The Digitised Dragon: China’s Cyber Intelligence, Security and Future Monitors

In July 2016, Finnish cyber-security firm F-Secure published a White Paper entitled ‘NanHaiShu: RATing the South China Sea’. The article discussed the identification of a Remote Access Trojan, a malware which targeted organisations associated to the international territorial dispute in the South China Sea since 2015. Based on technical and motivational characteristics, the malware was attributed to threat actors from the People’s Republic of China (PRC). The identification of NanHaiShu validates findings detailed an earlier study about China’s evolving intelligence strategies in cyberspace, and its move away from outdated mosaic techniques. Armed with a firm foothold in the technological research, development and manufacturing sector, there could be little doubt about the continued sophistication of China’s operational cyber-security capabilities being used in its plans for global market expansion. The recognition of cyberspace as an operation domain has revealed a clear indication of cyber-security’s intimate relationship with global geopolitics, and the subsequent effects on how state coordinated cyber-espionage will be conducted.

A bellwether for Europe? Dutch Parliamentary Elections – 2017

A political storm is brewing in the Netherlands.

With the far-right firebrand, Geert Wilders, level in the polls with incumbent Mark Rutte in the upcoming Dutch parliamentary elections on March 15th, it appears that this storm may bring with it the wind of change that Europe’s political elite fear.

In this second edition of our global election series, we examine how Wilders’ ability to dictate the narrative around the election is having a profound effect on not just Dutch voters, but also on the upcoming elections in Europe and the future of the EU.

An Ideological Revolution?

The French Presidential Elections – 2017

Vote with your head, then vote with your heart. For almost 200 years, this has been the guiding principle behind France’s 2-round election system. If there is no clear majority in the first round of elections, then the two most popular candidates go through to a straight run-off two weeks later. The system was designed to limit the potential for violent swings in political sentiment during elections. A barrier of sorts, to keep the hot-heads and agitators from any real source of power.

The Dangerous Business of Humanitarian Aid

How Aid Organisations Should Go About Providing Safety and Security

With about 280,000 humanitarian aid workers worldwide, the United Nation’s Office for Co-ordination of Humanitarian Affairs estimates that the odds of an aid worker experiencing an attack are 1 in 1,000, making the business of assisting the world’s most vulnerable citizens a very dangerous undertaking.1 The complexity of today’s threat landscape has caused the business of humanitarian action to become more physically dangerous. In 2015 and 2016 alone, 616 aid workers fell victim to violent attacks, 229 of which resulted in death, with the most prevalent acts of intentional violence stemming from armed robbery, carjacking, kidnapping, IED’s, landmines and assault.2 Overall, the rate of major attacks against aid workers, measured by the number of killings, kidnappings and casualties over the population of aid workers in the field has increased over the past decade in a handful in violent environments. With the highest-risk degree of attacks taking place in: Syria, Afghanistan, Somalia, South Sudan, Yemen, and the Central African Republic.