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Following the 50th anniversary of the 1967 sovereignty referendum, Gibraltar ensures its cultural heritage is digitally preserved foreverGibraltar National Archives (GNA) has announced a partnership with Preservica to preserve and protect its extensive collection of historic digital records, following yesterdayrsquo;s National Gibraltar Day, which in 2017 marked the 50th anniversary of Gibraltarrsquo;s sovereignty referendum. Using Preservicarsquo;s active digital preservation software and collaborative working approach, GNArsquo;s historic records are now safely stored and accessible for generations... Source: RealWire
British MPs suggest cyberattackers may have used DDoS attacks to bring site down before EU referendum.
But Cabinet Office has ruled out interference from hostile powers A committee of MPs has expressed concerns that foreign hackers might have had a hand in crashing the UK's voter registration website last year shortly before the Brexit referendum.…
New report by MPs 'does not rule out the possibility' that foreign actors worked to take down the EU Referendum vote registration site - but government and cybersecurity experts disagree.
Press Release Challenge to globalisation and free trade highlighted by US election and Brexit referendum ushers in year of heightened strategic uncertainty for business The distinction for businesses between perceived safe domestic markets and foreign ones rife with challenges has become marginal as risks increasingly come home through political, cyber and terrorism threats A US-led brake on regulation could transform the global regulatory environment London, Monday 12 December, 2016.

Control Risks, the specialist risk consultancy, today publishes its annual RiskMap forecast, the leading guide to political and business risk and an important reference for policy makers and business leaders. Richard Fenning, CEO, Control Risks, said: “The unexpected US election and Brexit referendum results that caught the world by surprise have tipped the balance to make 2017 one of the most difficult years for business’ strategic decision making since the end of the Cold War. “The catalysts to international business – geopolitical stability, trade and investment liberalisation and democratisation – are facing erosion.

The commercial landscape among government, private sector and non-state actors is getting more complex.” The high levels of complexity and uncertainty attached to the key political and security issues for the year, highlighted by RiskMap, mean that boards will need to undertake comprehensive reviews of their approaches to risk management. Control Risks has identified the following key business risks for 2017: Political populism exemplified by President-elect Trump and Brexit.

The era of greater national control of economic and security policy ushered in by the US election and Brexit provides increased uncertainty for business leaders.

Caution prevails because of the lack of political policy clarity from the USA and UK and the impacts on the global trading and economic environment, as well as geopolitics. Political sparks will fly as the new presidency places pressure on the economic relationship between the US and China, vital for the stability of the global economy; and the US withdrawal from the Trans-Pacific Partnership threatens to redraw Trans-Pacific commerce.

The calls across Europe for further referendums on EU membership is causing nervousness and populism in other parts of the world such as sub-Saharan Africa is adding fuel to investor risk. Persistent terrorist threats.

The threat of terrorism will remain high in 2017 but become more fragmented.

The eventual collapse of Islamic State’s territorial control in Syria and Iraq will lead to an exodus of experienced militants across the world. Responding to terrorism is becoming ever more difficult for businesses; risk adjustment is critical, including big data solutions and reviews of potential insider radicalisation, physical security and scenario planning. Increasing complexity of cyber security. 2017 will see the rise of conflicting data legislation: US and EU data protection regulations remain at odds; the EU’s Single Digital Market is isolationist; and China and Russia are introducing new cyber security laws.

This will lead to data nationalism, forcing companies to store data locally, at increased cost, as they are unable to meet regulatory requirements in international data transfer.

E-commerce will be stifled.

Fears of terrorism and state sponsored cyber-attacks will exacerbate national legislation, adding burden to businesses. A potential brake on US regulation could lead to a transformation of the global regulatory environment.

The US adherence to the Paris climate accords is under question, the Dodd-Frank Act could be modified substantially and the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act is not off limits, either.

This could have a domino impact on regulation around the world. Intensifying geopolitical pressures driven by nationalism, global power vacuums and proxy conflicts.
Syria, Libya, Yemen and Ukraine are likely to remain intractable conflicts and the Middle East will continue to be shaped by friction between Saudi Arabia and Iran; China’s increased focus on diplomacy and military influence will extend from Central Asia and the Indian Ocean to sub-Saharan Africa; and North Korea’s systematic nuclear capability development is upending a relatively static regional and global nuclear status quo. Richard Fenning continued: “Digitalisation and the internet of everything take risk everywhere and the distinction between safe home markets and dangerous foreign ones has largely gone.

The sheer mass of stored data, teetering on a fulcrum between asset and liability, has shifted the gravitational centre of risk. “Terrorist attacks across continents in 2016 made possible in large part by the internet have shown that Islamist inspired violence can be planned and carried out anywhere in the world. “With the seismic shift in risk scenario planning now required by businesses, we can expect the competitive playing field in many industries to see significant change as organisations respond in different ways to the multitude of complexities facing them.” Ends For further information please contact:Georgina Parkesgeorgina.parkes@controlrisks.com Simon Barkersbarker@barkercomms.com Note to Editors:About Control RisksControl Risks is a global risk consultancy specialising in political, security and integrity risk.

The company enables its clients to understand and manage the risks of operating in complex or hostile environments.

Through a unique combination of services, wide geographical reach and by adopting a close partnership approach with clients, Control Risks helps organisations effectively solve their problems and realise new opportunities across the world.www.controlrisks.com
Brexit means Brex... hang on, you want to store... WTF? A petition to Parliament requesting the repeal of the Investigatory Powers Act has received the 100,000 signatures required to make Parliamanet “consider” debating the issue. Although the Investigatory Powers Act doesn't actually exist at the moment — it remains a Bill of Parliament which will not become an Act until it achieves royal assent — the deep unpopularity of the surveillance legislation has already provoked over 100,000 people to sign a petition against it. This means it meets the threshold for Parliament to "consider" debating its proposition, though in practice debates are rarely carried out resulting from such petitions, and the repeal of the Investigatory Powers Act is ultimately extremely unlikely. Created by someone calling themselves Tom Skillinger, and titled “Repeal the new Surveillance laws (Investigatory Powers Act)” the petition described the legislation as “an absolute disgrace to both privacy and freedom”. Skillinger wrote: With this bill, they will be able to hack, read and store any information from any citizen's computer or phone, without even the requirement of proof that the citizen is up to no good. This essentially entitles them to free reign [sic] of your files, whether you're a law-abiding citizen or not! The executive director of the Open Rights Group, Jim Killock, commented that Brexit had distracted politicians and the public from examining the bill when it was debated in the House of Commons in the weeks before the referendum. "Now that the Bill has passed, there is renewed concern about the extent of the powers that will be given to the police and security agencies," Killock wrote. "Parliament may choose to ignore calls for a debate but this could undermine public confidence in these intrusive powers." In the face of several legal battles, Killock recommends that the debate be used as an opportunity to amend the bill's more questionable legal provisions. ® Sponsored: Customer Identity and Access Management
EnlargeThe Washington Post/Getty Images reader comments 167 Share this story "Post-truth" has been announced as the Oxford Dictionaries’ international word of the year.
It is widely associated with US president-elect Donald Trump’s extravagantly untruthful assertions and the working-class people who voted for him nonetheless.

But responsibility for the "post-truth" era lies with the middle-class professionals who prepared the runway for its recent take-off.

Those responsible include academics, journalists, "creatives," and financial traders; even the centre-left politicians who have now been hit hard by the rise of the anti-factual. On November 16, 2016 Oxford Dictionaries announced that "post-truth" had been selected as the word which, more than any other, reflects "the passing year in language." It defines "post-truth" as "relating to or denoting circumstances in which objective facts are less influential in shaping public opinion than appeals to emotion and personal belief." The word itself can be traced back as far as 1992, but documented usage increased by 2,000 percent in 2016 compared to 2015.

As Oxford Dictionaries’ Casper Grathwohl explained: We first saw the frequency really spike this year in June with buzz over the Brexit vote and again in July when Donald Trump secured the Republican presidential nomination. Given that usage of the term hasn’t shown any signs of slowing down, I wouldn’t be surprised if post-truth becomes one of the defining words of our time. Punditry on the "post-truth era" is often accompanied by a picture either of Trump (for example, BBC News Online or the Guardian) or of his supporters (The Spectator).

Although the Spectator article was a rare exception, the connotations embedded in "post-truth" commentary are normally as follows: "post-truth" is the product of populism; it is the bastard child of common-touch charlatans and a rabble ripe for arousal; it is often in blatant disregard of the actualité. The truth about post-truth But this interpretation blatantly disregards the actual origins of "post-truth." These lie neither with those deemed under-educated nor with their new-found champions.
Instead, the groundbreaking work on "post-truth" was performed by academics, with further contributions from an extensive roster of middle-class professionals. Left-leaning, self-confessed liberals, they sought freedom from state-sponsored truth; instead they built a new form of cognitive confinement—"post-truth." More than 30 years ago, academics started to discredit "truth" as one of the "grand narratives" which clever people could no longer bring themselves to believe in.
Instead of "the truth," which was to be rejected as naïve and/or repressive, a new intellectual orthodoxy permitted only "truths"—always plural, frequently personalised, inevitably relativised. Under the terms of this outlook, all claims on truth are relative to the particular person making them; there is no position outside our own particulars from which to establish universal truth.

This was one of the key tenets of postmodernism, a concept which first caught on in the 1980s after publication of Jean-Francois Lyotard’s The Postmodern Condition: A Report On Knowledge in 1979.
In this respect, for as long as we have been postmodern, we have been setting the scene for a "post-truth" era. And these attitudes soon spread across wider society.

By the mid-1990s, journalists were following academics in rejecting "objectivity" as nothing more than a professional ritual. Old-school hacks who continued to adhere to objectivity as their organising principle were scolded for cheating the public and deceiving themselves in equal measure. Nor was this shift confined to the minority who embraced war reporter Martin Bell’s infamous "journalism of attachment," which supported the idea that journalists should respond personally to events. Under the flag of pragmatism, the professional consensus allowed for a lower-case version of truth, broadly equivalent to academic relativism—which nonetheless dissociated professional journalism from the allegedly anachronistic quest for the one true truth, as in Ivor Gaber’s Three Cheers For Subjectivity: Or The Crumbling Of The Seven Pillars Of Journalistic Wisdom.

But this shift meant that journalists were already moving towards a "post-truth" age. Meanwhile, in the "creative" economy… In the second half of the 1990s, branding comprised the core business of the newly categorised "creative industries." Bright young things generated fast-growing revenues by creating a magical system of mythical thinking known in shorthand as "the brand." Branding came to be seen as far more important than the mundane activity of product design, development, and manufacture.
In Britain, as the latter went into decline, the simultaneous expansion of City-type activities meant that the national economy was reconfigured around whatever the next person was prepared to believe in, which is as close as financial markets ever get to the truth.
In Western economies, this system of managed perceptions and permanent PR—promotional culture as a whole way of life—has now largely replaced the incontrovertible facts of large-scale manufacturing. Throughout the second half of the 1990s and into the new century, there was optimistic talk of a "new economy," driven by the expansion of technology and the Internet.
It was seemingly based on a whole generation of "symbolic analysts"—Robert Reich’s term for "the workers who make up the creative and knowledge economies"—happily living on thin air. Even then, there were concerns that the associated media sector was a living example of the Emperor’s New Clothes, as illustrated by television’s "self-facilitating media node," Nathan Barley.

But it is now clear that in moving inexorably towards free-floating, barely verifiable "intangibles" (a buzzword of the time), the millennial hybrid of creative and financial services was also a stepping stone to "post-truth."
Political post-truth But the political realm experienced parallel developments, too, and they were similarly aligned to the trend towards "post-truth." In the US, Bill Clinton initiated the transformation of politics into "showbiz for uglies"—a show of inclusivity performed in a series of shared national experiences.
In the UK this was exemplified in Tony Blair’s role at the forefront of public reaction to the death of Princess Diana.

The extent to which such phenomena are best understood as myth rather than reality, has been well illustrated in the recent film HyperNormalisation by Adam Curtis. By the turn of the century, government was already less about the "truth" than about how "truths" could be spun.
So-called "spin doctors" took centre stage; it was government by PR—and the Iraq War was a prime example.

Facts, apparently, took a back seat. Meanwhile, the art of government was also being dumbed down into "evidence-based" managerialism—the largely exclusive process with which "Washington insider" Hillary Clinton has been unfavourably associated. As further practised by Blair, during his stint as UK prime minister, outgoing US president, Barack Obama, and their respective administrations, the subdivision of politics into (a) cultural experience and (b) management, has made a dual contribution to the social construction of "post-truth." As the protagonists neared the role of a priest or pop star in their near-mythical performances, so the Clinton-Blair-Obama triad has moved politics further away from truth and closer to the realm of the imagination. Meanwhile, in the hands of managerialists what was left of the truth—"the evidence base"—was soon recognised by the wider population as a tool for use in social engineering, and largely discredited as a result—hence the mounting hostility towards experts, on which Brexiter Michael Gove sought to capitalise in the run-up to the EU referendum.
On both counts, prominent representatives of the centre-left prepared the ground for the post-politics of "post-truth." The irony is that some of their closest relatives have been the first casualties of its further realisation. "Post-truth" is the latest step in a logic long established in the history of ideas, and previously expressed in the cultural turn led by middle-class professionals.
Instead of blaming populism for enacting what we set in motion, it would be better to acknowledge our own shameful part in it. This story was originally published in The Conversation. This post originated on Ars Technica UK
Cheer up, Europe, love.

Cyberwar might never happen European enterprises are teaming with information security agencies and governments to run a pan-European cyberwar readiness exercise today. Cyber Europe 2016 - which involves thousands of experts from all 28 EU Member States, Switzerland and Norway - is being co-ordinated by European Union security agency ENISA.
It's the fourth exercise of its type, and the most complex and wide-ranging to date.
Such exercises typically focus on responding to DDoS attacks and malware but Cyber Europe 2016 will encompass a far wider range of threats and ancillary crisis management problems, as a statement by ENISA explains. Cyber Europe 2016 paints a very dark scenario, inspired by events such as the blackout in a European Country over Christmas period1 and the dependence on technologies manufactured outside the jurisdiction of the European Union.
It also features the Internet of Things, drones, cloud computing, innovative exfiltration vectors, mobile malware, ransomware, etc. The exercise will focus on political and economic policies closely related to cybersecurity.

This also takes into account new processes and cooperation mechanisms contained in the Network and Information Security (NIS) Directive.

For the first time, a full scenario was developed with actors, media coverage, simulated companies and social media, bringing in the public affairs dimension associated with cyber crises, so as to increase realism to a level never seen before in cybersecurity exercises. Infosec experts from more than 300 organisations, including national and governmental cybersecurity agencies, ministries, EU institutions as well as internet and cloud service providers and cybersecurity software and service providers are taking part in the pan-European incident response exercise. Preparation work has been doing on for six months in the run-up to main event this week, which started on Thursday and culminates today. The whole exercise is designed to forge links that can come in handy during a real crisis as well as developing best practice for ensuring business continuity and, ultimately, safeguarding e-commerce in Europe.

This effort is more than justified, according to securocrats. “Computer security attacks are increasingly used to perform industrial reconnaissance, lead disinformation campaigns, manipulate stock markets, leak sensitive information, tamper with customer data, sabotage critical infrastructures,” ENISA argues. Cyber Europe is organised every two years by ENISA, the EU Agency for Network and Information Security, which describes its latest edition as the largest cybersecurity exercise in the world (see high budget promo trailer below). Results from the latest edition are due to be publicly released next year, following analysis by ENISA and the Member States. “Detailed lessons learned will be shared with the participants to the exercise in order to establish a list of actions to improve cybersecurity in Europe,” ENISA explains. “It is expected that many of the findings of the exercise are useful for the implementation of the NIS Directive and the work of the CSIRT Network, and the European cyber cooperation platform.” The Cyber Europe motto is “stronger together”.

Despite Brexit, the UK is participating in the exercise (and likely will in future, given the strategic importance of cybersecurity, though this is uncertain). “All 28 European Union Member States participate in the exercise, as well as two European Free Trade Association member states: Norway and Switzerland,” as ENISA explains in an FAQ.
Bootnote 1 A reference to the BlackEnergy attacks against three Ukrainian electricity utilities last December.
Enlarge / Japanese PM Shinzo Abe arrives in China for the G20 summit... just as his country's awkward Brexit memo lands.Etienne Oliveau/Getty Images reader comments 11 Share this story Prime minister Theresa May said at the weekend that she wanted to take her time to secure the best trade deals for a post-Brexit Britain, and reiterated—in her trademark vague terms—that the so-called Article 50 won't be triggered this year.

But political pressure from governments as far away as Japan continues to mount. On Sunday, in a bold move, the Japanese government published a 15-page memo (PDF) setting out a number of demands it wants the UK to adhere to, once it leaves the European Union. It underscored that Britain faces a torrid time of negotiations—not just with member states in the EU, but further afield, too. Japan, which has close economic ties with the UK, listed its demands based on requests from businesses in the country.
It said: Since Europe including the UK is a major trading partner and investment destination for other countries in Asia as well as of Japan, it is in the common interest of all Asian countries as a whole that they continue to have access to the free market of Europe, including the UK. It is of great importance that the UK and the EU maintain market integrity and remain attractive destinations for businesses where free trade, unfettered investment, and smooth financial transactions are ensured. In light of the fact that a number of Japanese businesses, invited by the government in some cases, have invested actively to the UK, which was seen to be a gateway to Europe, and have established value-chains across Europe, we strongly request that the UK will consider this fact seriously and respond in a responsible manner to minimise any harmful effects on these businesses. It's brutal stuff from Japan, and could well lead to other countries making similarly robust demands. On tech specifically, the Japanese government called on the UK and EU, post-Brexit, to maintain cloud agreements between businesses at an international level, by safeguarding the "free transfer of data." Here's the list in full: [Requests directed at the UK and the EU] maintenance of the current tariff rates and customs clearance procedures; ・introduction of provisions for cumulative rules of origin; ・maintenance of the access to workers who are nationals of the UK or the EU; ・maintenance of the freedom of establishment and the provision of financial services, including the “single passport” system; ・maintenance of the freedom of cross-border investment and the provision of services as well as the free movement of capital, including that between associated companies; ・maintenance of the current level of information protection and the free transfer of data; ・unified protection of intellectual property rights; ・maintenance of harmonisation of the regulations and standards between the UK and the EU (including the maintenance of established frameworks of mutual recognition and equivalence); ・securing the UK’s function as a clearing centre for the Euro and the location within the UK of EU agencies such as the European Medicines Agency (EMA); and ・maintenance of the UK’s access to the EU budget for research and development and participation in the Japan-EU joint research project. [Additional requests directed at the UK] ・liberalisation of trade in goods without the burdens of customs duties and procedures; ・maintenance of access to workers with the necessary skills; ・maintenance of basic policies regarding the entry of foreign capital; ・implementation of measures to promote investment; ・maintenance of the current levels of information protection and the free transfer of data in case the UK establishes its own legislation distinct from the EU’s; ・ensuring the consistency of regulations and standards between the UK and the EU; and ・ensuring that the EU’s research and development budget applies to research institutions in the UK. [Additional request directed at the EU] ・provision of transitional arrangements for the single passporting system. PM May is currently in China with other world leaders at the G20 summit, where she will be attempting to negotiate on global trade and investment plans with her peers as Brexit looms large. But over the weekend, US president Obama repeated his earlier disappointment about the UK voting to leave the EU. When quizzed, he said that Britain was at the back of the queue, saying "it would not make sense" for the US to put the UK ahead of Asia and the EU on trade deals. "We’re going to do everything we can to make sure that the consequences of the decision don’t end up unraveling what is already a very strong and robust economic relationship," Obama said, before adding that "the first task is going to be figuring out what Brexit means with respect to Europe." On Monday afternoon MPs in the UK will debate a call, based on a public petition, for a second EU referendum—something that May has already said won't happen on her watch. This post originated on Ars Technica UK
The EU wants to force WhatsApp, iMessage and other internet-based tools to abide by tougher data-protection rules, leaked documents say. By Matthew BroersmaThe European Union is looking to extend some of the privacy rules that currently apply to telecommunications companies to cover internet-based services such as Skype and WhatsApp in a way that could restrict their use of encryption, according to reports.The EU's plans could also oblige digital services to allow users to take content, such as copies of emails, with them when they change providers, according to reports from media outlets including The Financial Times and Reuters, all of which cited internal EU documents.New Privacy Obligations The privacy and confidentiality obligations for internet firms remain to be defined, according to the EU documents. Currently 2002's Privacy and Electronic Communications Directive, known as the ePrivacy Directive, applies only to telecoms providers such as Vodafone or Orange, and those providers have argued the rules place them at a disadvantage to web-based competitors.Facebook's WhatsApp, for instance, protects its communications with end-to-end encryption, while telecoms companies are barred from doing so, being subject to wiretapping and "lawful interception" demands by governments.Apple's mobile iMessage service also claims to offer end-to-end encryption, while Microsoft's Skype encrypts communications but also says it monitors message content for the purposes of blocking fraud and other illegal activity. ePrivacy Review The possible changes are part of a review to the ePrivacy rules announced by the EU in April, when it launched a public consultation seeking the views of stakeholders.The EU said the review was motivated in part by the introduction of the General Data Protection Regulation this year, which is set to broadly alter Europe's data protection environment.While organizations including national data protection regulators, telecoms companies and internet firms have published their responses to the consultation, the EU's own views have not previously been made public.Orange pointed out in its response that internet-based services are "allowed to commercially exploit the traffic data and the location data they collect", while telecoms firms are restricted in how they use such information.In its response, Facebook argued against any extension of the ePrivacy rules, saying new restrictions could mean it would "no longer be able to guarantee the security and confidentiality of the communication through encryption" and therefore could "have the undesired consequence of undermining the very privacy it is seeking to protect".The European Commission has said it does not necessarily plan to treat all communications services the same for all purposes. Spectrum Changes A broader reform of the EU's telecoms rules is set to begin next month, and the Commission is proposing to take the opportunity to increase the term of spectrum licenses from 10 to 25 years, according to internal documents cited by Reuters.That move, intended to introduce a more stable market for operators and encourage them to boost their investments, could face opposition from national governments, for whom spectrum license auctions have proven a lucrative source of income.Under the results of a June referendum, the UK is set to exit the European Union, but EU laws are likely nevertheless to continue to influence British policies.
NEWS ANALYSIS: The agreement between Europe and the U.S. replaces the previous Safe Harbor agreement that was invalidated by European courts. Representatives of the 28 states of the European Union approved the final version of the Privacy Shield agreement between the United States and the EU on July 8.This is the final step before the agreement is formally adopted by the European Commission, which is expected to happen during the week of July 11.

The Privacy Shield agreement is intended to protect the privacy of EU citizens as data about them flows between the EU and the U.S. and while that data is stored in the U.S.The Privacy Shield replaces the former Safe Harbor agreement that was supposed to accomplish the same thing.

But documents leaked by former National Security Agency analyst Edward Snowden showed that the Safe Harbor agreement was frequently ignored by the intelligence agency and that companies didn't always deliver on their promises of privacy following their self-certification.

The Privacy Shield requires written assurances by the U.S. that it will respect European privacy laws for data stored in the U.S.However, a number of privacy advocates in the EU have threatened to take the agreement to court, claiming that it doesn't go far enough in protecting the privacy of EU citizens.
In addition, if the United Kingdom abides by the results of a recent referendum and pulls out of the EU, it's possible that the UK and U.S. would have to negotiate a separate privacy agreement. Negotiators reached initial agreement on the Privacy Shield framework on Feb. 2.

The proposed agreement went through the review process required in the EU, first by national data protection authorities, then by the EU's Data Protection Supervisor, both of which expressed reservations. However, neither has the authority to block the deal. The EU parliament approved the Privacy Shield in May, which allowed the agreement to move along to final approval by the 28 member nations.Once the agreement receives formal approval by the European Commission, the agreement will be in force.

The U.S.

Congress has already passed its enabling legislation in the form of the Judicial Redress Act, which gives EU citizens privacy rights similar to U.S. citizens.The Privacy Shield agreement is critical to enable the free flow of information between the U.S. and the EU.

This data may include anything ranging from employee payroll data of companies with operations on both sides of the Atlantic to financial data used by banks and credit card companies.Equally important, especially to European privacy advocates, is the data collected by U.S.-based Internet services such as Facebook and Google, both of which have faced criticism in Europe.

Google's situation is under particular scrutiny, with European moves to require it to allow people to be forgotten. 
'Tiny fraction of the overall count' however A petition for a second EU referendum in the UK has been hit by suspicions of computer automated ballot stuffing, possibly by politically motivated hackers. 77K fraudulent signatures have been removed from a petition calling for a second vote on the UK’s relationship with the European Union. The so-far identified fraudulent votes represent a tiny fraction of the overall count, though not perhaps the full extent of the issue. Reg reader Rob has uncovered evidence that a botnet (i.e. automated computer program rather than human) is stuffing the second referendum ballot. “It's continuously been getting roughly 10 signatures per *SECOND* since it started and all throughout the night when people would be sleeping,” Rob explained. “I monitored it from 2.30 to 3.30am this morning and in that space of time it received over 90,000 new signatures.” The json data on the referendum link provides further evidence that all is not perhaps kosher. “There are 2,371 signatures from The Vatican - a place that only has a population of 1,000,” Rob notes.

Also the json data shows 2735 signatures from the Antarctic and 23,694 signatures from North Korea.” A blackhat hacker from Syria claimed responsibility for the “hack” which he claimed he was doing in order to show “your democracies are a joke”. He also claimed to be “voting like crazy” on this petition. Both claims are unsubstantiated and therefore ought to be treated with caution. House of Commons staff said that they are on top of the ballot-stuffing issue in a series of tweets that seek to dispel rumours that any Parliamentary site had been hacked. “The petitions website has not been hacked.

Fraudulent signatures have been and will continue to be removed, to ensure the site’s integrity,” the Petitions Committee said on Sunday through its official Twitter profile. “The petition site is working and secure. We’re monitoring the site to ensure it’s used properly,” it added. So far more than 3.6 million people have signed up the petition on the parliament.uk website.

Any petition with more than 100K votes is considered for debate in parliament, irrespective of its merits either way. The second EU referendum petition states: We the undersigned call upon HM Government to implement a rule that if the remain or leave vote is less than 60% based a turnout less than 75% there should be another referendum. Demand on the petition’s site in the immediate aftermath of the surprise result of Thursday’s vote caused the site to crash. ®