February 5, 2018
Security Measures at The Winter Olympics Include Drones That Catch Drones – North Korea and South Korea
Organizers of the 2018 Winter Olympics in South Korea have plenty to deal with, including the late addition of North Korea as a participant. But it’s not just events on the ground they must worry about. Security personnel will be looking skyward, as well—for suspicious drones. As part of safety precautions, drone-catching drones will be on hand to cast nets over any dangerous-looking unmanned aerial vehicles that approach the Olympics grounds in Pyeongchang. One fear is that an unauthorized drone could be used to deliver a bomb to disrupt the proceedings. Even without the Olympics, South Korea has been beefing up its drone expertise. In December it announced a combat unit centered around weaponized drones, to be used for reconnaissance and other missions in a possible conflict with North Korea. The North, for its part, has sent spy drones over the border, some of which have been recovered by the South after breaking down before they could cross back. And a state-run think tank in the South said last March that the North is presumed to have about 1,000 drones ready for airborne terror attacks, possibly involving chemical or biological weapons.
ICE to Gain Access to License Plate Tracking Database – United States
The Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency has officially gained agency-wide access to a nationwide license plate recognition database. The source of the database is not named in ICE’s contract, finalized earlier this month, but is reported to be Vigilant Solutions. Vigilant declined to confirm any contract with ICE. Vigilant collects few photos itself but has a database of more than 2 billion license plate photos, created from data collecting from private partners like vehicle repossession agencies as well as local law enforcement agencies. Vigilant’s immense database generates as many as 100 million sightings per month, and each sighting is tagged with a date, time, and GPS coordinates. There are two ways ICE agents would be able to use that database. For example, ICE agents could choose to be instantly alerted whenever a new record of a specific plate is found. In addition, by searching past records, agents could find every place a license plate has been spotted in the last five years. These records would provide a detailed record of the target’s movements that could point to places the target lives or often goes.
A Legal Fracas That Could Test Silicon Valley’s Spirit – California, United States
After nearly a year of legal wrangling, dramatic last-minute delays and uncooperative witnesses, a jury will soon hear arguments in Waymo’s high-profile lawsuit accusing Uber of stealing driverless car technology. The trial, which started with jury selection in the US District Court, Northern District of California, pits Waymo, a spin-off of Google and one of the most successful companies from the dot-com boom, against Uber, the ride-hailing giant and today’s most valuable start-up. At stake is a leading role in the intense competition among tech and auto companies to create autonomous vehicles. The dispute hinges on the actions of a former star engineer at Google who started his own company and then sold it to Uber within a year. Did he steal thousands of Google computer files as he headed out the door and bring those files with him to Uber? The courtroom fight will most likely prompt a philosophical discussion over the entrepreneurial — some would say outlaw — spirit that has long made Silicon Valley tick. When called to testify, Levandowski is expected to exercise his Fifth Amendment right to avoid self-incrimination. He hasn’t cooperated with Uber’s lawyers, and Alsup has referred Levandowski to the federal prosecutors for possible theft of trade secrets. While it’s not clear whether the Justice Department is investigating his actions, federal investigators confirmed it was looking into Uber’s business practices.
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
To sign up for the complete daily G4S Corporate Risk Services Intelligence Bulletin, as well as regular intelligence and risk updates and news, click here to subscribe!