Business | Homeland Security Newswire

  • Lawmaker demands documents on Kaspersky Lab, threatens use of compulsory process against DHS

    U.S. House Science, Space, and Technology Committee Chairman Lamar Smith (R-Texas) yesterday sent a letter to the DHS demanding a complete response to the committee’s 5 December request and threatening the use of compulsory process to obtain documents related to the DHS Binding Operational Directive (BOD) 17-01. The BOD required all government agencies to identify and remove Kaspersky Lab software from their computer systems.

  • Digital deceit: Tacking the technologies behind precision propaganda on the internet

    Over the past year, there has been rising pressure on Facebook, Google, and Twitter to account for how bad actors are exploiting their platforms. The catalyst of this so-called “tech-lash” was the revelation last summer that agents of the Russian government engaged in disinformation operations using these services to influence the 2016 presidential campaigns. The investigation into the Russian operation pulled back the curtain on a modern Internet marketplace that enables widespread disinformation over online channels. The authors of a new report say we have only begun to scratch the surface of a much larger ecosystem of digital advertising and marketing technologies.

  • Debunking 3 myths behind “chain migration” and “low-skilled” immigrants

    President Donald Trump has embraced the rhetoric of “chain migration” to spread the message that the United States is legally letting in too many of the wrong kind of immigrant. That term, however, distorts the facts. As a scholar on U.S. immigration law and policy, I’d like to correct and contextualize the numbers on the now maligned “family-based immigration,” and uncover the biases that underlie the preference for the “highly-skilled” immigrant. Family immigration is subject to significant limitations and it exists because American values include ideals such as family unification.

  • IvySys Technologies awarded $4.6 million DARPA contract to combat Weapons of Mass Terror (WMT)

    Reports of chemical weapons use around the world raises serious concerns about non-state actors’ access to weapons of mass terror (WMT) and reinforces fears of a possible terrorist attack with chemical, biological, radiological, or nuclear (CBRN) weapons in the West. Today’s terrorist networks move operatives, money and material across borders and through the crevices of the global economy, making tracking such adversaries a daunting challenge. In this new norm, the security of the United States will rely on novel, game-changing modeling techniques and solutions to curtail mass terror events.

  • Border security improvements boost West Bank-Jordan trade

    The West Bank and Israel could double trade with Jordan after new security measures were opened at the Allenby border crossing. The new system for scanning cargo containers will enable 200 containers to cross between Jordan and the West Bank each day, double the current number.

  • ISIS bomb-making videos continue to be available on Google platforms

    One of ISIS’s most notorious bomb-making videos is frequently and continually uploaded to Google web platforms, and there is little indication that the company is taking the appropriate steps to prevent these reuploads. “You Must Fight Them O Muwahhid” is one of ISIS’s most infamous videos, urging attacks in the West, displaying knife attack tactics on a live human target, and notably, providing instructions for building an explosive device with easily obtainable materials.

  • Cyber incidents doubled in 2017

    The Online Trust Alliance (OTA) has just released its Cyber Incident & Breach Trends Report. OTA’s annual analysis found that cyber incidents targeting businesses nearly doubled from 82,000 in 2016 to 159,700 in 2017. Since the majority of cyber incidents are never reported, OTA believes the actual number in 2017 could easily exceed 350,000. The report analyzes data breaches, ransomware targeting businesses, business email compromise (BEC), distributed denial of service attacks (DDoS), and takeover of critical infrastructure and physical systems over the course of a year.

  • Smuggling of people from Africa to Europe conducted by “independent traders,” not Mafia-like monopoly

    First study to model the organization behind trade in illegal border crossings shows no “Mafia-like” monopoly of routes from Africa into Europe via Mediterranean. Instead, myriad independent smugglers compete in open markets that have emerged at every stage of the journey.

  • Downtime of a top cloud service provider could cost U.S. economy $15 billion

    Businesses in the United States could lose $15 billion if a leading cloud service provider would experience a downtime of at least three days. A new study finds that if a top cloud provider went down, manufacturing would see direct economic losses of $8.6 billion; wholesale and retail trade sectors would see economic losses of $3.6 billion; information sectors would see economic losses of $847 million; finance and insurance sectors would see economic losses of $447 million; and transportation and warehousing sectors would see economic losses of $439 million.

  • World Economic Forum launches new cybersecurity center “to prevent a digital dark age”

    Without collaboration and robust defenses, cyberattacks could cripple economies, nation states, and societies. The World Economic Forum says that urgent action is needed to create safe operating environment for new technologies like artificial intelligence, robotics, drones, self-driving cars, and the Internet of Things. The Forum has launched a new Global Center for Cybersecurity, which will offer a platform for governments, companies, and international organizations to diminish the impact of malicious activities on the web.

  • Moods can impact cybersecurity behavior

    As professionals return to work after holidays, their moods are undoubtedly affected by the emotional impact of their holiday experiences, but these moods may be more critical to workplace cybersecurity than previously realized. New research suggests that people’s positive or negative moods can affect the likelihood that they will engage in insecure computing behavior in the workplace.

  • $1 billion reward proposed for development of new antibiotics

    An international group tasked with researching and developing new economic models to promote antibiotic development is calling for a $1 billion market entry reward for new antibiotics, saying the reward could significantly boost the number of new antibiotics coming to market over the next thirty years. The proposal was made by an international consortium of public health organizations, academic institutions, and pharmaceutical companies supported by the European Medicines Initiative. The $1 billion market entry reward is one of four incentives proposed by the group to stimulate research and development (R&D) for new antibiotics and ensure that critically needed antibiotics are used sustainably and continue to be accessible. “Without incentives, some scientifically promising treatments would probably never make it to patients,” says one expert.

  • What we didn’t learn from Twitter’s news dump on Russiagate

    On Friday evening, amid a pending U.S. government shutdown and a presidential porn payoff scandal, Twitter released its long-awaited report on Russian uses of its platform to interfere in the 2016 presidential election. The numbers were striking. Twitter officials said, they had found a cluster of 3,814 accounts that were “a propaganda effort by a Russian government-linked organization known as the Internet Research Agency (IRA).” These were supplemented by a broader project of 50,258 automated accounts — bots — which spread the messaging further. In total, 677,775 people in the United States followed one of these accounts or retweeted or liked a Tweet from these accounts during the election period. Peter Singer writes that social media is about scale and networking, and this combination means that, in actuality, the numbers released by Twitter are far worse than they seem.

  • Interconnected technological risks: Responding to disruptions of cyber-physical systems

    When infectious diseases strike, the World Health Organization acts swiftly, coordinating with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and its foreign counterparts to contain the threat. But there is no equivalent international organization similarly dedicated to identifying and mitigating a cyberattack. The World Economic Forum (WEF), however, is bringing together infrastructure and technology developers, insurers and government officials from across the globe to develop strategies for responding to interconnected technological risks, including those that can cascade when hackers disrupt cyber-physical systems.

  • 2018: Critical period of intensified risks

    The Global Risks Report 2018, published this week by the World Economic Forum cautions that we are struggling to keep up with the accelerating pace of change. It highlights numerous areas in which we are pushing systems to the brink, from extinction-level rates of biodiversity loss to mounting concerns about the possibility of new wars. The reports says that the structural and interconnected nature of risks in 2018 threatens the very system on which societies, economies, and international relations are based – but that the positive economic outlook gives leaders the opportunity to tackle systemic fragility.