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opinion

Nadine Dorries’ password sharing violates Parliament’s cyber security policy

Nadine Dorries password sharing among her staff is in violation of Parliament s cyber security policy. The Conservative MP revealed she shares her Parliamentary digital log ins with around four members of staff1 in order to handle the high volume of virtual correspondence she receives every day.

In common with other organisations, Parliament has a cyber security policy that applies to all users of its digital services, including Members, their staff and parliamentary staff, a Parliamentary spokesperson told i . In line with good practice, this policy includes a requirement not to share passwords.

Nadine Dorries' Password Sharing Violates Parliament's Cyber Security PolicyCyber security: not a Parliamentary concern, it would seem | Photo: PA

Ms Dorries made the comments on Twitter as she defended Damian Green, who is currently facing calls to step down as the investigation into whether he viewed pornography on his work laptop2 intensifies.

My staff log onto my computer on my desk with my login every day . Including interns on exchange programmes, she said . For the officer on BBC News just now to claim that the computer on Green s desk was accessed, and therefore it was Green is utterly preposterous! In response to an online backlash berating her for poor security practices, Ms Dorries attempted to downplay her importance in Westminster, adding: You don t have a team of four to six staff answering the 300 emails you receive every day.

Flattered by number of people on here who think I m part of the Government and have access to government docs .

I m a back bench MP two Westminster-based computers in a shared office, she later added.

On my computer, there is a shared email account . That s it . Nothing else . Sorry to disappoint ! All my staff have my login details . A frequent shout when I manage to sit at my desk myself is, what is the password?

Nadine Dorries' Password Sharing Violates Parliament's Cyber Security PolicyAmber Rudd: not a fan of encryption (Photo: Getty)

Fellow Tory MP Nick Boles weighed in to offer his support, adding I often forget my password and have to ask my staff what it is, while James Clayton, a producer for the BBC s Newsnight, claimed it is extremely common for MPs to share their parliamentary login details with their staff . The House of Commons was hit by a sustained cyber attack in June3, targeting MP accounts with weak passwords and blocking their owners from accessing them.

A handbook for MPs and their staff4 even explicitly states passwords should not be shared, a sentiment echoed by the House of Commons Staff Handbook on Information Security Responsibilities5. The same advice is recommended by cyber security experts the fewer people in possession of a password, the more secure the account will be.

The cyber security industry makes the point about human fallibility time and again for obvious reasons . Passwords tend to be one of the basics when training staff in cyber security and for good reason, as shared or re-used passwords create weaknesses in an organisations cyber defence, said Tony Pepper, chief executive of data security company Eggress.

From there, a creative attacker can move sideways through a network, implement phishing attacks or undertake any number of malicious actions .

An enterprise can deploy all the advanced tech it likes to track, stop and forensically analyse attacks but if people make mistakes, these are neutered.

References

  1. ^ shares her Parliamentary digital log ins with around four members of staff (inews.co.uk)
  2. ^ viewed pornography on his work laptop (inews.co.uk)
  3. ^ sustained cyber attack in June (inews.co.uk)
  4. ^ handbook for MPs and their staff (www.parliament.uk)
  5. ^ House of Commons Staff Handbook on Information Security Responsibilities (www.parliament.uk)

Republic vows to oppose amnesty for Troubles security forces

  • Republic vows to oppose amnesty for Troubles security forces

    BelfastTelegraph.co.uk

    The Irish government will oppose any form of amnesty for security force members as part of measures to address the legacy of the Troubles. https://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/news/northern-ireland/republic-vows-to-oppose-amnesty-for-troubles-security-forces-36342375.html

    https://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/news/northern-ireland/article36342373.ece/2cacf/AUTOCROP/h342/2017-11-22_new_36441499_I2.JPG

  • Email1

The Irish government will oppose any form of amnesty for security force members as part of measures to address the legacy of the Troubles. Dublin last night pledged to challenge the statute of limitations proposal which is to be floated in a British Government public consultation document.

Human rights and victims groups also came out strongly against the move. An Irish Department of Foreign Affairs spokesman warned it would “not look favourably” on any form of amnesty for security forces or paramilitaries.

“There are no amnesties from prosecution provided for in the Good Friday Agreement or any subsequent agreements including the Stormont House Agreement,” he said.

“The government’s position is and will remain that the rule of law, including the requirement under Article 2 of the European Convention on Human Rights, for effective investigations of unlawful killings, must be upheld by all responsible authorities.” Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams accused London of an “act of bad faith” and said neither his party nor the Irish government had been consulted about the proposal while the SDLP and Alliance also voiced their opposition. Amnesty International said any statute of limitations imposed to block investigations for killings or torture carried out by the security forces would be “an utter betrayal of victims’ fundamental rights to justice”.

Relatives For Justice said the proposal was “a slap in the face to victims of state violence – it once again casts them as second class citizens”. A range of mechanisms to deal with the Troubles legacy were agreed by the parties in the 2014 Stormont House Agreement – an amnesty was not among them. The agreed proposals included a new independent investigatory unit, a truth recovery body and an oral archive.

They were put on hold due to ongoing political disagreement with republicans fearing the UK Government would cite national security as a reason to withhold documents from victims’ families. Secretary of State James Brokenshire announced in September that he was planning to launch a public consultation exercise in an attempt to move the situation on. It was expected to focus on the Stormont House Agreement mechanisms, but Sinn Fein emerged from its meeting with Prime Minister Theresa May (above) yesterday claiming that a new statute of limitation proposal had been inserted into the consultation document.

A Northern Ireland Office spokesman said the Government believed the Stormont House Agreement proposals still represented the “best means” to address legacy issues. However, he said that for it to be an “open and meaningful consultation” the public should have its say on alternative approaches, such as the statute of limitations proposal. Support for an amnesty is strong among DUP and Tory MPs . However, UUP MLA Doug Beattie (inset) said legal experts believed it would “inevitably have to be extended to cover all Troubles-related deaths and open the door to a general amnesty for everyone, including terrorists”.

He added: “We need to be very careful that in our desire to prevent former police officers and soldiers from being the victims of a witch hunt, we do not inadvertently open the door to an amnesty for the very terrorists they risked their lives to defeat.”

SDLP MLA Dolores Kelly added: “The British Government cannot allow any amnesty for any violent perpetrators.

“Victims and survivors of the Troubles deserve truth and justice . The British state and others must deliver that justice .

No-one should be off-limits to the rule of law.” Alliance Leader Naomi Long said: “Justice and the rule of law cannot be adjusted to make people differently accountable for their actions.

“In all cases, we should follow the evidence to wherever that leads.

“Members of the armed forces should be treated exactly the same as anyone else in a similar situation.”

Belfast Telegraph

References

  1. ^ Email (www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk)

Heavy security blanketed Las Vegas Marathon in wake of shooting

Police had 350 officers on the ground and used dump trucks, buses and other large vehicles as barriers to protect the crowds, Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Captain Andy Walsh told CNN affiliate KTNV1.

There were also counter-sniper surveillance posts along the route and coverage from the police department’s helicopter unit, Walsh said. The city also worked to install 800 steel posts along the Strip as part of larger plan to keep pedestrians and vehicles apart, KSNV reported.

The Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon2 began at 4:30 p.m . local time (7:30 p.m . ET) and was expected to draw 40,000 runners from more than 70 countries, CNN affiliate KLAS3 reported.

Organizers billed it as “a unique opportunity for marathoners,” saying the race starts at sunset, when “the city comes to life with lights shining like you’ve never seen before.” Few runners canceled their registrations in wake of last month’s shooting, Cruz told KSNV. Participants were warned to expect a greater security presence than in years past . Runners were funneled into a blocked-off starting area, where their bibs were checked and confirmed both upon entry and at the starting line. Some say the shooting has given the marathon new meaning.

Esther Reincke told KTNV4 that she dedicated her marathon to Cameron Robinson, her coworker and running buddy who was killed in the shooting.

“I can run now and Cameron can’t . That’s really moving for me, to have somebody that was so young and so full of life and really just getting his life going,” Reincke said.

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References

  1. ^ KTNV (www.ktnv.com)
  2. ^ Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon (www.runrocknroll.com)
  3. ^ KLAS (www.lasvegasnow.com)
  4. ^ Esther Reincke told KTNV (www.ktnv.com)