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Internet Governance Weekly Brief (W26A20): GDPR and Europe Hate Speech code evaluation; Ecowas court on Internet shutdown; Caribbean Digital Transformation project; ITU on Child Online Protection; Brazil’s Bill 2630/2020 on fake news; IGF 2020 2nd OC & MAG meeting outcomes

Internet Governance Weekly Brief (W26A20): GDPR and Europe Hate Speech code evaluation; Ecowas court on Internet shutdown; Caribbean Digital Transformation project; ITU on Child Online Protection; Brazil’s Bill 2630/2020 on fake news; IGF 2020 2nd OC & MAG meeting outcomes

ABSTRACT

This week, accusations on China continue over cyber-attacks in hospitals and health care institutions as well cyber disputes on 5G between China and US. Europe evaluated GDPR and its 2016 Code of Conduct on countering illegal hate speech online.  In Africa, The United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) launched the Africa Communication and Information Platform for Health and Economic Action (ACIP) and ECOWAS Community Court of Justice ruled that the September 2017 internet shutdown ordered by the Togolese government during protests is illegal. In the Caribbean, The World Bank Board of Executive Directors approved the regional Caribbean Digital Transformation Project for a total of US$94 million. The US government has announced its plans for HTTPS on all dot-gov sites and Brazil introduced Bill 2630/2020 on the Law on Freedom, Responsibility and Digital Transparency on the Internet to the Federal Senate. ITU launched the 2020 Guidelines on Child Online Protection

CYBER GEOPOLITICS

CHINA IN THE SPOTLIGHT AS ACCUSATIONS FOR CYBER ATTACKS CONTINUE

The Trump administration has stated that top Chinese firms, including Huawei Technologies and video surveillance company Hikvision are owned or controlled by the Chinese military.  

Besides, deep concerns in Washington and Europe emerged after China unveiled details of its new national security law for Hong Kong mostly designed to collect intelligence and handle crimes against national security.

In Europe, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen called out China for targeting EU hospitals and health care institutions with cyberattacks during the coronavirus crisis.

In India, security agencies have issued a cyber alert following an advisory from the Computer Emergency Response Team-India (CERT-In) regarding a potential “cyber offensive attack from the Chinese Army”.

On infrastructure, Nokia and Ericsson have been chosen as Singapore’s main 5G network providers, telecom operators said, leaving Huawei with only a minor role as the Chinese tech giant faces growing US pressure.

MORE NEWS ON THE ISSUE INCLUDING ETHIOPIA, EGYPT, AUSTRALIA, RUSSIA, AND NEW ZEALAND

Ethiopia’s Information Network Security Agency (INSA) said that hackers based in Egypt attempted cyber-attacks on the Ethiopian government and non-government sites on June 20 and 21.

The Prime Minister of Australia, released, on 19 June, a statement warning that Australian organisations are currently being targeted by a sophisticated state-based cyber actor.

New Zealand police revealed they had frozen NZ$140 million (US$90 million) in assets linked to a Russian man accused of laundering money for organised crime using cyber currency.

PRIVACY – DATA PROTECTION

EUROPEAN COMMISSION RELEASED GDPR EVALUATION AS MORE COUNTRIES ADOPTED MOBILE DIGITAL APP TO FIGHT COVID-19

The European Commission has published an evaluation report on the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). The report states that GDPR has met majority of its objectives.

During its 32nd plenary session, the EDPB adopted a statement on the interoperability of contact tracing apps and a statement on the processing of personal data in the context of reopening the Shengen borders offering more analysis on data rights and security as highlighted in EDPB Guidelines 04/2020.

The EU Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA) and the European Data Protection Supervisor (EDPS) released, on 22 June 2020, a joint statement on the adoption of new technologies and data protection, in light of the contact tracing apps used during the COVID-19 crisis.

The Government of Spain announced that it had launched a pilot of the COVID-19 tracing app while  Ireland’s health authority looks forward to the launch of a coronavirus contact-tracing app based on Apple and Google’s technology.

In the US, a group of senators plan to introduce a new piece of legislation aiming to boost regulation for contact tracing apps.

MORE NEWS ON PRIVACY IN SOUTH AFRICA JAPAN, GERMANY AND SPAIN

The President of South Africa announced the commencement of certain sections of the Protection of Personal Information Act, 2013 (‘POPIA’).

In Japan, The Personal Information Protection Commission (‘PPC’) announced revisions to the general guidelines on the Protection of Personal Information Act (Act No. 57 of 2003 as amended in 2016)

In Germany, a top court ruled that Facebook must comply with an order by Germany’s antitrust watchdog to curb data collection from users

In Spain, the Supreme Court issued a decision confirming a €7,500 fine against Miraclia Telecomunicaciones SL for violations of the data protection law.

CONTENT

EUROPEAN COMMISSION, GREMANY AND FRANCE ON ONLINE HATE SPEECH

European Commission released the results of its fifth evaluation of the 2016 Code of Conduct on countering illegal hate speech online.

Germany tightens online hate speech rules to make platforms send reports straight to the Federal Criminal Police Office (BKA) while the National Assembly of France adopted, on 24 June 2020, Law No. 2020-766 of 24 June 2020 on Hate Speech on the Internet.

In Brazil, Bill 2630/2020 on the Law on Freedom, Responsibility and Digital Transparency on the Internet was introduced to the Federal Senate seeking to establish rules, guidelines, and mechanisms for the transparency of network services and private messaging services over the internet.

DIGITAL ECONOMY / SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT

The World Bank Board of Executive Directors approved the regional Caribbean Digital Transformation Project for a total of US$94 million for four Eastern Caribbean countries: Dominica (US$28 million), Grenada (US$8 million), Saint Lucia (US$20 million), Saint Vincent and the Grenadines (US$30 million), and the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) Commission (US$8 million) to build an inclusive digital economy.

The Ministry of Trade and Industry Singapore announced that Singapore and the Republic of Korea had launched negotiations on a Korea-Singapore Digital Partnership Agreement

Brazil’s central bank suspended WhatsApp’s payments service, after a week it first went live in the country.

DIGITAL HEALTH

The United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) has launched the Africa Communication and Information Platform for Health and Economic Action (ACIP). The platform aims to furnish to national and regional COVID-19 task forces with user-generated survey data and actionable health and economic insights.

HUMAN RIGHTS

the African Declaration on Internet Rights and Freedoms (AfDec) Coalition has launched a Rapid Response Fund to support members of the Coalition “reviewing national-level emergency response initiatives and policies aimed at COVID-19 prevention, containment and treatment, within the context of AfDec objectives and principles”.

INTERNET RESOURCES

The US government has announced its plans for HTTPS on all dot-gov sites paving the way to retiring HTTP altogether and preventing web users from making unencrypted connection to government sites.

CHILD ONLINE PROTECTION

ITU launched the 2020 Guidelines on Child Online Protection “on how to develop a safe and empowering online environment for children and young people”.

ACCESS

The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Community Court of Justice ruled that the September 2017 internet shutdown ordered by the Togolese government during protests is illegal and an affront to the applicants’ right to freedom of expression. These internet restrictions took place in September 2017 from 5 to 10 and 19 to 21.

SECURITY

The Data Security Council of India issued its guidance on Targeted Phishing Campaign by Malicious Actors highlighting the importance of using proper antivirus and strong passwords to mitigate the risks of phishing attacks. Also, The Telecommunications Regulatory Authority of India issued a press release on unsolicited commercial communication to fight the nuisance of spams.

The Australian Taxation Office released its guidance on cybersecurity highlighting a number of steps that organisations can take to improve their cyber resilience.

SURVEILLANCE

On June 24, a federal grand jury handed down a superseding indictment charging WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange with offenses related to Assange’s alleged role in intentionally working with hackers to compromise classified information.

INTERNET GOVERNANCE FORUM

The IGF Secretariat has produced daily summaries for all five days of the 2nd IGF 2020 Open Consultations and MAG Meeting https://www.intgovforum.org/multilingual/content/igf-2020-second-open-consultations-and-mag-meeting

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