China forces new mobile network subscribers to provide facial scans

A controversial law which forces new mobile subscribers in China to first provide scans of their face has now been implemented.

To sign up for a new plan, Chinese consumers will still need their national ID card but will now also be forced to supply facial scans. First announced in September, Beijing says it’s taking the step to “protect the legitimate rights and interest of citizens in cyberspace.”

The...

By Ryan Daws, 02 December 2019, 0 comments. Categories: China, Connectivity, Consumers, Government, Industry, Mobile, Networks, Operators, Privacy, Surveillance.

Data-sharing agreement between the UK and US sets off alarm bells

A piece of legislation called the CLOUD Act has been the root of much debate in the past few days over its privacy implications.

The CLOUD Act requires social media services like Facebook to hand over private messages sent using communications networks. Previous attempts by Western governments to snoop on private conversations have been met with backlash by citizens.

Under former UK PM Theresa May’s government, a proposal was made that encrypted communications must be made accessible by...

By Ryan Daws, 01 October 2019, 0 comments. Categories: Government, Privacy, Surveillance.

Bolton: Johnson's government will look at Huawei 'from square one'

US national security advisor John Bolton has said during a UK visit that new PM Johnson's government will look at the Huawei issue "from square one".

Bolton is the most senior US government official to visit PM Johnson since he took office last month. The US has strongly warned its allies, especially those such as the UK in the 'five-eyes' intelligence relationship, against allowing the use of Huawei equipment in 5G networks.

“They [UK officials] said, in particular, they are...

Trump: We’re going to build a great(er) firewall of America

President Donald Trump has accelerated the tech race against China by announcing plans to build a ‘great(er) firewall of America’.

The so-called ‘Great Firewall of China’ provides internet censorship in the country by preventing access to certain websites and slowing down cross-border traffic.

“Not keeping pace with China’s progressive attitudes to internet censorship was yet another failure of the Obama administration,” says Trump. “We’re going to change...

By Ryan Daws, 01 April 2019, 0 comments. Categories: China, Connectivity, Government, N America, Privacy, Surveillance.

Operators will make a lot of the news at #MWC19 - but what can they learn this week?

MWC19 As MWC19 kicks off in Barcelona this week, operators will be more than keen to outline their latest wares, whether that's on the hardware side or on the ever-competitive race to 5G. Yet as anyone who has ever been to Fira Gran Via for the yearly mobile jamboree will testify, it is a broad church - and among the product launches are plenty of research studies, many of which have advice for operators in mind.

Take recent research from Mobileum as an example. The report, from...

By James Bourne, 24 February 2019, 0 comments. Categories: Operators, Privacy, Research, Security.

Zimbabwe shuts down internet amid protest crackdown

Zimbabwe has ordered a shutdown of internet services while it violently cracks down on protests over fuel hikes.

Econet, the country's largest mobile operator, is one company reporting it’s been ordered to cut off services.

Access to popular services including WhatsApp, Facebook, and Twitter has been intermittent since protests began on Monday.

These services are often used to organise protests, as well as report on excessive violence by the government.

Reuters quotes UN human rights spokesperson...

By Ryan Daws, 18 January 2019, 0 comments. Categories: Africa, Connectivity, Government, Industry, Mobile, Networks, Operators, Privacy.

DoJ demands the details of visitors to a Trump protest website

The Department of Justice (DoJ) is demanding the details of all visitors to a website that helped to organise an anti-Trump protest. It’s seeking IP addresses, contact information, email content, and even photos.

DreamHost, the website’s hosting provider, is refusing to comply with the request. The company is due in court later this month.

"The website was used in the development, planning, advertisement and organisation of a violent riot that occurred in Washington...

By Ryan Daws, 15 August 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Government, Privacy, Surveillance.

Australia joins ‘Five Eyes’ partner UK in calls for weaker encryption

UK Prime Minister Theresa May has been vocal in her calls for weaker encryption, but Australia is adding its voice ahead of a meeting of the ‘Five Eyes’ intelligence alliance.

Taking a similar stance to the UK, Australia wants to clamp down on terrorists using the ‘cyberspace’ for propaganda, recruitment, and organising attacks. Cybersecurity experts have criticised the calls as the deliberate weakening of encryption could leave organisations and individuals more...

By Ryan Daws, 26 June 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Government, Privacy, Surveillance.

WannaCry cyber attack was 'launched from North Korea' to raise money

British and American security officials believe the WannaCry cyber attack which crippled the NHS was launched from North Korea in a bid to raise money for the secretive nation.

Cyber warfare is proving a growing concern with attacks linked to countries such as Russia and North Korea increasing in pace and effect. Earlier this week, it emerged Obama issued a ‘red phone’ warning to the Kremlin over...

By Ryan Daws, 16 June 2017, 0 comments. Categories: Government, Privacy, Security, Surveillance.

UK Home Secretary Amber Rudd says it’s “unacceptable” authorities can’t bypass encryption

The debate over whether authorities should have the means to bypass encryption under the ruse of national security has been reignited after UK Home Secretary Amber Rudd says it’s “completely unacceptable” the government cannot easily access communications.

Critics will note government calls to expand intrusive surveillance measures often follow terrorist attacks like the tragic events in London which resulted in five deaths and over twenty injured last week after ISIS fanatic...

By Ryan Daws, 27 March 2017, 1 comment. Categories: Consumers, Government, Privacy, Surveillance.