The Malta Independent 12 May 2021, Wednesday

Digital protection

Alfred Sant MEP Monday, 19 April 2021, 08:00 Last update: about 23 days ago

The chairman of the American Central Bank – or better the Federal Reserve Board – made a statement during a televised interview that really surprised me. He confessed that the greatest financial threat at present, in his view and that of his colleagues, is not the possibility that the debt which governments are piling up to counter the threat of the Covid-19 pandemic will overwhelm national financial systems, including that of the US.

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Rather in his view, the most disturbing possibility as of now, is that criminal activity of one kind or another would succceed to completely disrupt the world financial system... covering global payments, share dealing and bank transfers. 

Overall the system relies on computer software and the internet to make things happen. This dependency has increased hugely since the pandemic took over our lives. In short time, criminals or others could invade it. Measures are much needed to ensure the protection – resilience seems to be the right technical word – to face off such attacks.

The problem is that no guarantee exists that the measures being envisaged will be successful on all fronts. Which is why the head of the US Reserve Board worries.

***

A RESOLUTION

A resolution will be brought to the vote at the next plenary of the European Parliament on a subject that was discussed as part of the last plenary’s agenda. It will again put the spotlight on the disgusting murder of Mrs Caruana Galizia. The tone of the resolution will seek to badmouth the efforts deployed by the Labour goverenment to ensure that justice is really being done to clear this atrocious murder.

One understands the political logic which has been followed since the 1950’s at least, by which Maltese issues get debated in parliaments outside the country. This is seen as a facile way by which to fire up partisan controversies in Malta.

On the other hand, if one is really interested in seeing the rule of law function the way it should, the space and time must be allowed within which it can be implemented without interference. Otherwise, it is not true that there is a wish for it to really be effective.

Debates and political voting on what is occurring during criminal procedures in court against alleged perpetrators of crime, open the way for arguments that claim the rights of the accused have been breached.

Is this what those who for their political convenience are promoting untimely debates and votes really want?

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THE COURT OF MIRACLES

In his novel “The Hunchback of Notre Dame”, Victor Hugo takes readers to the Court of Miracles downtown in the Paris of the Middle Ages. As the dusk gathers, the down-and-outs and beggars of the city assemble. Some come blind or deaf and dumb, some have amputated limbs, others cannot stand.

As soon as they arrive in the court, they all recover. Suddenly the court becomes a market where they trade among themselves, exchanging whatever they would have earned during the day with their wailing or stolen.

With all due respect, I am reminded of this court when I listen to most of those who today publicly lament the loss of innocence suffered by the Malta Republic, according to them, just recently. When they arrive at their own court of miracles, they surely change back to the vultures one knew them as in their lives of yesteryear.

 

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