Coronavirus: Internet companies agree to drop data caps amid lockdown

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Internet companies are dropping broadband data caps in an attempt to keep people connected through the coronavirus pandemic.

A deal struck between the government and internet companies will see them give users unlimited data allowance on their current services and offer new rates on mobile and landline packages.

The measures come as many people are being forced to work and study from home in an attempt to stop the spread of coronavirus, and vulnerable people rely on their internet connections for shopping and communications through the lockdown.


They are among a range of immediately effective measures which have been signed up to by major internet service and mobile providers including BT/EE, Openreach, Virgin Media, Sky, TalkTalk, O2, Vodafone, Three, Hyperoptic, Gigaclear, and KCOM.

The companies have pledged that anyone who is struggling to pay their bill due to the pandemic will be treated fairly and appropriately supported, the Digital, Culture, Media & Sport Department said.

The firms have also agreed to offer some new, generous mobile and landline packages to ensure people are connected and the most vulnerable continue to be supported.

These could put users in line for packages featuring data boosts at low prices and free calls from their landline or mobile.

Vulnerable customers or those who are self-isolating, who are faced with priority repairs to fixed broadband and landlines which cannot be carried out, should be given alternative methods of communication wherever possible, the companies said.

Digital Secretary Oliver Dowden said: “It’s fantastic to see mobile and broadband providers pulling together to do their bit for the national effort by helping customers, particularly the most vulnerable, who may be struggling with bills at this difficult time.

“It is essential that people stay at home to protect the NHS and save lives. This package helps people to stay connected whilst they stay home.”

Watchdog Ofcom’s chief executive Melanie Dawes said: “We recognise providers are dealing with unprecedented challenges at the moment.

“So we welcome them stepping up to protect vulnerable customers, at a time when keeping in touch with our friends and families has never been more important.”

Executives from the firms said there has never been a more important period for people to stay connected, adding that during the current uncertainty nobody should have to worry about how to keep in touch with friends and loved ones.

Their companies would work tirelessly to keep the country connected, they said.

Marc Allera, chief executive of BT’s Consumer division, said: “During this national and global crisis, our priorities are the safety of our colleagues and ensuring that our customers, particularly those that are vulnerable, stay connected.”

Openreach chief executive Clive Selley said: “Thankfully a large amount of the work we do – including fixing faults, adding capacity and building faster, more reliable full fibre networks – can be completed outside, so you’ll still see Openreach engineers working to maintain service across the UK.”

Additional reporting by agencies

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WiFi slow, failing to join or unreliable? How to make sure your internet relationship is as fantastic as doable as you perform from residence throughout coronavirus lockdown

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As individuals across the earth keep at home in an endeavor to stop the distribute of coronavirus, lots of are discovering by themselves especially pissed off by problems with web relationship and wifi dropouts.

Relying on the web for doing work, researching and entertainment can really swiftly exacerbate any troubles you may well constantly have had with the velocity or dependability of your world wide web connection. But there are some variations you can make that may well make your link faster and far more trustworthy.

A quantity of points make a decision your internet velocity, which you are not able to do everything about. If you are a extensive way from the telephone exchange, for instance, there’s really tiny you can do apart from shift dwelling or hope that the infrastructure is up-to-date.


But you can find lots more aside from that that you can in fact do anything about. Primarily when it comes to your device’s relationship to your router – rather than your router’s link to the earth – some smaller tweaks can make a world of variation.

The desire take care of for a poor wifi connection is not to rely on wifi at all, as a lot as probable. If you can, try plugging in by way of your ethernet link relatively than wirelessly – that will do absent with any troubles of interference and really should velocity up your link to the router.

In lots of conditions, on the other hand, that will not be attainable. Several times it is unattainable to drill via walls and run cables all all-around your flat or residence, and many units – this sort of as telephones – don’t have any place to plug in an ethernet relationship in any case.

In that circumstance, the ideal reaction is basically to guarantee that the wifi signal can get to your device as cleanly as possible.

In get to do this, the initial matter to do is to find just about anything that might be interfering with your wifi sign. This can be just about nearly anything: specified kinds of lamps, dimmer switches, speakers, energy cords and specifically microwaves can get in the way.

Anybody else attempting to use the wifi will also be combating for your relationship, so see what you can do to restrict that as a lot as attainable. Put a password on your router so that strangers are not capable to squat on your network and borrow your bandwidth, and make sure that any one carrying out weighty function on the computer system – such as downloading huge data files or taking part in games – tries to do so at situations when the desire isn’t way too higher.

If all of that does not perform, then it could possibly be time to insert some new components. By offering your router a strengthen, you really should be in a position to increase the connection and velocity you get, in flip indicating you can get the job done, stream and do anything else on your network far more speedily.

Enhance your router

Most folks are now making use of the router that came from their internet service supplier. That is commonly a reasonable choice, given the extra controls which will come with having a standalone unit are mainly unneeded.

But it does suggest that you will find rather minor you can do if you want to enhance your community, given that you are at the behest of what ever your internet services provider chose to give to you. There are a whole host of third-party routers out there on the market – from cheap options like this TP-Hyperlink device to hulking, speedy devices that can price tag hundreds of kilos and have a tendency to resemble alien spiders, this kind of as Netgear’s Nighthawk variety.

Quite a few routers now present the possibility to have a mesh network close to your home – indicating that the distinctive units will converse to each other and share out the community. These kinds of selections consist of the Eero routers that are now owned by Amazon and Google’s Nest WiFi.

Changing your router is a great concept if you are heading to be using it for superior-performance circumstances where by it demands to be trustworthy, these types of as intensive online gaming. But it may well be more hassle than it is well worth if you are merely locating by yourself pissed off with your coverage, and there may perhaps be easier alternatives.

Your net business could supply one thing very similar, also. Sky, for occasion, lets you acquire boosters that will connect to your router and assistance fling the wifi link further throughout the dwelling.

Or give it a boost

If you would want to continue to keep your current router – mainly because it is mandated – then a further alternative is to assist it out. With wifi boosters or powerline extenders, you can hold your present router but insert further points for your cell phone, computer system and whatever else to connect.

Wifi extenders occur in a selection of designs, measurements and charges, but the theory is largely the exact same – they plug into the wall, ordinarily attaching them selves to the socket, borrow the exact wifi relationship and options and push it additional out into the household. You can locate them reasonably cheaply online.

Powerline lets you to borrow the cables that are now all over your residence, and send out your searching knowledge by means of them. It can be a fantastic solution in residences that are more substantial or have thick partitions, where by a wifi extender may well not be in a position to attain. The connection is not normally as fast as that despatched by means of a committed cable, but it is much a lot easier to set together.

Powerline connectors can be acquired for fairly cheap, even though it depends on how lots of extenders you want. The Independent has had superior success with TP-Link’s adaptor, which comes in a variety of various sets relying on your setup.

IndyBest product assessments are impartial, independent assistance you can trust. On some events, we gain income if you simply click the inbound links and purchase the merchandise, but we in no way allow this to bias our protection. The critiques are compiled through a combine of pro impression and serious-globe testing.

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British isles coronavirus lockdown has led daytime web utilization to extra than double, Virgin Media states

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The UK’s coronavirus lockdown has about doubled the UK’s internet usage for the duration of the day, according to Virgin Media.

End users are both receiving and sending significantly much more data throughout the daytime than common, the community says.

The amplified targeted traffic will come as quite a few folks are operating or studying from home in an try to end the unfold of coronavirus.

But the firm claims that the improved targeted traffic is even now less than the community has to offer with in the evenings, and that it carries on to cope with the added desire.


The world-wide-web company explained downstream broadband targeted traffic – web written content acquired by end users on their products – was up 90% on Monday, the initial day of college closures, compared with two months ago.

Upstream visitors – data sent by people when making use of programmes such as video clip phone calls – is also up all through the working day, far more than doubling in the latest weeks, Virgin Media said.

Web service suppliers have said their networks are sturdy sufficient to tackle the boosts in targeted visitors for the duration of the Covid-19 lockdown nonetheless, some online video clip solutions, including Netflix and YouTube, have begun restricting video clip stream bitrates in an endeavor to simplicity any network pressure.

Jeanie York, Virgin Media’s chief technology and information officer, mentioned the increase is even now below the targeted traffic levels the agency encounters in its traditional evening peak.

“Our network is constructed to face up to this day-to-day evening peak, and proper now is easily accommodating this daytime increase.”

Ms York explained the maximize in upstream website traffic is joined to additional men and women doing the job from home, and the mounting craze of video conferencing during social distancing.

“This has mostly been triggered by additional and much more folks functioning from household and sending information and information again to company networks,” she said.

“This targeted visitors is raising all through the working day and continuing into the night, with peak upstream site visitors up all over 25% on the preceding 7 days, exhibiting people today are operating later on or joining conference phone calls with mates and household.

“Our network has enough ability to take care of this increased desire.”

Video clip conferencing applications and apps, these kinds of as Skype, Zoom and Houseparty, have acquired new waves of attractiveness as workers use them to continue to be in contact with colleagues even though aside, and people and friendship teams all attempt to keep in touch.

The internet supplier also mentioned it is presently looking at some familiar styles regardless of the altering conditions.

“Upstream traffic is dipping slightly at lunchtime as remote personnel end for lunch and yet again at 5.30pm when folks log off for the day,” Ms York reported.

“We’re also seeing evidence of people today remaining at property and social distancing, with community demand from customers up at the weekend. Upload facts spiked on Mothering Sunday as numerous households held online video calls with beloved ones.”

According to its figures, traffic also sharply dropped 10% on Monday evening as people place down their devices to listen to Primary Minister Boris Johnson converse – exactly where the current degree of lockdown was declared.

The range and length of landline calls have also greater in the last 7 days, the corporation stated.

On the other hand, Virgin Media said the present traffic increases has “however not pushed up need to the ranges noticed throughout recent pc match releases or when multiple Premier League video games ended up streamed simultaneously”.

“Inspite of increased info use on our community, we’re not at capability and are continuing to provide our clients with the ultrafast and dependable providers they count on,” Ms York mentioned.

Additional reporting by agencies

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Coronavirus: How to improve your internet speed when working from home according to Ofcom

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With millions of people across the country staying at home amid the UK coronavirus lockdown, broadband and mobile networks have found themselves under increased demand. 

From remote working to home schooling, the number of households attempting to access the internet at the same time is causing connections to perform at slower speeds. 

But, there are things people can do to ensure everyone in the home gets the bandwidth they need, whether it is for video streaming or virtual calls.


On Wednesday, media regulator Ofcom published a list of seven ways people can reduce the strain on internet providers as part of its “Stay Connected” campaign, which has been launched alongside BT, Sky, O2 and Virgin Media.

“Families across the country are going online together this week, often juggling work and keeping children busy at the same time,” Melanie Dawes, the chief executive of Ofcom, said.

“So we’re encouraging people to read our advice on getting the most from their broadband, home phones and mobiles.”

Here are seven ways you can improve your internet speed during self-isolation.

Use your landline or wifi calls if you can

Ofcom reports that because more people are making calls using their mobile network during the day, people might find they get a more reliable connection using a landline. 

If you do need to use your mobile, it suggests using your settings to turn on “wifi calling”.

“Some smartphones and mobile packages allow your phone to make calls over your broadband network, which often provides the best sound quality and also helps reduce demand on the mobile network,” Ofcom says.

Alternatively, voice calls can also be made over the internet using apps like Facetime, Skype or WhatsApp.

Move your router clear of other devices

Another way to help boost your internet speed is to make sure your router is as far away as possible from other devices including cordless phones, baby monitors, halogen lamps, dimmer switches, stereos and computer speakers and televisions.

Ofcom adds that microwaves can also reduce wifi signals, so try not to use them when you’re making video calls, watching HD videos or doing something important online. 

Lower the demands on your connection

The more devices attached to your wifi, the lower the speed you get,Ofcom says.

Devices like tablets and smartphones typically work in the background, so Ofcom suggests switching wifi reception off on these devices when you’re not using them. 

“You might also want to manage your family’s online activity, so that different people aren’t carrying out data-heavy tasks (like HD streaming, gaming or video calls) all at the same time,” it adds.

It is also a good idea to download any video content in advance, instead of streaming it.

Try wired rather than wireless

For the best broadband speeds, Ofcom recommends using an Ethernet cable to connect your computer directly to your router rather than using wifi. 

An Ethernet cable is a computer networking cable which should give you a faster, more reliable connection and can be purchased from as little as £3.

Plug your router directly into your main phone socket

Where possible, Ofcom suggests not using a telephone extension lead, as these can cause interference which could lower your speed. If you have to use an extension lead, use a new, high-quality cable with the shortest possible length. 

Similarly, tangled and coiled cables can also affect speeds, as can interference from your phone line, so try plugging “microfilters” into every phone socket in your home. 

“They look like little white boxes and split the phone and broadband signals so that they don’t affect each other,” Ofcom says.

Test the speed on your broadband line

Ofcom also recommends running a speed test using its official mobile and broadband checker. 

The tests should be carried out over a few days and at different times of day. 

You can download Ofcom’s checker as a smartphone app (search Ofcom in Apple’s app store or Google Play) or use it through your internet browser.

Get advice from your broadband provider

If your connection still isn’t working as well as it should, Ofcom recommends looking for more information on your broadband provider’s website.

If you need to, you can also contact them for help over the phone. However, people should be aware that, because of the coronavirus, some companies are running with a reduced number of staff who can help with your queries. 

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world wide web is experiencing stress

The world wide web is experiencing some stress. We have been warned of our impending doom, but we are not ready to give up yet. There are many proactive steps you can take to help your internet run more smoothly and securely. You will be happy you did!

This blog post will talk about what misinformation is, how it affects us as individuals and as a society, why we should care about fighting against it, and some ways that we can do so.

Read More:- Data Analyst Salary: Paying Industries

AT&T’s CEO Randall Stephenson has mentioned that the company is seeing “some indicators of stress” as a result of containment steps taken to combat the coronavirus. He also said that it was too early to tell if this would lead to any significant problems for customers, but he did say there were no indications so far that this had affected customer service or internet speeds.

In order to help with these issues, AT&T has been working on contingency plans and have increased their staffing levels in order to provide better service during this time. They are also monitoring traffic closely and will be able to adjust accordingly when necessary. This includes adjusting pricing structures for data usage based on demand from customers who need more bandwidth than others.

experiencing

• The world wide web is experiencing some stress.

• No, I’m not talking about a pesky mosquito bite.

• What I am referring to are the servers that store and distribute data around the globe – or so we thought!

o It turns out these important computer systems might be in trouble as more people use the internet every day.

o With all this worry circling around the web – there’s one company who’s on it (no pun intended).

• You guessed it: Optimizely!

o They’re leading the charge for new, faster ways of connecting people to vital information by using state-of-the art technology – which makes them our go-to source for better bandwidth and less data congestion.

If you want your internet connection back up and running at full speed, contact AT&T today!

Read More:- 4 Security Benefits of Using the Cloud

The internet can be a wonderful place. It has the ability to connect people and provide them with endless amounts of information, which can be life changing. However, it’s not always that simple for everyone – many have fallen victim to misinformation online in one way or another. We’re here to help you stay informed about the latest news and updates on topics related to your industry by providing accurate content from credible sources. If there are any areas where we could improve our blog posts, please let us know!

Coronavirus: YouTube and Amazon Prime join Netflix by reducing streaming quality

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Amazon Prime Video and YouTube will reduce the quality of streaming on their platforms in Europe in order to help internet infrastructure cope with a surge in traffic resulting from the Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic.

The move follows a similar announcement from Netflix following a request from European Union commissioner Thierry Breton for streaming services to lower the resolution of their content to prevent internet gridlock.

“We are making a commitment to temporarily switch all traffic in the EU to standard definition by default,” YouTube said in a statement.

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A spokesperson for Prime Video said the platform was working with local authorities and internet service providers “to help mitigate any network congestion”.

Increased strain on the internet will likely increase over the coming weeks. From Friday, schools across the UK will close for the majority of students, leaving millions more at home using video streaming and online gaming platforms.

Concerns about widespread outages and critical services going down prompted BT to offer assurances that its broadband network would be able to cope with the added demand.

“The UK is one of the world’s most advanced digital economies, so we overbuild our networks to compensate for our love of high-definition streaming content, video gaming and other bandwidth-hungry applications,” Howard Watson, BT’s chief technology officer, wrote in a blog post on Friday.

“The Covid-19 outbreak is causing changes to the way our networks are being used. We’re monitoring those changes carefully to make sure we can respond rapidly if needed. However, the UK’s communications infrastructure is well within its capacity limits and has significant headroom for growth in demand.”​

 

Other industry experts have warned that the measures may not be enough to prevent more outages, with GlobalData director Emma Mohr-McClune calling on other major bandwidth consumers to take similar action.

Online video game platforms have already seen huge spikes in users in recent weeks – a trend that is expected to continue as the crisis progresses. Desktop gaming client Steam broke its all-time record for the highest number of concurrent users over the weekend, seeing over 20 million gamers use the platform at one time.

“Netflix and [YouTube owner] Alphabet have demonstrated superb industry leadership with this compromise and gesture, but online gaming service providers must now follow suit,” she said.

“Although video streaming represents the lion’s share of residential internet traffic in Europe, interactive online gaming is a substantially greater threat in network overload terms. Any mass market spike in activity will have significant consequences for vital government and market functions in Covid-19 lockdown mode.”​

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Coronavirus: Netflix to lower streaming quality to stop internet from collapsing

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Netflix has agreed to reduce the quality of its streaming service in order to help internet infrastructure cope with the increased traffic caused by the Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic.

The online streaming platform has seen a significant increase in demand in recent days, after containment measures forced people to stay at home and self-isolate to prevent the spread of the deadly virus.

Netflix said the reduction in picture quality will only affect users in Europe, though it is not yet clear whether this includes the UK. The Independent has reached out to Netflix for clarification.


The move follows a call from European Union commissioner Thierry Breton for streaming services to lower the resolution of their content to help ease the strain on overloaded networks.

“To secure internet access for all, let’s switch to standard definition when HD is not necessary,” he tweeted on Wednesday.

Following a phone call between Mr Breton and Netflix CEO Reed Hastings, the streaming giant agreed to a reduction in streaming quality that will lower data consumption by 25 per cent.

“Following the discussion between Commissioner Thierry Breton and Reed Hastings, and given the extraordinary challenges raised by the coronavirus, Netflix has decided to begin reducing bitrates across all our streams in Europe for 30 days,” Netflix said.

Reducing bitrates reduces data consumption but can result in videos appearing less clear and more pixelated.

Commissioner Breton responded by saying the “prompt action” would “preserve the smooth functioning of the internet during the Covid-19 crisis”.

The recent surge in internet traffic has caused significant issues for phone networks and internet providers in the UK.

EE, O2, Three and Vodafone all suffered mass outages earlier this week, with customers complaining that they were unable to get online.

Virgin Media and TalkTalk have also seen an increased rise in internet use, which will likely increase in the coming days.

Schools across England will close indefinitely from Friday as containment measures become more strict. The closures. will likely result in a further rise in demand for Netflix and other streaming services.



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World Wide Web inventor Tim Berners-Lee

The story of Tim Berners-Lee is a fascinating one. He invented the World Wide Web and changed the world with it. He’s not just an inventor, though; he also has a passion for making sure everyone in the world has access to information, education, and opportunity online.
This blog post will discuss how you can get involved in his latest project: Disrupting Digital Inequality.

Read More:- Facebook sues analytics firm for knowledge misuse

The inventor of the world wide web, Tim Berners-Lee, has warned that the online harassment of women and girls is threatening global progress towards gender equality. Berners-Lee, who created the web in 1989, said he was “seriously concerned” about the long-term impact of online gendered abuse.

“I am seriously concerned that online harms facing women and girls — especially those of colour, from LGBTQ+ communities and other minority groups — threaten that progress,” he wrote in an open letter to mark the 31 anniversary of the web.

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 ”This should concern us all. And at times like now, when coronavirus is closing offices and schools, the web becomes the only way we can continue to work, teach our children and get vital health information to keep ourselves safe.”

He warned that the problems weren’t just digital but that harassment, sexual abuse and online threats were forcing women out of jobs, causing girls to skip school, damaging relationships and silencing female opinions.

He concluded that “the web is not working for women and girls” and urged governments and companies to do more to combat the growing problem.

In 2019 Berners-Lee launched the Contract for the Web, a global action plan to save online platforms for forces that threaten to create a “digital dystopia”.

He said without tackling misogyny online these aims could not be achieved and said that gender equality now needed to be embedded, by design, into products and services rather than creating them entrenched with existing bias.

“A world where so many women and girls would be deprived of such basics is completely unacceptable,” he said.

According to a survey by the Web Foundation, set up by Berners-Lee, more than half of young women have experienced violence online.

This includes sexual harassment, threatening messages and having private images shared without consent. And 84 per cent believe the problem is getting worse. A study in 2017 found nearly half of girls aged 11 to 18 have suffered harassment or abuse on social media.  Berners-Lee

A poll more than 1,000 girls and boys in the UK found 48 per cent of female respondents had experienced some form of harassment or abuse on social media, such as receiving upsetting messages, having images shared without their consent or feeling harassed through regular contact.

And across both men and women, almost one in four people in the UK have experienced some sort of cyberbullying, according to research released by YouGov.

Those aged 18 to 24 are the most likely to be cyberbullied, with 55 per cent of respondents in this age bracket saying they had experienced some sort of bullying online, followed by 25- to 34-year-olds (33 per cent).

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‘Internet of things’ could be an unseen threat to elections

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'Internet of things' could be an unseen threat to elections
Your home security systems knows when you leave for work, and when you get back. Credit: ESB Professional/Shutterstock.com

The app failure that led to a chaotic 2020 Iowa caucus was a reminder of how vulnerable the democratic process is to technological problems—even without any malicious outside intervention. Far more sophisticated foreign hacking continues to try to disrupt democracy, as a rare joint federal agency warning advised prior to Super Tuesday. Russia’s attempt to interfere in the 2016 election has already revealed how this could happen: social media disinformation, email hacking and probing of voter registration systems.

The threats to the 2020 election may be even more insidious. As I explain in my new book, “The Internet in Everything: Freedom and Security in a World with No Off Switch,” election interference may well come through the vast constellation of always-on, always-connected cameras, thermostats, alarm systems and other physical objects collectively known as the “internet of things.”

The social and economic benefits of these devices are tremendous. But, in large part because the devices are not yet adequately secure, they also raise concerns for consumer safety, national security and privacy. And they create new vulnerabilities for democracy.

It is not necessary to hack into voting systems themselves but merely co-opt internet-connected objects to attack political information sites, stop people from voting, or exploit the intimate personal data these devices capture to manipulate voters.

Disrupting political communication

Connected objects have already been hijacked to shut down internet traffic.

The Mirai botnet of 2016 hijacked insecure video cameras and other home devices to launch a massive “distributed denial of service” attack that blocked access to many popular sites, including Reddit and Twitter. More recently, the FBI arrested a hacker for allegedly disrupting a California congressional candidate’s website, flooding it with so many false requests it became inaccessible for legitimate views.

Similar political attacks that hijack some of the billions of often insecure connected devices could disrupt campaign websites and social media. They could also restrict public access to government websites with information about how and where to vote, as well as news reports on election results.

Preventing people from voting

Beyond blocking access to political information, a foreign agent or group might seek to stop people from voting by creating targeted chaos, whether by disrupting power systems, generating false weather or traffic reports, or otherwise triggering local emergencies that divert attention on Election Day.

Smart cities and the industrial internet of things are already targets, as evidenced by the yearslong history of Russia-attributed disruptions to Ukrainian power systems. Hacking home alarm or water systems could create politically micro-targeted local emergencies that distract people who would otherwise vote.

This type of local disruption in swing districts would be more likely to evade public or press scrutiny than an outright hack of election machines or vote-tallying systems.

Making phishing hacks more credible

The massive amount of intimate data these devices collect—when someone enters a building, drives a car, uses a sink, or turns on a coffee machine—could also make political operatives more susceptible to highly targeted spear phishing attacks. These tactics trick people into relinquishing personal information or clicking on malicious links—mistakes that gave hackers access to Democratic National Committee emails in 2016.

Similar phishing attempts on political campaigns continue, seeking to infiltrate email accounts used by presidential and down-ballot candidates. The more believable they are, the more effective they are – so an email referencing personal facts gleaned from connected objects would make these attacks more potent.

Not being surprised again

More things than people are now connected to the internet. These connected objects are a new terrain for election interference—and people shouldn’t be surprised if they’re used that way.

To address this over the long term, customers will have to demand better privacy and security from their connected devices, such as doorbells and lightbulbs. Companies—and political institutions—that connect these devices to their networks will have to build in appropriate safeguards. Manufacturers will also have to design better protections into their devices. There may also need to be data privacy laws limiting how personal information is collected and shared.

More immediately, though, it is essential not only for state and local authorities and intelligence communities to remain vigilant, but for citizens to take security precautions with their own devices, and be on high alert for personalized attempts to influence or disrupt their political participation.

Preserving democracy now requires taking seriously the consequences of the internet being deeply embedded in the physical world—the internet in everything. We are all responsible.


Super Tuesday marks first major security test of 2020


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‘Internet of things’ could be an unseen threat to elections (2020, March 6)
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New artificial intelligence instruments could aid tackle on the internet abuse

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New equipment which could be employed to automatically detect and counter abuse on social media, are currently being developed by researchers at the University of Sheffield.

The analysis, led by Professor Kalina Bontcheva from the University’s Division of Laptop or computer Science, is developing new synthetic intelligence (AI) and all-natural language processing (NLP) strategies that could be utilised to responsibly tackle abuse and hate speech on line.

Released in collaboration with Wendy Hui Kyong Chun of Simon Fraser University in Canada, the job is seeking at AI solutions that are now being employed to detect on the net abuse and detest speech inside of two locations the gaming industry and messages directed at politicians on social media.

Researchers in the analyze intend to use their findings to produce new AI algorithms that are effective, reasonable and unbiased. The techniques will be context-informed and respectful of language dissimilarities within communities centered on race, ethnicity, gender and sexuality.

Researchers will look at the biases embedded within recent material moderation methods that generally use rigid definitions or determinations of abusive language. These latest programs frequently paradoxically produce new types of discrimination or bias dependent on id, like sexual intercourse, gender, ethnicity, tradition, religion, political affiliation or some others.

The exploration group is aiming to tackle these outcomes by developing a lot more context-informed, dynamic methods of detection.

On top of that, the job is hunting to empower customers by building the new applications open up supply, so they can be embedded in just new approaches to democratically deal with abuse and loathe speech on-line. They could also be utilized as aspect of community-centered care and response measures.

Professor Kalina Bontcheva claimed: “There has been a enormous improve in the level of abuse and hate speech on the web in current many years and this has remaining governments and social media platforms struggling to deal with the effects.

“This massive increase in abuse and despise speech on the web has sparked general public outrage with people today demanding governments and social media companies do extra to tackle the trouble, but there are presently no efficient or complex procedures that can tackle the challenge in a dependable or democratic way.

“We are creating novel AI and NLP solutions to address the problem even though also establishing a substantial programme of training for academics and early job scientists to make capability and knowledge in this vital spot of investigation.”

The task, Responsible AI for Inclusive, Democratic Societies: A cross-disciplinary strategy to detecting and countering abusive language on the net, is led by the University of Sheffield in collaboration with Simon Fraser University. It is funded by British isles Exploration and Innovation (UKRI) as a single of 10 British isles-Canada tasks to assistance the liable progress of AI, including making sure all associates of society trust AI and advantage from it.


Analyze finds racial bias in tweets flagged as detest speech


More information and facts:
On the internet Abuse towards Candidates through the British isles Normal Election 2019: Performing Paper. arXiv:2001.08686 [cs.CY] arxiv.org/abs/2001.08686

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