Science & Technology

184 Items

Security personnel surround Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro during an incident as he was giving a speech in Caracas on Saturday.

(Xinhua/AP)

Analysis & Opinions - The Washington Post

Drone Attacks Are Essentially Terrorism by Joystick

| Aug. 05, 2018

A failed assassination attempt against Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro on Saturday was mounted with explosive-armed drones, according to news reports. Nine days earlier, and on the other side of the world, terrorists claimed to have sent an armed drone to attack the international airport in Abu Dhabi, the capital of the United Arab Emirates. No one was killed in either case, and the circumstances of both remain murky. But a new and dangerous era in non-state-sponsored terrorism clearly has begun, and no one is adequately prepared to counter it.

Election Cyber Incident Communications Plan Template: International Edition

Adobe Stock

Report - Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard Kennedy School

Election Cyber Incident Communications Plan Template: International Edition

May 2018

This Template is primarily intended for use by political parties or campaigns as a foundation from which they can develop their own tailored communications response plans, which include best practices, recommended external response processes, and scenarios to anticipate an election cyber incident.

Photo of state and local election officials at D3P conference.

Benn Craig/Belfer Center

News - Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard Kennedy School

Election Officials from 38 States Learn to Fortify Elections Against Attacks

| Mar. 29, 2018

More than 120 election officials from 38 states gathered in Cambridge, Massachusetts, this week to participate in role-playing exercises that provided them with tips, tools, and training to fortify their election systems against cyber attacks and information operations. Organized by the Defending Digital Democracy Project (D3P) at Harvard Kennedy School’s Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, the two-day event featured a tabletop exercise (TTX) scenario for officials that simulated attacks on election systems ranging from hacks and social media misinformation to  manipulation of voter information and trust. The state and local election officials learned how to better prepare, defend, and respond to a range of attacks on the integrity of American elections and how to empower their colleagues back home with this knowledge as they prepare for the 2018 and 2020 elections.   

Former Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson, right, and Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, and former arrive for a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing in Washington on Wednesday, March 21, 2018. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

AP Photo/Andrew Harnik

Testimony - Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard Kennedy School

Jeh Johnson Testimony on Russian Interference in the 2016 U.S. Elections

| Mar. 23, 2018

In 2016 the Russian government, at the direction of Vladimir Putin himself, orchestrated cyberattacks on our Nation for the purpose of influencing the election that year – plain and simple. The experience should be a wake-up call for our Nation, as it highlighted cyber vulnerabilities in our political process, and in our election infrastructure itself. Now, with the experience fresh in our minds and clear in our rear-view mirror, the key question for our leaders at the national and state level is this: what are we doing about it? The matter is all the more urgent given the public testimony of our Nation’s intelligence chiefs last month, before this very Committee, that the Russians effort continues into the ongoing 2018 midterm election season.

Drone in clear sky

Public Domain Pictures

Analysis & Opinions - Real Clear Politics

Future of Drones Lies in Data, Not Delivery

| Mar. 19, 2018

One day, we imagine, drones will carry products right to consumers’ doorsteps. Retailers, supermarkets and restaurants will deploy squadrons of remotely controlled flying machines to deliver whatever people want whenever they want it.

At least that’s the popular lore. Unfortunately, the reality is different. For now, broad adoption of drone delivery is neither economical nor practical. Today’s commercial drones simply can’t carry anywhere near the weight of ground vehicles. They also are a lot more expensive to operate than trucks or trains. On top of that, air traffic controllers couldn’t manage them safely nor would the public tolerate them constantly buzzing their neighborhoods – even if they could be managed.

The future of drones is in the data not the products they can deliver.

FBI Headquarters

FBI, via Wikimedia Commons

Analysis & Opinions - The Washington Post

A ‘global game of whack-a-mole’: Overseas data rules are stuck in the 19th century

| Mar. 05, 2018

How should law enforcement officials deal with digital data that happens to be stored in a different country? If FBI agents, pursuing a subject who committed a crime in the United States, serve a valid court order on an American company, the government shouldn’t have to wait a year because the company happens to store the information overseas. Likewise, if the London police are investigating a local murder, the fact that they are seeking phone records from a communications provider located in the United States should not block them from doing their job. 

Sir John Sawers with Sec. Ash Carter and Amb. Nicholas Burns

Benn Craig/ Belfer Center

Analysis & Opinions

Conversations in Diplomacy: Sir John Sawers

| Mar. 01, 2018

In this installment of “Conversations in Diplomacy," the Future of Diplomacy Project's Faculty Director Nicholas Burns is joined by Sir John Sawers, the former Chief of the Secret Intelligence Service, MI6, for a conversation on tackling global security challenges in the digital age and the changing nature of intelligence agencies.