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Security

Major data leak at the Belgium railway company

16 January, 2013
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This article is also available in:
Deutsch: Schwere Datenpanne bei der belgischen Bahn


At the end of December 2012, the personal data of more than one million customers of the Belgian train company SNCB Europe were available on-line, at a simple query in a search engine. The data contained in the SNCB database included names, email addresses and even, in some cases, phone numbers and home addresses.

Commission's own internal review condemned CleanIT's incoherence and cost

9 January, 2013
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The CleanIT project has received a huge amount of criticism from outside of the EU institutions. But imagine if the Commission had been alerted to the incoherence of the planned project. Imagine if, before investing 325.796 Euro in CleanIT, the European Commission had been warned that the project lacked methodology and did not represent value for money. Imagine if the Commission's independent checks of the initial proposal gave the project a “value for money” rating that was substantially less than half the minimum average score necessary.

Remarkably, this is exactly what happened.

Export Controls for Digital Weapons

19 December, 2012
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This article is also available in:
Deutsch: Exportbeschränkungen für digitale Waffen


While the European Governments often praise the positive role the Internet can have on the society in helping empower people and promoting freedom of information and expression, European mass surveillance and censorship software is being exported under their watch. Some governments not only fail to enact controls, but even further the export of such technology using export credit guarantees.

International coalition calls for withdrawal of Dutch hacking plans

5 December, 2012
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This article is also available in:
Deutsch: Niederlande: Internationale Koalition fordert Rücknahme der Hacking-P...


An international coalition of more than 40 civil rights organizations and security experts have expressed their “grave concerns” about a Dutch proposal to break into foreign computers and search and delete data.

IE Domain Registry confirms hijacking of the DNS nameservers

21 November, 2012
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This article is also available in:
Deutsch: IE Domain Registry bestätigt Angriff auf DNS Nameserver


On 9 October 2012, those who tried to visit Google.ie and Yahoo.ie were sent to an Indonesian webserver controlled by hackers.

After having investigated the security incident, the IE Domain Registry (IEDR) confirmed on November 2012 that unauthorised change had been made to the two .ie domains on an independent Registrar’s account which resulted in a change of DNS nameservers.

Nameservers ensure that when users visit a certain domain, they are pointed to the correct website on the correct server.

Lawless, unproven filtering and blocking of content as “best practice”

26 October, 2012
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On Monday of next week (29 October, 2012), the European Union and the United States will have a “summit” (draft agenda) on “Exchange of Best Practices for Child Protection Online”. In the course of that meeting, the question of measures to prevent “re-uploading of the content” will be discussed. Both the European Commission and the United States appear to think that widespread, suspicionless upload filtering is “best practice”.

“CLEAN IT”: the secret EU surveillance plan that wasn’t

10 October, 2012
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This article is also available in:
Deutsch: “CLEAN IT”: Der geheime Überwachungsplan, der keiner war


There was a lot of interest among EU policy wonks and digital rights people last week about an initiative called CLEAN IT, following the leak of its “confidential” draft recommendations. “Police to 'patrol' Facebook and Twitter for terrorists under EU plan” announced the UK’s Daily Telegraph. Cory Doctorow blogged about how an “EU working group” had produced the “stupidest set of proposed Internet rules in the history of the human race”. The blogosphere was soon awash with reports of the new ACTA.

Belarusian journalist detained for showing subway security flaws

1 August, 2012
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This article is also available in:
Deutsch: Weißrussland: Journalist wegen Berichts über Sicherheitsmängel in d...


Several Belarusian journalists have been lately arrested for having shown flows in the security system of Belarus. The latest arrest, on 25 July 2012, was that of Vital Ruhayn on charges of hooliganism and obscene language in public.

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