Technology
Defensive versus Offensive Strategies against Cyber Attacks: What the United Nations Charter has to say

Defensive versus Offensive Strategies against Cyber Attacks: What the United Nations Charter has to say

‘The new [cyber security] strategy is built on three core pillars: defend, deter and develop, underpinned by £1.9 billion of transformational investment […],’ said British Chancellor of the Exchequer in a speech in October 2016. Since his speech, Britain has launched the National Cyber Security Strategy 2016 to 2021 report, detailing how the British Government...
The Selfie Seen Round the World: Social Media and its Pervasive Role in Politics

The Selfie Seen Round the World: Social Media and its Pervasive Role in Politics

Syrian refugee Anas Modamani—who posed with German Chancellor Angela Merkel in a 2015 photograph that went viral— has recently filed for an injunction that would obligate Facebook to remove any content connecting him to terrorism. His doing so raises interesting questions about the role of technology in politics and the responsibility of the media. The...
Snapchat: From 0 to 100 to 25 Billion

Snapchat: From 0 to 100 to 25 Billion

For a mobile application that launched in 2011, Snapchat is seemingly ubiquitous. With 158 million daily users— 43 per cent of which are based in North America, and 33 per cent of which are based in Europe— sending 2.5 billion snaps everyday, the statistics speak for themselves. Perhaps what is more impressive is that Snap...
Blighting the Fourth Estate: Fake News and New Democracy

Blighting the Fourth Estate: Fake News and New Democracy

Oxford Dictionary’s 2016 word of the year is ‘post-truth’. The traditional reporter’s dependency on cold, impartial facts has been upended by persuasive satire, deception, and radicalism. Stories that fit snugly into one’s worldview are far more attractive than those that force them to think critically about their assumptions. Stories that outright lie to validate one’s...
Money, Media, and Mugabe: Zimbabwe’s Tech Crossroads

Money, Media, and Mugabe: Zimbabwe’s Tech Crossroads

The latest string of clashes which have simmered in Zimbabwe in the past months is the abduction and beating of six prominent activists by riot police in capital city Harare on Friday 18 November, in advance of a planned protest against President Robert Mugabe and his government. The protest (referred to as #MunhuWeseMuRoad) was intended...
Cybersecurity and the Governance Gap: A Role for Multilateral Institutions?

Cybersecurity and the Governance Gap: A Role for Multilateral Institutions?

The Internet is inherently global. It exists within and beyond national borders, capable of connecting people all over the world for communication, business, finance, and other collaborative opportunities. In this increasingly interconnected and globalised world, however, the scale of scope of cybersecurity threats continues to intensify. Government operations, communication technologies, military weapons and satellites, and...
French Plans to Create Mass ID Database

French Plans to Create Mass ID Database

In an increasingly interconnected world, personal privacy is becoming more and more of a rarity. Lives are led online, records are held in electronic databases, and the rise of social media means information is instantly accessible and has a digital afterlife. In recent years, passport control has been improved in some airports to include a...
Déjà vu: A US election and an aggressive Russia

Déjà vu: A US election and an aggressive Russia

Since the 2014 annexation of Crimea, the already volatile Russian state has become increasingly unpredictable and confrontational, especially towards the United States (US) and NATO. Although seemingly inexplicable, the combination of suspected cyberwarfare, provocative missile placements, and increasingly belligerent rhetoric can be attributed to an overly ambitious, and more significantly, opportunistic Moscow. The hacking of...
The Privatisation of Space Tourism: Space Law and its Failure to Launch

The Privatisation of Space Tourism: Space Law and its Failure to Launch

In 2001, Dennis Tito became the first non-astronaut to travel to space (although classifying him as a non-astronaut is contentious, it will become clear why). He was taken on board a Russian Soyuz capsule by a private space vehicle provider. Since then, the launch of private space tourism has become a marked feature in the...
Reinventing the Wheel: Uber Diplomacy

Reinventing the Wheel: Uber Diplomacy

Uber’s premise is simple: “Tap the app, get a ride.” In just a few years, Uber Technologies Inc. went from mobile app to global phenomenon— completely reimagining what urban transportation can achieve in the twenty first century. With humble beginnings, Uber was once known as UberCab— a ride-hailing mobile app launched in 2009 by entrepreneurs...
Waiting on the World Wide Web to Change: Reflections on Power in the Digital Age

Waiting on the World Wide Web to Change: Reflections on Power in the Digital Age

The development of the Internet has been characterized as the defining moment of our generation— but for whom? Despite its name, the web is far from worldwide. Half of the world’s population is ‘offline’ [1]. As of 2014, there were an estimated 4.4 billion people in the world without Internet access, and up to 2.8...