As political leaders and public health experts look to both stem the spread of COVID-19 and work towards economic recovery, the use of contact tracing for those testing positive for the novel coronavirus has come to the forefront. While he praised the idea of contact tracing, Sen. Ed Markey, D-Mass., urged Vice President Mike Pence to data privacy at the forefront of any policy decisions. […]

DHS Homeland Security

The Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) Customs and Border Protection (CBP) operation has pulled its support for a mandatory biometric entry-exit system that would require facial recognition scans for all travelers – including U.S. citizens – entering or departing the United States, according to a Dec. 5 press release from Sen. Ed Markey, D-Mass.






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Sens. Edward Markey, D-Mass., and Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., are asking the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) about what the senators called a lack of public disclosure about cyber vulnerabilities in internet-connected vehicles, and suggested that the government may want to consider taking “possible regulatory action” to remedy that lack of public information.






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Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., and a series of other senators wrote Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Ajit Pai on Aug. 9 to urge the commission to protect consumers from cellphone fraud.






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Sens. Ed Markey, D-Mass., and Mike Lee, R-Utah, pressed the Department of Homeland Security in a July 26 letter to deliver an overdue report on biometric identification technology viability.  That report, the senators said, was due to be delivered on July 2.






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State Department
Capitol snow day winter-min
Cyber America Connected Internet of things

Senators and panelists across government and industry came to agreements, but also butted heads, about steps to take in strengthening Internet of Things (IoT) cybersecurity at an April 30 Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Security Subcommittee hearing.






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binary, data privacy, breach, data

Senators and witnesses alike took turns criticizing Chinese tech and trade policy, and China-based network equipment maker Huawei, at a hearing on Thursday over the firm’s alleged potential to create security harms if its equipment was included in U.S. 5G wireless networks.






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Lawmakers from both sides of the aisle and both houses of Congress joined together on Thursday to reintroduce the Help Americans Never Get Unwanted Phone calls, or HANGUP Act.






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Capitol Washington DC Federal

A group of Democratic senators went public with a letter to Gen. Paul Nakasone, head of U.S. Cyber Command and the National Security Agency, and Kirstjen Nielsen, secretary of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), asking them to answer questions about the partial Federal government shutdown’s effect on cybersecurity.






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Capital, House of Representatives, Congress, Senate

Several Democratic senators voiced concern today over impacts of T-Mobile’s $26 billion agreement to acquire rival wireless service provider Sprint, and requested a hearing on the merger. At the same time, rural wireless carriers expressed their opposition to the deal.






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Mike Pompeo Secretary of State Department of State

A bipartisan group of senators wrote to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Tuesday questioning the State Department on what they called its failure to meet Federal cybersecurity standards, including a “near total absence of multifactor authentication (MFA).”






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Sens. Ed Markey, D-Mass, Richard Blumenthal D-Conn., Sheldon Whitehouse D-R.I., and Al Franken D-Minn., introduced a bill on Sept. 14 to require accountability and transparency for credit report companies that are collecting and selling personal information about consumers. The legislation follows the Equifax breach, which affected 143 million Americans.






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