Archive for February, 2016

San Antonio cybersecurity CEOs push state committee for support, reform

From: San Antonio Business Journal

After hours of testimony about cybersecurity issues in government and business in front of the Texas House of Representatives Committee on Urban Affairs at the University of Texas at San Antonio — one representative got blunt.

“Now that you’ve laid out the basis for concern, my question is what law do you want us to pass?” queried State Rep. Todd Hunter, D- Corpus Christi. “You’ve all talked about the issue but I’d like to know what can be done.”

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What Israel Could Teach the U.S. about Cybersecurity

From: Yahoo Tech

Rob Pegoraro

The first day of the recent CyberTech 2016 conference on cybersecurity in Tel Aviv, Yuval Steinitz, Israel’s minister of national infrastructure, energy and water resources, dramatically demonstrated the urgency of the matter at hand: He admitted that the state electric authority itself was currently “facing a very serious cyber attack.”

His government agency had identified the malware and isolated the infected computers. And the attack affected only a regulator of the electric industry, not the actual power generation or transmission systems. But Steinitz’s point still stood: “This is a fresh example of the sensitivity of infrastructure to such attacks.“

Pentagon seeks more visibility into industry R&D

From: FCW

By Sean Lyngaas

Defense officials are proposing a change to the Defense Federal Acquisition Regulation Supplement that they say would improve government-funded research and development carried out by private firms.

Under the proposal, firms undertaking new independent R&D efforts that are being reimbursed by the government would have to tell defense officials before doing so, and to share the results of those investments afterward.

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What Could be Done about China’s Theft of Intellectual Property?

From: Industry Week


Hardly a week goes by without a report of Chinese “hacking” or intellectual property theft, so it was no surprise that a published analysis by CrowdStrike, a California-based cyber security company, revealed that China violated its cyber agreement with the United States the very next day after CNBC reported that President Obama and China’s President Xi Jinping agreed to not conduct cyber theft of intellectual property on Friday, 25 Sep 2015. President Obama said, “The United States government does not engage in cyber economic espionage for commercial gain, and today I can announce that our two countries have reached a common understanding on a way forward.” However, the U.S.-China agreement “does not prohibit cyber spying for national security purposes.”

Obama seeks 35 percent hike in federal cyber budget to boost defense

From: The Washington Post

President Obama is seeking a 35 percent hike in cybersecurity funding in his final budget to boost the capability of the federal government to defend itself against cyberattacks.

The proposed $19 billion request, which represents one of the largest increases ever sought in this area, comes as Congress and the public have witnessed an alarming series of intrusions in recent years against targets ranging from Target and Sony to the Pentagon and the Office of Personnel Management.

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Dubai’s new data law – tapping a new well

From: JDSupra Business Advisor

by Paul Allen, Eamon HolleyDLA Piper

If data is the new oil, then the Dubai Government is keen to tap the well. Dubai’s recently issued “Dubai Data Law” (the Law) is a one of the latest examples of the progress being made by the Dubai Government to diversify and “future-proof” its economy and society – a strategy brought into even greater focus given the recent backdrop of plummeting oil prices.


US Government Says Weapons Export Rules Won’t Hurt Cyber Researchers

From: Motherboard

Written by JOSEPH COX

The Obama administration is committed to making sure that controversial proposals regarding the sale of spy software will not interfere with legitimate uses of cybersecurity tools, according to a letter written by the National Security Council.

One of the most contentious debates in information security has been around the Wassenaar Arrangement—a trade pact geared at regulating the flow of conventional arms and dual-use technologies to repressive regimes. Proposals were written to add surveillance software to that agreement, but, with those included, Wassenaar would lead to all sorts of other problems for researchers and cybersecurity more generally.

US to rework arms control rule on exporting hacker tools

From: The News & Observer

The U.S. government is rewriting a proposal under arms control rules from 20 years ago to make it simpler to export tools related to hacking and surveillance software since they are also used to secure computer networks.

The White House said it supports making cyber intrusion tools available overseas for legitimate cybersecurity activities, according to a letter made public Tuesday.

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Help Wanted: 1,000 Cybersecurity Jobs At OPM, Post-Hack Hiring Approved By DHS

From: In Homeland Security

There are one million cybersecurity job openings in 2016. Where are all of those jobs? This week we take a look at the cybersecurity job boom in the U.S. government sector.

The Office of Personnel Management (OPM) suffered the largest cyber attack over the past year, resulting in the theft of contact records on more than twenty million people including those who applied for government security clearances and went through background checks, and nearly two million spouses and domestic partners of those applicants. As the OPM hack news unraveled, it got worse — revealing that hackers stole the digital fingerprints of more than five million people employed by the U.S. federal government… the same fingerprints that are sometimes used for access to so-called locked down buildings and computers.