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Google locks Afghan government accounts amid fears of Taliban seeking emails

Washington: Google has temporarily locked down Afghan government accounts amid fears of Taliban accessing the emails.

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Google locks Afghan government accounts amid fears of Taliban seeking emails
GNN Media: Representational Photo

According to Reuters, Google has blocked an unspecified number of accounts related to Afghan government officials as fears intensify over the digital paper trail left by former officials and their international partners.

There have been several reports in media highlighting concerns on how biometric and Afghan payroll databases might be exploited by Taliban leaders following their takeover of Kabul.

In a statement on Friday, Alphabet Inc's Google (GOOGL.O) stopped short of confirming that Afghan government accounts were being locked down, saying that the “company is monitoring the situation in Afghanistan and taking temporary actions to secure relevant accounts."

An employee of former Afghan government told Reuters on the condition of anonymity that the Taliban are seeking to acquire former officials' emails.

"If I do so, then they will get access to the data and official communications of the previous ministry leadership," the employee said.

As per records, more than two dozen of Afghan government institutions were using Google's servers to communicate via emails, including the ministries of finance, higher education, industry and mines.

 

Abeera Baig is a senior editor at GNN, known for writing top quality content which garner very high readerships and has been covering every field of journalism, including politics, media, sports and scholarly articles. Abeera Baig is nothing less than a Veteran Editor and has been writing for GNN for the past 7 months.

Sports

Ramiz Raja becomes PCB chairman unopposed

Lahore: Veteran cricketer and former Test captain-turned commentator Rameez Raja has emerged as the next chairman of the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) on Monday.

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Ramiz Raja becomes PCB chairman unopposed

To elect the 36th PCB Chairman, a special meeting of the Board of Governors (BoG) took place today, (September 13) at the High Performance in Lahore.

The PCB Election Commissioner, Mr Justice (retd) Sheikh Azmat Saeed conducted the election, presiding over the meeting.

The members of the BoG including Mr Aasim Wajid Jawad, Ms Alia Zafar, Mr Asad Ali Khan, Mr Arif Saeed, Mr Javed Kurieshi, Mr Ramiz Raja and Mr Wasim Khan attended the special meeting.

At 1415 inside the Bob Woolmer Indoor School, NHPC, the newly-elected PCB Chairman will hold his media conference, which will be live-streamed on all PCB social media channels.

As per the PCB Covid-19 Protocols, which are designed to ensure health and wellbeing of all involved, only reporters and correspondents who are fully vaccinated and have immunisation certificates are invited to attend the media conference.

Moreover, TV news channels will be welcome to use PCB’s broadcast quality live-stream details of which will be shared shortly before the start of the media conference.

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Pakistan

Pakistan records dip in daily new COVID-19 cases

Islamabad: Pakistan has reported 2,928 new coronavirus cases in last 24 hours, the lowest spike in daily new infections in nearly a week.

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Pakistan records dip in daily new COVID-19 cases

Pakistan is presently experiencing the fourth wave of coronavirus which is said to be deadlier and more contagious than previous three COVID waves.

According to National Command and Operations Center (NCOC), around 2,928 cases of coronavirus were reported while 68 people succumbed to the disease in the last 24 hours, taking the total death toll to 27,072.

The total number of cases has reached 1,218,749.

As many as 1,125,952 patients have recovered from the disease with 4,960 critical cases.

Punjab              

The number of patients swelled to 419,423 in the province with 12,345 causalities.

Sindh

The number of infections has surged to 448,658 in the province, while the death toll has reached 7,224.

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa

The confirmed cases have surged to 170,391 in the province with 5,354 casualties.

Balochistan

There are 32,707 confirmed cases while 344 patients have died from the infection so far.

AJK and Gilgit-Baltistan

There are 33,628 coronavirus cases in the AJK while the death toll has reached 728. On the other hand, there are 10,222 cases in GB with 182 coronavirus deaths.

Islamabad

There are 103,720 cases in the capital city while 895 people have lost their lives.

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Sports

Australia to cancel Afghan test if Taliban ban women's sports

Canberra: Cricket Australia Thursday issued an official notification, stating that they would cancel Test match against Afghanistan unless Taliban lift the reported ban on women’s sports.

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Australia to renounce Afghan test if Taliban ban women's sports

On its official twitter handle, Cricket Australia said that it will not host Afghanistan planned Test match in Hobart starting November 27, if news reports of Taliban views on the women’s game were true.

"If recent media reports that women's cricket will not be supported in Afghanistan are substantiated, Cricket Australia would have no alternative but not to host Afghanistan for the proposed Test match due to be played in Hobart," said Cricket Australia in its statement.

The Taliban, banned sports for women in the country saying, they don't think women will be allowed to play cricket as it’s not necessary for them to participate.

According to SBS, Ahmadullah Wasiq, deputy head of the Taliban's cultural commission said, “In cricket, women might face a situation where their face and body will not be covered”.

“Islam does not allow women to be seen like this," he stressed.

Meanwhile, players from Afghanistan women’s soccer team are among dozens of athletes who were given visas to live in Australia and have been undergoing quarantine amid coronavirus pandemic.

However, it is a move that could cost Afghanistan its status as a Test-playing nation.

Afghanistan has a national women's cricket team — but its status has been thrown into question along with every other woman in the country after the Taliban ousted the U.S.-backed government.

In August, Taliban allowed men’s cricket to continue and gave approval for the men’s national team to travel to Australia for a test match in November.

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