Comment ne pas écrire un guide de cybersécurité pour les dirigeants

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J’ai lu le Guide de cybersécurité pour les dirigeants pour pas que vous ayez à le faire. Ou comment perdre une bonne occasion de sensibiliser…

Challenges et Eyrolles publient, le 23 février, un guide intitulé “L’essentiel de la sécurité numérique pour les dirigeants”. L’ouvrage est présenté comme “[l]e mode d’emploi facile d’accès pour être à jour et mieux éclairé face au nouveau risque numérique”. L’idée est excellente : il faut sensibiliser toujours davantage aux risques numériques, les personnes qui ont en charge la prise de décision. Ces derniers sont nombreux et de nature très variable. C’est encourageant de voir qu’enfin la gestion des risques rencontre le volet numérique.

Enfin, c’est ce que j’ai pensé… jusqu’au moment où j’ai commencé à lire. Déjà, pour l’obtenir, c’était un peu délicat : la personne qui me l’a envoyé en première disait que ça m’épargne la création d’un compte pour le télécharger chez Eyrolles où la navigation n’est pas en HTTPS, où il n’y a pas de TLS pour SMTP et où les machines ne sont pas à l’heure. Que doit-on conclure quant à l’importance de la sécurité de ses visiteurs dans ces conditions ? (C’est une question rhétorique.)

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#OrangeIsTheNewBlacklist: In France, Google and Wikipedia briefly censored for “apologia of terrorism”

Oops, something didn't go as planned.
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You dislike Mondays? You’d have loved this one: Google and Wikipedia were censored for an hour in France, for “apologia of terrorism”.

Yesterday 17 October 2016, an ordinary Monday morning, I was searching for a document online. Using different search engines — DuckDuckGo, Qwant, Google — helps me find out more details; incidentally and in contrast with Google, alternative engines also respect my privacy since they neither log nor keep track of my search requests.

Weirdly enough, Google was timing out. I tried out a few more times, to no success. My Internet connection was fine, though, and Qwant was also responding. Even more bizarre, my Gmail account was functional. On Twitter, some people were also flagging a “Google down” situation and started asking me which my ISP is. My Internet service provider (ISP) is Orange. It turned out that the issue seemed to affect only subscribers at Orange and its low-cost subsidiary, Sosh.

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Le créateur du bitcoin est inconnu. Mais pourquoi tant vouloir l’être ?

Qui est Satoshi Nakamoto ? Pourquoi d'autres veulent tant convaincre le monde d'être le créateur du bitcoin ? Des rebondissement dignes d'un thriller.
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Qui est Satoshi Nakamoto ? Pourquoi Craig Wright a-t-il tant voulu convaincre le monde d’être le créateur du bitcoin ? Que de rebondissements dignes d’un thriller.

Si les mystères du bitcoin peuvent être élucidés rapidement à l’aide de quelques articles de vulgarisation, le secret autour de son créateur reste entier. Journalistes du monde entier comme enquêteurs amateurs : depuis la création du bitcoin en 2009, chacun joue les Sherlock Holmes pour tenter de le démasquer. Ce n’est pas une histoire de passe-temps favori. Comme on le verra plus bas, savoir qui a la paternité du bitcoin peut être d’une importance capitale.

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What exactly happened in North Sinai today?

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[UPDATED: please scroll] Violence erupted in North Sinai early on 1 July 2015. The attack is widely attributed to the local ISIS faction. The below account is of the developing situation with live fact-checking based on open-source intelligence (OSINT).

With the coming celebration of the military takeover of power in Egypt, terrorist attacks have intensified. Or this is at least what some claim. I am not exactly sure how much this is true. Others seem to doubt it as well. Another reason why I doubt the July 3 anniversary is THE reason is because of recent encouragements by ISIS to intensify attacks during the holy month of Ramadan. ISIS was coming anyway, Morsi or not Morsi, Sisi or not Sisi; and its horrors are not restricted to Egypt.

Anyhow, the question in this situation is hardly one’s capability to speculate about what the reason is behind these fierce attacks by ISIS-affiliated terrorists. Instead, I figured there is—perhaps a bit more than usual—too much of rumours and beefed-up images and numbers. And as the great people from reported.ly are a bit busy with the Greek euro crisis, I decided to sum up a few findings from this morning.

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Youth, “the Internet” and speech

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Last week, just a few days after I returned from Cairo, I stumbled upon an event organised by UNESCO and whose combination of supporting countries amused me. The two-day conference, “Youth and the internet: Fighting radicalisation and extremism”, was supported by Bulgaria and Egypt. Everyone who knows me understands the amusement.

Beyond this fun fact of limited importance, the topic and its relationship to my own work and interests were intriguing enough to give the event a day. I know quite a few people around me are interested in this write-up. So, I took the time to actually expand it, in a way that it can relate to a broader work I am into exploring excitable speech through post-colonial lenses in the Balkans and MENA. Also, enriching the write-up helps me contribute to a project to train citizens to mitigate hate speech online in South Sudan. More on the distinction between ‘hate speech’ and ‘excitable speech’ later (a research paper coming up on that).

I had my own expectations about the line-up of speakers and the probable directions the discussions would head to. And I was entirely correct.

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Plug & Play News: Sourcing, Verifying and Publishing Info in Real-Time Crisis

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Earlier in May, I attended re:publica, aka Berlin’s annual gathering of innovators from the worldover. This year’s topic was “Finding Europe”. One of the two talks I gave focused on sourcing, verifying and disseminating information in a rapidly evolving situation, e.g. a real-time crisis.

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Wonderings and wanderings: Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan

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Bishkek is the Eastern Europe of 30 years ago, except with mobile phones and internet access. It is more or less a museum relic of the former Soviet Union Bloc.

This quote translates my exact feelings upon arrival in Bishkek, the capital city of Kyrgyzstan. Although I remember nothing from the Soviet Union bloc 30 years ago, I do remember how my own homecountry looked like 15 years ago. And even if Bulgaria was not formally a part of the Soviet Union, it was close enough to the Big Brother to look strikingly alike. I have done my best to collect my impressions in a dedicated photoset: a concrete post-Soviet experience, in both senses of the term ‘concrete’.

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Legal Challenges to Opening up Research Data in France

There are a lot of legal challenges to opening research data
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We at RS Strategy are strong supporters of open knowledge. Our founder is a trained scientist, thus opening up science and research are a soft spot for us.

We are thus happy to join a dedicated workgroup at the French National Institute for Agriculture Research (Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique, INRA) aiming to map the current legal framework of research data production and management. To our knowledge, this workgroup is the first of its kind at the institutional level in France. The group’s members wish to explore the legal challenges ahead of opening the Institute’s data. An expected outcome is a handbook for researchers to smoothen their journey towards Open Science Data.

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Bulgaria’s ‘chilly welcome’ to Syrian refugees

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[First published on openDemocracy.]

Over two million people have fled the havoc in Syria and sought refuge in bordering countries; at least one million of them are children, estimated the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) back in August 2013. Jordan, Turkey, Lebanon, Egypt and Iraq are the top five countries where most have resettled. Over the past several months, however, the exodus has shifted to Europe. For the majority of Syrians searching for a safe EU haven, the journey starts in Turkey where refugee smuggling blossoms. Today, Bulgaria counts over 10,000 refugees, an atypical surge this European border country was unprepared for.

Despite financial help from the EU, the Bulgarian government has consistently preferred to engage in exacerbating the situation. Intensifying influx of refugees in the country prompted the opening of more camps to host the newcomers. These hellholes are in incredibly squalid conditions, but this is where the Bulgarian government welcomes asylum seekers. In October 2013, Interior Minister Tsvetlin Yovchev played the tough guy and sacked the head of Bulgaria’s Refugee Agency for “failing to handle the influx.” Yet, reception centres continue to be overcrowded, Syrians undergo an administrative hassle for weeks, and food, clothing and medicine are largely funded by donations from ordinary citizens.

The official excuse for not providing humane and dignified conditions for the refugees was “tight finances.” Bulgaria is indeed the EU’s poorest member, and media outlets have asked whether the country should shelter even more people in need. Yet, Bulgaria has recently received 6.4 million euros (8.8 million USD) from the EU’s Refugee Fund and 2 million euros (2.7 million USD) in aid from the Czech Republic and Slovakia; funds specifically dedicated to managing the Syrian refugees influx. Thus, the “tight finances” should not be a barrier any more.

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