Petróleos Mexicanos , which translates to Mexican Petroleums, is the Mexican state-owned petroleum company, created in 1938 by nationalized petroleum and the expropriation of all private foreign and domestic companies at that time. Pemex has a total asset worth of $415.75 billion, and is the world's second largest non-publicly listed company by total market value, and Latin America's second largest enterprise by annual revenue as of 2009, surpassed only by Petrobras . The majority of its shares are not listed publicly and are under control of the Mexican government, with the value of its publicly listed shares totaling $202 billion in 2010, representing approximately one quarter of the company's total net worth. Emilio Lozoya Austin is the current CEO of Pemex. Wikipedia.
Perez-Marin M.,Mexican Institute of Petroleum |
Journal of Loss Prevention in the Process Industries | Year: 2013
HAZOP (Hazard and Operability) studies began about 40 years ago, when the Process Industry and complexity of its operations start to massively grow in different parts of the world. HAZOP has been successfully applied in Process Systems hazard identification by operators, design engineers and consulting firms. Nevertheless, after a few decades since its first applications, HAZOP studies are not truly standard in worldwide industrial practice. It is common to find differences in its execution and results format. The aim of this paper is to show that in the Mexican case at National level in the oil and gas industry, there exist an explicit acceptance risk criteria, thus impacting the risk scenarios prioritizing process. Although HAZOP studies in the Mexican oil & gas industry, based on PEMEX corporate standard has precise acceptance criteria, it is not a significant difference in HAZOP applied elsewhere, but has the advantage of being fully transparent in terms of what a local industry is willing to accept as the level of risk acceptance criteria, also helps to gain an understanding of the degree of HAZOP applications in the Mexican oil & gas sector. Contrary to this in HAZOP ISO standard, risk acceptance criteria is not specified and it only mentions that HAZOP can consider scenarios ranking. The paper concludes indicating major implications of risk ranking in HAZOP, whether before or after safeguards identification. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. Source
Chanussot-Deprez C.,PEMEX |
Contreras-Ruiz J.,Interdisciplinary Clinic of Wound and Ostomy Care
Advances in Skin and Wound Care | Year: 2013
Telemedicine (TM) is a new, rapidly evolving area and can be of great value in the provision of healthcare to remote and rural populations. Wound healing and wound management are prime candidates for TM. The treatment of skin ulcers requires frequent assessments of local wound status and adjustment of therapy. The availability of reasonably priced photographic equipment and quick electronic transfer of high-quality digital images should make the assessment of wound status by remote experts possible. Several studies showing the feasibility and the usefulness of teleconsultations in dermatology have already been described in the literature, and high accordance for diagnosis and treatment between face-to-face visits and teleconsultations has been reported. Some used digital photographs and sent the image and clinical data via the Internet to a wound care specialist (store and forward), whereas others used a webcam (televideoconferencing). Tele-wound care offers great potential for the future in chronic wound care. By reducing the need to travel long distances to the hospital or to consult with a physician, TM decreases the costs and improves the quality of life for patients with chronic wounds, while still maintaining high standards of wound care. The intent of TM is to reduce, in a clinically equivalent way, the number of visits to a specialized clinic, but not necessarily to eliminate all visits. Further well-designed research is necessary to understand how best to deploy TM services in healthcare. Copyright © 2013 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. Source
Mexican Institute of Petroleum, Pemex and Polytechnic University of Valencia | Date: 2014-12-04
News Article | March 19, 2015
Bond investors in Petroleos Mexicanos have been saddled with losses this year as the oil producer’s woes deepen. Now the states that rely on the company for revenue are poised to feel the pain. Moody’s Investors Service said March 16 that the oil-patch states of Tamaulipas, Veracruz, Tabasco and Campeche will be the hardest hit as output at the state-owned company plummets. Four days earlier, a Pemex official said production may fall for an 11th straight year to the lowest since records began in 1990. The announcement is the latest setback for Pemex, whose bid to revive its fortunes after Mexico ended its seven-decade monopoly has been upended by the collapse in oil. The company’s dollar-denominated bonds have lost 2.4 percent on average this year, versus a 0.6 percent gain for emerging markets. “States are going to have to start tightening their belts,” Francisco Vazquez-Ahued, an analyst at Moody’s, said by telephone from Mexico City. “Oil production has been much lower than expected so far this year and we think Pemex will not attain its output goal.” Gustavo Hernandez, Pemex’s exploration and production chief, said March 12 that output will sink to 2.29 million barrels a day in 2015, 7 percent below its initial target. In a statement later that day, Pemex said it may still reach the earlier target through joint ventures. States depend on federal transfers called participations for about 88 percent of the revenue they need to repay debt, according to Moody’s Vazquez-Ahued. Those payments are set to fall 5 percent this year, he said. President Enrique Pena Nieto is urging states to prepare for larger revenue declines next year, according to Finance Minister Luis Videgaray. Oil accounts for a third of revenue at the national level. “The important challenge for public finances is in 2016 and beyond,” Videgaray said at a LatinFinance conference in Mexico City on March 18. State governments “have to plan for a 2016 in which it’s highly probable they’ll have less revenue.” Mexico bought hedges that give it the right to sell oil at $76.40 a barrel, safeguarding most of its export revenue this year. It doesn’t have protection against lower-than-expected output or hedges that guarantee it an above-market price in 2016. Oil has plunged 57 percent since June to $43.84 a barrel on March 18. The peso climbed 1.5 percent to 15.0531 per dollar at 10:39 a.m. in New York. Reining in spending may prove difficult for some states and municipalities as Mexicans go to the polls June 7 to choose lower-house lawmakers and nine state governors, Standard & Poor’s analyst Daniela Brandazza said. “States are going to have to control their operating expenses and capital spending plans,” she said in a telephone interview from Mexico City. “It’s still a challenge to create that kind of prudent culture in an election year.” While Mexico may tap a state revenue stabilization fund to make up for shortfalls, lower production will hurt the oil-producing states more because some federal transfers are earmarked based on petroleum output, Moody’s Vazquez-Ahued said. Declining output will also hurt economic activity more broadly in those states. “Sustained low oil prices and further declines in production would likely reduce the overall level of federal transfers for 2016,” Vazquez-Ahued said.
News Article | April 18, 2016
In early April, 2014, a spy from the Ecuador’s intelligence agency sent a flurry of emails to the support team of Hacking Team, a company of Italian hackers-for-hire that works with government agencies around the world. The agent, Luis Solis, needed Hacking Team to plant its spyware in a series of PDF documents he planned to send. This episode would’ve been just another story of a customer asking for help booby-trapping email attachments—which was standard procedure for Hacking Team—if it wasn’t for the target of the investigation. Solis, who worked for the spy agency SENAIN, wasn’t trying to hack a drug dealer or an alleged criminal. He was trying to infect Carlos Figueroa, a doctor and well-known activist who’s been opposing the government of President Rafael Correa. Hacking Team’s support engineer Bruno Muschitiello seemed worried—not because his customer wanted to use the company’s Remote Control System, or RCS, spyware against a political opponent—but because he thought he’d get caught. “It is not a good choice send [sic] many exploit documents to the same target, it can be very risky, the target may suspect something,” Muschitiello wrote in an email. It’s unclear if Muschitiello or Hacking Team realized these infected documents were intended for Figueroa. But Solis wasn’t exactly trying to hide it. In fact, the agent included a screenshot of a fake invitation to a medical conference, one of the booby-trapped documents he wanted to send to Figueroa, in an email to Muschitiello. The screenshot showed the email address "dr.carlosfigue." "I had four email accounts and problems with all of them," Figueroa told the Associated Press, which first reported on the incident last year. "I also had problems with Facebook. At one point, it seems like they attacked all my communications on social media.” Solis apparently also used Hacking Team’s spyware to target judges and other politicians opposing the government of Correa, according to a series of screenshots contained in an email analyzed by a member of the Tor Project. This is just one example where Hacking Team’s technology was used against dissidents or political opponents in Latin America, one of the company’s biggest regional markets, where the practice was more common than Hacking Team ever admitted. In fact, in the past, the company repeatedly claimed to vet its customers to make sure they wouldn’t abuse its products, and said it simply provides a tool for police to “track criminals and terrorists.” In a new, exhaustive report on the use and legality of Hacking Team’s spyware in Latin America, the digital rights organization Derechos Digitales details some cases where the spyware was abused, and argues that in general the use of RCS was against the law. “It’s illegal in the whole region,” Gisela Perez de Acha, a lawyer and public policy analyst at Derechos Digitales, and the author of the report, told Motherboard. “And it’s illegal because [the use of government malware] is not explicitly authorized.” And even if in some cases there were court orders authorizing it, that doesn’t make it legal, the report concluded. “OK, there’s a court order. But is this enough in countries with collapsed democratic institutions and judicial powers that are not independent such as Mexico?” Perez de Acha said. There is also another problem in countries with pervasive corruption, she added. How can you tell who you’re really selling your spyware to? “In Mexico, the police, the authorities, public officials, and organized crime are the same thing. They work together, they work in collusion, both actively or by omission,” Perez de Acha told me. “Considering this, if you give spyware to the police who makes students disappear, you’re practically giving it to the organized crime.” For Hacking Team, Latin America was a continent ripe for business. Several government agencies in seven different countries bought RCS at some point in the last few years, and the company negotiated the sale of its spyware in six other countries, practically blanketing the whole continent. Mexico was by far the best market, with 11 different customers, including the country’s intelligence agency CISEN, the Federal Police, the State Attorney, and five state authorities, according to leaked documents from the company. Through the years, Hacking Team grossed 5.8 million euros in Mexico. (For reference, the second and third best markets were Italy, with a combined 4 million, and Morocco, with 3.1 million euros.) Perhaps it shouldn’t come as a surprise that authorities in Mexico thought they’d need software like Hacking Team’s RCS, with the country’s ongoing and bloody war against drug cartels. “Hacking Team continues to market especially to governments in places where there is the need to investigate serious crime,” the company’s spokesperson Eric Rabe told me in March, in response to a previous story. “As one example—the drug cartel issues in Latin America are well known and have a wide impact well beyond the region.” But there’s evidence that Hacking Team’s Mexican customers weren’t just using it to hunt down drug lords. The governor of Puebla was perhaps the worst offender, using RCS to spy on several political rivals, academics and journalists, according to leaked emails reported in the local press. Most of the local customers, according to Derechos Digitales, were not legally authorized to use spyware like Hacking Team’s RCS, given that only federal authorities, and not state ones, can request judicial permission to intercept communications according to the Mexican constitution. Strangely, among Hacking Team’s customers in Mexico was one client that isn’t strictly a government agency, the state-owned oil company PEMEX. The list of Hacking Team customers in Mexico, from a leaked company spreadsheet. Other customers, not just in Mexico and Ecuador, apparently used Hacking Team’s software to spy on targets who weren’t criminals or terrorists. In Panama, the company’s products were part of a high-level political scandal. The government bought the surveillance software in 2011, spending $680,000, under the direct order of former President Ricardo Martinelli. It’s unclear who the government surveilled using RCS, but in 2014, Martinelli’s government got Hacking Team to extend its spyware license ahead of the local presidential elections in May of that year, leading many to speculate the government wanted to use them to spy on political opponents. Later that year, after Martinelli’s hand-picked successor surprisingly lost the elections to outsider candidate Juan Carlos Varela, Hacking Team’s surveillance equipment in Panama mysteriously went missing. Panamanian anti-corruption authorities then launched an investigation, but nothing has come out of it so far. “As a Panamanian, I was incensed to see how an Italian company sold to my country’s government software to spy on citizens that, just like me, were critical of the government,” Alvin Weeden, a lawyer who worked in the Panama government as a comptroller in the early 2000s, and who filed a separate lawsuit against former government officials and Hacking Team employees last year, told me. “Given that none of the Panamanian citizens I sued have been detained, it looks like there’s no real intention to prosecute them.” Other than in Panama, however, no other countries have announced any inquiry into the purchase or the use of Hacking Team’s spyware. Other countries, such as Colombia, simply denied having any relationship with Hacking Team, while admitting buying spyware from one of Hacking Team’s many resellers in the region. In Chile, the Investigations Police, which paid 2.2 million euros for it, publicly admitted buying RCS after Hacking Team was breached by an outside hacker last year, revealing most of its internal secrets, including its relationship with the Latin American country. The agency defended its use, saying it was “exclusively used to prosecute crimes with prior judicial authorization.” In a way, it seems all the revelations from the leaks have fallen on deaf ears in Latin America. Human rights activists such as Perez de Acha and Derechos Digitales Director Claudio Ruiz hope that can still change, especially considering the continent’s “history of authoritarianism and repression,” as the report put it. “The main goal of criminal investigation and intelligence systems is to safeguard security, peace and the principles of each country,” the organization’s report concluded. “However, when you use methods like malware, these goals are reached via secret and potentially illegal mechanisms—with little public discussion—when, given its democratic goal, they ought to be object of citizen control and accountability.” Months after the hack, Hacking Team is now back in business—although struggling to stay afloat. And the company has not given up on the continent. Earlier this year, a representative of the company travelled to one of the few countries in Latin America that hasn’t bought RCS before. After an unimpressive pitch, however, the new potential customer turned down Hacking Team’s offer. But Hacking Team isn’t the only company selling spyware to governments. There’s now an entire industry around helping police, intelligence and other agencies use hacking tools to track targets. One of its competitors, FinFisher, also allegedly sold spyware in Latin America, to Venezuela, Paraguay and Mexico. Given its history, Latin America will likely remain a juicy target for the flourishing, and mostly underground, spyware vendors such as Hacking Team and FinFisher. Check out more of our extensive Hacking Team coverage here.