Category Archive : Ethiopia

Facebook will fuel further unrest, whistleblower says

By Paul Sandle and Kate Holton

LONDON (Reuters) – Facebook will fuel more violent unrest around the world unless it stops its algorithms pushing extreme and divisive content, whistleblower Frances Haugen told the British parliament on Monday.

The former employee, who accused the social media giant of putting profit before people at a Senate subcommittee earlier this month, said she was encouraged by British plans to force big tech companies to tackle harmful content on their platforms.

Facebook, Haugen said, saw online safety as a cost and lionised a start-up culture where cutting corners was good. “Unquestionably it is making hate worse,” she said.

With a focus on the United States, the company was wilfully blind to its impact in many markets where a lack of local-language staff meant it often failed to understand the toxic or dangerous nature of messages on its platform, she said.

The world’s biggest social network has rejected the charges, with CEO Mark Zuckerberg saying earlier this month that it was deeply illogical to argue that Facebook deliberately pushed content that made people angry.

Facebook, which also owns Instagram and WhatsApp, has been accused by U.S. lawmakers of chasing higher profits while being cavalier about user safety.

Britain is bringing forward laws that could fine social media companies up to 10% of their turnover if they fail to remove or limit the spread of illegal content.

“The events we’re seeing around the world, things like Myanmar and Ethiopia, those are the opening chapters because engagement-based ranking does two things: one, it prioritises and amplifies divisive and polarising extreme content and two it concentrates it,” Haugen said.

Facebook, which operates in more than 190 countries and boasts more than 2.8 billion monthly users, declined to provide immediate comment in response to Haugen’s committee appearance.

Haugen in October told a Senate Commerce subcommittee hearing that Facebook had devised ways to keep users scrolling even…


Facebook knew about, failed to police, abusive content globally

By Elizabeth Culliford and Brad Heath

(Reuters) – Facebook employees have warned for years that as the company raced to become a global service it was failing to police abusive content in countries where such speech was likely to cause the most harm, according to interviews with five former employees and internal company documents viewed by Reuters.

For over a decade, Facebook has pushed to become the world’s dominant online platform. It currently operates in more than 190 countries and boasts more than 2.8 billion monthly users who post content in more than 160 languages. But its efforts to prevent its products from becoming conduits for hate speech, inflammatory rhetoric and misinformation – some which has been blamed for inciting violence – have not kept pace with its global expansion.

Internal company documents viewed by Reuters show Facebook has known that it hasn’t hired enough workers who possess both the language skills and knowledge of local events needed to identify objectionable posts from users in a number of developing countries. The documents also showed that the artificial intelligence systems Facebook employs to root out such content frequently aren’t up to the task, either; and that the company hasn’t made it easy for its global users themselves to flag posts that violate the site’s rules.

Those shortcomings, employees warned in the documents, could limit the company’s ability to make good on its promise to block hate speech and other rule-breaking posts in places from Afghanistan to Yemen.

In a review posted to Facebook’s internal message board last year regarding ways the company identifies abuses on its site, one employee reported “significant gaps” in certain countries at risk of real-world violence, especially Myanmar and Ethiopia.

The documents are among a cache of disclosures made to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and Congress by Facebook whistleblower Frances Haugen, a former Facebook product manager who left the company in May….


Twitter’s Jack Dorsey Warns of Impending Hyperinflation | ‘Not Shocking’ Due to 30-Year High Consumer Price Inflation in the US?

(Photo : Image from Twitter’s Jack Dorsey Warns of Impending Hyperinflation | ‘Not Shocking’ Due to 30-Year High Consumer Price Inflation in the US?

Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey is warning of an impending hyperinflation that could come. Jack Dorsey could have just warned about the hyperinflation being set to happen first in the US and then finally the world at large.

Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey

The CEO of Twitter as well as Square Inc., Jack Dorsey had officially taken to his own Twitter page as of recently in order to tweet out a warning about what could be an incoming hyperinflation in the United States. The Tweet noted that “Hyperinflation is going to change everything” with the tech CEO noting that “it’s happening.”

Jack Dorsey’s tweet, however, isn’t quite shocking as, according to CoinGape, this is especially due to seeing consumer price inflation which is now running really close to a whole 30-year high in the United States. The tweet also reportedly came on the heels of Jerome Powell, the Federal Reserve Chairman’s acknowledgement just recently.

Not Hyperinflation?

Powell also admitted that inflation pressures are also very likely to persist even longer compared to other previous predictions which would extend it deeply into 2022. Meanwhile, there have been a lot of people that still disagree with Jack’s prediction. Others, however, also agree with Jack.

Daniel Drezner, a professor at Tufts University’s Fletcher School, claimed to actually have experienced a true hyperinflation. This was while…


Ofcom orders phone networks to block foreign scam calls

A woman looks upset while looking at her mobile phone

Major phone networks have agreed to automatically block almost all internet calls coming from abroad if they pretend to be from UK numbers, Ofcom has confirmed.

Criminals have been using internet-based calling technology to make it look like a phone call or text is coming from a real telephone number.

Almost 45 million consumers were targeted by phone scams this summer.

Ofcom said it expected the measures to be introduced at pace as a “priority”.

So far, one operator has already implemented the new plans, the regulator told the BBC, while other phone networks are still exploring methods of making it work.

“We’ve been working with telecoms companies to implement technical solutions, including blocking at source, suspicious international calls that are masked by a UK number,” said Lindsey Fussell, Ofcom’s networks and communications group director.

“We expect these measures to be introduced as a priority, and at pace, to ensure customers are better protected.”

She added that tackling the phone scams issue was a “complex problem” that requires a coordinated effort from the police, government, other regulators and industry.

The move follows months of discussions between Ofcom and the UK telecoms industry.

Will the plans work?

Internet-based calling technology, also known as Voice Over Internet Protcol (VoIP), is used by millions of consumers globally to make phone calls free or cheaply every year.

Popular services you might recognise that use VoIP include WhatsApp, Skype, Zoom and Microsoft Teams.

The Telegraph, which first reported the story on Sunday, cited Whitehall sources that have cast doubt on Ofcom’s plans.

They say blocking traffic from foreign VoIP providers won’t work to stop scam texts and calls, because much of the UK is still relying on old copper-based ISDN networks dating back to the 1970s.

Security experts the BBC spoke to disagree, however.

Apart from consumers, many businesses also use the VoIP…


Africa Tech Festival

5 days of critical content to continue shaping Africa’s Digital Transformation happens virtually 08-12  November 2021 and everyone is invited. 

The world’s leading Africa-focused technology, media and telecommunications event will take place virtually for the second year in a row. Building on the success of its first-ever digital event in 2020 (thanks to global lockdowns), Africa Tech Festival, the home of AfricaCom and AfricaTech, will once again host global industry leaders, showcase innovation, and promote debate and discussion – all on one accessible platform – with a view to connecting the next billion people to the Internet and one another. 

Tom Cuthell, (Senior Event Director) and his team have once again drawn on the expertise of more than 300 speakers who will enlighten a global audience as to the developments and opportunities affecting Africa’s digital transition. Cuthell also shares that the show has been extended saying:  “Whilst we miss the physical on-site interaction and debate with our audiences, we are delighted to be able to continue the conversations, albeit virtually again. With so much content on offer by virtue of the event being online, we have taken on board the learnings from 2020 and have extended  AfricaTech Festival to a full five days of presentations, talks and debates. This should assist delegates in planning and attending more of their desired sessions. This year we are very proud to announce as our partner, we have great admiration for their work and are excited to have them join us for this very special edition of the Africa Tech Festival.  

“This year Africa Tech Festival is going above and beyond to provide the best online experience to all of our attendees. From Google to Twitter, Vodacom to TikTok, we have some of the most influential speakers in African Tech joining us. We can’t wait for everyone to join us online in November” – James  Williams, Festival…


CISA’s grant for cyber talent development. State governments as security models for US Federal agencies. Cybersecurity metrics. An international effort takes down REvil.

At a glance.

  • CISA’s grant intended to develop cyber talent.
  • State governments as security models for US Federal agencies.
  • A call for better cybersecurity metrics.
  • An international effort takes down REvil.

CISA puts $2 million toward honing cybersecurity talent in nontraditional communities.

The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency has announced it is awarding $2 million to two organizations, NPower and CyberWarrior, to support their cybersecurity training programs for diverse populations. The award is part of CISA’s initiative to find new talent in underserved communities. CISA Director Jen Easterly explained “Addressing the cyber workforce shortage requires us to proactively seek out, find, and foster prospective talent from nontraditional places…We’re best positioned to solve the cyber challenges facing our nation when we have a diverse range of thought bringing every perspective to the problem.” For a three-year pilot program, CyberWarrior and NPower will establish a 28-week cybersecurity bootcamp aimed at creating a cybersecurity pathways retention strategy, offering entry-level cybersecurity preparation, providing apprenticeships that allow firsthand experience, and alleviating the cybersecurity workforce shortage. The announcement is concurrent with the third week of CISA’s Cybersecurity Summit, themed “Team Awesome: The Cyber Workforce.”

US CISO looks for positive models in state and local government.

At this week’s Michigan Cyber Summit, US federal chief information security officer Chris DeRusha stated that the federal government should look to state governments for guidance. As StateScoop reports, prior to his current role, DeRusha served as chief security officer for the state of Michigan from 2018 to 2020, and in his remarks he referenced several of the programs he worked on during his term, saying they should serve as examples of what the federal government can accomplish, and he referred to the Michigan State Police’s cyber…


REvil’s difficulties seem induced by law enforcement. Cybercrime’s evolution. A timing bug approaches…this weekend.

Attacks, Threats, and Vulnerabilities

CISA: GPS software bug may cause unexpected behavior this Sunday (BleepingComputer) The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) warned that GPS deices might experience issues over the weekend because of a timing bug impacting Network Time Protocol  (NTP) servers running the GPS Daemon (GPSD) software.

GPS Daemon (GPSD) Rollover Bug (CISA) Critical Infrastructure (CI) owners and operators, and other users who obtain Coordinated Universal Time (UTC) from Global Positioning System (GPS) devices, should be aware of a GPS Daemon (GPSD) bug in GPSD versions 3.20 (released December 31, 2019) through 3.22 (released January 8, 2021). 

TA551 Shifts Tactics to Install Sliver Red-Teaming Tool (Threatpost) A new email campaign from the threat group uses the attack-simulation framework in a likely leadup to ransomware deployment.

New TA551 Email Campaign Installs Sliver Red-Team Tool (Decipher) A new email hijacking campaign by the TA551 attack group is installing the legitimate Sliver red-team tool as a payload, possibly for use in future ransomware operations.

FiveSys Rootkit Abuses Microsoft-Issued Digital Signature (SecurityWeek) A rootkit named FiveSys is able to evade detection and slip unnoticed onto Windows users’ systems courtesy of a Microsoft-issued digital signature.

‘This Gave Us Chills’: Maltese Voter Data Leak Accurately Predicted General Election Results (Lovin Malta) A data leak of over 300,000 voters and their preferences from a Maltese political party has been able to accurately predict election results

Here’s how a hacker was able to blow up Trump’s new free speech site (The Daily Dot) A hacker discovered that former President Donald Trump’s social media platform “Truth Social” was publicly accessible online.

Palo Alto warns of BEC-as-a-service (ZDNet) According to Palo Alto Networks ‘ researchers, business email compromise continues to be one of the leading ways cybercriminals scam victims finding an…


The Truth on Being Ethical in the Heat of it All

I was in my twenties when I began photographing protests. Growing up, I was taught to fight for what I believe in, never to let anyone silence me. That got me into a little trouble over the years. However, once I mellowed out, my early lessons led me to be interested in what warrants protest. Combined with my enthusiasm for photography, you have the perfect cocktail.

Credit: Dan Ginn

The first protest I photographed was a women’s march. Donald Trump had just taken office, and women, in response to many of his comments, wanted to show their disdain for America’s new president. That was in London. So even across the pond, almost 6000km away, the hatred for one man was strong.

Unlike street photography, which I knew had a certain code of ethics, I felt like anything goes for protests. It’s an important moment in time. The world needs to see what’s happening. So whoever is marching, and regardless of what they do, is fair game for documentation.

After making one photograph, a woman followed me as I walked away from a scene. “Delete that right now,” she said. Being young and locked into the values installed in me, I said, “don’t be afraid to let the world know what you believe in.” That didn’t go down well, and the issue was resolved by me deleting the photo. But it got me thinking: do certain ethics apply to photographing protests?

Photographing Protests And Ethics

I wouldn’t consider myself as someone who is known for photographing protests. If I come across a protest while shooting street photography, I’ll surely get involved. But would I call myself an authority on the topic? No.

Keen to dig deep into the ethical element of photographing protests, I turned to someone better positioned to comment than me. Henri Calderon is a French photographer based in London. His work has been featured in several leading publications across the industry. He also won the Portrait of Britain prize for his documentary work. Being in London, the perfect ground for…


Tesla just did something stunning, analysts say

Tesla’s first quarterly earnings call on Wednesday night without CEO Elon Musk (by his own design) was as boring as watching a Pinto head down a quarter mile track for time. 

But Wall Street pros say that the lack of Musk’s presence didn’t really matter, the more important thing is that Tesla (TSLA) continues to squeeze out more profits from each vehicle it makes. 

“Tesla reported particularly strong 3Q21 operating performance, delivering its highest auto gross margins since Model 3 was introduced, despite minimal S+X volume and higher supply chain costs, and impressive GAAP operating margin of 14.6% (18.4% ex-SBC), surpassing even its long-term company targets. We believe this reflects relentless efforts towards vehicle cost reductions, and operational flexibility in a challenging industry environment,” said Deutsche Bank analyst Emmanuel Rosner in a research note to clients. 

The EV maker’s profits topped expectations for the third quarter, powered by record deliveries. Third-quarter deliveries were driven by the more affordable Model 3 and Model Y vehicles. Together, these models comprised over 232,000 of the overall quarterly deliveries. But, quarterly sales came in short of consensus estimates as the top line was somewhat hindered by the semiconductor shortage.

Despite the revenue shortfall, Tesla widened its operating margin to 14.6% in the third quarter, versus 11.0% in the second quarter and 9.2% in the same period last year. 

Tesla bulls on the Street quickly regained the narrative on Thursday after the stock initially came under pressure on the revenue miss. The stock rose 3% in afternoon trading in large part because of the impressive margin showing for the company. 

Said Morgan Stanley auto analyst Adam Jonas, “Annualized 3Q EBITDA is approaching $13 billion… getting into GM and Ford territory magnitude, despite a fraction of the revenues. What’s particularly notable is Tesla’s margin performance despite significant cost inflation…


Politics | The Economist

Police investigating the murder of a Conservative MP in Britain were treating the incident as an act of terrorism. Sir David Amess, who represented the town of Southend, to the east of London, was stabbed to death while holding one of his weekly consultations with constituents. The suspect is a 25-year-old man born in Britain to a Somali family. He had reportedly once been referred to a programme that tries to turn youngsters away from radicalisation.

Time for Plan B?

Health-service leaders in Britain called for the immediate reimposition of pandemic measures, such as masks in public places and work-from-home orders. Deaths from covid-19 are at their highest level sinceMarch, though still less than 10% of the peak in January. The government said infections could reach 100,000 a day over the winter, but it was not planning to reintroduce restrictions. The British Medical Association described that as “wilfully negligent”.

In Russia Vladimir Putin backed a plan to keep workers at home for a week to curb a tide of covid-19 infections. It will be the closest Russia has come to a lockdown.

The European Parliament awarded its annual Sakharov prize to Alexei Navalny, Russia’s leading opposition figure, who has been imprisoned after surviving an assassination attempt by Russian agents.

Ursula von der Leyen vowed that the European Commission will punish Poland after its constitutional court, acting on a legal request from the prime minister, ruled that parts of the EU treaties are not compatible with Polish law. The commission president’s threat is directed against Polish access to some €57bn ($66bn) in funds for recovery from the pandemic.

A primary involving members of six opposition parties in Hungary chose Peter Marki-Zay, the mayor of a small town, as their joint candidate to take on Viktor Orban, the prime minister, in elections due next spring. The parties will also field joint candidates for all parliamentary seats.

A panel of senators in Brazil


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