Global Digital Download
The Global Digital Download is a weekly publication that aggregates resources on Internet freedom, highlighting trends in digital and social media that intersect with freedom of expression, policy, privacy, censorship and new technologies. The GDD includes information about relevant events, news, and research. To find past articles and research, search the archive database.
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Several blogs and twitter feeds of the Financial Times were put in jeopardy by hackers on May 17, Friday. The "Syrian Electronic Army", a group of hackers and avowed supporters of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, already owned up responsibility to the action. This group of online activists is also responsible for the repeated attacks on Western media companies in the past.
Six Twitter users were sentenced to a year in prison each by a Bahrain court on May 15 for allegedly insulting King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa on the micro-blogging site. According to the government-run Bahrain News Agency, the “six suspects” were charged in five different cases “related to the misuse of freedom of expression and defaming His Majesty the King on Twitter.” It added that the six were “charged [with] misusing freedoms of expression and opinion publicly and remanded…in custody ahead of their trial.”
Francophone African online communities were astonished to learn on May 7 that Chadian blogger Makaila Nguébla had been arrested by Senegalese intelligence services and the deported to Conakry (Republic of Guinea) from Dakar. Nguébla, who had lived in exile in Senegal for eight years, is the editor of the collective blog Makaila Info, an information and opinion site that is highly popular among Chadians inside the country and abroad. In the phone interview with Global Voices Advocacy, Nguébla's lawyer explained that deportation to a country where a journalist would receive less protection than in his or her home country runs contrary to Senegalese law.
At the close of the World Telecommunications Policy Forum (WTPF), Matthew Shears, director of CDT's Project on Global Internet Policy and Human Rights, delivered a statement on behalf of a coalition of civil society members and organizations from around the world. Hailing from six continents, these members of civil society participated in the WTPF both in person and remotely, bringing critically important perspectives as governments gathered to debate a range of Internet governance issues.
Today, a group of 20 of the world’s preeminent experts in computer and network security released a report warning that an FBI proposal to modify Internet services to make them wiretap friendly would open major security holes, and that criminals would easily circumvent the wiretap capability that would have to be built in.
Today EFF joins organizations from the around the world representing a diversity of interests in launching a new coalition to ask for A Fair Deal on intellectual property (IP) in the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP). The coalition has launched a website at www.OurFairDeal.org calling for TPP negotiators to “reject copyright proposals that restrict the open Internet, access to knowledge, economic opportunity and our fundamental rights.” The TPP meetings are taking place in Lima, Peru this week until May 25th, and EFF has been on the ground working with groups to fight those provisions and demand a seat at the table at these secretive negotiations.
The Saudi Interior Ministry said Friday that several government Web sites have come under attack in a campaign hackers are calling #OpSaudi. Hackers who identify with the loose hacking collective Anonymous have aimed at several government Web sites, including the Saudi Ministry of Finance, General Intelligence Presidency, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and the Directorate General of Passports, as well as sites for several major Saudi provinces, including Makkah and Jeddah.
Rather than trying to keep up with the threats posed by rapidly evolving malicious software, agencies can leverage the security features being built into hardware to ensure that computing devices are safe and remain uninfected, says Larry Hamid, chief architect for IronKey by Imation. Malware has gone from being a nuisance to a serious tool for crime, espionage and possibly terrorism, Hamid said during a presentation at the FOSE conference in Washington, D.C. Responding to these developments puts defenders in a perpetual game of catch-up in which the bad actors have the advantage. Moving away from software for security solutions could help shift the advantage to defense, he said.
On 9 May, I posted the following message on Sina Weibo: "The account you have been managing for years can be deleted in a second. Then you try to plot its reincarnation by writing every word from scratch. The house you have been building all your life can be bulldozed in a moment. Then you try to rise from its rubble by picking up every piece of brick and tile. "This is my Chinese dream: harbour no illusion about the evil powers, and understand that their evil will only grow.
A group of security researchers in Germany found some suspicious traffic on their web servers after a Skype instant messaging session. After a single experiment, they concluded that Microsoft is snooping on its customers. But a closer look at the facts suggests that this is a well-documented security feature at work.
All content presented in the Global Digital Digest is aggregated from public news sources. This information does not reflect the opinions of Internews, and is not produced or verified by Internews.