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A Link to News Site Meduza Can (Technically) Land You in Russian Prison

WIRED

When you run a major app, all it takes is one mistake to put countless people at risk. Such is the case with Diksha, a public education app run by India's Ministry of Education that exposed the personal information of around 1 million teachers and millions of students across the country. The data, which included things like full names, email addresses, and phone numbers, was publicly accessible for at least a year and likely longer, potentially exposing those impacted to phishing attacks and other scams. Speaking of cybercrime, the LockBit ransomware gang has long operated under the radar, thanks to its professional operation and choice of targets. But over the past year, a series of missteps and drama have thrust it into the spotlight, potentially threatening its ability to continue operating with impunity.


Russian shelling leaves 10 Ukrainian civilians dead, 20 injured, Zelenskyy says

FOX News

Fox News Flash top headlines are here. Check out what's clicking on Foxnews.com. A new barrage of Russian shelling killed at least 10 Ukrainian civilians and wounded 20 others in a day, the office of Ukraine's president said Friday as the country worked to recover from an earlier wave of Russian missile strikes and drone attacks. Regional officials said towns and villages in the east and in the south that are within reach of the Russian artillery suffered most. Six people died in the Donetsk region, two in Kherson, and two in the Kharkiv region.


Japan tightens Russia sanctions, expands export ban list

Al Jazeera

Japan has tightened its sanctions against Russia following its latest wave of missile attacks in Ukraine, adding goods to an export ban list and freezing the assets of Russian officials and entities. The decision on Friday comes after Russia launched missile attacks across Ukraine on Thursday, killing at least 11 people, following a pledge by Germany and the United States to supply tanks that could help Kyiv counter a new Russian offensive. "In light of the situation surrounding Ukraine and to contribute to international efforts to secure peace, Japan will implement export bans in line with other major nations," Japan's Ministry of Economy Trade and Industry said in a press release. Among the new sanctions, Japan will prohibit shipments of items to 49 organisations in Russia from February 3 that could be used to enhance Moscow's military capability. Those will include products ranging from water cannons, gas exploration equipment and semiconductor equipment to vaccines, X-ray inspection equipment, explosives and robots, the ministry said.


Iran condemns EU vote over 'terrorist' designation for IRGC

Al Jazeera

Tehran, Iran – The European Parliament's approval of a resolution calling on the bloc to consider a "terrorist" designation for the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) has received strong condemnation from senior Iranian officials and commanders. On Thursday, the European Parliament overwhelmingly approved a resolution that calls on the European Union to recognise Iran's elite force and its subsidiaries, like the paramilitary Basij and the Quds Force, as "terrorist" organisations. It also condemned the Iranian government's response to the protests that have been taking place in the country since September, the executions linked to the protests, and drone sales to Russia, while also recommending sanctions against Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, President Ebrahim Raisi and all IRGC-linked foundations. The EU is not obliged to enforce the resolution. While senior EU politicians have voiced their support for the resolution, it is not expected to be among new sanctions on dozens of Iranian individuals and entities expected to be approved by the bloc on Monday.


Drone attack hits US-led coalition base in southern Syria

Al Jazeera

A drone attack hit a US-led coalition base in southern Syria, the US military's Central Command has said. "Three one-way attack drones attacked the al-Tanf Garrison in Syria," a CENTCOM statement said on Friday. Two of the drones were shot down by the coalition, but the third hit the compound, wounding two allied Syrian opposition fighters who received treatment, the statement added. "Attacks of this kind are unacceptable," CENTCOM spokesperson Joe Buccino said, without specifying who carried it out. "They place our troops and our partners at risk and jeopardise the fight against ISIL." There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack.


Russian Hackers Try to Bypass ChatGPT's Restrictions For Malicious Purposes - Infosecurity Magazine

#artificialintelligence

Russian cyber-criminals have been observed on dark web forums trying to bypass OpenAI's API restrictions to gain access to the ChatGPT chatbot for nefarious purposes. Various individuals have been observed, for instance, discussing how to use stolen payment cards to pay for upgraded users on OpenAI (thus circumventing the limitations of free accounts). Others have created blog posts on how to bypass the geo controls of OpenAI, and others still have created tutorials explaining how to use semi-legal online SMS services to register to ChatGPT. "Generally, there are a lot of tutorials in Russian semi-legal online SMS services on how to use it to register to ChatGPT, and we have examples that it is already being used," wrote Check Point Research (CPR), which shared the findings with Infosecurity ahead of publication. "It is not extremely difficult to bypass OpenAI's restricting measures for specific countries to access ChatGPT," said Sergey Shykevich, threat intelligence group manager at Check Point Software Technologies.


Chinese facial recognition technology helping Iran to identify women breaking strict dress code: Report

FOX News

Over 100 days of nationwide protests in Iran have demonstrated the greatest pushback against the decades-old regime and its repressive policies, showing the world that the people demand rights they have long been denied. Iranian authorities may be using new technology to help enforce the country's strict dress code for women, expanding the use of facial recognition technology to issue fines and other penalties for those breaking the rules. "Many people haven't been arrested in the streets," Shaparak Shajarizadeh, who fled from Iran to Canada in 2018 after multiple violations of Iran's strict laws and became an activist, told Wired in a report Tuesday. "They were arrested at their homes one or two days later." Shajarizadeh is one of several observers of Iran who fear that the country's Islamist regime has begun to weaponize facial recognition technology to find and punish women who flaunt laws about their dress and appearance in public, a setback for activists amid months of protesting for women's rights and regime change.


Iran Says Face Recognition Will ID Women Breaking Hijab Laws

WIRED

Last month, a young woman went to work at Sarzamineh Shadi, or Land of Happiness, an indoor amusement park east of Iran's capital, Tehran. After a photo of her without a hijab circulated on social media, the amusement park was closed, according to multiple accounts in Iranian media. Prosecutors in Tehran have reportedly opened an investigation. Shuttering a business to force compliance with Iran's strict laws for women's dress is a familiar tactic to Shaparak Shajarizadeh. She stopped wearing a hijab in 2017 because she views it as a symbol of government suppression, and recalls restaurant owners, fearful of authorities, pressuring her to cover her head. But Shajarizadeh, who fled to Canada in 2018 after three arrests for flouting hijab law, worries that women like the amusement park worker may now be targeted with face recognition algorithms as well as by conventional police work.


Russia-Ukraine War an outlook for 2023: more bloodshed to come with no end in sight

FOX News

Former Defense Intelligence Agency Officer Rebekah Koffler discusses why peace talks are unlikely between Russia, Ukraine, and the U.S., on'Varney & Co.' As we have welcome the New Year, many on both sides of the Atlantic are wondering whether the Russia-Ukraine conflict, the biggest war in Europe since World War II, will come to an end this year. The largest country on the continent, Ukraine, is being depopulated, having lost more than 100,000 of its citizens to death or injury. Europe itself is being destabilized by financial woes and influx of refugees from war-torn areas. Contrary to the hopes of many, not only will 2023 not bring peace, it will likely see the most bloodshed yet, as the key warring parties – Moscow, Kyiv, and Washington, D.C. – are all postured for decisive escalation. Here's why we are probably entering the "hottest" phase of this war.


Japan and Mexico agree on importance of rules-based international order

The Japan Times

The foreign ministers of Japan and Mexico have agreed on the importance of promoting a rules-based international order, the Japanese government said Friday, as Russia's war in Ukraine continues. During their meeting in Mexico City on Thursday, Foreign Minister Yoshimasa Hayashi and his counterpart, Marcelo Ebrard, also confirmed that the two governments will cooperate closely toward the realization of a "free and open Indo-Pacific." The vision has been advocated by Japan and the United States as a counter to China's growing military influence in the region. This could be due to a conflict with your ad-blocking or security software. Please add japantimes.co.jp and piano.io to your list of allowed sites.