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Internet Governance Weekly Brief (W23Y20): Internet in COVID-19 era; Internet in FLOYD death protests; Geopolitics and race for 5G; Israel-Iran cyberwar; Germany – Russia cyber disputes; Pre-ICANN68 Policy Report…

Internet Governance Weekly Brief (W23Y20): Internet in COVID-19 era; Internet in FLOYD death protests; Geopolitics and race for 5G; Israel-Iran cyberwar; Germany – Russia cyber disputes; Pre-ICANN68 Policy Report…









US Cyberspace Solarium Commission White Paper #1: Cybersecurity Lessons from the Pandemic

“The COVID-19 pandemic is challenging our resilience on a national scale and illustrates the challenges with building and maintaining resilience in a modern, connected world…”

Statement by the North Atlantic Council concerning malicious cyber activities

“We stand united as we face this unprecedented coronavirus pandemic. We condemn destabilising and malicious cyber activities directed against those whose work is critical to the response against the pandemic, including healthcare services, hospitals and research institutes…”


EDPB response to NGOs on Hungarian Decrees and statement on Article 23 GDPR

“During its 30th plenary session, the EDPB adopted a statement on data subject rights in connection to the state of emergency in Member States. The Board also adopted a letter in response to a letter from Civil Liberties Union for Europe, Access Now and the Hungarian Civil Liberties Union (HCLU) regarding the Hungarian Government’s Decree 179/2020 of 4 May….”

French virus tracing app goes live amid debate over privacy

“France is rolling out an official coronavirus contact-tracing app aimed at containing fresh outbreaks as lockdown restrictions gradually ease, becoming the first major European country to deploy the smartphone technology amid simmering debates over data privacy…”

Italy launches one of the first Apple Exposure Notification API-based apps with ‘Immuni’

“Apple and Google officially made their contact tracing software available with iOS 13.5 for local health authorities to create COVID-19 contact tracing apps…”

Finland to launch nationwide COVID-19 tracking app in August

“Finland is going to formally launch a nationwide mobile app to trace the spread of COVID-19 in August this year, announced the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health on Thursday…”

Morocco Launches COVID-19 Tracking Application ‘Wiqaytna’

“Morocco’s Ministry of Health launched Monday, June 1 the COVID-19 tracking application “Wiqaytna,” “our protection” in Arabic, to help curb the spread of the pandemic in the country…”

Governments and WHO changed Covid-19 policy based on suspect data from tiny US company

“The World Health Organization and a number of national governments have changed their Covid-19 policies and treatments on the basis of flawed data from a little-known US healthcare analytics company, also calling into question the integrity of key studies published in some of the world’s most prestigious medical journals…”


Digital rights organisations rebuke restrictions on rights and freedoms during COVID-19 using cybercrimes legislations in Kenya and Nigeria

“On Wednesday 27 May, 2020, nine (9) civil society organisations coming together as the African Internet Rights Alliance (or AIRA), submitted two (2) joint letters to the Special Rapporteur’s – African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights and the United Nations – focused on freedom of opinion and expression and access to information…”


How cloud computing has supported the COVID-19 response

“…Cloud computing has played a crucial role in enabling businesses and governments to quickly apply solutions to respond to the crisis and maintain continuity…”


Fight fake news linking 5G with coronavirus, European Union members urge

« European Union (EU) nations banking on 5G to boost economic growth are eager to tackle conspiracy theories linking the wireless technology to the spread of the novel coronavirus that have seen masts torched in several places…”


Brazil’s President Bolsonaro Latest Victim Of Anonymous Hackers

“Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro was also subject to Anonymous hackers this week, with the local branch of the international band of info warriors revealing addresses, income, and other personal assets in a data dump first posted on Twitter last night….”



Minneapolis City and Police Websites Attacked

“Police and city websites in Minneapolis have come under cyber-attack as both lawful protests and illegal rioting continue across America…” 

Hackers and hucksters reinvigorate ‘Anonymous’ brand amid protests

The amorphous internet activist movement known as Anonymous staged an online resurgence in the past week on the back of real-world protests against police brutality.

Huge Cyberattacks Attempt To Silence Black Rights Movement With DDoS Attacks

“After the death of George Floyd and the subsequent protests across the U.S., cyberattacks on advocacy groups spiked by an astonishing 1,120 times. It’s unclear who is behind the attacks, but they included attempts to neuter anti-racist organizations’ freedom of speech….”

George Floyd death: Anti-racism sites hit by wave of cyber-attacks

“Cyber-attacks against anti-racism organisations shot up in the wake of the death of George Floyd, a leading provider of protection services says…”

Chicago police officers’ radios crackled with rogue messages during weekend of chaos

“The city has launched an investigation to unmask those responsible for “jamming” its emergency radio system. Everything from anti-cop music to pro-cop slogans interrupted police dispatchers…”


Social media users criticised for using George Floyd protests as photo-ops

“Social media has become a vital channel for spreading footage and information about the George Floyd protests taking place across the US, with many sharing blackout posts in solidarity with demonstrators….”

Social media companies address ‘challenge’ mocking George Floyd’s death

“Facebook and Twitter are responding to disturbing images circulating on social media mocking the death of George Floyd by reenacting the scene of a Minneapolis police officer kneeling on Floyd’s neck…” 


Apple tracks looters who steal iPhones

“iPhones stolen in lootings of Apple stores in the US are tracked, disabled and the local authorities notified, according to messages displayed on their screens…”


Telefonica Deutschland picks Ericsson for 5G core network

“Telefonica Deutschland will build its 5G core mobile network in Germany using equipment from Ericsson, saying the choice of the Swedish supplier would safeguard the security of its next-generation services…”

Canada’s Bell and Telus drop Huawei, pick Ericsson and Nokia for 5G roll out

“Canadian telcos Bell Canada and Telus will use equipment from Nokia and Ericsson in their 5G networks instead of Huawei….”

US DOD Announces New Locations for Additional 5G Testing, Experimentation

“The Defense Department already is heavily involved in investigating how 5G technology will best serve the warfighter. Experimentation is ongoing at five installations across the United States, with seven more to come, as part of the department’s second tranche of test beds for 5G communications capability, DOD’s technical director for 5G said….”

Expanded G7 likely to tackle Huawei’s 5G dominance

“Developing rival 5G technology to Chinese telecommunications supplier Huawei looms as one of the top priorities of a potentially expanded Group of Seven that could involve Australia, with the United Kingdom also keen on bringing like-minded democracies together…”

Britain pushing US to form 5G club of nations to cut out Huawei

“Britain said Friday it was pushing the United States to form a club of 10 nations that could develop its own 5G technology and reduce dependence on China’s controversial telecoms giant Huawei…”



Iran ‘opened a Pandora’s box’ in cyber attack on Israeli water system

“The reported Israeli retaliation will give the Islamic Republic reason to think twice before launching a new cyber attack on Israeli civilian targets, according to Israeli defense experts….”

Israel, Iran reportedly trade cyber-blows as part of ongoing tensions

“Media outlets reported on Monday that in a recent thwarted Iranian cyber-attack on Israeli water systems, there was an attempt to change the chlorine levels in the water, putting hundreds of Israelis at risk…”

Google deletes Indian app that deleted Chinese apps

“Google has deleted an app from the Play Store that offered to delete Android software associated with China…”

EU to impose sanctions on Russia hackers for cyber attack on German Bundestag – journalist

“Brussels-based RFE/RL journalist Rikard Jozwiak says the EU diplomats will impose sanctions on Russian hackers for the cyber attack on the German Bundestag in 2015…”

North Korea accuses U.S. of hurting its image with cyber threat warning

“North Korea accused the United States of smear tactics on Friday after Washington renewed accusations last month that Pyongyang was responsible for malicious cyber attacks…”

India and Australia sign military base and cyber accords

« India and Australia sealed an accord on Thursday to grant access to each other’s military bases in order to facilitate mutual defence exchanges and exercises…”


The European Digital Media Observatory project kicks off

“The European Digital Media Observatory (EDMO) project has started its activities on 1 June 2020. EDMO will support the creation and work of a multidisciplinary community composed of fact-checkers, academic researchers and other relevant stakeholders….”

Launch of ARII 2019 website for deeper understanding of Africa’s performance in regional integration

“Following the release of the African Regional Integration Index (ARII) 2019 Report, ECA launches a dedicated website to enable a deeper understanding of the performance of the continent, Regional Economic Communities (RECs) and African countries in regional integration and assist African countries in making the most out of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) and boosting intra-African trade (BIAT) action plan…”

Facebook to verify identities on accounts that churn out viral posts

« Facebook announced on Thursday that it’s going to be verifying the identity of some US profiles that pump out posts that reach a mass of people….”

Lawsuit Says Trump’s Social Media Crackdown Violates Free Speech

“President Trump’s crackdown on social media companies faced a new legal challenge on Tuesday, as a technology policy organization claimed in a lawsuit that he violated the companies’ right to free speech with his executive order aimed at curtailing their legal protections…”

Mark Zuckerberg defends Facebook as employee quits over refusal to act on Trump posts

“The social network’s founder told staff at a virtual meeting that he would stick by his decision to leave up the US President’s messages, which staff said had inflamed tensions…”


Europe’s Gaia-X cloud computing platform takes shape

“A proposed European cloud computing platform that seeks to break the continent’s reliance on Silicon Valley will take shape in the coming weeks when a group of 22 French and German companies set up a legal entity to run it…”


European Commission launches consultation to seek views on Digital Services Act package

« ..the Commission has launched a public consultation on the Digital Services Act, a landmark package announced by President von der Leyen in her political guidelines and in the Commission’s Communication “Shaping Europe’s Digital Future” of 19 February….”


Google faces $5B lawsuit for tracking private browsing

“Google could be slammed with a fine of at least $5 billion in a US lawsuit if found to have illegally gathered data from millions of users surfing the internet privately through its Chrome browser, Reuters reported….”


Five mines in Europe take part in €7-million digitization project

“Sixteen organizations across the European Union have joined forces in Dig_IT, a consortium that is going to administer €7-million destined for a project titled A Human-centred Internet of Things Platform for the Sustainable Digital Mine of the Future….”

Iran Unveils Four Mega Projects to Boost Digital Economy

“Iran’s president has unveiled four new infrastructural projects, launched by the information and communications technology ministry, to boost the country’s digital economy….”


Taiwan government database leaked on dark web

“It was reported on Friday (May 29) that a government database of more than 20 million Taiwanese citizens was leaked on the dark web…”


US CISA launched CISA Central, the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency’s hub for staying on top of threats and emerging risks.

“CISA Central is the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency’s hub for staying on top of threats and emerging risks to our nation’s critical infrastructure, whether they’re of cyber, communications or physical origin…” 

ECUADOR launches its legislative reform on cybercrime

“More than thirty Ecuadorian officials attended a one and a half days online legislative drafting workshop on 28-29 May 2020, organized by Ecuador’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Ministerio de Relaciones Exteriores y Movilidad Humana) and supported by the Global Action on Cybercrime Extended (GLACY+) Project. The workshop follows a GLACY+ onsite assessment mission held in February 2020 and a consequent request for technical assistance sent by Ecuador to the Council of Europe…”

British Army launches its first cyberwar regiment

“Britain’s first dedicated cyber regiment has been officially established as part of the Army’s drive to modernize its response to the growing digital threat posed by potential adversaries….”

Saudi Arabia works to enhance cybersecurity

“Cybersecurity is a priority for Saudi Arabia, a country that is making significant investment in boosting its capacity and is rapidly advancing as a global leader in the space. The Kingdom was the top-ranked Arab country in the International Telecommunication Union’s 2018 global cybersecurity index, and ranked 13th overall out of 175 countries..”


EU Signs Contract for Large-Scale Biometric Database to Enhance Border Security

“Europe’s Entry/Exit System, a database that among others is set to replace passport stamps and enhance border security in EU, is one step closer to its establishment as the eu-LISA has awarded a consortium of IDEMIA and Sopra Steria a contract for the delivery of a new shared Biometric Matching System (sBMS), an important part of the EES…”


Google Pushes Back on Parts of EU’s Plans to Regulate AI

“Google is pushing back on parts of the European Union’s plans to legislate artificial intelligence, including a potential requirement to have some systems checked by authorities before deployment…”


Antitrust: Commission consults stakeholders on a possible new competition tool

“The European Commission has published today an inception impact assessment as well as an open public consultation inviting comments on exploring the need for a possible new competition tool that would allow addressing structural competition problems in a timely and effective manner. …”


Pre-ICANN68 Policy Report

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