13.6 C
London
Tuesday, September 26, 2017
Home Tags United Nations

Tag: United Nations

Australia Foreign Minister Julie Bishop has used a United Nations speech to thank Facebook, Microsoft, Twitter, Google, and YouTube for their help in identifying terrorists online.
The hit sci-fi show is now a board gamemdash;and a pretty good one.
Energy Futures Initiative will offer analysis to “policymakers, industry executives, and NGOs.”
With mobile operators’ marketing departments already throwing around claims about their 5G services, the United Nations is weighing in with its definition of what qualifies a network as next-generation.Verizon Wireless will begin delivering “5G” service to select users in 11 U.S. cities in mid-2017, even though some places don’t yet have access to 4G.

And at the Mobile World Congress 2017 trade show in Barcelona, companies including Intel, Qualcomm and Ericsson will be promoting their moves towards 5G.To read this article in full or to leave a comment, please click here
reader comments 14 Share this story On Wednesday, a spokesman for President-Elect Trump’s transition team told Reuters that the team would not be seeking the names of Department of Energy (DOE) employees who had attended meetings and conferences on climate change. "The questionnaire was not authorized or part of our standard protocol," Trump spokesman Sean Spicer told the news outlet. "The person who sent it has been properly counseled." Spicer apparently declined to comment any further. The controversial questionnaire was sent to the Department of Energy last Friday, and included dozens of questions about the legal, financial, and organizational structures within the DOE. While the majority of the questions were straightforward, several questions stood out as highly unusual for any administration’s transition team to ask. Specifically, Trump’s team demanded names of individual employees that attended conferences on the social cost of carbon as well as names of employees that attended any Conference of the Parties hosted by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.The request worried staffers—some of whom are long-time civil servants who have worked at the department under Obama, Bush, and Clinton administrations—that they would be targeted by the new administration, which has been overt about its baseless disdain for decades of solid climate science. On Monday, DOE officials e-mailed staffers saying that no such list of individual employees would be turned over to the Trump Administration transition team. “We are going to respect the professional and scientific integrity and independence of our employees at our labs and across our department,” the e-mail said. Trump has falsely said that climate change is a hoax created by the Chinese, and as recently as this Sunday attempted to dispute climate science on Fox News. He has nominated former Texas senator Rick Perry to replace nuclear physicist Ernest Moniz as head of the DOE.
Department of Energy in Washington, DC.Begemot reader comments 138 Share this story The US Department of Energy said it will not provide a list of names of staffers who worked on climate change issues to the Trump transition team on Tuesday, despite the team’s demand for that information. On Friday, Bloomberg leaked a 75-question memo sent from the Trump transition team to the DOE, asking the department to provide information about the kinds of work it’s doing and the legal and procedural basis for certain programs. While such a questionnaire is not uncommon for transition teams to send federal agencies, the questionnaire also included demands that the DOE provide a list of names of staffers who worked on climate change issues.

Those demands came across as deeply concerning and highly unusual to career staffers and contractors, some of whom worked at the DOE not only during the Obama administration but under the Bush and Clinton administrations as well. Trump has publicly called climate change a hoax, and just this weekend, he told the Fox Sunday host that “nobody really knows” about climate change.

These are blatant lies from Trump, as climate scientists have decades of research showing that climate change is happening.

The most recent Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report showed 95 percent statistical confidence that humans are the primary cause for this undeniable warming trend. The Trump transition team’s request for the names of all staffers who attended meetings about the social cost of carbon, as well as any Conference of the Parties hosted by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, suggested to DOE staffers that the team could be looking to fire staffers for their work on climate change or to marginalize their role at the department. According to the Washington Post, DOE officials sent an e-mail to employees this morning assuring them that no individual names will be provided to the Trump transition team: The Department of Energy received significant feedback from our workforce throughout the department, including the National Labs, following the release of the transition team’s questions.
Some of the questions asked left many in our workforce unsettled. Our career workforce, including our contractors and employees at our labs, comprise the backbone of DOE and the important work our department does to benefit the American people. We are going to respect the professional and scientific integrity and independence of our employees at our labs and across our department. We will be forthcoming with all publicly-available information with the transition team. We will not be providing any individual names to the transition team. The boldface in the final sentence was present in the e-mail sent by DOE spokesperson Eben Burnham-Snyder, according to the Post. This morning, the Trump transition team announced its nomination of Rick Perry, former Texas governor with ties to the fossil fuel industry who has rejected climate science, to head the DOE. His appointment will need to be approved by the Senate to become official. Amid this uncertainty about the future of climate science under the new administration, the Washington Post also reported this morning that “scientists have begun a feverish attempt to copy reams of government data onto independent servers in hopes of safeguarding it from any political interference,” including efforts to copy irreplaceable data from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) at a “guerrilla archiving” event in Toronto, as well as efforts to compile online portals for scientific information. Meteorologist Eric Holthaus tweeted this weekend asking scientists to use a Google spreadsheet to list links to .gov databases they don’t want to see disappear, prompting dozens of entries from scientists, as well as offers from investors, lawyers, and database managers to help protect and store the data. While it's unclear that a Trump administration would necessarily spell destruction for these databases, many scientists aren't waiting around to find out.
In addition, this week at the American Geophysical Union in San Francisco, lawyers from the Climate Science Legal Defense Fund will be holding one-on-one consultations with researchers who feel they might need help protecting their data.
Intelligence sharing is at risk if UK is exposed to Trump's torturous activities Comment If comments made on the campaign trail by Donald Trump were sincere, then today's British government will need to do some serious soul-searching very soon. Trump, who was today announced as the president-elect of the United States of America, has been controversially outspoken while seeking to be nominated as the Republican Party's presidential candidate, and while campaigning to be elected as President. Many of his outbursts had been criticized for their deemed sincerity – and vulgarity – but it is particularly his defense of torture (despite his nation's ratification of the United Nations Convention Against Torture, and the constitutional prohibition against cruel and unusual punishment) that could provoke problems between the UK and US. The constitution may ostensibly be amended, and a UN convention might be derogated from, but a US decision to legalize torture would very probably prohibit the greater part of the intelligence-sharing aspects of the UK and US's special relationship – a relationship that already is substantively about the collaboration between GCHQ and the NSA (US National Security Agency). The future of the "special relationship" is very much dependent on how Trump will exercise the US intelligence apparatus, and if he seeks to assert the position he had previously issued on torture he is very likely to receive push-back from the UK due to the nation's legal obligations, which are much more unlikely to be derogated from. Back in February, Trump told a rally audience that "torture works." He said: OK, folks? You know, I have these guys — 'Torture doesn't work!' — believe me, it works.

And waterboarding is your minor form.
Some people say it's not actually torture. Let's assume it is.

But they asked me the question: What do you think of waterboarding? Absolutely fine.

But we should go much stronger than waterboarding.

That's the way I feel.

They're chopping off heads.

Believe me, we should go much stronger, because our country's in trouble. We're in danger. We have people that want to do really bad things! UK-based infosec expert and ex-GCHQ specialist Matt Tait, aka Pwn All The Things on Twitter, told El Reg: Trump's position on torture is a really big deal.

Torture of detainees is directly and unambiguously a violation of the internationally accepted laws of armed conflict – even if used against unlawful enemy belligerents, such as terrorists rather than captured prisoners of war.

Trump's comments on torture are important and a unique deviation for US policy. Previous administrations, even when they have engaged in "enhanced interrogation techniques" such as under George W Bush – and even when these EITs escalate to the point that they are widely called "torture" – the US has gone to lengths to assert that the EITs it did use didn't amount to "torture"; declassified legal memos show lawyers within the Bush administration trying to define the line where interrogation becomes torture and push EITs right up to, but not over, that line. Whether you think the Bush administration was successful or whether it overstepped that line, they did at least know there was a line, and tried not to overstep it. No so with Trump.

Trump actively embraces the idea of torturing detainees. He not only says that torture is ok; he says it's something the US should actively engage in.

And not just to get information.

To "punish" them as well. Even laying aside the enormous domestic law and eighth amendment issues this brings up, this will make it impossible for UK intelligence cooperation with the Trump administration across a range of intelligence programs.

The UK will have to restrict the uses, categories and programs of intelligence sharing with the US if there is any risk the US could use that intelligence to intentionally engage in war crimes. This differs to Trump's position on cybersecurity.

Although his positions are less clear on this topic, it seems that his position largely boils down to a much more substantial active response to cyberattacks on the US.
So long as the response isn't clearly disproportionate, or targeting civilians, this doesn't look especially challenging to international partners; it's certainly not an intentional war crime. On topics such as this, the UK may end up disagreeing with the Trump administration on policy, but ultimately the UK won't be in the same position as with torture where the UK would have to take a firm line of non-cooperation to avoid being complicit in a war crime itself. Jim Killock, executive director of the Open Rights Group (ORG), warned The Register: "If the US openly pursues a policy of torturing those suspected of terrorism, it cannot legally be enabled by the sharing of intelligence from the UK." "However, given the close integration of the UK and US intelligence agencies, it will be difficult to separate our data sharing and technologies," Killock continued. "This presents a huge challenge for oversight, who need to be aware of the possibility that GCHQ might be urged to help with policies that are indefensible." ORG additionally warned that Trump will exert a great deal of control over GCHQ's operations as President, and stressed the integration between the UK and US signals intelligence organizations.
Such integration was today restated by the UK's Prime Minister, Theresa May, who congratulated Trump and applauded how "Britain and the United States have an enduring and special relationship based on the values of freedom, democracy and enterprise." "We are, and will remain, strong and close partners on trade, security and defense," stated May. "I look forward to working with President-elect Donald Trump, building on these ties to ensure the security and prosperity of our nations in the years ahead." ® Sponsored: Customer Identity and Access Management
There's not much more than fine print between stress testing and DDoS-as-a-service Two Israeli men have been arrested for running a distributed-denial-of service-as-a-service site, after one seemingly claimed to attack the Pentagon. Itay Huri and Yarden Bidani, released on US$10,000 bonds, were arrested following a tip off from the FBI, local news site TheMarker reports. A Twitter account using Bidani's name and handle tweeted last year that parts of the Pentagon site were down after a DDoS. Their slick DDoS site vDos-s.com charged between US$30 and US$200 a month for DDoS attacks sold as legitimate network stress testing. "We are not just another booter, we guarantee 10-50Gbps of UDP traffic per stress test using our DNS method, our high end dedicated servers can satisfy even the most power hungry customers," the pair wrote on their site. VDos targeted 150,000 victims according to a stolen database provided to KrebsonSecurity lifted from the site by an anonymous security researcher who exploited a vulnerability. That database revealed the actors' identities along with details of paying customers. The lifted document mentions victim sites including the UK's Imperial College Model United Nations club, game site GoodGame.co.uk, and anti-DDoS site Zare.com. KrebsonSecurity says the booter site made some US$600,000 over the last two years. The pair seemed to have trued to present the company as a legitimate stress testing service, rather than as guns for hire.

Customers using the "legitimate stress testing company" are told they "are prohibited from stressing internet connections and/or servers that [they] do not have ownership of or authorisation to test". Huri and Bidan even authored a technical paper [PDF] on DDoS last month, signing the document with their real names. ®
Enlarge / Kirk and Spock wear nifty outfits in order to contemplate the concept of the Prime Directive, which was first introduced in the episode "Return of the Archons."Paramount Star Trek 50th Anniversary Smithsonian Channel’s Building Star Trek is a cheesy but reverent tribute Why does the Star Trek franchise keep returning to its origins? View more storiesreader comments 55 Share this story Asking lawyers about Star Trek is a bit like asking bike mechanics what their favorite beer is.

Even if it’s not their area of professional expertise, they have lots of clear, well thought-out opinions on the subject. One day last month, I put out a quick call for Trek-minded attorneys, and they flooded in. Within minutes, this actual e-mail message landed in my inbox. Sir: I suddenly had five people e-mailing me saying I had to chat with you! I aver that I am a lawyer who defines himself first and foremost as a Starfleet officer. May I help? CWWChristian W. WaughWaugh Law, P.A. Sent from my Starfleet Communicator I should add that this guy goes by the handle @AdmiralWaugh on Twitter.
I knew I had hit on something great. As a Trek fan—I'm a child of the 1980s, TNG was my first foray into the universe—and someone who reports frequently about legal issues, I wanted to honor the 50th anniversary of the series with a look at the legal issues at play across Star Trek. Sure, entire books have already been written on this subject, but this was boldly going into terra nullis for yours truly. From copyright to civil law After reviewing various episodes (research, I swear!), I was reminded of how many Picard-as-counsel episodes there are.

Court-style procedurals are no rarity across the various series and movies. According to a recent panel discussion at Comic Con (SDCC) entitled "Star Trek: Where Lawyers Boldly Go," there are a number of landmark legal-themed episodes ranging from TOS "Court Martial," to TNG’s "Measure of a Man," to DS9’s "Tribunal," to Enterprise’s "Judgment." This panel, I should add, included various legal luminaries such as California Supreme Court Justice Mariano-Florentino Cuéllar, and former US Magistrate Judge Paul Grewal, now a vice president and lawyer for Facebook. Enlarge / Some legal issues raised in Star Trek have direct relevance to today. Joshua Gillilan The point is there are many legal roads to go down in the Star Trek universe, and some even have direct parallels to our own time.

The ongoing case of Naruto v.
Slater
(currently before the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals) involves the question of whether a non-human (in this case, a macaque) can hold copyright of a photograph. Nearly this exact same question is explored in Voyager’s "Author, Author," where the Doctor, a holographic medical program, tries to assert intellectual property rights over a holonovel. In the Star Trek universe, of course, the most important "law" is more of an overarching policy and social norm.
It's called the Prime Directive, and interpreting its meaning is one of the major preoccupations of show characters and fans alike.

As one of the organizers of that SDCC panel, Joshua Gilliland pointed out to me during a conversation over coffee, that in itself is quite true to life. "What is law but a civil contract as to how we’re going to behave?" Bending the rules In canonical Trek, the Prime Directive is never explicitly stated in its full, legalistic glory.
Introduced as a concept in the 21st episode of TOS, "Return of the Archons," it is a commandment of the highest moral authority to not interfere in the natural cultural and scientific development of a civilization, particularly those that are pre-warp.

That's a pretty difficult rule to follow, given how hard it is to define a concept like "natural cultural and scientific development," let alone loaded terms like "civilization" and "interfere." So this was the precise question that I put forward to the best human legal minds I could find: Could the Prime Directive actually work as a law? How should we, in 2016, think about United Nations law or whatever our existing equivalent is, as being precursors to an interstellar directive (should we even think of it as a law? Or merely a guidepost?) to the Prime Directive? Here on early 21st-century Earth, the Prime Directive is probably most similar to something like the Law of the Sea—a "law" that nearly every country on Earth follows—establishing rights and norms for the usage of the world’s oceans and waterways. (Interestingly, while the United States essentially accepts the Law of the Sea, it has not formally ratified it.) "The Prime Directive is a lot like international law in that it is often not enforced depending on who breaks it," Greg Della Posta, a tenancy lawyer in Buffalo, New York, e-mailed Ars. "Famous captains, or ones in important circumstances, are usually forgiven, much like large nations generally don't face consequences from international courts for breaking treaties." In short, if international law doesn’t always work all that well now in the 21st century, is there any hope that an interstellar law could work in the future? Many officers of the court seemed to dismiss the idea of a truly universal law binding the members of the planet, much less something approaching the United Federation of Planets. "The concern probably is not military takeover, but communication that violates the Prime Directive, because that doesn’t require unrealistic interstellar travel," Scott Moss, a law professor at the University of Colorado, wrote. He wondered what would happen if interplanetary communications began before Earth united under one government. "What if a highly religious regime like Iran sees a need to spread a religious message to other planets by giving a less advanced civilization the communications technology necessary to share (or impose) theological views?" Moss wondered. Moss continued his thought experiment: And when the threat is interstellar communication, which is much lower cost than interstellar travel, what stops rogue tycoons from freely communicating whatever idiosyncratic messages strike their fancy? A nation can, of course, criminalize dangerous activity, but (a) such a ban would, in the United States, require the government to prove actual harm in order to restrict speech, and I can’t wait for the First Amendment case about Donald Trump, Jr., violating the American Prime Directive by communicating his family’s greatness across the stars, and (b) a rogue tycoon in a country not imposing a Prime Directive would seem to have free rein. Looking back to the 17th century Given how difficult it would be to control rogue nations from violating something like the Prime Directive, it might be truly impossible to rein in private companies. "I think it's more likely that future interstellar craft will say ‘Musk Enterprises’ ‘Virgin Galactic’ or ‘Putin Enterprises’ on the hull," Marc Randazza, a well-known First Amendment lawyer based in Las Vegas, e-mailed. "So let's say a private enterprise sends its spacecraft off to conduct a mining mission or an exploration mission, one might think that Earth-based governments would say that they have jurisdiction over their citizens who engage in interstellar or interplanetary or intergalactic exploration and commerce.

Think of the Dutch East India Company, or other enterprises that sent people off from Europe to colonize other areas.

They were still ostensibly under there on the flag and could be punished for violations of the law of their land once they returned.

But what jurisdiction was there out there really?" Companies and nation-states might sign agreements not to violate the Prime Directive, but Randazza argued it would lack an enforcement mechanism. "Unfortunately, I think the only existing force strong enough to get us out there is greed and capitalism," he said. "But once those forces land somewhere, it's already fucked.
I think if you want to look forward into the future to see what the exploration and exploitation of space is going to look like, you shouldn't be looking at Star Trek.
I mean if you want to dream and aspire, that's definitely the place to look.

But if you want reality, take a look at Africa in the 1800s coupled with Blade Runner—and that is me being optimistic." Live long and prosper Other lawyers explained Star Trek's legal system as a reflection of the era when the series was conceived. Recall that this was a time of great post-war optimism and 1960s grooviness. Gene Roddenberry, Star Trek’s creator, was a World War II Army fighter jet pilot from the age of 21 to 28. Roddenberry went on to become a cop with the Los Angeles Police Department.
It was only after years in the law-and-order professions that he switched careers to write his first TV show, The Lieutenant. Airing in 1963, the show featured many as-yet-unknown actors, including Leonard Nimoy. "[Roddenberry] lived in a Cold War environment where any and every developing nation was valued almost exclusively as a pawn in the conflict between capitalism and communism," Ashley Meyers, a personal injury lawyer in California, e-mailed. "This background makes the centerpiece philosophy of the show unsurprising.

For someone who experienced both the horrors of war first-hand and who saw the damaging impact of the First World’s ‘benevolent’ interference in the Third World, the Prime Directive makes perfect sense." In the context of the series, the Prime Directive is violated (or perhaps "bent") in arguably justifiable scenarios. Meyers cited TOS’ "A Private Little War," where Kirk returns to a planet that he last knew as an Eden-like paradise. However, upon his return, he finds that the Klingons are disrupting the balance of power by providing the "Villagers" with flintlock long guns, and they are attacking the "Hill People." Kirk decides that the way to restore this power is to similarly provide firearms to the Hill People. "Some sort of corrective measures would have to be the first step toward any meaningful attempt to model international law after the Prime Directive," Meyers concluded. "Realistically, an objective committee could act like a jury and evaluate what would be necessary for every ‘pre-warp’ nation on Earth to be made whole. What would restitution for colonialism, Cold War proxy wars, and modern interference look like? Restitution damages are never easy to calculate but it can be done." Inga Fyodorova, a corporate lawyer with Steiner Leisure, agreed.
She told Ars that while "humans find great challenge in non-interference," she remains an optimist. "Given the current state of our international relations, I find it unlikely that we would succeed, but the Trekkie idealist in me wants to believe that we as humans have the capacity to tap into some inherent non-judging, cooperative spirit and hug it out as a planet," she wrote. "Consequently, we would live long and prosper."
Vote at Human Rights Council to take place Friday Russia and China are fighting an effort at the United Nations (UN) to extend human rights to the internet. The resolution was due to be voted on at the UN Human Rights Council (HRC) on Thursday, but the vote was put off until Friday amid growing tensions and a spotlight put on the vote by a campaign of over 80 organizations, including Amnesty International, the Electronic Frontier Foundation, the W3C and Reporters Without Borders. The resolution [PDF] follows a gradual movement in the UN to recognize that the online and offline worlds are no longer separate entities but feed into one another.
So rights granted in the offline world should also be protected online. The problem, from China's and Russia's perspective, is that it includes new elements that stress the need for an accessible and open internet, and condemns violations against people for expressing their views online.

Both countries have become renowned for censoring the internet and for taking action against those who are critical of their regimes on the internet. In response, four amendments to the draft resolution have been put down whose main impacts would be to remove the text on freedom of expression and the condemnation of shutting down internet access to citizens in response to events. The resolution, which was written by a number of countries including Brazil, Nigeria, Turkey and the USA, also includes recommendations to strengthen anonymity and encryption. ®
Or that mobile USB dongle could let an attacker take over your PC! Hooray! Nullcon Russian security tester Timur Yunusov has found critical vulnerabilities in routers and 3G and 4G modems from Huawei, ZTE, Gemtek, and Quanta.

The flaws mean attackers could completely compromise machines and intercept SMS and HTTP traffic. The research first detailed in December and showcased to hackers yesterday at the Nullcon conference in Goa revealed un-patched flaws in eight devices of which thousands were exposed over the Shodan device search engine. Yunusov, of consultancy Positive Technologies, found some 2800 Gemtek modems and routers and 1250 from Quanta and ZTE exposed over Shodan. “All the modem models investigated had critical vulnerabilities leading to complete system compromise,” Yunusov says. “Virtually all the vulnerabilities could be exploited remotely. “Not all the modems had vulnerabilities in their factory settings; some of them appeared after the firmware was customised by the service provider.” Yunusov says almost all devices lacked cross-site request forgery protection that combined with a lack of filters meant 60 percent were exposed to remote code execution. Three sported defences against firmware modifications but each could be compromised and undermined.

Four of the eight modems and routers contain cross-site scripting vulnerabilities permitting infection of hosts and SMS interception for dedicated attackers who put in extra effort to geo-locate targets. The penetration tester offered examples of how to exploit the vulnerable devices including how to own connected computers. “If we penetrate a modem … infecting a PC connected to it provides us with many ways to steal and intercept the PC user's data,” he says. Pwnage chart. Yunusov and his team have found nasty holes in popular modem kit before, including holes in Huawei devices that allow attackers to compromise connected computers. Last year he demonstrated how an SMS could be used to manipulate rail systems and derail trains. ® Sponsored: Network monitoring and troubleshooting for Dummies