Articles about Federal

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Oregon hit with federal subpoena over failed healthcare website launch

The state of Oregon is facing a subpoena and grand jury probe from the US government over a failed IT project which cost taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars. A Federal Court has issued a subpoena asking the state's Cover Oregon agency to hand over documents, records and correspondence related to the agency's disastrous …
Shaun Nichols, 21 May 2014
FBI badge and gun

UK man Lauri Love accused of hacking US Federal Reserve

The US government have laid more hacking charges against a Brit alleged to have hacked into the US Federal Reserve. Lauri Love, 28, of Stradishall, Suffolk, is charged with one count of computer hacking and a further charge of aggravated identify theft over an alleged attack on Federal Reserve computer systems between October …
John Leyden, 28 Feb 2014
anonymous logo

'Anons' cuffed by Australian Federal Police

The Australian Federal Police (AFP) claim to have arrested two chaps who conducted defacement and denial of service attacks on Indonesian and Australian government websites while using the name and iconography of Anonymous. The AFP says a 40-year-old from Scarborough in Western Australia has been charged with aiding “the …
Simon Sharwood, 22 May 2014
Isilon 3-node S200

Federal squeeze hits EMC as revenues and profits nose downwards

The US federal spending shutdown has hit EMC's results, causing declines in both revenues and profits compared to the previous quarter. In comparison, rivals VMware saw accelerated double-digit year-over-year revenue growth; no federal shutdown effect visible there. Third quarter revenues of $5.5bn were $100m less than the …
Chris Mellor, 22 Oct 2013
Supreme Court Building

Slurp away, NSA: Mass phone data collection IS legal, rules federal judge

A US federal judge has ruled that the NSA is within its rights to harvest millions of innocent Americans' telephone call records under Section 215 of the Patriot Act – and that the dragnet is fine under the Fourth Amendment since the data was collected by a third-party telco, not the government. The decision kicks the debate …
Iain Thomson, 27 Dec 2013

Australian Federal Police admit to slurping politicians' metadata

It seems that merely being a recipient of a leak is sufficient, in Australia, for the Australian Federal Police (AFP) to search members of parliaments' phone records. The admission that the AFP had accessed “non-content data” of MPs came as independent Senator Nick Xenophon grilled the AFP over the issue. In a Senate Estimates …

US federal judge: Yes, Bitcoin IS MONEY

A US federal judge has ruled that Bitcoin meets the criteria for "a form of money" under US law, paving the way for what could become a defining lawsuit for the virtual currency. The US Securities and Exchange Commission has charged Texas resident Trendon Shavers with operating a Ponzi scheme under the name Bitcoin Savings and …
Neil McAllister, 07 Aug 2013
The Sun, hacked to redirect to LulzSec Twitter page

Australian Federal Police claim arrest of 'LulzSec leader'

Updated The Australian Federal Police (AFP) has arrested a man described "a self-proclaimed leader of the group ‘Lulz Security’ (Lulzsec), a computer hacking group that has existed since 2011." The as-yet-unnamed 24-year-old man was apprehended in the coastal town of Point Clare was arrested after using a known exploit to last month …
The Register breaking news

AWS cloud gains critical federal security certification

The more people you have to go through to get approval for an IT project, the less likely it is to happen, so when Amazon announces another security certification it's not just about compliance, it's about releasing pent-up cloud demand. With the company's announcement on Tuesday that both its US West and East data center hubs, …
Jack Clark, 21 May 2013
The Register breaking news

Press exposure of Federal data security hole leads to legal threats

An investigation into a security slip that left the identity information for over 170,000 users of a US federal government program publicly available online has led to accusations of hacking and legal threats. The Scripps News investigative team spent the last month studying companies running Lifeline, a federal program to …
Iain Thomson, 22 May 2013
The Register breaking news

US federal transport crash investigators ditch BlackBerry for iPhones

The US National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has followed other federal agencies in ditching Blackberry for iPhone. But it's not just because they love the retina screen, the public sector agency has blamed their Blackberry devices for being unreliable in a document on the FedBizOpps site explaining why they are switching …
Anna Leach, 21 Nov 2012
The Register breaking news

Privacy campaigner blasts FTC's federal limpness

The American Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is making a mistake by leaving web and data companies to regulate themselves, privacy campaigner the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) said today. Responding to the FTC's report Protecting Consumer Privacy in an Era of Rapid Change (PDF) published yesterday, EPIC said the …
Anna Leach, 27 Mar 2012
The Register breaking news

Viviane Reding says imitate US and form FEDERAL EUROPE

Viviane Reding, VP of the European Commission, has published an open letter calling for a Federal Europe, modelled on the USA, claiming the only way out of the financial crisis is consolidation of all the participating countries into a single administration. The letter, published on the same day that European leaders are meeting …
Bill Ray, 28 Jun 2012
CSIRO's giant titanium bugs

CSIRO carves out another 75 jobs

The CSIRO has had to announce yet more staff cuts after one of its divisions failed to meet an external funding target. According to the CSIRO Staff Association, the digital productivity flagship is one of the agency's targets for the cuts, along with researchers in agriculture and advanced manufacturing. The latter is the home …
The Register breaking news

Federal advisors urge Congress to look into China's cyber attacks

A federal advisory group has told the US Congress that it should be doing an in-depth investigation of Chinese cyber spying and that it should create tougher penalties for companies that benefit from corporate espionage. The US-China Economic and Security Review Commission said in its annual report to the government that China …
The Register breaking news

Scores of US federal agencies still open to 2008 cache attack

US federal agencies are still struggling to roll out mandated technology that would make it much harder for attackers to spoof their websites. The Federal Information Security Management Act set a December 2010 deadline to deploy DNSSEC, or DNS Security Extensions, on federal domains. However a survey by Domain Name System …
John Leyden, 23 Mar 2012

Silk Road 2.0 busted! At least two arrests as federal crackdown begins

If drugs traffickers thought the anonymous online black market calling itself Silk Road 2.0 would be any safer from law enforcement than the original, it looks like they had better think again. According to reports by Forbes and TechCrunch, the FBI have made "multiple arrests" of people believed to be involved with Silk Road 2.0 …
Neil McAllister, 20 Dec 2013
The Register breaking news

US federal court fast-forwards case on Google privacy policy

A lawsuit brought against the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) over its inaction regarding Google's imminent changes to its terms of service was expedited yesterday. The US federal court of the District of Columbia agreed to a request put forward by the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) - the plaintiffs in the case …
Kelly Fiveash, 10 Feb 2012
American Airlines Plane

iPad no flight risk says Federal Aviation Authority

Being asked to switch off your electronic devices during the takeoff and landing phases of a flight now looks even more anachronistic, after American Airlines announced it has been given permission to let its pilots use iPads in the cockpit “in all phases of flight”. The airline is chuffed that the Federal Aviation …
Simon Sharwood, 11 Sep 2012
Bitcoin bloodbath

FTC to flog Butterfly Labs' Bitcoin holdings

The US Federal Trade Commission has stuck another pin through Butterfly Labs, obtaining a court order that the company hand over any Bitcoins it had mined for itself. The company had promised potential customers that its US$29,000-plus servers would embiggen punters' Bitcoin wealth to wildest-dreams level. It turned out to be …

Microsoft opens Azure cloud to US govt for vid surveillance, etc

At its Cloud for Government Summit in Washington DC on Tuesday, Microsoft declared its cloud good enough for government work, announcing general availability of Microsoft Azure Government. Specifically, its target customers are in the US public sector, with Redmond pitching its cloudy offerings to federal, state, and local …
Neil McAllister, 09 Dec 2014

Feds dig up law from 1789 to demand Apple, Google decrypt smartphones, slabs

The FBI has made it no secret that it hates Apple and Google's efforts to encrypt files in your smartphones and tablets. Now court documents have emerged showing just how far the Feds are willing to go to decrypt citizens' data. The paperwork has shown two cases where federal prosecutors have cited the All Writs Act – which was …
Iain Thomson, 01 Dec 2014
The Register breaking news

Pwned HBGary Federal boss cancels debate after threats

Ex–HBGary Federal chief exec Aaron Barr has abandoned plans to speak at the DefCon security conference in Vegas next week. Barr was due to take part in a panel discussion on 6 August but cancelled these plans in response to a threatened legal injunction by lawyers acting for his former employers, security blog Threatpost reports …
John Leyden, 28 Jul 2011

'LulzSec leader Aush0k' found to be naughty boy not worthy of jail

The man that Australia's Federal Police once described as "a self-proclaimed leader of the group ‘Lulz Security’ (Lulzsec)" has been sentenced to 15 months of home detention, after a local magistrate decided he was just a very naughty boy. Flannery was sentenced last week in a case that has to date evaded law reports and media …
M-DISC profile

Wanna keep your data for 1,000 YEARS? No? Hard luck, HDS wants you to anyway

HDS' federal subsidiary says it has a Blu-ray optical storage platform for long term data preservation, with 1,000-year M-DISCs in prospect. The kit - we say kit although no products have been announced yet, just this "platform" - is for US federal agencies who need to "preserve and archive mission-critical data indefinitely." …
Chris Mellor, 17 Sep 2014
The Register breaking news

Anonymous vows to attack Federal Reserve

Infamous hacktivist collective Anonymous has served notice that it intends to attack the websites of the Federal Reserve. The campaign – likely to take the form of denial of service attacks and possibly sit-ins – is in protest at the Federal Reserve's role in the global financial crisis, misuse of US taxpayer funds and supposed …
John Leyden, 14 Jun 2011
John Brennan protests TSA security by going starkers

Feds investigate Homeland Security background checker security breach

A contractor running background checks for the US Department of Homeland Security has suffered a potentially embarrassing security breach. The security snafu at USIS reportedly led to the theft of some DHS employees’ personal information. The recently discovered breach prompted DHS to suspend all work with USIS, pending the …
John Leyden, 05 Nov 2014
The Register breaking news

Serial hacker admits breaching Federal Reserve computers

A Malaysian national has admitted hacking a computer network operated by the US Federal Reserve Bank and possessing stolen payment card data. Lin Mun Poo, 32, entered a guilty plea on Wednesday in US District Court in Brooklyn. In November, prosecutors brought a four-count indictment against him that charged him with fraud, …
Dan Goodin, 14 Apr 2011
The Register breaking news

'Unlimited' misleading on throttled broadband: Federal Court

Australia's Federal Court has handed the ACCC a win over the misleading use of the word “unlimited” in broadband advertisements. In a decision handed down in Melbourne this week, Justice Anthony North of the Federal Court agreed with the ACCC that the word “unlimited” in Optus advertisements was misleading. Under the plans the …

German spies want millions of Euros to buy zero-day code holes

Germany's spooks have come under fire for reportedly seeking funds to find bugs – not to fix them, but to hoard them. According to The Süddeutsche Zeitung, the country's BND – its federal intelligence service – wants €300 million in funding for what it calls the Strategic Technical Initiative. The Local says €4.5 million of that …

Big content seeks specialist court for copyright cases

Australia's music lobby has stepped up its calls for intervention against unauthorised copying, asking the government to establish a special court system devoted to copyright. Former Australian Federation Against Copyright Theft (AFACT) enforcer Michael Speck made the call speaking to The Sydney Morning Herald, following the UK …

Cops apologise for leaving EXPLOSIVES in suitcase at airport

Australia's Federal Police force has apologised for leaving explosives in a suitcase at an airport. The force says the explosives – all 230 grams of them – were a “canine training device” inadvertently left in a suitcase used during a training exercise at Sydney Airport. The suitcase was then forgotten but eventually “a woman …
Simon Sharwood, 12 Sep 2014
Parliament House Canberra by Flickr user OzMark17 used under CC Share and Share alike licence

Turnbull: Box-huggers are holding back cloud

Dimension Data has announced it will soon offer a government-only cloud hosted in Australia's capital city, Canberra. The new facility will be another node of the firm's currently-14-strong network of Managed Cloud Platforms (MCPs), but won't be open to the general public. Instead, it's been tweaked to handle Australian …
Simon Sharwood, 24 Nov 2014

FTC: We didn't robocall you and thousands of others asking for bank details. IT'S A TRAP!

The FTC says it has shut down a massive robocall operation that gathered personal information and bank account details on thousands of people. The US watchdog claims a company operating under the name The Cuban Exchange used a combination of calls and fake websites to pose as an "FTC refund" site in order to harvest account …
Shaun Nichols, 10 Sep 2014
Map showing Narrabri in NSW

Supposed 'leader' of LulzSec pleads guilty to hacking, hubris

Matthew Flannery, once paraded by the Australian Federal Police (AFP) as the “leader” of international hacking collective LulzSec, has pleaded guilty to the five remaining charges against him, in Gosford Local Court. Flannery has waited since April 2013 to have the case settled. He is to be sentenced at a later date. At the …
Funnel of cash. Credit: via SXC – http://www.sxc.hu/profile/Leonardini

FCC to smack Sprint with $105m fine over 'cramming' – report

US mobile carrier Sprint should expect a hefty fine from the Federal Communications Commission for overbilling its customers, say sources with knowledge of the agency's plans. As first reported by the National Review, the FCC is preparing to vote on action to be taken against Sprint over its role in "cramming" – the practice of …
Neil McAllister, 17 Dec 2014

Vulnerable utilities, telcos, top of new Aussie natsec centre's to-do list

The Australian Cyber Security Centre (ACSC) will increase its headcount from 90 to 150 as soon as possible, then grow to full capacity of 300 seats by year's end. The centre's opening was delayed to allow staff to move into the new Australian Security Intelligence Organisation (ASIO) ASIO building to avoid burning taxpayer dosh …
Darren Pauli, 16 Oct 2014
The Register breaking news

German states defend use of 'Federal Trojan'

Five German states have admitted using a controversial backdoor Trojan to spy on criminal suspects. Samples of the so-called R2D2 (AKA "0zapftis") Trojan came into the possession of the Chaos Computer Club (CCC), which published an analysis of the code last weekend. German federal law allows the use of malware to eavesdrop on …
John Leyden, 12 Oct 2011

Apple denied 'App Store' trademark by Australian court

Australia's Federal Court has decided Apple cannot trademark the term “App Store”. Apple's been trying to own the term in Australia since 2008, but in 2013 the nation's Registrar of Trademarks ruled that App Store “ does not distinguish the applicant on its own.” In other words, App Store doesn't apply to Apple alone. The …
Simon Sharwood, 03 Dec 2014
Murchison Widefield Array telescope installation

SKA under budget cloud in the Great Oz Science Brain Drain

In the midst of swingeing cuts to scientific research in Australia, the Square Kilometre Array project has emerged as a possible victim of the 2014 federal budget. Among the minutiae to emerge from the budget papers is this: SKA funding is only committed for another two years. Australia won the right to host the low-frequency …

Iranian CLEAVER hackers may DRAIN energy and defence firms, warn Feds

Iranian hackers may be sniffing out education, defence and energy targets as part of a well-planned operation, the US Federal Bureau of Investigation has reportedly warned. A secret FBI document dubbed "Flash, seen by Reuters, offered advice to businesses on how to foil any such attacks. It comes after Cylance researchers …
Kelly Fiveash, 14 Dec 2014
Original "Airplane" image from Paramount Pictures

AT&T drops plans for LTE data networking on commercial flights

US mobile carrier AT&T is scrapping its plans to roll out high-speed data connectivity for commercial airline flights, a mere six months after announcing the effort. The wireless provider said in April that it had formed a partnership with Honeywell to develop an in-flight internet network based on 4G LTE technology. Under that …
Neil McAllister, 11 Nov 2014

Supreme Court nixes idea of 'indirect' patent infringement

The US Supreme Court has issued a ruling that could help shield companies and end users from patent-troll lawsuits. The court on Monday issued a unanimous ruling to overturn a Federal Circuit court ruling in the case of Akamai v. Limelight. In the opinion, written by Associate Justice Samuel Alito on behalf of the unified court …
Shaun Nichols, 03 Jun 2014
The Register breaking news

Federal lawyers, MIT threatened following Aaron Swartz' death

Prosecutors associated with the case against the late Aaron Swartz have received "harassing and threatening communications", including postcards of disembodied heads pictured next to guillotines. Government lawyers have detailed the harassment in a court filing urging the court to keep details of the case redacted to protect …
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Microsoft online app melodrama wins federal certification

Microsoft's BPOS-Federal suite of online business applications has been certified for use by the US government. Which highlights the fact that it wasn't certified earlier. Earlier this month, Microsoft made headlines when it accused Google of making "misleading security claims" to the US government, an accusation that hinged on …
Cade Metz, 21 Apr 2011
Hangar One at Moffett Field, California - 1999

Consumer group SLAMS NASA for letting Google rent $1bn 'playground'

A consumer watchdog has slammed NASA for signing a whopping $1bn deal that will see a historic airbase turned into Google's space "playground". Mountain View has inked a deal with the space agency which will see it rent Moffett Federal Airfield for 60 years. The massive site is home to the Ames Research Center, where the Kepler …
Jasper Hamill, 11 Nov 2014

Court flushes VirnetX's $368m check from Apple down the toilet

A US court has dashed a $368m windfall for technology hoarder VirnetX, which successfully sued Apple for patent infringement. The Federal Circuit Court of Appeals in Washington today tore up [PDF] the infringement damages figure given by a jury in a lower court – and sent the case back for reconsideration. A jury in the Eastern …
Shaun Nichols, 16 Sep 2014
Dunce

Australia's Digital Tech curriculum looks to be shelved for another year

For over a year, I've tracked the development of Australia's Digital Technologies curriculum, the nation's first effort to introduce a national plan for teaching computing from kindergarten to year ten. I've reported on it because industry wants the curriculum: it's thought that teaching every kid computational thinking will …
Simon Sharwood, 08 Oct 2014
eyeofSauron

Oz gov lets slip: telco metadata might be available to civil courts

Comment A series of slips by the nation's top cop followed by communications minister Malcolm Turnbull has made Australia's data retention bill even more of a potential horror than it seemed when it was introduced last week. It started with the Australian Federal Police commissioner Andrew Colvin saying that stored telecommunications …
Parliament in the clouds

Oracle emerges from bureaucratic sludge clutching crucial cloud certificate

Oracle has gained a crucial federal certification that will make it easier for US government agencies to buy cloud services from the database giant. The company announced it had gained a provisional authority to operate under the Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program (FedRAMP) on Thursday, almost a year after cloud …
Jack Clark, 22 May 2014