Assange's internet link intentionally severed by state party - WikiLeaks

WikiLeaks has activated “contingency plans” after its co-founder’s internet service was intentionally cut off by a state actor, the media organization said in a tweet.
 
@wikileaks Julian Assange's internet link has been intentionally severed by a state party. We have activated the appropriate contingency plans.

The internet is one of the few, if not only, available ways for Julian Assange, who has been locked up in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London for more than four years, to maintain contact with the outside world.

READ MORE: WikiLeaks cancels Assange’s live balcony appearance over ‘security concerns’

Facing extradition to Sweden over allegations of rape, which he denies, the Australian computer programmer has been holed up in the embassy in West London since 2012.

He claims the extradition is actually a bid to move him to a jurisdiction from which he can then be sent to the US, which is known to be actively investigating WikiLeaks. 

The unverified claims of state sabotage come as WikiLeaks continues to release damaging documents, most recently thousands of hacked emails from Hillary Clinton’s campaign manager John Podesta.

Earlier this month, Assange claimed his organization would aim to publish documents “every week” in the run up to US Election Day on November 8. 

Clinton’s campaign has made unsubstantiated claims that WikiLeaks is working with the Russian government to help defeat the Democrat in favor of Trump.

Last week the FBI reissued a statement saying it was working to “determine the accuracy, nature and scope” of cyber intrusions, but did not name any suspected perpetrators.

READ MORE : Podesta files: Top 10 revelations from leaked Clinton campaign emails

The ninth release of Podesta emails occurred on Sunday, bringing the total number of leaked files to over 12,000.

Among the hundreds of emails released are discussions about Clinton’s appeal among black voters, her email apologies, and Chelsea Clinton being described by one of her father’s longtime aides as a ‘backstabber’.

The batch also comes amid revelations of Clinton’s cozy relationship with the mainstream media, and how they work closely to control the media landscape and set up stories that show her in a favorable light.

Earlier this month, it emerged that Hillary Clinton reportedly wanted to “drone” WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange when she was the US secretary of state.

According to True Pundit, Clinton and the State Department were under pressure to silence the whistleblower in the months before WikiLeaks dumped some 250,000 diplomatic cables from 1966 to 2010, dubbed CableGate.

Unidentified State Department sources claimed Clinton asked “can’t we just drone this guy?”.

READ MORE: Hillary Clinton considered drone attack on Julian Assange - report

  • Published in World

Twitter planning 10,000-character limit for tweets

Twitter has hinted at plans to expand its character limit from 140 to 10,000. CEO Jack Dorsey tweeted that while the notorious 140-character limit was a “beautiful constraint”, change was being explored to respond to its users’ needs.
  • Published in World

Cuba now has 50 wi-fi hotspots

Cuba now has 50 wi-fi hotspotsHAVANA, Cuba, Nov 25 (acn) The Telecommunications Company of Cuba, ETECSA S.A by its Spanish acronym, opened from Tuesday another four WIFI areas for wireless Internet access, located in parks and urban areas of public high influx, Granma newspaper says.

The new areas are located in parks Rubén Bravo, in Holguin province; Calixto Garcia, in Granma province; and Monaco, in Havana; in addition to the Central and 14th pavilions of EXPOCUBA fairground in the capital.

With these new areas there are 50 WIFI public zones throughout the country and it is expected to create five others before the end of the year, and this will be communicated in due course.

For information and assistance on this path to the Internet, users can call to 118, commercial information service.

  • Published in Now

Cuba: New Wi-Fi Spots will Extend Use of Internet

ETECSA reminds of the possibility offered by Computing Clubs as an alternative Internet browsing. Highlighting the advantages of permanent cards for the Nauta service and specifies that Wi-Fi spots will grow before year end and rates for the use of Internet will gradually drop.

Cuba has the political will to continue advancing in the computerization process and bring these services closer to the population, vice minister for Communications Wilfredo González assured yesterday on a TV show devoted to this important topic.

González informed that since June 4, 2013, at the beginning of the amplification process, there are today more than 3 millions Cubans who have access to Internet and approximately 1 million Nauta users.

The intention is to keep encouraging, he said, the infrastructure in communications, either wired or wireless, and boost the broadband development, quality guarantee. The economic-financial elements mark the development of these goals, he finished.

He mentioned 35 projects of greater impact in the development of technologies considered basic. He said these projects are supported in two fundamental premises: to create capacities and technological infrastructure and at the same time to consider technological security and sustainability. These 35 projects are considered as the Red Cuba platform.

The banking system appears among these projects, the computerization of public records, to this purpose is necessary to computerize the primary registers – he stressed -, as well as that of digital TV. As for digital TV he said that more than 500 thousand decoding boxes have already been bought.

ETECSA’s Executive Director, Mayra Arevich Machín, underlined that the development of communications infrastructure depends significantly on how sustainable is done. She emphasized that "the development of telecommunications in Cuba must follow the same pace of economy."

She highlighted the importance of security to avoid computer attacks. We cannot risk our economy neither the security of services. Therefore, we must work to keep our applications with security and sustainability."

Arevich remembered that since year 2000 the development of Internet began in Cuba and she emphasized the important premise of improving the infrastructure and bandwidth of entities. Today, she added, most Cuban ministries can load their applications in data centers.

Among the goals achieved this year she mentioned the work in the integration of universities, as well as the modernization of the Infomed platform. It’s something we are very proud of, she commented.

The directive of the Cuban company made public the inclination of users for the Nauta temporary account, which have sold 3,8 millions approximately. Nevertheless, she called the attention on the advantages of the permanent account whose one-year duration allows the owner to recharge through bonus. Arevich insisted in that the permanent account offers greater facilities, not trips to sale offices and turning to resellers' as option.

There are nearly 3 million cell phones right now - it has been an explosion in just a few years, - and almost a million clients use the Nauta mail.

The Wi-Fi Spots

ETECSA’s Executive Director, Mayra Arevich, expressed the intention of increasing the number of Wi-Fi spots which are presently 35.

Questioned about the practice of having several users with a single account, she clarified that, although it’s doable, is counterproductive to the quality of the service they get because for better results a certain bandwidth is needed.

There are a few Wi-Fi spots that do not comply with all the conditions so people can navigate comfortably. For the coming spots are intended to make previous consultations to municipal and provincial organizations to achieve greater comfort.

Regarding the Nauta service rates, she said that the policy to follow is the gradual drop in the prices which went from 4.50 cuc per hour to 2 cuc. “We know it is high, she said, it depends on the system capacity, but we will continue lowering the rates. We’ll look for special offers for the permanent accounts".

The computer sciences and other windows

The vice-dean of production at the University of Computer Sciences (UCS), Reynaldo Rosado Roselló, assured in the television that today the potential of development of computer sciences in Cuba gathers 30 software developing companies, which today works in teams and strategic alliances. 

As key element of this task he mentioned the human resources. He remembered that 13 years ago Fidel had the vision of creating the UCS to give crash courses to computer programmers and today we can speak of a software industry, because we have an elevated number of computer engineers and from other similar studies.

He mentioned 128 projects developed by the UCS, an atypical university since it’s an educational and productive center at the same time while it works supporting the Cuban software industry.

Regarding the Young Computing and Electronic Club, created in 1987, its directress, Anamaris Solórzano, highlighted that among their priorities appear the technical support to the Cuban encyclopedia Ecured, with about 200 thousand daily visits.

It has also been created the portable Ecured and the Ecumobile (for android 2.2 or higher) in two versions, with and without images, the second can be downloaded from the net.

During the television program it was announced the creation of the Union of Computer Engineers of Cuba, a request from the IT and communications professionals of the country, said Ailyn Febles, vice-dean of the UCS and coordinator for the creation process of the new organization.

At present nearly 4 thousand professionals have been registered and creation process must conclude next January. “It will be, referred Febles, an organization leading the free software and defender of the technological sovereignty and pioneer of the technological breakthroughs attained by Cuba."

Last, but not least, it was approached the aspect of cyber security.  

Since 2014 until 2015, more than 176 nations have been notified on cybernetic attacks carried out against our country. Hence a key element is to promote the international solidarity in this regard. Cooperation ties have been established with more than 20 nations, including China and Russia. Cuba supports the use of the cyberspace with peaceful ends.

The conclusion of the program aimed at continuing advancing in the computerization of the Cuban society and the access of the population to new technologies, always cyber security keeping in mind and without forgetting the importance of these breakthroughs for the development of the economy, sciences and the entire work of society. It was noted that the United States has been the main obstacle for the development of telecommunications and computer science in Cuba.

Internet: Cubans Navigate with Wi-Fi

With the goal of widening access to Internet users, the Cuban Telecommunications Company (Etecsa) opened today 35 Internet rooms with Wi-Fi technology in public spaces of several cities, besides lowering the rate for that purpose.  

The chosen Wi-Fi spots in the Cuban capital were La Rampa, from Malecon Avenue to Yara movies; the parks on 51 Ave., in La Lisa, and Fe del Valle, in Galiano and San Rafael streets, Centro Habana; the Amphitheater of Marianao and the Promenade in the Pan-American Villa, in Cojímar, East of Havana.  

A quick tour through ETECSA facilities allowed us to see the long lines of interested people in signing contracts for local Nauta accounts. Signing this contract and using cell phones, laptops or tablets will allow them to hook up to Internet and communicate with different parts of the world.  

Many were motivated to take these new services since the announcement that, starting this Wednesday, the price on the hour for Internet navigation would have a discount of up to 2 CUC (Cuban money equivalent to the dollar) for Nauta users, an approximate cut back of the 50% regarding the established rates.  

As informed, the connection speed for wireless Internet will be 1 Mbps for each user, on this regard several interviewees said that although it’s quick "when there are more than 100 people connected in a single spot, the servers get overloaded".

Besides showing concern for this clogging, the Wi-Fi spot in La Rampa, young Carlos Manuel Castillo García commented to AIN how positive were these steps for the computerization of society, "rates are yet far away from the affordability of many Cubans whose wages aren’t enough".    

  • Published in Cuba

Cuba to Expand Internet Connectivity, Lower Prices

The telecommunication company said it is opening 35 internet centers across the country and halving the prices of an hour of internet.

Cuba said that it was expanding internet coverage in the country and dropping the price of the hourly usage of internet, the local Cuban daily Juventud Rebelde newspaper reported Thursday.

The newspaper said that the telecommunication authority in the country has plans to open 35 internet centers around the country. According to the Communications Director of at the Cuban Telecommunication Company Luis Manuel Díaz Naranjo, the centers are expected to be ready by July 1 as his organization is finishing up “final settings to ensure the quality of the service.”

The centers would allow people who own WiFi-enabled devices, such as phones or laptops or tablets, to connect freely to the internet.

Diaz Naranjo also said that as of the July 1, the price of one hour of internet will be reduced to US$2 from US$4.50. He said he was hoping that the new measure would increase the population's connectivity to the internet.

“The internet space is opening up here and I think this is a significant step,” Norges Rodríguez, a blogger and telecommunications engineer in Havana told the Guardian. “A year or two ago, we didn’t have anything like this.”

The news comes days after executives from the social media site Twitter visited Cuba and held talks with Cuban officials about expanding into the country. Twitter officials proposed that they would set up the infrastructure that let users tweet via texts. Officials from Google have also made similar approaches.

The latest development in the internet services in Cuba comes few weeks after the United States formally removed Havana from its list of terrorist countries, following decades of embargo and sanctions against the Latin American country. The removal from the list and the subsequent lifting of sanctions would allow Cuba and international companies, including ones in the U.S. to form trade deals and agreements.


  • Published in Cuba
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