Mold in the municipal archives of Emmen
There is mold in the municipal archives of Emmen. The fungus is on boxes and files, but also on the floor, on shelves and in the air. The archive must be cleaned quickly, specialists from the National Archives advise. The Emmen archive is located in the building of the former Public Works Department. The archive is about 300 linear meters, and mold has been found at least 126 meters of it. This affects the archives and is unhealthy for the people who work there. "Only after the files have been cleaned can we see whether there has been permanent damage or loss of documents. That remains to be seen," said a spokesman for Emmen. The municipality is legally obliged to keep the archive and make it available to citizens and companies. For example, there are also registrations of births, marriages and deceased persons. The archive is used 30,000 times a year. Closure is therefore not an option, writes the municipality.
Cleaning up the fungus is a temporary fix. Ultimately, more will have to be done to keep the fungus out for good. But the municipality of Emmen has no money for that now. That is why cleaning is still chosen and a follow-up plan is drawn up later.
After cleaning, the archive is not yet directly accessible: all descriptions of the information present must be redone. Cleaning up the fungus costs the municipality a few tens after 110,000 euros.
More and more DDoS attacks on companies and organizations
More and more companies and organizations are affected by DDoS attacks. Since last month, the number of attacks is, by Dutch standards, "exceptionally high", says the National Cyber Security Center of the Ministry of Justice and Security. Numbers have not been disclosed. Several companies and organizations have been affected, including government agencies and internet service providers.
The center says there were multiple attacks up to 250 Gigabits per second (Gbps). Last year, the heaviest attack was 124 Gbps. "At 250 Gigabits per second you have to imagine that 45 old-fashioned CD-ROMs are fired at a website per second," says NOS tech editor Joost Schellevis.
Knowledge of other country
The National Cyber Security Center has received reports from parties who have received extortion emails in the name of a 'state actor'. These are attacks directed by or carried out with the knowledge of another country. It is not known from which countries the reports come. The motive is also unclear. "But we should not just draw conclusions that countries are behind every attack. Because an attack previously linked to Russia turned out to be just the work of an adolescent in his attic room," says Schellevis.
Internet connection lost
At some institutions, the DDoS attacks have disrupted online services, says the National Cyber Security Center. Some websites were no longer accessible at all and internet connections stopped working. The National Cyber Security Center calls on companies and organizations to take another good look at their internet security and take measures.
No diploma for students due to faltering online exam supervision
If you think you have passed your exam with a good grade, you will receive an email from the university two months later that the exam is invalid anyway, because online supervision faltered. It now happens to dozens of law students from Erasmus University in Rotterdam. As a result, the diplomas of at least fifteen students have even been withdrawn. The students took their exams online in July because of the corona measures. To prevent cheating, the university monitors the students' webcam, microphone and sometimes web browser. This is possible with the help of proctoring software. At the Erasmus University School of Law, something has now gone wrong with the webcam images, which means that the university cannot check whether the students have cheated or not. It concerns almost a hundred exams. The result: those exams were still declared invalid, because the university claims to have to guarantee the quality of study achievements.
Dozens of victims
Students were only informed about this by e-mail last week, so two months after their exam. According to the university, the control of the images took so long because the software company could not deliver the suspicious images earlier.
University council members Philip van Moll and Younes Assou say dozens of shocked students have reported to them. Van Moll: "It may be due to an internet connection, but also to the software itself. Students indicate that they cannot see errors with ProctorExam themselves, because the webcam light is still on and the internet connection is not causing any problems. the poignant thing: students think that things are going well, but that is not the case." Involved students say to NOS op 3 that they are very stressed. Victims do not want to be mentioned by name in this article because they are afraid that this could have consequences for their relationship with the university.
They do not think it fair that by definition they have to bear the consequences of what they call 'technical problems'. And they point out that in other exams there was no verification of identity or prohibited sources, even though those exams were approved.
The School of Law Examination Board emphasizes that there are all kinds of causes for declaring exams invalid. "Failure to assess the legal validity of the exam need not be due to a malfunction, which was also regularly caused by students not logging in properly, or incorrect actions by students and laptops, cameras or WiFi connections that were not functioning properly. " Some students have hired a lawyer. One of them says: "The technical problems are being passed on to us. We have already adapted ourselves to create online exams. It is assumed that we have committed fraud. We feel powerless." And: "We now have an app group with dozens of students so that we can respond to the exam committee. They now pretend we have committed some kind of fraud. That is insulting."
The concerned software company ProctorExam does not want to respond and refers to the university. It is not clear what exactly happened and whether it concerns technical problems or the connection, which must be further investigated.
Around this time, students all have an individual discussion with the university about the consequences for their studies. They would like the university to think about another solution, for example an open book exam as a resit. The Examination Board emphasizes that the declaration of invalidity does not have to have consequences for the study career of the person concerned, because leniency rules already apply to students due to corona. Erasmus School of Law has also offered extra resits for a number of courses. But they are also via online proctoring, the students say, and they would rather see that differently.
Gas leak at Chemelot in Geleen closed, no injuries
A cloud of hexane gas has been released at the Limburg industrial complex Chemelot in Geleen. As a precaution, the adjacent highways A2 and A76 were closed for a while and train traffic was stopped. Hexane gas is a highly flammable substance. The gas cloud was released around 9:30 am. After more than an hour the leak was closed and no more vapor was released. Nobody was injured, writes the regional broadcaster 1Limburg . According to the South Limburg Safety Region, the substance was not measured outside the industrial complex at Geleen.
The A2 and A76 were temporarily closed at the Kerensheide junction, but they were released shortly after 10.30 am. Trains are also running again between Sittard and Maastricht. It is not the first time that the emergency services have taken action at Chemelot. Last year, for example, toxic smoke escaped from a nitric acid factory. At the time, no alarming values were measured outside the site.
Translated from Dutch to English with Google translate