities…”

Rare cybercrime enforcement in Russia yields 25 arrests, shutters ‘BuyBest’ marketplace /

“The Federal Security Service (FSB) on March 20 apprehended 25 people, including Russians and foreign nationals, for their alleged roles in a digital identity theft ring, the agency announced on Tuesday…”


NCC advises parents to protect children from negative online /
“NIGERIA Communications Commission, NCC, has advised parents to protect their wards from the negative influence of the internet….”


Amid pandemic, Pentagon urges ‘hyper-vigilance’ against foreign investment /

“The Pentagon’s top acquisition official is worried that adversary nations may use the economic downturn caused by the new coronavirus pandemic to buy out American-made technologies….”

U.S. prepares crackdown on Huawei’s global chip supply – sources /

“Senior cabinet officials in the Trump administration agreed to new measures to restrict the global supply of chips to China’s Huawei Technologies [HWT.UL], sources familiar with the matter said, as the White House ramps up criticism of China over coronavirus….”


Snowden warns government surveillance amid COVID-19 could be long lasting /

« Edward Snowden on Monday warned that high-tech surveillance measures governments use to fight the outbreak of COVID-19, the disease caused by the newly identified coronavirus, could have a long-lasting impact….”

Europe eyes smartphone location data to stem virus spread /

“The Czech Republic has become the first European country to announce plans to deploy a powerful but potentially intrusive location-tracking tool for fighting the coronavirus pandemic, as others consider similar moves bound to put public health in conflict with individual privacy….”

Slovakia: CORONAVIRUS – Using data from mobile phones /

“…-The government will pass a law on a short-tracked procedure to allow state authorities to use localisation data from mobile phone operators. GDPR permits the use of this data during crisis times, but “we need a law for the telecom operators to be sure we are able to use this data”….”

Singapore is using a high-tech surveillance app to track the coronavirus, keeping schools and businesses open. Here’s how it works /

“Singapore is using a smartphone app to monitor the spread of the coronavirus by tracking people who may have been exposed. ..”

EU’s Breton defends COVID-19 telecoms data acquisition plans /

“The European Commission’s Internal Market chief Thierry Breton has defended plans to obtain mobile data from EU telecom firms during the coronavirus outbreak, saying the acquisition of certain datasets allows for a clearer reading of “the impact of the confinement measures taken by member states…”

Governments could track COVID-19 lockdowns through social media posts /

“A research group scrapes more than 500,000 Instagram profiles in Italy to see if people are abiding by the quarantine….”

Commission touts importance of ‘data for common good’ amid COVID-19 privacy concerns /

“As part of its broader open data policy, the European Commission is to task EU member states with establishing structures that facilitate the use of data for the ‘common good.’ And the executive is hoping that the Coronavirus crisis can be leveraged to demonstrate the power of data analytics…”

California Modifies Consumer Privacy Regulations – Again /

“Amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, California’s attorney general on March 11 released a second modification of the proposed regulations to implement the California Consumer Protection Act. Attorney Sadia Mirza explains what’s included in this “spring cleaning” and how the coronavirus impacts the global privacy landscape…”


COVID-19 Vaccine Test Center Hit By Cyber Attack, Stolen Data Posted Online /

“A medical facility on standby to help test any coronavirus vaccine has been hit by a ransomware group that promised not to target medical organizations….”

Elite hackers target WHO as coronavirus cyberattacks spike /

“Elite hackers tried to break into the World Health Organization earlier this month, sources told Reuters, part of what a senior agency official said was a more than two-fold increase in cyberattacks…..”

COVID-19: Commission and national consumer authorities are on high alert and call on platforms to stop scams and unfair practices /

“On 23 March 2020, Commissioner For Justice and Consumers Didier Reynders wrote to a number of platforms, social media, search engines and market places to require their cooperation in taking down scams from their platforms, following the common position endorsed by the CPC network….”

Spanish hospitals targeted with coronavirus-themed phishing lures in Netwalker ransomware attacks /

“Hospitals in Spain have been targeted with coronavirus-themed phishing lures by attackers looking to lock-down their systems with Netwalker ransomware….”

Authorities Warn of Escalating COVID-19-Themed Cyberattacks /

“Authorities in the United States and Europe have issued warnings of increased malicious cyber-activity related to the ongoing COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic….”

US Justice Department Files Its First Enforcement Action Against COVID-19 Fraud: Federal Court Issues Temporary Restraining Order Against Website Offering Fraudulent Coronavirus Vaccine /

“The Department of Justice announced today that it has taken its first action in federal court to combat fraud related to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.  The enforcement action filed today in Austin against operators of a fraudulent website follows Attorney General William Barr’s recent direction for the department to prioritize the detection, investigation, and prosecution of illegal conduct related to the pandemic…”

D-Link and Linksys routers hacked to point users to coronavirus-themed malware /

“For almost a week, a group of hackers has been breaking into people’s routers and changing DNS settings in order to point unsuspecting device users to coronavirus-related sites pushing malware…”


UN telecommunications agency launches global platform to fortify countries’ networks /

“The International Telecommunication Union (ITU), an agency of the United Nations, has today announced the launch of a ‘global platform’ to help protect telecommunication networks under strain due to the COVID-19 pandemic….”

Coronavirus Confinement Challenges Intelligence Services /

“The home confinement of hundreds of millions of people worldwide to halt coronavirus contagion has presented intelligence services with a challenge: monitoring an explosion in internet traffic, above board and not, even as their own capacity is reduced…”

VPN usage soars as coronavirus spreads /

“Of nine major VPN companies that responded to our questions, eight have confirmed a significant increase in usage, sales, or both. It varies between a 10% and 50% global increase over the latter weeks, but the numbers in specific countries are even more staggering….”


Coronavirus: EU hails tech giants’ efforts to safeguard internet access /

“EU Digital Commissioner Thierry Breton welcomes the decisions by Netflix and YouTube to reduce their videos down to standard definition quality in Europe for 30 days.

Disney is also delaying the launch of its streaming service “Disney+” in France after a request from authorities, and will cut its bandwidth usage by a quarter in other European markets…..”


Twitter Updates its Platform Rules to Cover More Types of COVID-19 Misinformation /

“Twitter has announced a new update to its safety rules in order to remove more types of misinformation relating to the COVID-19 outbreak.

Responding to communication trends around the pandemic, Twitter says that it will now require people to remove Tweets that include the following:…”

World Health Organization, Facebook, Microsoft team up in COVID-19 hackathon /

On Tuesday, the WHO, alongside Microsoft, Facebook, Giphy, Pinterest, Slack, TikTok, Twitter, and WeChat said the global #BuildforCOVID19 hackathon “is an opportunity for developers to build software solutions that drive social impact, with the aim of tackling some of the challenges related to the current coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.”

Twitter deletes a message from Nicolás Maduro about coronavirus /

“On the social network, the Venezuelan president shared articles that refer to Covid-19 as bioterrorism or give home remedies to combat the disease…”

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