HELSINKI, March 22 -- EDPS launches report on Nokia phones, says Reijo Aarnio, Data Protection Officer.
Aarnio says that HMD Global's Nokia branded phones may have sent personal information to China. “According to our preliminary analysis, it can be estimated that personal data has been transferred,” Aarnio says. The EDPS notes that the concept of personal information is broad and depends on the situation. The Norwegian Broadcasting Company NRK reported earlier today that Nokia 7 Plus mobile phones have sent information such as the location of the phone, device serial number, wireless LAN (wlan / wifi) identification, and access point information. The data has reached the server of China Telecom's state-owned telecom operator. According to Aarnio, the Data Protection Officer wants to find out from HMD Global, the manufacturer of the phones, on what grounds the information was sent.
“The idea is that the data will move freely within the EU, but when we go outside the EU, there must always be a legal basis. The request for clarification seeks to clarify whether such a legal basis has existed, ”he says. "Another thing is how the information has worked in the matter, ie have phone holders known that information about them is being transferred to China."
HMD GLOBAL is a Finnish company that has licensed the Nokia brand and its patents. HMD Global grants NRK that some 7 Plus phones have been detected to send data to China. The company says in NRK's news that no individual can be identified from the data sent by the phone. The company says it has sent the phone owners an update that should fix the issue. Aarnio also wants to make sure that the potential security gap is patched. "At least I am interested in the situation being rectified in such a way that personal data is no longer transferred outside the EU without a legal basis." Next, the EDPS Office will formulate the request for clarification it will send to HMD. The EDPS office also handles complaints that may come from elsewhere in Europe. The first news about NRK's news in Finland was Yle. Last time in western countries, and also in Finland, there have been concerns about possible leaks in the Chinese network equipment and telephone manufacturer Huawei and the security threats associated with China. At the beginning of February, the Security Police warned Finnish companies about cooperation with Chinese companies. “It is good to remember that Chinese companies usually have strong ties with China's government and civil service. China has recently entered into force legislation that obliges all companies to help the security authorities. Cooperation with Chinese companies should also be considered from this perspective, ”the Security Police said in a statement sent to Helsingin Sanomat.
Previously, the Finnish Transport and Communications Authority (FICORA) sent a request for information to telecom operators on the equipment manufacturers' network equipment used by telecom operators in their networks and to what extent. Mika Lauhde, Chief Network Security Officer at Huawein, denied security holes in an HS interview at the end of February.
FRANKFURT, February 18 -- In the space of just two years, the euro zone has gone from the world economy’s hero to zero.
In 2017, the bloc expanded at the fastest rate in a decade, as it benefited from a combination of booming global trade and ultra-easy monetary policy. Now, the currency union has become the prime concern for those who worry about a wider downturn. The International Monetary Fund cut its forecasts for global growth mainly due to downward revisions for the euro area. But look closely at the map, and the picture is much more heterogeneous than you’d think. Italy and Germany – ironically the sick man and the powerhouse of the bloc – are in trouble, with the former now officially in recession and the latter only narrowly missing one. But, elsewhere, there is no shortage of countries still growing at a decent clip. The monetary union may be down; it isn’t out.
The euro zone’s most consistent surprise is Spain, which grew by 0.7% in the fourth quarter, marginally up from the 0.6% expansion seen in each of the previous three quarters. The country may be headed for an election after Pedro Sanchez’s minority government failed to secure sufficient support for its budget, but the political uncertainty has had relatively little impact. In 2018, the country expanded by less than 3% for the first time in four years, but growth still came in at a decent 2.5%. France’s economic performance is even more surprising. The bloc’s second-largest economy has been jolted by the protests of the gilets jaunes, which shook the political system and dented investor confidence. Yet it expanded by 0.3% at the end of last year, in line with the previous quarter and marginally faster than in the first two quarters of the year. Growth for the full-year came in at 1.5 percent, down from 2.3% in 2017. But the early signs for 2019 are positive: The Bank of France forecasts the economy will expand by 0.4% in the first quarter.
Other countries, from north to south, also tell a more positive story. Growth in Finland rebounded from 0.5% in the third quarter to 0.9% in the final stretch of the year. Portugal expanded by 0.4%, pretty much in line with the other three quarters. The Netherlands also bounced back after a poor third quarter, posting a rate of expansion of 0.5%. For all their size as the first and third largest economies, Germany and Italy look like the exception rather than the rule. Policy makers across Europe will take a very close look at the economic indicators at the start of this year to understand whether the downturn will worsen. In particular, the European Central Bank will be watching like a hawk: In the second half of 2018, it started to scale back its monetary stimulus, stopping its net asset purchases at the start of 2019. There are now questions about whether that was the right decision.
The ECB can take heart from the euro zone labor market, which continues to strengthen both in terms of employment and of wages. This should offer continuous support to domestic demand. However, the central bank has to balance this with risks from abroad, including a slowdown in China and the trade war between Beijing and Washington. All of this has important knock-on effects on business confidence, with entrepreneurs putting investment on hold as they wait for greater clarity.
Europe’s uneven picture suggests that there is a problem with the growth model of some countries as opposed to the bloc as a whole. In Italy, the fiscal plans of the new populist government have pushed up bond yields, contributing to a reduction in the flow of credit. Domestic demand fell in the fourth quarter, showing that consumers and entrepreneurs are being cautious. Meanwhile, Germany’s export-driven growth model is facing its biggest test in decades as Berlin discovers it is vulnerable to the global trade outlook and China’s economic fortunes. But unlike Italy, the country has scope to boost growth by raising public investment: Such spending would provide short-term relief and help to re-balance the economy towards domestic demand.
The world is right to look at Europe’s slowdown and wonder what is going on. But, as often in the past, it’s hard to find a single explanation. The strength of Europe is its variety; it can also be its weakness.
HELSINKI, January 20 -- Finland's motorsport governing body would like to conduct a feasibility study on the possibility of bringing Grand Prix racing to the country in the future.
For all its significance in the history of F1 as a purveyor of great champions, Finland has never appeared interested in hosting a Grand Prix. Recently however, AKK Motorsport, the country's governing body, initiated a study to evaluate the viability of bringing Formula 1 to the land of a thousand lakes. The motorsport association has applied for funding from the Ministry of Education and Culture to support its feasibility study and "to create a realistic road map towards the possible application for hosting a Finnish F1 Grand Prix".The country's choice of a potential venue already has a familiar ring to it: the Kymiring, a new 4.5km circuit located about 160 km from Helsinki that will host a MotoGP round in 2020.
“Finland has an excellent and unique legacy in motorsports," said AKK CEO Tatu Lehmuskallio "Not only have Finnish Formula 1 and WRC rally drivers collected more world championship points in recent seasons than drivers from any other country, we also have internationally recognised expertise on hosting modern, reliable, sustainable and – most of all – thrilling motorsport events for fans, partners and athletes. "The study will provide us detailed knowledge on what motor racing competition at the highest level truly demands and that will help us tremendously when staging other racing events, too."
Formula 1 enjoyed a presence for several years in northern European during the days of the Swedish Grand Prix in Anderstorp. Recently, efforts were conducted to put Denmark on the F1 map with a race in Copenhagen. Those plans have not come to fruition however and now look seriously jeopardized by the city's opposition to having F1 cars race on its streets.
BEIJING, January 15 -- Peng Liyuan, the wife of Chinese President Xi Jinping, attended a performance with Jenni Haukio, wife of Finnish President Sauli Niinisto.
The show, which included poetry reading and musical performances, was held in the stylish bookstore Page One situated in the Qianmen area, a significant symbol of old Beijing. After having strolled around the bookstore and learning about the history of the bookstore and the surrounding block, Peng and Haukio enjoyed wonderful performances on the top floor. Peng also briefed Haukio on the history and recent renovation of the historic district of Dashilar.
During the show, students majoring in Finnish read Haukio's award-winning poems, catching her by surprise. Young ladies dressed in ancient costumes sang traditional Chinese poems with the accompaniment of piano and Chinese zither, a traditional Chinese instrument. The performance ended with a violinist and a pianist playing a piece work composed by Finnish composer Jean Sibelius.
The show was performed by teachers and students from the Beijing Foreign Studies University and the China Conservatory of Music. Haukio is in Beijing accompanying President Niinisto who is paying a state visit to China from Sunday to Wednesday.
HELSINKI, November 22 -- Finland will not issue new arms export authorisations to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates due to the humanitarian situation in Yemen.
“The Government discussed arms export matters and decided that in the current situation there are no foundations for new arms export authorisations to Saudi Arabia or the United Arab Emirates,” the Thursday, November 22 release said. “In its deliberations, the Government laid stress on the alarming humanitarian situation in Yemen, in particular.”
The two Persian Gulf states lead an alliance that intervened in Yemen’s civil war in 2015, supporting President Abd Rabbo Mansour Hadi’s government against the Iran-backed Houthi rebels.
The grinding war has caused growing international outcry, particularly after a string of high-profile coalition strikes that have killed scores of civilians, many of them children. Finland joins Denmark, Germany and Norway, who all recently froze arms arms exports to Saudi Arabia over Yemen and the murder of high-profile Saudi journalist Jamal Kashoggi in Istanbul.
“Finland’s arms export is based on a careful case-by-case discussion,” the ministry said, adding that it “observes the European Union’s arms export criteria, in which special attention is paid to human rights and to the protection of regional peace, security and stability.”
The UAE was Finland’s biggest arms export customer in 2017, according to a foreign ministry report. Eleven export licenses were issued, valued at €36,352,120 ($41.5 million). Saudi Arabia was granted three permits, valued at a total of €1,508,970 ($1.7 million). The total value of realized exports from Finland in 2017 was €106.4 million ($121.4), a drop of around 20 percent on 2016. The UAE accounted for 8.4 percent of those exports, valued at €8.9 million ($10.2 million), while Saudi Arabia accounted for almost 5 percent at €5.3 million ($6 million).
BERLIN, October 5 -- Finland’s most citizens would not want their country to join NATO, and thus the issue is not on the agenda, Finland’s Prime Minister Alexander Stubb said.
“We should have joined NATO in 1995, when we joined the European Union. But now we are very satisfied with the close partnership with the Alliance, though purely formal; though we do not have security guarantees in case of attacks. Anyway, I do not see a majority calling for joining (NATO),” he said.
Besides, the prime minister stressed importance of economic relations with Russia.
“If everything is good in the Russian economy, everything will be good in ours, too,” he said. Thus, Helsinki is for “diplomatic settlement of the Ukrainian conflict,” which has been a reason for the sanctions against Russia. Finland is also affected by the sanctions, the prime minister added.