This Tuesday is “Safer Internet Day”, part of an initiative of the EU SafeBorders project launched in 2004 to raise awareness of threats posed to children online. In the Czech Republic, police have noted a significant rise in cybercrime in recent years, with children increasingly falling victim to bullying and online predators.
The Czech National Bank may get extended powers in being able to dictate
conditions for mortgage loans to banks, according to an amendment to the
law approved in its first reading by the lower house on Friday.
At present the central bank only has the right to issue recommendations which are not binding, although they are generally adhered to. According to the bill’s proponents it is to lower the risk of potential losses and protect the resilience of the financial sector.
The proposed amendment was vehemently opposed by the Civic Democrats, the Pirate Party a TOP 09, who argued that it could make housing less accessible to young people.
It is now being reviewed by the Budget Committee in the Chamber of Deputies.
Referred to as a key document, the government’s National Investment Plan has been years in the making. On Monday, the long awaited concept was finally unveiled. It counts on some CZK 8 trillion being spent by 2050 on investments in all branches of state infrastructure. The prime minister says it could help in EU funding negotiations with Brussels. However, the opposition has mocked it as a simple wish list with no clear implementation strategy.
The Czech Elves are secretive volunteers who have taken it upon themselves to monitor disinformation that they say emanates from Russia. Their name is borrowed from similar groups in the Baltic states who also combat trolls, while their chief activity is publishing regular reports about disinformation and fake news in the Czech online sphere. I discussed their work with Bob Kartous, a Czech Elves’ spokesperson and one of the few members who is not anonymous.