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North Korea accused of hacking Pfizer for Covid-19 vaccine data

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North Korea attempted to steal Covid-19 vaccine technology from US pharmaceutical company Pfizer, according to South Korean intelligence officials.

It is currently unclear as to what, if any, data was stolen.

South Korea’s National Intelligence Agency privately briefed lawmakers about the alleged attack, reported local news agency Yonhap.

The BBC has asked Pfizer for a comment but it has yet to respond .

When will it be my turn to be vaccinated?
North Korea and Russia hackers ‘targeting vaccine’
North Korea has yet to report a single case of coronavirus.

However, the country is due to receive two million doses of the AstraZeneca-Oxford vaccine in the coming weeks.

North Korea closed its borders in January last year soon after the virus began to emerge in China.

In November, Microsoft said at least nine health organisations including Pfizer had been targeted by state-backed organisations in North Korea and Russia.

It said North Korean groups dubbed Zinc and Cerium, and a Russian group nicknamed Fancy Bear, were responsible.

The Kremlin has denied targeting other countries’ vaccine research.

While many of the break-in attempts failed, Microsoft warned at the time that some had been successful.

Since the start of the pandemic, states have been deploying their hackers as part of the coronavirus crisis.

Some of this has been intelligence gathering and some of it the theft of intellectual property to gain advantage.

North Korea was always likely to be one of the most active in this field.

It is a closed society but one with advanced cyber-units, which have been willing to target other countries not only for secrets but even just for money.

Last year in the UK, the National Cyber Security Centre threw a protective arm around vaccine research.

This year, the focus has shifted more towards protecting the supply chain and rollout of a vaccine.

And there is no doubt that because of what is at stake, the pharmaceutical and health sectors are going to be on the cyber front lines for the foreseeable future.

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APPLY NOW FOR $5000 IN THE 2023 TONY ELUMELU FOUNDATION ENTREPRENEURSHIP PROGRAMME!

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DEADLINE: 31 March 2023

Apply for the 2023 Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship Programme

The Tony Elumelu Foundation (TEF), the leading philanthropy empowering young African entrepreneurs across all 54 African countries, has opened applications for the 2023 TEF Entrepreneurship Programme on www.TEFConnect.net. African entrepreneurs with business ideas or existing businesses under 5 years, are encouraged to apply now for $5000 seed capital, mentorship, business management training and more on the 2023 Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship Programme.

As the foremost champion of entrepreneurship in Africa, the Tony Elumelu Foundation is empowering women and men across the African continent through entrepreneurship to catalyse economic growth, drive poverty eradication and ensure job creation. The Foundation’s mission is rooted in the philosophy of Africapitalism, which positions the private sector as the key enabler of economic and social wealth creation in Africa. Through TEFConnect, the Foundation’s proprietary digital platform, it has provided capacity-building support, advisory and market linkages, to over 1.5 million Africans.

The Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship Programme is open to entrepreneurs across Africa: new start-ups and existing young businesses, operating in any sector. Prospective applicants should apply now on the digital networking hub for African entrepreneurs, www.tefconnect.net

Benefits

  • Non-refundable seed funding of USD 5,000
  • A world-class business training for 12 weeks
  • Access to TEF Alumni network with over 15,000 entrepreneurs across Africa
  • Mentoring and networking opportunities via Africa’s largest digital platform for Entrepreneurs, TEFConnect.net

Application Requirements

  • Applicants must be 18 years of age and above
  • All businesses must be business ideas or an early stage company in the range of 0 to 5 years old

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Laureen beating the odds to become a star

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Lauren wants to use her talent to preach against teenage pregnancy, drug abuse and the likes.

Musician turned politician Robert Kyagulanyi Ssentamu alias Bobi Wine in one of his songs “ghetto” sung ” Muzalawa ghetto…mwerabira talanta eziva mu ghetto kyokka buli talanta wano esibuka mu ghetto…” Meaning slums are underrated yet many talents come from them.

When you take a walk in law income settlements commonly known as the ghetto, you will realize that there are many young people wasting their lives on drugs. You will also meet young dreamers trying to figure out the right path to get them to their dreams.

Laureen Athieno 15 years in form one has lived her life in the slums of Namuwongo. Among others, these slums are characterised with domestic violence, drug abuse, teenage pregnancies and child labor.

Coming from such an environment has not stopped her from dreaming as she drowns her sorrows in acting and dancing.

Athieno Laureen in an interview session organized by Touch the slum teens on their online campaign

“I want to become the best entertainer years to come. I have great talent and passion for both acting and dancing. It will also feel great if I add fashion designing to that since I am already getting skills from Touch the slum ( GAF UGANDA).” She reveals

Even though comedian Taata Sam is not a dancer, Lauren says seeing him perfom his comedy on television inspires her. 

” One of my hobbies is watching television and Everytime I see Taata Sam on TV, I tell myself that I have to get there one day. With dance, I always participated in MDD at school so this keeps me busy.” She says

Lauren adds ” I have seen many young people’s lives get out of hand because of drugs. Some girls are impregnated just because they lack basic needs at home. I however tell any man who aproaches me to wait after I finish school then come to my parents to make everything official.”

Like any other parent, Lauren’s mother at first did not support the idea of her joining the entertainment world with fear that her daughter will not balance books with film/ dance. The young girl had to prove her self.

Angel in acting as a victim of Teen pregnancy, Watch video by clicking on video link ihttps://youtu.be/_OE93aXxJRY

” I know books are very important but the situation we are in is very challenging. I am in form one and my young siblings need the education too. Sometimes we live on empty stomachs at home. When it rains, our homes get flooded. I believe using my talent will help my family out because there are children already who are earning on their talents.” She says

Ronald Eligu, founder of Touch the slum ( GAF UGANDA) says young people like Lauren have beautiful dreams that will help them defeat poverty. However, the fact that many of these children are already occupied with business duties as some help their mothers in bread winning for the rest of the family hardens the entire process.

Eligu Ronald, founder of Touch the slum Organisation ( GAF UGANDA)

Lauren wants to use her talent to preach against teenage pregnancy, drug abuse and the likes. Watch her first video here https://youtu.be/_OE93aXxJRY

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