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Online alert for ISIS in SA

ISIS is using the Internet for their recruitment drive, making no country unreachable. To try and combat any new South Africans being recruited, South Africa’s State agencies are monitoring cyberspace for any suspicious activity, writes ADAM WAKEFIELD.

South Africa’s State agencies were monitoring cyberspace for recruitment by the Islamic State (ISIS), State Security Minster David Mahlobo said on Tuesday.

“International terrorism is the biggest challenge in the world, it is the challenge of our lifetime,” he said at a media briefing in Cape Town and Pretoria, via video-link.

“ISIS is a little bit sophisticated because in their own recruitment drive they are using cyber space… In terms of the world, there is no country where they are not recruiting.”

Describing the ISIS as promoting a “funny ideology”, he said state security agencies were monitoring cyberspace to stop them from trying to radicalise South Africans to their cause.

“In South Africa, there is work we are doing in terms of monitoring cyberspace, including social platforms,” he said.

Referring to the 15-year-old Cape Town girl pulled off of an international flight on her way to reportedly join ISIS, Mahlobo said that if state security agencies had not been doing their job, the girl could have left the country.

“If the police and state security agencies had never done our work, that child could have left,” he said.

“The child that was trying to get out of this country, we intervened.”

Earlier at the same media briefing, Defence Minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula said the recruitment of young people to take part in acts of terror was a growing global concern.

“The JCPS [Justice, Crime Prevention and Security] cluster will not allow South Africa to be used as a recruitment platform for terror groups. We wish to reiterate our resolve to ensure that South Africa remains a place where people feel and are safe,” she said.

“We want to sound a note of caution to all South Africans not to lend themselves to terrorist activities.”

Against the background of the 15-year-old being stopped from joining ISIS, government encouraged the community at large, and parents in particular, to be cautious and concerned about what activities their children might be involved with.

“Cyber technology has proven itself to be a double-edged sword. On the one hand it enables development, whilst on the other hand, greater internet accessibility poses major risks, especially for children,” the defence minister said.

“Parents should take an extra effort to monitor their children’s online activities. Parents and guardians need to know who their children are chatting with. They need to know what websites their children visit. We need to keep our children safe.”

News24

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http://www.news24.com/SouthAfrica/News/State-agencies-monitoring-cyberspace-for-ISIS-recruitment-20150414

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Eugene Kaspersky posts from 2050

In his imagined blog entry from the year 2050, the Kaspersky Lab founder imagines an era of digital immunity

In recent years, digital systems have moved up to a whole new level. No longer assistants making life easier for us mere mortals, they’ve become the basis of civilisation — the very framework keeping the world functioning properly in 2050.

This quantum leap forward has generated new requirements for the reliability and stability of artificial intelligence. Although some cyberthreats still haven’t become extinct since the romantic era around the turn of the century, they’re now dangerous only to outliers who for some reason reject modern standards of digital immunity.

The situation in many ways resembles the fight against human diseases. Thanks to the success of vaccines, the terrible epidemics that once devastated entire cities in the twentieth century are a thing of the past.

However, that’s where the resemblance ends. For humans, diseases like the plague or smallpox have been replaced by new, highly resistant “post-vaccination” diseases; but for the machines, things have turned out much better. This is largely because the initial designers of digital immunity made all the right preparations for it in advance. In doing so, what helped them in particular was borrowing the systemic approaches of living systems and humans.

One of the pillars of cyber-immunity today is digital intuition, the ability of AI systems to make the right decisions in conditions where the source data are clearly insufficient to make a rational choice.

But there’s no mysticism here: Digital intuition is merely the logical continuation of the idea of machine learning. When the number and complexity of related self-learning systems exceeds a certain threshold, the quality of decision-making rises to a whole new level — a level that’s completely elusive to rational understanding. An “intuitive solution” results fromthe superimposition of the experience of a huge number of machine-learning models, much like the result of the calculations of a quantum computer.

So, as you can see, it has been digital intuition, with its ability to instantly, correctly respond to unknown challenges that has helped build the digital security standards of this new era.  

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M-Net to film Deon Meyer novel

A television adaptation of Deon Meyer’s crime novel Trackers is to be co-produced by M-Net, Germany’s public broadcaster ZDF, and HBO subsidiary Cinemax, which will also distribute the drama series worldwide. 

Trackers is an unprecedented scripted television venture and MultiChoice and M-Net are proud to chart out new territory … allowing local and international talent to combine their world-class story-telling and production skills,” says MultiChoice CEO of General Entertainment, Yolisa Phahle.

HBO, Cinemax, and M-Net also launched a Producers Apprenticeship programme last year when the Cinemax series Warrior, coming to M-Net in July, was filmed in South Africa. Some other Cinemax originals screened on M-Net include Banshee, The Knick and Strike Back. 

“Cinemax is delighted to partner with M-Net and ZDF in bringing Deon Meyer’s unforgettable characters and storytelling—all so richly rooted in the people and spectacular geography of South Africa—to screens around the world,” says Len Amato, President, HBO Films, Miniseries, and Cinemax.    

Filming for Trackers has already started in  locations across South Africa and the co-production partners have been working together on all aspects of production 

Deon Meyer, whose award-winning crime novels have been translated into more than 20 languages, with millions of copies sold worldwide, serves as a supervising screenwriter and co-producer; British writer Robert Thorogood (Death in Paradise) is the showrunner. The team of South African writers on the project includes the Mitchell’s Plain playwright, screenwriter and director Amy Jephta (Die Ellen Pakkies Story) and local writer/directors Kelsey Egen and Jozua Malherbe. 

The cast for the six-part miniseries includes Ed Stoppard, Rolanda Marais, James Alexander and Thapelo Mokoena. 

Trackers will make its debut on M-Net 101 in October 2019 and will also be available on MultiChoice’s on-demand service, Showmax. The six-part drama series is produced by UK production company Three River Studios as well as South Africa’s Scene 23. 

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