At a glance.
- UN cyber norms under discussion.
- Hostage diplomacy and the deferred prosecution agreement of Ms Meng.
- China's ban on cryptocurrency transactions.
- Japan's national strategy identifies Russia, China, and the DPRK as major cyberthreats.
UN cyber norms negotiations stall?
In March, as we saw, UN members hashed out further agreement on cyber norms, but the substance and procedures of the next phase of diplomacy remain up in the air, the Wall Street Journal reports. Participating countries still need to work out how to enforce the nonbinding norms, and have not yet decided on a forum for doing so. “There’s a total confusion as to where the next step is and what this process leads us to,” commented Zurich university security studies scholar Stefan Soesanto.
Law360 says the US Department of Justice dropped conspiracy, wire fraud, and bank fraud charges against Huawei CFO and first daughter Meng Wanzhou following almost three years of house arrest in Canada in exchange for an admission that she concealed the company’s connections to Tehran. In return, CNN reports, Beijing “dropped any pretense” that two Canadians detained in China shortly after Meng’s arrest were anything other than “political hostages,” and has repatriated the gentlemen (without tendering legal justification, the Guardian notes).
Chinese state media are celebrating Meng’s arrival and passing over her admission of guilt while social media censor mentions of the Canadian hostages. Beijing’s foreign affairs spokesperson called Meng’s arrest “an incident of political persecution…with the purpose of suppressing China’s hi-tech enterprises.”
Effects of China’s cryptocurrency ban.
In addition to barring offshore exchanges from hiring residents, the CCP’s latest crypto crackdown has resulted in Bitcoin giant Huobi blocking signups using mainland phone numbers, according to Bloomberg. CNBC notes that all “services offering trading, order matching, token issuance and derivatives for virtual currencies are strictly prohibited” under the new rule.
Japan names China, Russia, and North Korea cyber threats.
Tokyo today “for the first time” labeled Moscow, Pyongyang, and Beijing hostile cyber powers, Kyodo News reports. The Government plans to enact “tough countermeasures using every effective means and capability available,” and to enhance collaborative efforts with Washington, Canberra, New Delhi, and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations in order “to realize a free and open Indo-Pacific region.” Japan’s updated cyber strategy also highlights the importance of protecting critical infrastructure, undersea cables, and IT devices.