Binayak reports on information security, privacy and scientific research in health and environment with explanatory pieces. He also edits the news sections of the newspaper.
Articles by Binayak Dasgupta
Senior UK officials, PMO hacked using Pegasus: New report
Canada-based Citizen Labs, which first uncovered the widespread deployment of Pegasus in 2018, said in its report that “multiple suspected instances” of the spyware’s infection were found within official UK networks in 2020 and 2021.
Updated on Apr 19, 2022 12:51 AM IST
Chinese hackers targeted 7 Indian power hubs, govt says ops failed
The incident is the latest in a string of cyber espionage attributed to groups based in China, with past attacks targeting critical infrastructure such as power plants
Updated on Apr 08, 2022 06:43 AM IST
Mumbai Covid-19 case: Why panic over XE is premature
The confirmed Indian infection was in a 50-year-old woman who was asymptomatic and tested positive on March 2, before testing negative a day later. Union health ministry officials separately told HT that the variant sequenced in Mumbai is not XE and may have been misclassified.
Updated on Apr 07, 2022 06:22 AM IST
CAG flags privacy gaps, duplication in Aadhaar
The findings are part of the first performance review by the country’s independent auditor of UIDAI, which was carried out over a four-year period between FY2015 and FY2019 .
Updated on Apr 07, 2022 07:26 AM IST
ByNeeraj Chauhan and Binayak Dasgupta, New Delhi:
In Perspective | The years when social media particularly hurts children
According to a new study, these distinct windows of age — 14-15 years and 19 years for boys and 11-13 years and 19 years for girls — are when social media use appeared to relate to reduced life satisfaction a year later.
Published on Mar 28, 2022 08:22 PM IST
Two years since lockdown: The journey of India’s Covid response
To understand India’s early lockdown and pandemic policies, it is crucial to first characterise them. India was perhaps the only major country that locked down before Covid-19 took hold.
Updated on Mar 24, 2022 11:23 AM IST
Barkha Dutt: The stories behind the numbers
Her new book, To Hell And Back, offers a front-line view of those affected by Covid-19. It’s also a look at how Dutt’s own reporting, mobile, fast, unfettered by TV studios, has transformed
Updated on Feb 25, 2022 11:27 PM IST
In Perspective | Online child safety and the dangers of false equivalence
The solutions being advocated to combat child pornography have to do with weakening or incentivising the weakening of end-to-end encryption, the bedrock of privacy online
Published on Feb 14, 2022 04:05 PM IST
Entity with spying links behind Indian cyber ops: Report
The experts at California-based Sentinel Labs have named the group ModifiedElephant and found its digital footprints going back to at least 2012 and in the targeting of “hundreds of individuals and groups”, including Rona Wilson, who has been arrested in the Bhima-Koregaon violence case.
Updated on Feb 11, 2022 03:32 AM IST
Covid-19 linked with key cardiovascular risks: Study
Covid-19 puts people at a significantly higher risk of cardiovascular disease up to a year after infection and the chances are higher if the disease was more severe, according to an analysis involving the records of over 150,000 people who were infected by the coronavirus in the United States
Published on Feb 08, 2022 11:36 PM IST
In Brazil state, a sign of Omicron’s key advantage
The earliest theory that sought to explain this originated from lab studies that showed the virus to multiply more readily in parts of the respiratory system known as the bronchus, and thrive more widely in upper air passages.
Published on Feb 08, 2022 12:09 AM IST
In Perspective | The only answer to India vs Big Tech on moderation
While India must defend itself from adversaries that will exploit social media for information warfare, it must, at the same time, protect free speech; all while social media companies have to do much more
Updated on Feb 07, 2022 08:39 PM IST
Study with deliberate infections uncovers new Covid clues
A controlled clinical study in the UK, the findings of which were made public on Wednesday, now offers more concrete insights, some of which are new.
Updated on Feb 04, 2022 12:50 AM IST
BA.2 likely drove 3rd wave in some states
The first real-world analysis of infection trends split by BA.2 and the other Omicron lineages offers several insights. These findings are based on the latest variant technical briefing by the UK Health Security Agency released over the weekend.
Updated on Jan 31, 2022 04:32 AM IST
‘Censorship’ in India, 5 other nations pose risk to business: US trade panel
USITC, an independent and non-partisan US federal agency, compiled the report based on a request by the Senate Committee on Finance.
Updated on Jan 30, 2022 04:43 AM IST
ByPrashant Jha and Binayak Dasgupta, Washington/new Delhi
Why fears of ‘deadly’ NeoCoV may be greatly exaggerated
There are other factors to consider as well. NeoCoV is not a new coronavirus, and it – along with Mers – belongs to a distinctly different genera (a type of subclassification) of coronaviruses known as merbecovirus.
Updated on Jan 29, 2022 04:40 AM IST
Omicron likely to make vaccine update inevitable
On January 12, a coalition of medical regulators from 37 countries and regions (including all of EU, UK, US and India) agreed that there was now a need to reconsider the current vaccine design.
Published on Jan 28, 2022 12:01 AM IST
Omicron offshoot now under watch
The Omicron variant comprises four sister lineages. The earliest, detected in South Africa, was the B.1.1.529. Then came BA.1, which is now globally the predominant one, followed by BA.2 and BA.3.
Updated on Jan 25, 2022 01:52 AM IST
Few admissions during 5th wave question need for ongoing curbs
In Delhi, the peak of recorded cases came on January 12, and that of the test positivity on January 14. Since then, the number of people in the hospital have remained in the 2,600-2,700 range, even in fact dipping slightly in the last three days.
Published on Jan 22, 2022 03:08 AM IST
Variant watch: What Omicron means for future immunity
Three recent studies now come to similar conclusions on post-Omicron immunity: the protection is different in people who were infected for the first time, had a repeat infection, or had a repeat infection after vaccination.
Updated on Jan 21, 2022 03:18 AM IST
Variant watch: Why symptom link is key to Omicron
The researchers found that during the Omicron wave, close to 30% of the people who turned up had an asymptomatic infection.
Updated on Jan 20, 2022 07:22 AM IST
Variant watch: Even mild cases may leave a mark on brain
The finding holds implications for rehabilitation of people with even mild cases and those suffering from so-called long Covid symptoms, which are still not properly understood.
Updated on Jan 19, 2022 03:19 AM IST
No-vax? What the sceptics get wrong
In Serbian tennis star Novak Djokovic’s 2010 book, Serve to Win, he writes about how he improved his performance by removing gluten from his diet
Updated on Jan 18, 2022 03:14 AM IST
Variant watch: Updated UK data shows efficacy drop after 6 months
The UK Health Security Agency, in its Technical Briefing 34, said that it found vaccine efficacy against hospitalisation remained at around 64% till 24 weeks, but the protection dropped if the second doses were taken more than 24 weeks ago.
Updated on Jan 15, 2022 12:09 AM IST
240mn Covid-19 vaccine doses in rich nations to expire by March
The report, released by science analytics company Airfinity, came on a day when Unicef officials told Reuters that 100 million doses were rejected last month by poorer countries because they were nearing their expiry date.
Updated on Jan 14, 2022 12:39 AM IST
New study shows how coronavirus loses infectivity once exhaled
It also suggests that most infection happens when transmission is at a shorter range. This is why outdoor spaces have consistently proven to be safer.
Updated on Jan 13, 2022 04:52 AM IST
Variant watch: Omicron likely evolved in mice, say Chinese researchers
The Omicron variant of the Sars-CoV-2 virus may have evolved within mice and jumped back into humans, according to new research by scientists from the Chinese Academy of Sciences
Published on Jan 12, 2022 12:09 AM IST
Variant watch: Ending isolation after Omicron
Now, a study from Japan, albeit with a small sample size involving 21 people, suggests people can in some cases remain infectious up to 9 days after their symptoms begin.
Updated on Jan 11, 2022 12:03 AM IST
India’s true Covid toll could be over 3 million: Study
The new report, published by the journal Science early on Friday, estimates the true toll in this period was between 3.1 million and 3.4 million, with roughly 2.7 million of these happening in the April-July period, when the second wave tore through the country.
Published on Jan 07, 2022 11:52 PM IST
Omicron variant watch: Scientists detect key antibodies to neutralise mutations
In a study published almost exactly a year ago, scientists at the Rockefeller University found that memory B cells, which churn out antibodies, mature over time.
Updated on Jan 07, 2022 12:36 AM IST