Joseph Marks

The Justice Department is giving up on an encryption truce with Big Tech

The Justice Department has essentially given up hope that tech companies will voluntarily build into their products a special way for law enforcement to access encrypted communications to help track terrorists and criminals. Instead, the department is focusing on getting legislation that forces companies to cooperate –  and is hoping encryption-limiting laws in Australia and the United Kingdom will ease the path for a similar law in the US, said John Demers, assistant attorney general for national security. “If there were a proposal from tech companies or a desire to talk about this issue t

China is poised to lead in 5G. That's partly Washington's fault, Sen. Warner says.

The US government has been too slow to respond to China’s technological rise and aggression in cyberspace — and it could pay a big price. That's according to Sen Mark Warner (D-VaA), who blasted congressional dysfunction and mismanagement by both the Trump and Obama administrations for a complacency that allowed Chinese companies to get ahead in next-generation 5G wireless networks. The risks are big: Intelligence officials fret Beijing could use that position to spy on Americans or sabotage US companies.

FEC approves free cybersecurity for campaigns despite influence concerns

The Federal Election Commission gave the go-ahead to a nonprofit organization seeking to offer free cybersecurity services to political campaigns, upending rules that typically consider such free services illegal campaign contributions. The FEC’s reasoning, in a nutshell, was that it ordinarily bans such services due to the possibility people might try to cash in on political favors later. But in this case, the risk of Russian and Chinese hackers running roughshod over the 2020 elections is far worse.

Federal agencies are spending millions to hack into locked phones

A $1.2 million tab for iPhone hacking technology at US Immigration and Customs Enforcement underscores how pervasively law enforcement is cracking into passcodes and other security features Americans use to keep their information private.

What do Kamala Harris, Elizabeth Warren and Kirsten Gillibrand have in common? Cybersecurity chops

With Sen Kamala Harris (D-CA) joining the field of 2020 hopefuls, all Democratic senators now running for president have pushed for major cyber policy reforms -- from cracking down on election interference to stemming the flood of data breaches. Sen Harris was a co-sponsor of the Secure Elections Act (S 2261) while Sen Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) backed a separate bill that would have launched a 9/11 Commission-style investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election.

White House emails are highly vulnerable to hackers and spammers, new data shows

The White House, which has boasted of taking unprecedented actions to secure the nation’s digital infrastructure, isn’t doing enough to protect its own emails from being copycatted by hackers and spammers, according to data by the email security firm ValiMail. It isn't following its own administration's rules that require protections against the threat known as email spoofing, according to the company. That makes it comparatively easy for fraudsters posing as White House officials on email to deliver malware to citizens or to con them into giving up personal information.

Republicans and Democrats are feuding over the Equifax breach

Republican leaders of the House Oversight Committee released a scathing report about the Equifax data breach on Dec 10, detailing a series of security failures that preceded the 2017 compromise of 140 million Americans’ personal information. A few hours later, committee Democrats released a competing report about the consumer credit reporting agency, lashing out at their Republican colleagues for not demanding new cybersecurity laws to prevent the next major data breach.

The House is Shuttling Through Tech and Cyber Bills but the Senate's Behind

The House passed a slew of tech and cyber bills the week of Sept 3, ranging from imposing automatic sanctions on foreign hackers to creating a new chief data officer position at the Homeland Security Department. With a tight legislative calendar before this Congress turns into a pumpkin in January, however, the Senate will have to work fast if any of those bills are going to become law.

You Should Be ‘Significantly Concerned’ There’s No White House Cyber Coordinator, Policy Experts Say

How concerned should Americans be about a White House shuffle that removed the cybersecurity coordinator position? Significantly concerned, according to a collection of top cybersecurity policy experts.  White House National Security Adviser John Bolton eliminated the cybersecurity coordinator position soon after taking office in May.

GAO Probing FCC Claims of Denial-of-Service Attack

The Government Accountability Office is investigating the Federal Communications Commission’s claim that its commenting system suffered a distributed denial-of-service attack during a controversial debate over repealing net neutrality rules in May 2017. The alleged DDoS attack, which slowed but did not completely disable the commenting site, came after comedian John Oliver urged his viewers to submit comments opposing the net neutrality rewrite favored by the Trump administration. The timing has led some critics to suggest the massive increase in traffic to the FCC commenting site may have