First National Drone Delivery Service Launched — in Rwanda

Rwandan Drone Delivery Service First of Its Kind

Rwandan President Paul Kagame on Friday launched the world’s first national drone delivery service at a ceremony in Kigali. This comes at a time when U.S. regulatory agencies are yet to clear any kind of commercial drone delivery service here in this country.

Rwandan Drone Delivery Service First of Its Kind

The drone delivery service will make up to 150 on-demand, emergency deliveries per day of life-saving blood. The blood will be delivered to 21 transfusing facilities located in the western half of the country, where poor roads and healthcare infrastructure make it difficult to reach patients in need.

But even if the delivery service isn’t here, the drones that helped launch it are built and operated by an American robotics company, Zipline of San Francisco, California. An international partnership between Zipline, UPS, Gavi (the Bill Gates-backed vaccine fund) and the Vaccine Alliance will help Rwanda quickly expand the types of lifesaving vaccines and medicines that can be delivered.

“Drones are very useful, both commercially and for improving services in the health sector. We are happy to be launching this innovative technology and to continue working with partners to develop it further,” said Pres. Kagame, according to the official release from UPS.

According to UPS, which has supported the project with a $1.1 million (USD) grant through The UPS Foundation, the commercial partnership between Rwanda and the companies is expected to save thousands of lives over the next three years. The partnership also hopes to use the knowledge gained in Rwanda to export this delivery service around the world.

“The shared belief in the ability to save lives through applied innovation, combined with Rwanda’s vision, is now not only poised to advance humanitarian logistics — and logistics as we know it — around the world, but also to save lives,” said Eduardo Martinez, president of The UPS Foundation and chief diversity and inclusion officer at UPS. Martinez’s remarks were also included in the company’s official release.

Image: UPS

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PM Narendra Modi Praises national Civil Aviation policy 2016

PM Narendra Modi Praises National Civil Aviation Policy 2016
PM Narendra Modi Praises national Civil Aviation coverage 2016
All India |Indo-Asian news service | up to date: June 15, 2016 20:forty two IST
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PM Narendra Modi Praises countrywide Civil Aviation coverage 2016
top Minister Narendra Modi said that the national Civil Aviation coverage 2016 will “remodel” the aviationregion. (file picture)
NEW DELHI: top Minister Narendra Modi today stated that the country wide Civil Aviation policy 2016 will “transform” the aviation area and “significantly gain passengers”.

Commenting at the policy cleared by using the Union cupboard in advance within the day, PM Modi saidit would additionally assist in enhancing local connectivity in India.

“#CivilAviationPolicy gives an impetus to affordability, local connectivity, safety, infrastructure, which isimportant for #TransformingIndia,” the top minister wrote on Twitter.

“The #CivilAviationPolicy authorised these days via the cupboard will transform the sector & greatlybenefit passengers,” PM Modi brought.

earlier in the day, India unveiled its lengthy-awaited aviation policy with a roadmap to assist 300 million airtravelers in 5 years and steps to make air tour low cost and handy.

US Says National Guard May Join Cyber Offense Against Islamic State

US Says National Guard May Join Cyber Offense Against Islamic State

US Defense Secretary Ash Carter said the National Guard’s cyber squadrons will play an increasingly important role in assessing the vulnerabilities of US industrial infrastructure and could be asked to join the fight against Islamic State.

The National Guard – a reserve military force that resides in the states but can be mobilized for national needs – is a key part of the military’s larger effort to set up over 120 cyber squadrons to respond tocyber-attacks and prevent them.

One such unit, the 262nd squadron, is a 101-person team that includes employees of Microsoft Corp and Alphabet Inc’s Google. The unit is “famous throughout the country” for several high profile vulnerability assessments, Carter said at the Joint Base Lewis-McChord in Tacoma, Washington late on Friday.

He told reporters the squadron was not currently engaging in offensive cyber missions but could be in the future.

“Units like this can also participate in offensive cyber operations of the kind that I have stressed we are conducting, and actually accelerating, in Iraq and Syria, to secure the prompt defeat of ISIL, which we need to do and will do,” Carter said. “We’re looking for ways to accelerate that, and cyber’s one of them.”

The 262nd squadron’s work includes a study last year on the control system used by Snohomish County Public Utility District in Washington state, which helped the utility strengthen its security, and a 2010 case in which the US Air Force briefly lost contact with 50 Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missiles.

The 2010 assessment cost about $20,000 (roughly Rs. 13,41,000), much less than the $150,000 (roughly Rs. 1.01 crores) that a private sector company would likely charge, said Lieutenant Colonel Kenneth Borchers, deputy commander of the 252nd Cyber Operations Group, which oversees the 262nd squadron.

Borchers said the squadron is the only National Guard group that currently assesses industrial control systems, but it is now looking to train others. It is also studying the security of big weapons programs, such as the B-52 bomber.

Using National Guard units for such work made sense because it allowed the military to benefit from private sector cyber experts, Carter said.

“It brings in the high-tech sector in a very direct way to the mission of protecting the country,” he told reporters. “And we’re absolutely going to do more of it.”

© Thomson Reuters 2016

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Tags: Alphabet, Cyber Attacks, Google, Internet, Microsoft, US
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Chinese National Admits Hacking US Defense Firms

Chinese National Admits Hacking US Defense Firms

A Chinese national pleaded guilty Wednesday to charges stemming from the hacking of trade secrets from US defense contractors, including plans for transport and fighter jets, officials said.

Su Bin, 50, had been charged in a 2014 indictment with hacking into the computer networks of Boeing and other contractors, as part of a scheme to steal plans for the F-22 and F-35 fighter jets and C-17 transport aircraft.

In a plea agreement filed in a California federal court, Su admitted to conspiring with two unnamed persons in China from October 2008 to March 2014 to gain unauthorized access to the computer networks of defense firms to obtain “sensitive military information and to export that information illegally from the United States to China,” the Justice Department said in a statement.

Court documents did not indicate to whom Su was sending the plans, but the case highlighted growing concerns in the United States about Chinese hacking of American trade secrets, a topic which has been addressed by President Barack Obama and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping.

“Su Bin admitted to playing an important role in a conspiracy, originating in China, to illegally access sensitive military data, including data relating to military aircraft that are indispensable in keeping our military personnel safe,” Assistant Attorney General John Carlin said.

“This plea sends a strong message that stealing from the United States and our companies has a significant cost; we can and will find these criminals and bring them to justice.”

Arrested in Canada
Su was initially arrested in Canada in July 2014 on a warrant based on a US request. He waived extradition and was sent to the United States in February 2016.

Su Bin, also known as Stephen Su and Stephen Subin, was a China-based businessman in the aviation and aerospace fields.

According to prosecutors, Su would e-mail the co-conspirators pictures and other documents, with guidance regarding what persons, companies and technologies to target for hacking.

After the data was stolen, Su translated the information from English into Chinese.

Su and his co-conspirators each wrote, revised and emailed reports about the information and technology they had acquired “to the final beneficiaries of their hacking activities,” the Justice Department said.

Sentencing was set for July 13. Su faces a maximum penalty of five years in prison and a fine of $250,000 (roughly Rs. 1.8 crores) or twice the gross gain from the offense.

Last September, Obama and Xi addressed the issue of cyber theft at their Washington meeting, and both leaders agreed it was unacceptable.

Obama said after the talks that “we’ve agreed that neither the US or the Chinese government will conduct or knowingly support cyber-enabled theft of intellectual property.”

Xi said “China strongly opposes and combats the theft of commercial secrets and other kinds of hacking attacks.”

Analysts have been cautious, warning that it remained to be seen if Beijing would live up to its agreement to crack down on hacking.

One report by a cybersecurity firm said hackers linked to the Chinese government kept up efforts to break into US computer networks shortly after the cybersecurity agreement.

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Tags: China, Cyber Theft, Hack, Internet, Security, US
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