Round-up of news stories from across the EU 2.9.16

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Apple boosts iPhone security after Israeli spyware reveals startling weaknesses (Times of Israel, link):


"An Israeli digital arms company has prompted tech giant Apple to boost security for its mobile operating system after developing a highly sophisticated spyware package that allows complete control of iPhone devices.

The spyware — code-named Pegasus — took advantage of previously undisclosed weaknesses in Apple’s mobile operating system, iOS 9.3.5., according to reports published Thursday by the San Francisco-based Lookout smartphone security company and internet watchdog group Citizen Lab."

Bulgaria Sets National Security as Top Priority (Balkan Insight, link):

"Bulgarian MPs on Thursday adopted their annual report on the state of national security, which listed the greatest risks in 2015 as the refugee crisis, the wars in Syria and Ukraine and terrorism.

The parties in Bulgaria’s governing coalition, GERB, and its junior partner, the Reformist Bloc, also declared their commitment to complete the full four-year mandate of the government, naming national security as a top priority at a meeting on Thursday.

The other priorities agreed on were financial stability and preparations for the Bulgarian Presidency of the European Council, which is due to start in January 2018."

Czechoslovak communist leaders sued for Germans killed at border (Prague Daily Monitor, link):

"Former Czechoslovak communist leader Milos Jakes, 94, and premier Lubomir Strougal, 91, are among 67 Czech and Slovak citizens sued for the deaths of five East German at the border in the communist era, Platform of European Memory and Conscience head Neela Winkelmann said today.

The Platform filed the criminal complaint with German Attorney General Peter Frank on August 18, she said."

French kids face new anti-terror guidelines at start of school year (France 24, link):

"Around 12 million children went back to school across France on Thursday as the government unveiled a series of security procedures and guidelines designed to help teachers in the event of a terrorist attack.

An otherwise normal return to classes, or la rentrée as it is known in France, has been marked by tighter screening of people entering school buildings, more security drills and a greater police presence.

School officials in France’s national education system have asked teachers and other staff to remain “extremely” vigilant about the threat of a terror attack."

Kuwait’s new DNA collection law is scarier than we ever imagined (Fusion, link):

"But after an ISIS-linked man ignited a bomb in a Shiite mosque in Kuwait last year, killing 27, the mother of all troubling laws was rushed through the country’s Parliament. The law requires that all citizens, residents and visitors to the country submit DNA samples to enter or stay in the country. It was passed in the name of national security and in helping identify victims of large scale attacks.

Only recently are we starting to understand just how powerful and potentially intrusive the new DNA law, which is expected to fully go into effect late this year, will be. In a wealthy nation where citizenship is passed down by bloodline and is extremely restricted, officials have been letting on about a mission creep that will give citizenship enforcement an unprecedented scientific grounding, and possibly leave thousands stripped of their nationalities."

Macedonian Journalists Demand Release of Zoran Bozinovski (Balkan Insight, link):

"Issuing a call for the protest on Thursday, the president of the Journalists Association, Naser Selmani, recalled that Macedonia and Turkey are the only countries in Europe where journalists are still imprisoned for their work.

The Journalists Association has called Bozinovski's arrest "politically motivated and aimed at silencing journalists who had the courage to expose scandals about the authorities".

The Journalists Union and the Macedonia Institute for Media, as well as other organisations, have supported the protest."

SPAIN: Spanish Jihadist chatter on the rise say experts, with sights set on Spain (El País, link):

"Spanish counter-terrorism authorities have issued an alert about “the increase in mentions of our country” in recent propaganda material produced by the so-called Islamic State (ISIS), including text documents, videos and graphs.

Jihadists are now writing in Spanish, and even analyzing the political situation in Spain through written reviews of election results."

The Panopticons are coming! And they’ll know when we think the grass is greener (The Conversation, link):

"We used eye tracking – a technology that allows us to look deeply into exactly what you are looking at or paying attention to. Eye trackers follow your gaze as you look naturally around a scene. We see where your eye dwells and what things you skip over.

Where you stop is called a fixation and where the eye darts around is called a saccade. During saccades the eye is effectively blind. Watching what you stop to pay attention to and what you “don’t see” can tell us a lot about what might be going on inside your mind – what is driving your eyes to move about the way they do."

UK: Inquest told Austrailian hanged himself at Glen Parva Young Offenders Institution (Leicester Mercury, link):

"A paramedic has told an inquest into the death of a prisoner found hanged at Glen Parva Young Offenders Institution that staff seemed to be oblivious to the scale of the emergency on his arrival.

Liam Lambert, 20, was found in his cell on March 19, last year.

He died five days later at Leicester Royal Infirmary, having never regained consciousness. when his life support machine was turned off."

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