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Category Archives: Defense

Pete Recommends – Weekly highlights on cyber security issues, October 3, 2020

Via LLRX – Privacy and security issues impact every aspect of our lives – home, work, travel, education, health and medical records – to name but a few. On a weekly basis Pete Weiss highlights articles and information that focus on the increasingly complex and wide ranging ways technology is used to compromise and diminish our privacy and security, often without our situational awareness. Four highlights from this week: CISA Releases Telework Essentials Toolkit; A New Tool for Detecting Deepfakes Looks for What Isn’t There: an Invisible Pulse; Collection and Use of Biometrics by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services; and What to do when someone steals your identity.

CRS – The Fundamentals of Military Readiness

CRS report via The Fundamentals of Military Readiness, October 2, 2020: “Each year the Department of Defense (DOD) requests and Congress authorizes and appropriates billions of dollars in Operations and Maintenance (O&M) funding to support what the DOD calls readiness. Additionally, other types of defense appropriations may be used to contribute to producing, sustaining, or… Continue Reading

TikTok: Technology Overview and Issues

CRS report via LC – TikTok: Technology Overview and Issues, Updated September 29, 2020:” TikTok is a globally popular video-sharing smartphone application (app) owned by ByteDance Ltd., a privately held company headquartered in Beijing, China. It is under increasing scrutiny by the U.S. government as a potential privacy and security risk to U.S. citizens. This… Continue Reading

House Intel Cmte releases summary – The China Deep Dive

“Today, the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence (HPSCI) under Chairman Adam Schiff (D-CA) released the unclassified executive summary of its report, “The China Deep Dive: A Report on the Intelligence Community’s Capabilities and Competencies with Respect to the People’s Republic of China.” The Committee voted to approve the report by voice vote. This report… Continue Reading

Cybercrime and the Law: Computer Fraud and Abuse Act and the 116th Congress

CRS report via LC – Cybercrime and the Law: Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA) and the 116th Congress, September 21, 2020: “…Since the original enactment of the CFAA in 1984, technology and the human relationship to it have continued to evolve. Although Congress has amended the CFAA on numerous occasions to respond to new… Continue Reading

FinCEN Files Show How Criminals Use Big-Name Banks To Manage Global Financial Corruption

BuzzFeedNews: “A huge trove of secret government documents reveals for the first time how the giants of Western banking move trillions of dollars in suspicious transactions, enriching themselves and their shareholders while facilitating the work of terrorists, kleptocrats, and drug kingpins. And the US government, despite its vast powers, fails to stop it. Today, the… Continue Reading

What’s at Stake in This Election? The American Democratic Experiment

The New York Times / Opinion – Trump’s former director of national intelligence on how to firmly and unambiguously reassure all Americans that their votes will be counted. By Dan Coats. Mr. Coats served as the director of national intelligence from 2017 to 2019. “…Our democracy’s enemies, foreign and domestic, want us to concede in… Continue Reading

Americans’ Views of Government: Low Trust, but Some Positive Performance Ratings

“For years, public trust in the federal government has hovered at near-record lows. That remains the case today, as the United States struggles with a pandemic and economic recession. Just 20% of U.S. adults say they trust the government in Washington to “do the right thing” just about always or most of the time. Yet… Continue Reading

A Low-Yield, Submarine-Launched Nuclear Warhead: Overview of the Expert Debate

CRS – A Low-Yield, Submarine-Launched Nuclear Warhead: Overview of the Expert Debate Updated September 9, 2020 – “The Trump Administration has developed a new low-yield version of the W-76 warhead for existing submarine-launched Trident II (D-5) missiles. Unclassified sources state that the current W76-1 warhead has an explosive yield of around 100 kilotons. The National… Continue Reading

Barr’s removal of career national security official, weeks before election, raises concerns

ABC News: “Current and former national security officials are raising concerns over Attorney General William Barr’s recent decision to remove the head of a Justice Department office that helps ensure federal counterterrorism and counterintelligence activities are legal – and replace him with a political appointee with relatively limited experience. “It’s very alarming,” said Katrina Mulligan,… Continue Reading

The Freedom of Information Act – A Legal Overview Updated

CRS report via LC – The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA): A Legal Overview, Updated August 24, 2020: “Originally enacted in 1966, the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) establishes a three-part system that requires federal agencies to disclose a large swath of government information to the public. First, FOIA directs agencies to publish substantive and… Continue Reading

Resources on Deep Fakes and National Security

Deep Fakes and National Security, August 26, 2020. “Deep fakes”—a term that first emerged in 2017 to describe realistic photo, audio, video, and other forgeries generated with artificial intelligence (AI) technologies—could present a variety of national security challenges in the years to come.As these technologies continue to mature, they could hold significant implications for congressional… Continue Reading