“Ipsa scientia potestas est,” 16th-century philosopher and statesman Sir Frances Bacon famously wrote in his 1597 work, Meditationes Sacrae. Knowledge itself is power. The aphorism, cliché as it may be, takes on a palpable truth in times of war.
Just ask the people of Mariupol, a city in southeastern Ukraine, where Russia’s devastating attacks have cut off the flow of information in and out of the city. Meanwhile, in Russia, the government has banned Facebook and Instagram amid its crackdown on news without the state’s stamp of approval. But as we explained this week, building a full China-style splinternet is far more difficult than the Kremlin might like to admit.
We further explored the power of information—and the power to keep information secret—this week with a look at a new idea for creating digital cash in the US—no, not Bitcoin or any other cryptocurrency. Actual digital cash that, crucially, has the same built-in privacy as the bills in your actual wallet. We also dove into the pitfalls of knowing where your children and other loved ones are at any moment through the use of tracking apps, which you should probably stop using. And following last week’s approval of the Digital Markets Act in Europe, we parsed the tricky business of forcing encrypted messaging apps to work together, as the law requires.
To round things out, we got our mitts on some leaked internal documents that shed new light on the Lapsus$ extortion gang’s Okta hack. And we took a look at how researchers used a decommissioned satellite to broadcast hacker TV.
But that’s not all, folks. Read along below for the rest of the top security stories of the week.