• The Costs of Closing Germany’s Nuclear Power Plants

    Many countries have phased out production of nuclear energy because of concerns related to nuclear waste and the risk of nuclear accidents. A new study explores Germany’s decision, after the 2011 Fukushima accident, to replace nuclear power with fossil-fuel power generation, finding that the switch to fossil fuel-fired power resulted in considerable increases in pollution at an estimated annual social cost of about $12 billion.

  • Russian Spies Hacked Ukrainian Gas Company at Heart of Trump Impeachment Trial, Company Says

    Operatives of the GRU, the Russian military intelligence service which orchestrated the hacking and social media campaign in 2016 to help Donald Trump win the election, have hacked Burisma Holdings, the Ukrainian gas company which is at the center of the upcoming impeachment trial of Trump. In 2019, Trump withheld congressionally approved military aid to Ukraine in order to pressure Ukraine to help him undermine the candidacy of former vice president Joe Biden by having Volodymyr Zelensky, Ukraine’a president, announce that Ukraine was launching an investigation of Burisma, on whose board Joe Biden’s son served from 2014 to 2019.

  • U.S. in Last-Ditch Effort to Sway U.K.’s Huawei Decision

    The government of Boris Johnson will today (Monday) face last-minute lobbying blitz by the Trump administration to exclude Huawei from the U.K. 5G network. Johnson’s decision is expected before the end of the month, and the U.S. has threatened that intelligence sharing with the U.K. would be restricted if Johnson did not block Huawei. The U.S. intelligence community has evidence that Huawei is using its technological reach to serve as the eyes and ears of the Chinese intelligence services.

  • Tackling the Problem of Antimicrobial Resistance

    The CDC recently announced in its latest report that each year 2.8 million Americans are infected with a drug-resistant organism, and that 35,000 of them would later die. The antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is not new, though, and the problem has been growing for decades, but now it seems that we’re starting to truly take it seriously.

  • Sustainable Supply of Rare Earth Minerals Key to Low-Carbon Energy Future

    The global low-carbon revolution could be at risk unless new international agreements and governance mechanisms are put in place to ensure a sustainable supply of rare minerals and metals, a new study has warned.

  • 4. Chinese Firms Secretly Own Leading VPNs

    China’s efforts to implement its persistent surveillance approach outside its borders go beyond helping Huawei to make the company’s 5G technology more competitive, and thus more appealing, to Western and non-Western countries. A recent study found that almost a third (30 percent) of the world’s top virtual private network (VPN) providers are secretly owned by six Chinese companies.

  • ISIS Is Experimenting with This New Blockchain Messaging App

    The Islamic State has discovered blockchain. The technology which powers cryptocurrencies like bitcoin and ethereum promises to revolutionize almost all facets of society, from payment processing to online voting. David Gilbert writes that now ISIS is actively testing a blockchain-based messaging app that could provide everything it needs to thrive: secure, anonymous communication, a tamper-proof repository for beheading videos and other ISIS propaganda, and perhaps most ominously, the ability to transfer cryptocurrency anywhere in the world.

  • Click Here to Kill

    The idea of an online assassination market was advanced long before it was possible to build one, and long before there was anything resembling the dark web. Susan Choi writes that a threshold had been crossed: advances in encryption and cryptocurrency make this dark vision a reality: Journalists at BBC News Russia confirmed that on 12 March 2019, the first known case of a murder being ordered on the dark web and successfully carried out by hired assassins. The FBI and DHS are worried.

  • FDA Details Rising Sales of Antibiotics for Meat Production

    New data released by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) shows that the amount of medically important antibiotics sold and distributed for use in food-producing animals rose by 9 percent between 2017 and 2018, after a 3-year decline. “I’m concerned that we’re going in the wrong direction,” says one expert.

  • Telefonica Deutschland Chooses Huawei to Build Its German 5G Network

    Rebuffing U.S. pressure, German mobile provider Telefonica Deutschland announced Wednesday that it has chosen Finland’s Nokia and China’s Huawei to build its 5G network in Germany, the company. Huawei is a global leader in constructing equipment and infrastructure for ultra-high-speed 5G data networks, but the intelligence services of leading Western countries have argue that Huawei is a security threat because of its close ties with the Chinese military and intelligence establishments. 

  • Global Arms Sales Up 4.6 Percent Worldwide; U.S. Companies Dominate

    Sales of arms and military services by the sector’s largest 100 companies (excluding those in China) totalled $420 billion in 2018, marking an increase of 4.6 percent compared with the previous year. The new data from SIPRI’s Arms Industry Database shows that sales of arms and military services by companies listed in the Top 100 arms-manufacturing companies have increased by 47 percent since 2002. The database excludes Chinese companies due to the lack of data to make a reliable estimate.

  • The Challenges Facing Fisheries Climate Risk Insurance

    The world’s first “Fisheries Index Insurance” scheme, launched by an international consortium in July, is a sovereign-level instrument designed to protect Caribbean fishing communities from extreme weather events which may become more frequent and intense due to climate change. But insurance schemes with the potential to improve the resilience of global fisheries face a host of future challenges, researchers say.

  • Going After the Good Guys: The Government’s Ransomware Identity Crisis

    Government agencies find it difficult to keep pace with the rapidly evolving cybercrime – especially when it comes to ransomware and malware. Ryan Blanch, a criminal defense attorney who has been involved in myriad cybercrime cases, writes that “sometimes, the government seems to be going after the good guys instead of the bad guys.”

  • Telegram: The Latest Safe Haven for White Supremacists

    Telegram, the online social networking, may not be as popular in the U.S. as Twitter or Facebook, but with more than 200 million users, it has a significant audience. And it is gaining popularity. ADL reports that Telegram has become a popular online gathering place for the international white supremacist community and other extremist groups who have been displaced or banned from more popular sites.

  • Mobile Devices Blur Work and Personal Privacy Increasing Cyber Risks

    Organizations aren’t moving quickly enough to identify cyber security threats linked to the drive toward using personal mobile devices in the workplace, cybersecurity researchers warn. “The breakneck speed of digital transformation brought with it opportunities as well as threats,” one researcher said. “Organizations don’t appear to be keeping up with the pace of change, deliberately putting the brakes on digital transformation because it comes with security challenges.”