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Category Archives: E-Government

Electronic Messaging Recordkeeping Requirements

Electronic Messaging Recordkeeping Requirements, CRS In Focus, May 21, 2019

“The emergence and widespread governmental adoption of digital technologies that create information subject to the retention and preservation requirements of the Federal Records Act (FRA; 44 U.S.C. Chapters 21, 29, 31, and 33), as amended, and the Presidential Records Act (PRA; 44 U.S.C. §§2201-2209), as amended,may be of interest to Congress, officials charged with maintaining government records, and the public. Processes related to the preservation and archiving of born-digital record materials created by email (referred to in statute as electronic mail), text messages, mobile applications, and other forms of electronic messaging—whether created using official, governmental resources, or through personal devices owned by government employees—may be of interest to multiple audiences. Congressional interest arises from many perspectives, including compliance with federal record keeping laws,the consequence of more-complicated (and potentially incomplete) record keeping information, and the ability of Congress to conduct oversight of executive branch activities…”

Face It, You’re Being Watched

“San Francisco is the first American city to ban facial recognition software used by police and other agencies. Bloomberg QuickTake  [YouTube] explains why the technology’s advance is so alarming to regulators, the public, and even the people developing it.” See also: Government Is Using Most Vulnerable People to Test Facial Recognition Software; GAO Report –… Continue Reading

BEA International Trade and Investment Country Facts

“A new data tool–International Trade and Investment Country Facts Application–on the Bureau of Economic Analysis website gives users a snapshot of statistics on trade and investment between the United States and another country by simply clicking on a world map. These fast facts at your fingertips can include: Total exports, imports and trade balance between… Continue Reading

Microsoft offers software tools to secure elections

AP – “Microsoft has announced an ambitious effort to make voting secure, verifiable and subject to reliable audits by registering ballots in encrypted form so they can be accurately and independently tracked long after they are cast. Two of the three top U.S elections vendors have expressed interest in potentially incorporating the open-source software into… Continue Reading

Deloitte, MIT, and Datawheel Launch New ‘Viz Builder’ in Data USA 3.0

Deloitte – Data USA’s 3.0 includes additional data sets, now capable of generating more than 2.5 million data visualizations. ” Today Deloitte, MIT, and Datawheel released the third major update to Data USA, a data visualization platform with more than 400,000 monthly visits. This third update includes a “Viz Builder” tool, which allows users to… Continue Reading

Obama’s Presidential Library Is Already Digital

The Atlantic – The question now is how to leverage its nature to make it maximally useful and used…”The debate about the Obama library exhibits a fundamental confusion. Given its origins and composition, the Obama library is already largely digital. The vast majority of the record his presidency left behind consists not of evocative handwritten… Continue Reading

Congress Is About to Ban the Government From Offering Free Online Tax Filing

ProPublica: “Just in time for Tax Day, the for-profit tax preparation industry is about to realize one of its long-sought goals. Congressional Democrats and Republicans are moving to permanently bar the IRS from creating a free electronic tax filing system. Last week, the House Ways and Means Committee, led by Rep. Richard Neal, D-Mass., passed… Continue Reading

The Evolution of Law Libraries

Harvard University Law School Center on the Legal Profession – The Practice, The Evolution of Law Libraries Volume 5 • Issue 3 • March/April 2019 The Harvard Library Innovation Lab Embracing change in law and libraries. Making the Law Computable The Caselaw Access Project. Pausing the Internet How Perma.cc is trying to fix legal citations. Sketching the Future Discovering… Continue Reading

FTC Crackdown Stops Operations Responsible for Billions of Illegal Robocalls

“Four separate operations responsible for bombarding consumers nationwide with billions of unwanted and illegal robocalls pitching auto warranties, debt-relief services, home security systems, fake charities, and Google search results services have agreed to settle Federal Trade Commission charges that they violated the FTC Act and the agency’s Telemarketing Sales Rule (TSR), including its Do Not… Continue Reading

Senators demand to know why election vendors still sell voting machines with ‘known vulnerabilities’

TechCrunch: “Four senior senators have called on the largest U.S. voting machine makers to explain why they continue to sell devices with “known vulnerabilities,” ahead of upcoming critical elections. The letter, sent Wednesday, calls on election equipment makers ES&S, Dominion Voting and Hart InterCivic to explain why they continue to sell decades-old machines, which the… Continue Reading

Politico – The Federal Courts Are Running An Online Scam

The website everyone uses to follow the Mueller probe is a hopeless, costly disaster. By Seamus Hughes, deputy director of George Washington University’s Program on Extremism. He also runs a company providing services on navigating the federal court records system. “Every day, dozens of hungry reporters lurk inside something called PACER, the online records system… Continue Reading

Government Is Using Most Vulnerable People to Test Facial Recognition Software

Slate – Our research shows that any one of us might end up helping the facial recognition industry, perhaps during moments of extraordinary vulnerability. “If you thought IBM using “quietly scraped” Flickr images to train facial recognition systems was bad, it gets worse. Our research, which will be reviewed for publication this summer, indicates that… Continue Reading