Government Security


cyber command center

Documents Reveal Why U.S. Military Publishes Malware Used by North Korean and Russian Hackers

CYBERCOM has created a Twitter account with thousands of followers to publicize malware samples it shares with cybersecurity companies. Internal documents explain that it’s part of a defensive (and offensive) strategy.

capitol hill building

Lawmakers Plan Bill That Would Endanger Tech Company Efforts to Implement Full Encryption

The legislation reflects growing frustration from the Justice Department about the encryption practices of tech companies, particularly when it comes to investigating child abuse or terrorist activity.

california state capitol

California’s Consumer Privacy Act Affects How Companies Will Store Data Nationwide

CCPA (officially called AB-375) incorporates some of the elements of GDPR and takes a broader view of private data and protecting PII. The storage, transportation, and management of sensitive consumer and company information have become critical issues for companies of all sizes to lock down and secure.

TSA Plans For Hiring and Overtime Freeze Ahead of Spring Break Travel Season

The agency faces pressure to cut costs in the face of a pay increase for federal workers, but DHS officials say they will expand hiring after the freeze ends in April.

police body camera

Cincinnati Police Become First City To Install Body Cameras With Live-Streaming Capability

Police officials hope that the new software will allow them to better handle crisis situations in real time and speed up the filing of police reports.

Washington State Senate Adopts Legislation To Regulate Facial Recognition Statewide

While a senate bill would largely ban government agencies from using facial recognition for ongoing surveillance, other legislators are pushing for a full moratorium on the software.

dod pentagon

Pentagon, FBI Release Report on New Malware Attributed to North Korean Hackers

The new trend of public disclosures by government agencies about cybersecurity threats has led to the latest report about North Korea’s newly developed malware used to spy and steal data.

maine capitol

Maine Legislators Working On Bill To Make Law Enforcement Use of Surveillance Tech More Transparent

Law enforcement in Maine have cited a 2013 law stating they are not required to disclose if they are using facial recognition or cellphone signal interceptors. Two lawmakers hope to change that.



new hampshire polling place

MIT Study Finds That Mobile Voting App Could Pose Cybersecurity Issues For Voters

Tech company Voatz is fighting back against research critical of its security protections, stating that researchers used an outdated version of the app and never examined Voatz servers.

Capitol Hill at sunset

New Senate Bill Would Place Moratorium on Federal Use of Facial Recognition

Two Democratic senators want to temporarily pause the government’s use of facial recognition technology while a commission develops regulations.

Orthodox Jews in New York City

After Rise in Anti-Semitic Incidents, New York City Adds Cameras and Officers in Jewish Communities

The increase in video surveillance has not come without criticism, but many Jewish leaders are supporting the increased security efforts.

south dakota capitol

South Dakota Lawmakers Decline to Pass Legislation Regulating Police Body Cameras

The state is only one of a few not to have a statewide law regulating how police body camera footage is maintained and released to the public.

capitol hill building

House Homeland Security Committee Chairman Expresses Opposition To Moratorium on Facial Recognition

At a Thursday hearing, Rep. Bennie Thompson said he is not on a “moratorium route” but supports regulation of the software, which has been found to have accuracy issues for people of color.

McAfee: Lack of Verified Election Websites Could Pose Cybersecurity Issues For 2020 Election

McAfee’s survey of 13 states considered “critical” in the presidential election found that 83 percent lacked .GOV validation, which verifies websites as being run by official local governments.

iowa judicial branch

Security Testers Charged With Breaking Into Iowa Courthouses Cleared Of All Criminal Charges

The two men, who worked for Coalfire Labs, were caught up in a miscommunication between local law enforcement and the Iowa judicial branch, which hired the security firm to conduct testing.

TSA ID checkpoint

TSA Breaks Record For Highest Number of Firearms Detected at Airport Checkpoints

In 2019, TSA officers detected 4,432 firearms in carry-on baggage or on passengers, breaking the record set in 2018.

nist building

Federal Institute Releases Guidelines For How To Respond To Ransomware Attacks

The report, prepared by the National Institute of Standards and Technology, tested a variety of cybersecurity solutions in different IT environments to find out which methods were most effective in fighting ransomware.

white house

Coalition Pressures Government Agency To Recommend Ban on Government Use of Facial Recognition

Over 40 groups sent a letter to the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board on Monday asking the agency to recommend that the executive branch put a moratorium on facial recognition.

campaign signs

Technology Companies Sign On To Offer Free or Discounted Cybersecurity Services to Campaigns

Seventeen companies, including Microsoft and Cloudflare, are offering security assistance to federal campaigns that often cannot afford the services themselves.

gun retailer

New Security, Video Surveillance Requirements For Illinois Gun Dealers Go Into Effect

The regulations originally required gun retailers to have a backup of all video surveillance feeds, but has since been changed.

maryland state house

Ransomware Possession Would Become A Crime In Maryland Under Proposed Legislation

Lawmakers are trying to deter would-be hackers from carrying out cyber attacks that have paralyzed companies, hospital systems and local governments, including Baltimore’s city government.

New Minnesota Law Allows Families to Install Internet-Connected Cameras In Senior Care Facilities

The new policies, meant to protect elder privacy, have also drawn criticism because of the requirement that families notify care facilities before they install the camera.

washington state capitol

Washington State Lawmakers Introduce Legislation Regulating Data Privacy, Facial Recognition

The data privacy bill would give consumers the right to access and delete data collected about them, while the facial recognition legislation would regulate government use of the software.

cambridge city hall

Cambridge Becomes Fourth Massachusetts Community To Ban Municipal Facial Recognition Use

A bill is currently before the state House that would ban government use of biometric technology until the legislature regulates how agencies can adopt it.

tree of life synagogue

Pennsylvania Opens Grant Program For Faith Based Organizations Seeking Security Upgrades

Created in the wake of a shooting at the Pittsburgh Tree of Life synagogue, the grant program opened its application process last week.

capitol hill

New Bill Would Update Children’s Online Privacy Law In Wake Of YouTube, TikTok Controversies

The bipartisan measure would allow parents to delete information collected by companies about their kids and raise the age of parental consent protection from 13 to 16.

new york subway

Group Sues New York City MTA For Records On Facial Recognition Use in Subway Station

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority maintains that it has not used facial recognition on riders, but privacy advocates want records related to the technology the agency purchased.

fbi seal

FBI Warns U.S. Companies About Recent Scourge of “Maze” Ransomware Attacks

The advisory warned businesses about cyber attacks featuring cryptocurrency sites and spam campaigns impersonating government agencies.

facial recognition system

Majority of Facial Recognition Systems Are Less Accurate For People of Color, Federal Study Finds

Native Americans had the highest rates of false positives, while African-American women were most likely to be misidentified in a law enforcement database.

Housing and Urban Development

Lawmakers Seek Answers on HUD's Use of Facial Recognition

Eight Democrats in the House and Senate want to know if public housing residents are included in decisions about facial recognition use.

washington metro

TSA, Washington Metro Test Out New System That Can Detect Explosive Devices on Passengers

The non-invasive system has been implemented by more transportation authorities around the world to address threats of terrorism in public spaces.

san diego police

Due To New Law, San Diego’s Law Enforcement Facial Recognition Program Will End in 2020

Thanks to a statewide policy banning law enforcement use of facial recognition for three years, several agencies in San Diego will lose access to a database of facial scans.

orbitz site

Orbitz and Expedia Reach $110,000 Settlement with Pennsylvania AG Over 2017 Data Breach

The travel companies were fined for lax data security practices that potentially led to a breach affecting 880,000 payment cards globally.

camera with facial recognition software

Second Massachusetts Town Bans Government Use of Facial Recognition

The vote marks the fourth town that has banned facial recognition this year, following Somerville, Mass. and San Francisco and Oakland in California.

New Orleans Becomes Latest City To Suffer Ransomware Attack

The cyberattack caused the city to completely shut down its network for several days, but did not affect emergency services.

CBP Sign

ICE, Customs and Border Protection Face Lawsuit Over ‘Stingray’ Cell Phone Surveillance Tech

There is little known about the government’s use of “stingrays,” which tracks the locations of a cell phone and all devices within its range.

seattle tacoma airport

Seattle-Tacoma Airport Becomes First To Resist Government Push For Facial Recognition Expansion

The Port of Seattle Commission approved a moratorium on new biometric technology programs on Tuesday amid concern over data privacy and the tool’s accuracy.

Lindsey Graham

Senators to Big Tech Companies: Build A Back Door For Law Enforcement To Access Encrypted Messages, Or Else

The ongoing debate over Apple and Facebook’s decision to not build “backdoors” for law enforcement to obtain encrypted messages continued to rage during a Senate hearing on Tuesday.

cyber attack

Pensacola Government Faces Cyber Attack Hours After Shooting at Naval Base

The government has not linked the attack to the shooting, which is being investigated as an act of terrorism.

Huawei Files Second Lawsuit Against U.S. Government Over Ban

After the FCC voted to ban telecommunications companies from using subsidies to buy equipment from Huawei, the Chinese company filed suit.

NJ state police

Gun Battle in New Jersey Ends With Six Deaths, Including Police Officer

The shooting in Jersey City lasted for over an hour and ended with a firefight between the suspects and several police officers.

fbi logo

Shooting At Pensacola Naval Base is Being Investigated as Terrorism, FBI Says

Friends of the gunman, who was in the Saudi air force, have been cooperating with the investigation into the attack, which killed three sailors.

port of entry

House Legislation Would Increase Use of Non-Intrusive Inspection Tech at Ports of Entry

Two House members want the Department of Homeland Security to increase its rate of inspection from 15 percent of commercial vehicles to 100 percent.

CBP website

Customs and Border Protection Drops Plans To Expand Facial Recognition Scans to American Travelers

The decision to reverse plans to expand facial recognition at ports of entry came after widespread criticism from legislators and activists.

naval air station pensacola

Four People Dead, Including Suspect, After Shooting at Naval Air Station Pensacola

This is the second time in three days that a shooter has opened fire at a U.S. naval base.

customs officer

American Citizens Could Be Subject to Required Facial Recognition Scans While Entering or Leaving U.S.

The Trump administration plans to expand facial scans from a pilot program for foreign travelers to include all travelers, including permanent residents and citizens.

pearl harbor

Shooting At Pearl Harbor Naval Base Kills Two Workers, Injures Another

The gunman, a current U.S. sailor, shot the three civilian workers before turning the gun on himself.

FaceApp

FBI Warns That FaceApp and Other Apps Developed in Russia Are ‘Potential Counterintelligence Threats’

The viral app concerned senators due to the amount of data that it collected, including facial scans of users.

holiday shopping

Government Warns Shoppers of Rise in Counterfeit Retailers During Holiday Shopping Season

Officials have seen an increase of counterfeit goods being sold directly to customers as well as a rise in the use of the dark web.

drone airport

Congressmen Protest TSA Plan to Shoot Down Drones Near Airports

Two House members say the Department of Homeland Security does not have enough authority to deploy defense equipment to take down drones.

huawei

Senators Call For Commerce Department To Stop Licensing Tech Sales to Huawei

Huawei has started granting licenses to companies, including Microsoft, hoping to sell products to the Chinese tech giant.

healthcare workers

House of Representatives Passes Bill Addressing Violence Against Healthcare Workers

The legislation faces a tough road ahead in the Senate and a potential veto from the Trump administration, which opposes the current version of the bill.

Capitol Hill at sunset

New Bill Would Require Federal Law Enforcement To Obtain Warrant Before Using Facial Recognition

The bipartisan legislation would prevent “abuse” of the surveillance tool by federal authorities, according to Sens. Chris Coons and Mike Lee.

louisiana capitol

Louisiana Faces Down Ransomware Attack On State Agencies

Several services were shut down on Monday, but the governor says that it was a pre-emptive measure and that the ransomware did not infect all government servers.

camera with facial recognition software

Portland Seeks to Become First City in Maine to Ban Facial Recognition Technology

The ban seeks to prohibit the use of all facial recognition technology by city officials and employees in Portland, Maine.

department of justice

Federal Prosecutors Charge 10 Men in Romance Scams Based in Nigeria

Authorities have arrested seven men across the U.S. who were part of the money laundering fraud scheme.

port of entry and customs agent

Federal Court Rules That Warrantless Device Searches at Airports, Ports of Entry Violate Fourth Amendment

Under the terms of the ruling, border agents must demonstrate “individualized suspicion” of international travelers before officials can seize and search an electronic device.

Gun Manufacturer Could be Held Liable for Sandy Hook Shooting

Gun Manufacturer Could be Held Liable for Sandy Hook Shooting

The Supreme Court refused Tuesday to shield a major arms manufacturer from potential liability in the 2012 school shooting that left 26 students and educators dead in Newtown, Connecticut.

Watchdog Group Sues ICE For Records of Facial Recognition Use and Data Collection Methods

Watchdog Group Sues ICE For Records of Facial Recognition Use and Data Collection Methods

The Project on Government Oversight wants more information about how the agency has solicited facial recognition software from Amazon and other companies.

LAPD officer

Los Angeles Police Plan to Review Body Camera Footage for Instances of ‘Biased Policing’

The new approach to reviewing officers’ footage comes as researchers question how much impact body cameras have had on police behavior.

Digital Edition

  • Security Today Magazine - January February 2020

    January / February 2020

    Featuring:

    • Security at 20,000 Feet
    • Powering Access Control
    • The Role of Video in Security
    • Under Lock and Key
    • Protecting the Aviation Ecosystem

    View This Issue

  • Environmental Protection
  • Occupational Health & Safety
  • Infrastructure Solutions Group
  • Spaces4Learning
  • Campus Security & Life Safety