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Freedom House’s annual report on internet freedom, entitled “Freedom on the Net” and released today, finds that global internet freedom is on the decline for the eighth consecutive year. […]

The General Services Administration’s (GSA) Emerging Citizen Technology Office (ECTO) is working with a network of partners from more than 300 Federal, state, and local government entities to help evaluate, test, and implement IT modernization initiatives with emerging technologies.






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The FDIC is not accurately disclosing agency expenditures and spending information in compliance with the Digital Accountability and Transparency Act of 2014 (DATA Act), according to a recent audit issued by the FDIC Office of Inspector General (OIG).






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While states are still in the process of deciding whether they are opting in or opting out of FirstNet, AT&T and FirstNet are moving ahead with public safety and innovation. The two organizations have launched an application developer program focused on first responders. 






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NIC this month launched the first digital personal government assistant, Gov2Go, at the annual NASCIO conference. Gov2Go, which is hosted on Microsoft’s Azure public cloud, centralizes services citizens need at the local, state, and Federal level. While the platform was already in use in a few states, the recent launch marks the nationwide rollout.






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The Federal government is finding new ways to make Federal spending data more transparent to citizens by launching the Treasury Department’s Data Lab, and considering a bill that would add open data requirements to Federal grants.






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Esri has deployed the CrowdRescue Puerto Rico Infrastructure Map, which displays crowdsourced reports about damage from Hurricane Maria affecting the U.S. territory. The map enables a visualization of closed roads, collapsed bridges, flooding, mudslides, areas where communication is unavailable, areas that don’t have power, areas without drinking water, and areas with downed power lines.






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Direct Relief, a humanitarian organization that delivers medical supplies to crisis areas, uses Esri mapping technology and data to send resources to Houston during Hurricane Harvey. Direct Relief uses data layers from the Census, the National Weather Service, and other open data platforms to target where certain medical supplies such as inhalers and other medications will be needed.






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voting election map united states federal country government

Some states refused to turn over voter data to the White House on June 30, saying that the data requested contains sensitive information and could be used for political purposes. President Donald Trump signed an executive order in May that established the Commission on Election Integrity, which investigates instances of potential voter fraud. The commission asked the states to turn over all publicly available voter data.






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The transparent reporting of spending data through Digital Accountability and Transparency Act (DATA) requirements will go a long way to increasing public trust in the government, according to legislators and agency officials who spoke at the DATA Summit on June 29.






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Bernard Barton, chief information officer of the Library of Congress, is challenging American coders to bring the centuries-old information stored by the library into the digital era. The challenge, which will launch later this year, asks coders to submit ideas for modernizing the public’s access to the Library of Congress’ data.






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A group of prominent technology companies wrote a letter to the chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, asking Congress to reform the National Security Agency’s surveillance powers. The technology companies include Adobe, Amazon, Cisco, Google, and Microsoft.






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The Center for Data Innovation, along with 82 other civil society organizations, signed a letter on April 5 urging Congress to act on the Open, Permanent, Electronic, and Necessary Government Data Act, which would establish a policy requiring Federal agencies to ensure that their data is accessible to the public.






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