9 February 2022

The media is dominated by news of the cyberattack on the communications company Vodafone that affected 4 million customers as well as the emergency services and hospitals throughout the country. President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa has said the new government will take office on 23 February. Former PSD leader Miguel Relvas wants the party’s new leader to be chosen quickly and for the victor to unite the party. PM Costa’s decision not to meet Chega representatives is discussed.

RTP, Público, CNN PT, Lusa and DN all carry extensive coverage of a cyberattack on the Vodafone network that affected four million customers and hit communications, messaging, mobile data, internet and television services in what the company has called an act of terrorism. Público notes that Vodafone is just the latest target in a wave of cyberattacks that accompanied the pandemic, with this event affecting the communications of several critical services and infrastructure, including the emergency services and hospitals with Expresso stating that hospitals in Porto, Matosinhos and Guimarães were effectively cut off. CNN PT, Lusa, Público and Expresso all note that the Judicial Police (PJ) has called for support from Interpol and that the Security Intelligence Services have been activated with a view to “ascertaining the authorship of the crime and its collateral effects”. Carlos Cabreiro, coordinator of the PJ’s national cybercrime unit, said the attack is being investigated as a single computer crime, adding that “one of the objectives of the investigation is to understand the reasons for the attack”, for which no ransom has been demanded.

DN cites President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa who says he wants the country “and the PS in particular”  to listen carefully to the speech he will make at the inauguration of the new government, adding that he will say nothing more until 23 February, when he will make the inauguration speech for the new Government.

CNN PT claims PM Costa’s decision not to meet representatives of Chega has set a precedent by being the first time in almost 48 years of democracy that the party that won the legislative elections has excluded a party from the informal meetings.

Lusa carries a report, which is picked up by Público, that former PSD president Miguel Relvas wants the party’s new leader in place “as soon as possible” and that for the sake of party unity, the winning candidate should invite possible opponents to join their team.

Dinheiro Vivo reports that Lisbon mayor Carlos Moedas has announced a plan for the city to spend €500 million on the Lisboa Solar project that will take advantage of the city’s solar potential through the installation of “Production Units for Self-Consumption (UPAC) in municipal buildings and equipment parks, to meet part of the city’s current energy needs”, but also “to promote the installation of solar systems (thermal, photovoltaic and hybrid) for heating domestic hot water and producing electricity for self-consumption in residential, service and commercial buildings, prioritising schools and social housing buildings”. The plans include changes to the Almirante Reis cycle path and the creation of a network of electric car chargers throughout the city.

Lusa notes that the European Commissioner for Agriculture, Janusz Wojciechowski, has met Portuguese and Spanish ministers and discussed the drought and the funds that Brussels can release to support the agricultural sector in the two countries.

Expresso reports that the European Commission has issued bonds, including a five-year issue raising €2.2 billion that will be used to finance Portugal under the European Financial Stability Mechanism. According to Brussels, the transaction “raises the total funding obtained under the programme to €78.5 billion”, which is intended to be used to finance the Recovery and Resilience Mechanism, which is the main part of the Covid-19 post-crisis recovery fund.

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