The UK biometrics commissioner says the MoD has no lawful authority to access police and immigration fingerprint databases, Five Eyes spies planted malware inside Yandex
The Ministry of Defence has been unlawfully comparing fingerprints it takes during overseas military operations with UK police and immigration databases without any legal right to do so (The Register). In his latest annual report, UK biometrics commissioner Paul Wiles writes: “I continue to be very concerned about the searching by the Ministry of Defence into the police national fingerprint database without an agreed, clearly defined lawful basis.”
Hackers working for the Five Eyes intelligence alliance of anglophone countries penetrated Russian tech, search and email giant Yandex to plant malware on its developers’ machines in late 2018, according to Reuters sources. The goal was reportedly to spy on programmers in Yandex’s research and development unit in order to learn how the firm’s email authentication works, to make it easier to break into Yandex user accounts in the future.
Fossil fuel producing nations, led by Saudia Arabia with supportfrom the US and Iran, effectively ended meaningful discussion of the landmark Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change reportand prevented the inclusion of any targets to mitigate global heating during UN climate talks in Bonn (BBC News).
The oil producers made efforts to deny the report’s scientific validity and ultimately prevented the agreement of emissions reduction targets which, the Alliance of Small Island States says, are vital to the survival of the world’s most vulnerable nations.
Google’s Chrome is the world’s dominant browser but its rivals are fighting against the firm’s heavy data collecting habits (WIRED). Now Mozilla is taking the battle to Google’s front lawn with Firefox Preview for Android. Now in its public beta phase, Firefox’s vision of what an Android browser should look like: speedy and uncluttered, with little user tracking.
New research into the best way to debate science denialism such as anti-vaccination and climate denial has found that both correcting the facts and exposing rhetorical tricks work equally well to help mitigate the effect of science denial on vulnerable audiences (Ars Technica).
Above all, the researchers found, it’s important not to let science denial go unchallenged, with the caveat that the very best outcome is the cancellation of a debate that would give a science denier the opportunity to spread misinformation.