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How is artificial intelligence aiding war in Ukraine?

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Ukraine is using Clearview A.I. facial recognition in war wreckages across the country to help identify both the living and the dead

In early March, Clearview A.I. founder, Hoan Ton-That, started reaching out to people who could help him present his technology to the Ukrainian government.

Clearview holds a huge database of scraped photos from multiple social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

The facial recognition company is already being used extensively in the U.S.

According to Ton-That, the Russian invasion presented another implementation for the technology.

“We saw images of people who were prisoners of war and fleeing situations,” Mr Ton-That says

“It got us thinking that this could potentially be a technology that could be useful for identification, and also verification.”

Clearview A.I. founder, Hoan Ton-That

Last month, Ukrainian defence authorities began using facial recognition technology. The New York-based company offered the technology for free.

Just over a month ago, Clearview faced several legal actions from Italy, UK and France.

The company also has a line of legal challenges from Facebook, YouTube, Google and Twitter.

The tech giants have sent letters to Clearview to ask them to stop using pictures from their sites.

Mr Ton-That says there is debate over the legal aspects of facial recognition technology but assures his company works within the boundaries of the law.

Unlike the other situations, in Ukraine Clearview is being used to uncover the Russian assailant and to identify dead Ukrainian citizens.

It is also helping in identifying the Russian soldiers through their social media.

Risk of imprecision 

Critics of facial recognition worry that the technology might pose greater threats if induced in a war.

The A.I. technology does not have a 100% accuracy rate and has faced several issues of not responding well to people of colour.

Also, Clearview is not only being used to identify the dead. It is also being used at the Ukrainian defence check posts to prevent Russian assailants to enter. Hence, its use during wartime can result disastrously.

Shreya Vats contributed to this report

Tech

War in Ukraine collides with world of tech

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Russia’s largest social media app has been taken off Apple’s App store

VKontakte is a popular Russian social media app with millions of downloads.

The app’s users have been told the it will no longer be on the popular app store.

Other games made by the same developer have also been taken offline.

It’s unclear why the app has stopped showing online.

But many western companies have left Russia themselves, including Nike and McDonalds in the wake of President Putin’s war in Ukraine.

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Business

Optusdata hacker mocked on social media for clumsy attack

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Hackers are having a field day mocking the “Optusdata” hacker who stole the personal information of more than 10 million Australians.

The hapless hacker made the mistake of demanding a $1.5 million ransom from Optus, and then apologised when they didn’t get their way.

Now they’re being ridiculed by the very people they were trying to impress.

“This just goes to show that you can’t trust any optusdata these days,” said one commenter on an online forum. “They’ll steal your data and then humiliate you for it.”

“I wouldn’t give them a cent,” said another. “They don’t deserve it.”

Millions impacted

The company has downplayed the incident, saying that only a small percentage of its customers’ data was actually stolen.

“We would like to reassure our customers that their data is safe and secure,” an Optus spokesperson said. “We have robust security measures in place to protect our customers’ information.”

If you’re an Optus customer, you can check to see if your data was stolen by going to optusdata.com.au/hackcheck

You should also change your password and be on the lookout for any suspicious activity on your account.

If you’re worried about your data, you should change your password and be on the lookout for any suspicious activity on your account.

Optus has downplayed the incident, saying that only a small percentage of its customers’ data was actually stolen. However, the company is still urging customers to take precautions.

Government action

The Albanese government has said that it is “deeply concerned” about the hack and is working with Optus to investigate the matter.

“We take the security of our citizens’ data very seriously,” a spokesperson for the Albanese government said.

“This incident highlights the need for all businesses to have robust security measures in place to protect their customers’ information.”

The Albanese government is urging all businesses to review their security measures in light of the Optus hack.

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Optus hack – which businesses are at the highest risk of hacks?

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A hacker has threatened to release the private information of millions of Optus customers, this includes passports, medicare numbers, drivers licenses and banking information

If you’re one of the millions of Australians affected by the recent Optus data breach, you may be wondering what to do next.

Fortunately, the government has announced that Optus will be footing the bill for anyone who needs to change their driver’s licence number and get a new card.

This process is expected to cost the telco millions of dollars.

In the meantime, if you are concerned about your identity being compromised, experts recommend taking steps to protect yourself such as monitoring your credit report and changing your passwords and identity documents.

Optus has also set up a dedicated hotline for customers who want to know more about the data breach and what it means for them.

The hacker claimed to have accessed Optus customer names, addresses, dates of birth, driver’s licence numbers and credit.

They demanded a $1m ransom in cryptocurrency and threatened to release the data otherwise.

Now, they claim the data has been deleted, but there is no proof of this.

Can the hacker be found?

Susie Jones, Chief Executive at Cynch Security says it can be incredibly difficult to find cybercriminals “which is why it’s such a large market these days unfortunately.”

However, the the actions that they’re taking “certainly does indicate that they’re getting cold feet and certainly becoming a lot more nervous about the attention”.

“So whilst the pessimist cyber CEO hitting me says that they won’t be found. The optimistic Australian certainly hope they will be,” Susie says.

How long do people have to worry about hackers using their stolen ID information?

Good news – It’s not too late.

“The first step that they should be doing is really remaining vigilant and making sure that they’re scrutinising all of their bank accounts, all of their phone records, making sure that they’re really staying on top of what it is that is going on in their accounts and their personal data and personal lives,” Susie says.

“Being very, very careful around scam phone calls and emails. cyber attackers are very good at that now and they will be actively exploiting this opportunity.”

Susie says to make sure that you’re remaining vigilant and stay on top of what the latest scams are, so that you can spot them and delete them straight away.

Optus is in the business of dealing with people’s data and tech as one of Australia’s largest telco’s – what businesses are at the highest risk of ransomeware attacks?

“Businesses of every size, doesn’t matter if you’re a sole trader right up to the likes of Optus, are actively being attacked by cyber criminals every minute of every day.”

“But that’s just a reality. What this does do is raise awareness that personal data that is this is collect, even if it might seem small to yourself, and to the likes of hope this can be incredibly valuable and also from hands can be very, very damaging,” Susie says.

“So for those businesses that are not having to respond directly to this attack, they should be actively reviewing their own processes reviewing what personal information do they collect and store and making sure that they’re keeping it safe.

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