Daily Briefing: SG invests $12M into programme to grow local blockchain ecosystem; Second tranche of Budget 2020 grocery vouchers to be home-delivered

And hackers can use robot vacuum cleaners to 'spy' on conversations: NUS.

From e27:

Enterprise Singapore, Infocomm Media Development Authority, the National Research Foundation Singapore (NRF), and the Monetary Authority of Singapore announced the launch of a $12m (US$9m) Singapore Blockchain Innovation Programme (SBIP) to further strengthen Singapore’s blockchain ecosystem.

Funded by NRF, this national effort aims to align blockchain technology research with the needs of the industry, to facilitate the development, commercialisation, and adoption of wider real-world applications.

This initiative will engage close to 75 companies including MNCs, large enterprises, and ICT companies to conceptualise 17 blockchain-related projects within the next three years in sectors starting with trade and logistics, and supply chain.

Beyond research translation, SBIP will look into blockchain scalability to enable the adoption of blockchain in environments with high transaction rates.

The programme will also support blockchain interoperability, to enable value exchange across systems and address the current challenges of siloed networks.

Read more here.

From ChannelNewsAsia:

The second disbursement of Budget 2020 grocery vouchers will be delivered to the homes of 150,000 eligible recipients, the Ministry of Finance (MOF) announced on 6 December.

The Ministry said it has arranged with Singapore Post for two deliveries to those eligible for the vouchers.

"We will make up to two home deliveries to recipients. The first delivery will be done over four Saturdays, from Dec 12, 2020 to Jan 2, 2021, by postal code," said MOF. "If there is no one at home to receive the vouchers on the first delivery, we will make a second delivery between the following Monday to Friday (excluding public holidays)."

"If the vouchers are not delivered after both attempts, we will leave a delivery notification card for recipients to collect their grocery vouchers at a specified post office within 10 working days," MOF added.

Read more here. https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/budget-2020-grocery-vouchers-home-delivery-for-second-tranche-13710690

From ChannelNewsAsia:

Your robot vacuum cleaner could be picking up private conversations along with the dust and dirt in your home.

Computer scientists from the National University of Singapore (NUS) have demonstrated how a common robot vacuum cleaner and its built-in light detection and ranging (Lidar) sensor could be used to "spy" on private conversations, the university said on 7 December.

The method, called LidarPhone, repurposes the Lidar sensor that a robot vacuum cleaner normally uses for navigating around a home into a laser-based microphone to eavesdrop on private conversations.

The research team, led by Assistant Professor Jun Han and his doctoral student Sriram Sami, managed to recover speech data with "high accuracy", said NUS.

“The proliferation of smart devices – including smart speakers and smart security cameras – has increased the avenues for hackers to snoop on our private moments," said Mr Sami.

Read more here. https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/singapore/robot-vacuum-cleaners-hackers-spy-private-conversations-nus-13717064

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