• SolarWindsSolarWinds Hack Bigger, More Dangerous than Previously Thought, Tech Execs Warn

    By Jeff Seldin

    Executives with technology companies impacted by the massive cybersecurity breach known as the SolarWinds hack are giving U.S. lawmakers more reason to worry, warning the intrusion is both bigger and more dangerous than first realized.

  • Supply chainsBiden Orders Review to Bolster Supply Chain Resiliency

    By Patsy Widakuswara

    President Joe Biden signed an executive order on Wednesday to formally order a 100-day government review of global supply chains and potential U.S. vulnerabilities in key industries including computer chips, electric vehicle batteries, pharmaceuticals and critical minerals used in electronics. On top of the 100-day review of these four key industries, Biden’s order also directs yearlong reviews for six sectors: defense, public health, information technology, transportation, energy and food production.

  • Technology regulationHow Much Regulation of the Tech Industry Is Too Much?

    As prominent figures, including former President Donald Trump, are banned from social media platforms for posting disinformation or inflammatory remarks, technology regulation has become a hot topic of debate. “We are living in times where technology has fundamentally changed almost all aspects of our lives,” says UCLA’s Terry Kramer. “It is within this context that we must carefully balance and enable the advantages of technology, which can improve our lives, improve our connectedness, lower the cost of critical goods and services, and improve health care against forces that can create negative externalities. Developing a critical understanding of the trade-offs is essential.”

  • ARGUMENT: Reframing the China InitiativeThe Biden Administration Should Review and Rebuild the Trump Administration’s China Initiative from the Ground Up

    In mid-January an MIT engineering professor Gang Chen was arrested as part of the Trump administration’s China Initiative, which was launched in November 2018 as a prosecutorial response to China’s persistent, pervasive, and well-documented campaign of economic espionage and illicit knowledge transfer. The Chen case demonstrates why the initiative’s overly broad focus on China has been met with relentless criticism from academic institutions and Asian American advocacy groups.

  • Social mediaFacebook Restores News to Australian Users

    By Phil Mercer

    Facebook is restoring news content to its users in Australia after resolving a dispute with the government. Last week, Facebook blocked Australians from sharing and reading news stories on its platform in a dispute with the government in Canberra.   

  • China syndromeU.S. Government to Stop Buying Chinese-Made Drones

    By John Xie

    In its latest move to address national security threats posed by Chinese-made drones, the U.S. federal government’s purchasing agency no longer will purchase drones from Chinese manufacturers. China currently dominates the drone-manufacturing market. One Chinese company, DJI, which is the world’s largest drone maker, has a 76.8 percent share of the U.S. market.

  • PrivacyMore Privacy When Using WhatsApp, Signal and Other Apps

    Cryptography experts have developed a privacy-protecting security software for mobile messaging services. The software addresses to problem created when service providers access the users’ contact lists.

  • The Russia connectionFrench Companies Targeted by Russian Cyberattack between 2017 and 2020

    A broad Russian cyberattacks in France was carried out via French software Centreon, which serves large companies and government agencies. The cyberattack resembles Russia’s exploitation of vulnerabilities in SolarWinds to attacks American companies and government agencies. The scope of Russia’s cyberattack in France is still uncertain.

  • CybersecurityPreventing Cybersecurity Disruptions by Training Workforce

    Two cybersecurity researchers have published a new book to help train employees at public utilities to recognize cybersecurity vulnerabilities and develop measures to defend their networks from increasingly sophisticated cyberattacks.

  • Climate challengesErratic Weather Slows Down the Economy

    If temperature varies strongly from day to day, the economy grows less. Through these seemingly small variations climate change may have strong effects on economic growth. In a new study, researchers  juxtapose observed daily temperature changes with economic data from more than 1,500 regions worldwide over 40 years – with startling results.

  • ARGUMENT: China strategyThe U.S.’s China Strategy Needs New Tools

    Chinese state capitalism caught U.S. policymakers flat-footed. While far from perfect, the “China model” is dramatically reshaping global industry through the concentrated power of economic tools like subsidies, market protection, forced technology transfer and economic espionage. .” Jordan Schneider and David Talbot write that “the toolbox they inherited from the Trump administration is a few drill bits short.” The fact is, “Trump’s China trade strategy failed,” and “Trump’s tariffs also didn’t achieve their domestic objectives.” The U.S. needs to implement a multifaceted strategy to combat Chinese coercion,” Schneider and Talbot write, highlighting the essential components of this new strategy.

  • ARGUMENT: CybersecurityA Key Step in Preventing a Future SolarWinds

    In the weeks since news of the SolarWinds incident became public, commentators have offered no shortage of prescriptions for responding to the incident. Natalie Thompson writes that as information continues to emerge about the scope and scale of the incident and policymakers struggle with thorny questions regarding appropriate responses, urgent attention also is needed to actions that could prevent such large-scale catastrophes in the future.

  • PandemicThe Evolution of COVID-19 Dark Web Marketplaces Before the Vaccine

    In new research, data scientits highlight the importance of the continuous monitoring of dark web marketplaces (DWMs), especially in light of the current shortage and availability of COVID-19 vaccines.

  • EspionageEspionage Attempts Like the SolarWinds Hack Are Inevitable, So It’s Safer to Focus on Defense – Not Retaliation

    By William Akoto

    Since taking office, President Joe Biden has ordered a thorough intelligence review of Russian aggression around the world, which includes hacking, election interference, poisoning political opponents and posting bounties for killing U.S. soldiers. His administration faces pressure from members of Congress in both parties and former government officials to respond forcefully to the SolarWinds breach. But the U.S. government may not be able to stop future intrusions into American computer systems. Scholarship describes how difficult it can be to effectively deter cyberattacks or punish those responsible, and suggests that retaliation – in whatever form it might take – will almost certainly invite counterhacks from Russia, worsening tensions between the countries and potentially escalating into the offline world.

  • ARGUMENT: De-platforming limitsDe-platforming Is a Fix, But Only a Short-Term One

    In the wake of the 6 January attack on the Capitol, major social media companies like Facebook and Twitter have applied their now-customary methods of content moderation to U.S. users considered to be spreading hate and inciting violence. “More atypically, companies operating the mostly invisible digital infrastructure which platforms such as Facebook and Twitter are built on, also demonstrated their power, taking down Parler,” writes Will Marks, a researcher at the Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society at Harvard University. “But death on the internet is short lived,” he notes. “Without Parler or Twitter, disinformation and hatred — coded or overt — will continue to be broadcast.” Marks adds: “At a certain point, the question about what to do with Parler is only part of the broader one about how society should cope with the fact that segments of the population are living in different realities.” This is a problem for which there is no technological solution.