At a glance.
- Voting security during (or even after) a pandemic.
- Comments on UK 5G security policy trending against Huawei.
- EU seeks authority to take stronger measures against money laundering.
Voting security during (or even after) a pandemic.
One thing the pandemic has done is put a spoke in the wheels of programs designed to train election workers in how to secure voting, the Washington Post reports. It's also raised the likelihood that more ballots, in the US and elsewhere, will have to be cast remotely, in all probability mostly by mail, but in some cases online. Neither are easy to improvise at the eleventh hour.
All electronic balloting presents problems that paper ballots don't. (Paper ballots aren't problem-free either, and the history of corrupt elections goes back to the early Nineteenth Century at least, but they come with a different set of problems.) A group of academic and industry experts concerned with electronic voting have sent the US Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) a letter expressing their appreciation for CISA's work, but more importantly stating concerns about CISA's advisories about election security. The signatories see three basic problems:
- "Online ballot marking greatly amplifies the security threats of online ballot delivery and introduces significant risks to ballot secrecy. It should be discouraged except for voters with relevant disabilities."
- "Ballots delivered online are vulnerable to cybersecurity attacks. Unlimited/large scale online ballot delivery may enable the casting of fraudulent ballots if appropriate safeguards are not in place."
- "The back-end processing of electronically transmitted blank ballots involves a much greater workload and potential health risk for election workers compared to the processing of preprinted absentee ballots. Large-scale adoption of electronically delivered ballots will both burden election offices and increase the risk of person-to-person contact among election workers during the novel coronavirus pandemic if proper sanitation and social distancing precautions are not taken."
Comments on UK 5G security policy trending against Huawei.
Ars Technica has a review of the comments being offered on the British government's current policy of allowing Huawei to participate in "non-core" sections of the country's coming 5G infrastructure. Sentiment is not running in Huawei's favor. As Ars Technica sums it up, "If the written submissions are anything to go by, Huawei is in trouble in the UK. The only ones defending the decision were from the government itself and from the two companies with the most to lose from a total ban on Huawei kit in the UK’s 5G networks. Everyone else is urging the government to change its position to just that."
The European Commission wants more authority to take action against money laundering.
The Wall Street Journal reports that the European Commission, the EU's executive arm, is asking for more authority to act against money laundering. While the EU currently has some limited scope for action, most money laundering law enforcement remains in national hands. The proposed changes would not only give the EU the ability to undertake such enforcement actions as direct inspection of banks, but would also help harmonize and standardize regulations across the EU, removing the loopholes between national laws that have permitted criminals to slip past the authorities.