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Government/Defense News and Analysis

Federal agencies fall short on data breaches, GAO report says

GSA looks to issue new rules for gov’t contractor data breach reporting

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The General Services Administration (GSA) has issued a proposal for new guidelines on data breaches disclosure that government contractors must follow and give the government access to their system in the event of a breach. The GSA proposal will amend the General Services Administration Acquisition Regulation (GSAR) requiring contractors to report any cyber incidents that…

Pennsylvania police warn an app may have been hacked to send fake speeding tickets.

DEA and ICE using surveillance cameras hidden in streetlights

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In a move that could stir up visions of an Orwellian-style government surveillance state, recently published government procurement data revealed the US Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) have purchased an undisclosed number of covert surveillance cameras hidden inside streetlights to place around the country. Its unclear where or when either agency…

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Japan cyber minister tells parliament he’s never used computers

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The deputy chief of Japan’s cybersecurity strategy office told parliament this week that he doesn’t use computers. “Since the age of 25, I have instructed my employees and secretaries, so I don’t use computers myself,” 68-year-old Yoshitaka Sakurada said, according to local media. Sakurada, who is in charge of the 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games…

Justice Dept. has prepared indictment against Assange, court docs reveal

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WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has long justified his self-imposed asylum in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London – even after receiving citizenship – because he feared the U.S. would arrest him. Now, it seems he’s right, according to an unrelated court filing in Virginia that inadvertently revealed that Justice Department has an indictment ready to go…

U.S., Israel move to harden aviation assets from cyberattack

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The defense and aviation industries are taking a fresh and harder look at how well their top-of-the-line aircraft are protected from cyberattacks. In the U.S. the Lockheed-Martin F-35 is the recent focus of attention due to the fighter plane’s overwhelming dependence upon software to handle everything from weapons deployment to resupply, reported the Military Times.…

IT pros dubious of government officials’ cyber knowledge

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A newly released survey of 515 IT security professionals is giving government officials a no-confidence vote in terms of their ability to understand digital threats, practice cyber hygiene and legislate encryption policies. Conducted during last August’s 2018 Black Hat cybersecurity conference by researchers at Venafi, the survey found that 63 percent of respondents believe government…

U.S. declines to sign cybersecurity pact

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The U.S. Monday joined Russia, North Korea and China in declining to sign a cybersecurity pact supported by 50 countries and aimed at fighting both cyberwarfare and cybercrime. The Paris Call for Trust and Security in Cyberspace agreement, part of the Paris Peace Forum, seeks to create a cyber Geneva Conventions of sorts, laying out…

Trump may oust Nielsen at DHS

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President Trump may soon give the boot to Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, lauded on her nomination for her cybersecurity experience. Nielsen, who has been long-rumored to be unhappy in her role, has faced criticism from the president over a number of issues, including enforcement of the administration’s immigration policy and Trump…

Federal judge orders review of Georgia’s provisional ballots

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Noting that it was likely that the administration of former Georgia Secretary of State and self-proclaimed governor-elect Brian Kemp likely failed to “properly maintain a reliable and secure voter registration system,” a federal judge said the state must review provisional ballots cast in a contentious Nov. 6 election. In ruling on a case brought by…

Plans include an open standard that would shrink users' dependency on passwords.

Biometrics and AI firm team up for first U.S. biometric database amidst criticism

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Biometrics firm SureID and AI-startup firm Robbie.AI are teaming up to launch the first U.S. biometric database. SureID has a nationwide network of fingerprint enrollment kiosks while Robbie.AI uses technology to authenticate using AI-based facial recognition and behavioral prediction that could be combined to create a nationwide biometric databased for consumer focused initiatives, according to…

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