By: Nathaniel Tok, Peak Associate


Possible cyber attack during Olympics opening ceremony

A potential cyber attack that may have occurred during the opening ceremony of the PyeongChang Olympics is being investigated by organizers. Local media reported problems with non-critical systems, but the organizers have said it is too soon to tell if it is due to a cyber attack. The system glitches may also have caused failure to deploy drones during the ceremony. The problems have not had an impact on events or the safety or security of the athletes. The opening ceremony was attended by government officials, including Kim Jong Un’s sister and the US vice president. North and South Korean Olympians also participated in a joint Opening Ceremony march.

With files from Global News.


Lack of Samsung phone giveaway to Iran’s Olympians leaves Iranians furious

The PyeongChang Olympics organizing committee head has issued an apology to Iran following an incident where the country’s Olympians were told they would not get the “Olympic Edition” Samsung Galaxy Note 8 handsets. The smartphones are being given out to all Olympians in this year’s games, but Iranian Olympians were turned away from the queue to receive them as UN sanctions have banned the supply of luxury goods to the country. South Korea’s ambassador to Iran and Samsung’s representatives in Iran were both summoned to the Iranian Foreign Ministry to answer. Many Iranians also called for a boycott. LG, Samsung’s rival, has stepped in, giving every Iranian athlete a smartphone and a TV. The International Olympic Committee later confirmed the Iranian competitors will get the Samsung goods and be allowed to take them home. Iran is the biggest smartphone market in the Middle East.

With files from BBC News.


Olympic Games diplomacy sees South Korean president invited to Pyongyang

Kim Jong Un’s sister, Kim Yo Jong, delivered a written letter from her brother during a meeting in Seoul inviting South Korean President Moon Jae-in for talks in Pyongyang. The letter was delivered as part of Kim Yo Jong’s duties as “special envoy” to South Korea during the Olympics. Kim Yo Jong is the first of her governing family to visit the South since 1950. Moon did not give a firm reply to the offer. He has to balance North Korea’s interest in dialogue with the Americans’ use of “maximum pressure” when dealing with North Korea.

With files from The Washington Post.


Alibaba use Olympics sponsorship to showcase tech

Alibaba Group, a Chinese sponsor of the Olympics, is using cloud computing to help transform the Olympics. Alibaba believes that this is both a way to advertise its capabilities and to help bridge the gap between the fans and athletes. The e-commerce giant has a partnership with the International Olympic Committee until 2028 and used the 2018 Olympics to showcase its artificial intelligence and cloud services in its Cloud ET Sports Brain. These services will be used to better manage Olympic events and better sustain fans’ interest following the games. Alibaba will also be able to sell Olympic merchandise and promote Olympic events.

With files from South China Morning Post.