• ISISNorway Government Collapses over Repatriation of IS Terrorist’s Spouse, Kids

    The governing coalition in Norway has lost its parliamentary majority after the far-right, populist Progress Party announced today (Monday) that it was leaving the government after the cabinet’s Friday decision to allow a Norwegian woman to return from Syria with her two young kids. One of the children requires medical treatment. The woman left for Syria in 2013 to marry an ISIS terrorists, and the children were born in Syria. The dilemma with which Norway has been grappling is reflected in other countries across Europe, which must decide whether or not to allow their citizens who left to join the fight in Syria or marry IS terrorists to return home.

  • The Russia connectionU.K. PM Warns Putin Not to Repeat Chemical Attacks on Britain

    British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has told Vladimir Putin in their first official meeting that Moscow must not repeat a chemical attack on Britain like the 2018 nerve agent attack in Salisbury against former Russian spy Sergei Skripal.

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  • African securitySenators to Secretary Esper: Reconsider AFRICOM Drawdown

    U.S. Senators Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) and Chris Coons (D-Delaware) last week sent a letter to Secretary of Defense Mark Esper concerning the possible troop reduction or complete withdrawal from the AFRICOM area of responsibility. “Africa is a continent full of potential, and this is the wrong time to withdraw U.S. troops serving to stabilize fragile regions of the continent, the senators write.

  • EncryptionHomomorphic Encryption Improves Cloud Security

    A new approach to encryption — homomorphic encryption system — could improve user perception of cloud computing services where the users are concerned about private or personal data being exposed to third parties.

  • Public healthEdible “Security Tag” Protect Drugs from Counterfeit

    Manufacturing prescription drugs with distinct markings, colors, shapes or packaging isn’t enough to protect them from counterfeiting, DEA reports have shown. Researchers are aiming to stump counterfeiters with an edible “security tag” embedded into medicine. To imitate the drug, a counterfeiter would have to uncrack a complicated puzzle of patterns not fully visible to the naked eye.

  • SuperbugsNew Agents to Fight Multidrug-Resistant Germs

    Resistance to antibiotics is on the rise worldwide. Fraunhofer scientists have joined forces with partners in the Phage4Cure project to explore alternatives to antibiotics. One objective is to vanquish multidrug-resistant pathogens with viruses called bacteriophages. Another is to see these phages approved to treat the dreaded hospital germ Pseudomonas aeruginosa, the most frequent bacterial cause of pneumonia.

  • WildfiresBefore We Rush to Rebuild after Fires, We Need to Think about Where and How

    By Mark Maund, Kim Maund, and Thayaparan Gajendran

    Public support for rebuilding in the same disaster affected places is often high. But as fire-fighting agencies are aware, our bushfires are increasing in size, intensity and duration, and a warming climate will continue to worsen these factors. We need to start being more strategic about where we rebuild homes and facilities lost to fire, and how.

  • Climate mitigationThe Prospects of Climate Engineering

    Climate engineering may offer a last-ditch technological solution to catastrophic climate change, but who makes the decisions on which solutions to implement, and who the beneficiaries will be? Once we start fiddling with the Earth’s fundamental processes, where will it end?

  • ArgumentThe Age of Open Assassination

    In killing Iranian Major General Qassem Soleimani, head of the Quds Force, with an MQ-9 Reaper drone, the United States openly targeted a senior official of a sovereign nation-state, carrying out a satisfying act of short-term revenge but undermining its long-term strategic interests. We are in a dangerous period: “Revenge is an ungovernable impulse that easily spirals out of control,” Audrey Kurth Cronin writes. “U.S. policymakers must resist the temptation to use their technological and military prowess to target senior government officials, remembering who is watching and learning from what they do.”

  • PerspectiveAn Open Source Effort to Encrypt the Internet of Things

    End-to-end encryption is a staple of secure messaging apps like WhatsApp and Signal. Such encryption ensures that no one—even the app developer or the device manufacturer—can access the user’s data as it travels the web. “But what if you could bring some version of that protection to increasingly ubiquitous—and notoriously insecure—Internet of Things devices?” asks Lili Hay Newman.

  • Our picksHackers Coming for the 2020 Election | Submerged Florida Keys | Drones Near Nuclear Missile Silos, and more

    ·  U.S. Tech Sector Sees Only Modest Relief in China Trade Deal

    ·  German Soccer Club FC St. Pauli Symbol Listed on U.K. Counterterrorism Guide

    ·  Hackers Are Coming for the 2020 Election — and We’re Not Ready

    ·  The Secretive Company That Might End Privacy as We Know It

    ·  Russia’s Role in the Libyan Civil War Gives It Leverage Over Europe

    ·  Are the Mystery Drone Swarms Lingering Near Nuclear Missile Silos?

    ·  How AI Will Improve Threat Protection in 2020

    ·  The Cyberwar with Iran is Already a Decade Old: So Where Does It Go Now?

    ·  Residents of Florida Keys Face Losing Homes as Rising Sea Levels Threaten to Cut Them Off

  • Iran’s nukesEuropean Unity on Iran Nuclear Deal May Be Cracking

    There are signs that cracks are beginning to appear in European unity over its backing of the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, or JCPOA, as allies come under growing pressure from the United States to abandon the agreement in the wake of Tehran’s downing of a passenger jet January 8. Iran announced this month it would ignore all restrictions on its nuclear enrichment activities, but insisted it was permitted to do so under the 2015 deal, because the U.S. was the first signatory to break the agreement.

  • China syndromeChinese Communist Party’s Media Influence Expands Worldwide

    Over the past decade, Chinese Communist Party (CCP) leaders have overseen a dramatic expansion in the regime’s ability to shape media content and narratives about China around the world, affecting every region and multiple languages, according to a new report. This trend has accelerated since 2017, with the emergence of new and more brazen tactics by Chinese diplomats, state-owned news outlets, and CCP proxies.

  • Truth decayCombating the Latest Technological Threat to Democracy: A Comparison of Facebook and Twitter’s Deepfake Policies

    By Amber Frankland and Lindsay Gorman

    Twitter and Facebook have both recently announced policies for handling synthetic and manipulated media content on their platforms. Side-by-side comparison and analysis of Twitter and Facebook’s policies highlights that Facebook focuses on a narrow, technical type of manipulation, while Twitter’s approach contemplates the broader context and impact of manipulated media. 

  • SurveillanceIsraeli Court to Hear Case against Spy-Software Company NSO Behind Closed Doors

    On Thursday, a judge at Tel Aviv’s District Court begin hearing arguments as to why Israel’s Ministry of Defense (MoD) should revoke the export license of NSO Group. The firm’s Pegasus software has been used to target journalists and activists in several countries – including in Morocco, Saudi Arabia, Mexico, and the United Arab Emirates.

  • ImmigrationNumber of Illegal Immigrants in Europe Declines

    The number of illegal immigrants in Europe (EU states plus Switzerland, Norway, and Iceland), including asylum seekers, increased substantially between 2014 and 2016, reaching about 5 million, but has been declining since, and now stands at about 4.8 million. Pew Research Center notes that the number of illegal immigrants corresponds to less than 1 percent of the European population — compared to the United States, where illegal immigrants account for about 3.4 percent of the U.S. population.

  • Costly disastersTropical Cyclones Causing Billions in Losses Dominate 2019 Natural Catastrophe Picture

    Natural catastrophes cause overall losses of $150 billion, with insured losses of about $52 billion. Severe typhoons in Japan cause the year’s biggest losses. Hurricane Dorian, the strongest hurricane of the year, devastates the Bahamas, but the U.S. mainland was largely spared. Humanitarian tragedy caused by cyclones in Mozambique, with more than 1,000 deaths.  – Better protection is urgently needed

  • Climate crisisClimate Change will Take Increasingly Heavier Toll on People’s Welfare, Security: Experts

    The World Economic Forum has just issued its annual Global Risk Report, based on input from more than 750 global experts and decision-makers, who were asked to rank their biggest concerns in terms of likelihood and impact on the welfare and security of people around the world. For the first time in the survey’s 10-year outlook, the top five global risks in terms of likelihood are all related to the environment: intensification of extreme weather events; failure of climate mitigation and adaptation; increasing human-induced damage to the environment; ecosystem collapse; growing vulnerability of more people to natural disasters such as earthquakes, tsunamis, hurricanes, volcanic eruptions, and geomagnetic storms.

  • PerspectiveOn A Hotter Planet, We Are All Australians

    Warm the human body by 7 degrees Fahrenheit and death ensues. David Spratt writes that on the Paris Agreement emissions trajectory, the entire world is heading for around 7 degrees Fahrenheit of warming once system feedbacks are included. The Lancet wrote: “Without immediate and efficient climate action, catastrophic bushfires will become a common disaster and might destroy the future of Australia and possibly of humanity.” Spratt says: “On a hotter planet, we are all Australians, one way or another. And the fire season is far from over.”

  • Our picksKiller Robots | Sinking New Haven | Stuxnet Training, and more

    ·  Europe Is Running Out of Time to Save the Iran Deal

    ·  Al-Shabaab’s Attacks Come Amid Backdrop of West’s Waning Interest

    ·  Huawei Not Part of Trade Deal (Bill Gertz, Washington Times

    ·  Giuliani Associates May Have Surveilled U.S. Ambassador, New Evidence Shows

    ·  Immigrants Are Big Fans of Germany’s Anti-Immigrant Party

    ·  Federal Coastal Plan Recommends Way to Protect New Haven from Rising Seas

    ·  This Is Your Life on Climate Change

    ·  Airbus Researcher Explores “Stuxnet-Type Attack” for Security Training

    ·  Killer Robots Reconsidered: Could AI Weapons Actually Cut Collateral Damage?

    ·  Berwick-upon-Tweed, the British Town at War with Russia

  • Iran’s nukesIsrael Warns Iran is Closer to Nuclear Bomb

    Israeli military analysts say that by the end of 2020 Iran will have enough enriched uranium for one nuclear bomb. The assessment comes after recent tensions between the U.S. and Iran brought them to the brink of war. The United States pulled out of the Iran nuclear deal in 2018, and Israeli intelligence officials speculated that Iran would resume its efforts to acquire a nuclear bomb.

  • TerrorismIn Niger, 89 Killed in Islamic State Attack

    Islamic State claimed responsibility for the 9 January attack on a military base in Niger, in which 89 soldiers were killed. It was the deadliest terrorist attack in the Sahel region since Islamist groups began to escalate their activities in the region in 2015, and it came one month after a similar attack on another military base in Niger killed 71 soldiers. In 2019, Islamist terrorists killed more than 4,000 people in Mali, Niger, and Burkina Faso.