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Category Archives: Cybercrime

The Panama Papers: A Discussion of Some Ethical Issues

Follow up to previous posting, Panama Papers Database Goes Live, see McGee, Robert W., The Panama Papers: A Discussion of Some Ethical Issues (May 27, 2016). Available for download at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=2785954

“The Panama Papers refers to a massive leak of information encompassing more than 11 million documents involving more than 200,000 offshore entities. The leak originated in Panama. Some of the documents involve transactions as far back as the 1970s. Numerous wealthy individuals, including top government officials from many countries, have been implicated. The release of information and documents has led to several resignations and numerous lawsuits. The end of litigation is not in sight, as lawyers and government agencies in several countries continue to read and digest the information. Although there is nothing illegal per se about having offshore entities, some such entities have been used to hide assets, evade income taxes, launder money and evade sanctions. The whistleblower who leaked the information to Süddeutsche Zeitung, a German newspaper, called himself John Doe to maintain anonymity. He leaked the information because of his strong distaste for income inequality and because of his view that there were many injustices being perpetrated by some of the entities and individuals who were availing themselves of the entities. This paper discusses some of the underlying ethical issues that lurk beneath the surface of most discussions about hiding assets and income offshore. The discussion will focus on the ethics of parking profits (or hiding assets) offshore, tax evasion, bribery, and whistle blowers. This paper also includes links to more than 80 studies on tax evasion and 11 studies on bribery.”

OPM IG Report on Information Infrastructure Improvement Project

Second Interim Status Report on the U.S. Office of Personnel Management’s (OPM) Infrastructure Improvement Project – Major IT Business Case (Report No. 4A-CI-00-16-037).  May 18, 2016. “OPM has still not performed many of the critical capital project planning practices required by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB). Of primary concern, prior to initiating theContinue Reading

Federal Acquisition Regulation – Basic Safeguarding of Contractor Information Systems

Final Rule by the Defense Department, the General Services Administration, and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration on 05/16/2016 – “DoD, GSA, and NASA are issuing a final rule amending the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) to add a new subpart and contract clause for the basic safeguarding of contractor information systems that process, store orContinue Reading

DHS IG Security Audit Security Identifies Workplace Violations

Information Technology Management Letter for the Office of Financial Management and Office of Chief Information Officer Components of the FY 2015 Department of Homeland Security Financial Statement Audit,May 6, 2016. “We recommend that OFM, in coordination with the DHS Chief Information Officer and Chief Financial Officer, make improvements to its financial management systems and associatedContinue Reading

IG Report – GSA Data Breach – 18F and Slack

MANAGEMENT ALERT REPORT: GSA Data Breach JE16-004 May 12, 2016 “During the course of an ongoing evaluation, the OIG Office of Inspections and Forensic Auditing identified an issue that warrants immediate attention. Due to authorizations enabled by GSA 18F staff, over 100 GSA Google Drives were reportedly accessible by users both inside and outside ofContinue Reading

FCW – OPM’s sensitive data on feds still not encrypted

Federal Computer Week, Adam Mazmania, May 13, 2016 – “More than a year after a hack of Office of Personnel Management systems compromised more than 22 million records, the agency has not been able to encrypt all the sensitive data on 4 million federal employees, including Social Security numbers. “There are still elements of OPMContinue Reading

Sixth Annual Benchmark Study on Privacy & Security of Healthcare Data

“The Sixth Annual Benchmark Study on Privacy and Security of Healthcare Data by the Ponemon Institute, finds that criminal attacks are the leading cause of half of all data breaches in healthcare.  Employee mistakes, third-party snafus, and stolen computer devices—are the root cause of the other half of data breaches. The study also found thatContinue Reading

Lack of Trust in Internet Privacy and Security May Deter Economic and Other Online Activities

National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA): “Every day, billions of people around the world use the Internet to share ideas, conduct financial transactions, and keep in touch with family, friends, and colleagues. Users send and store personal medical data, business communications, and even intimate conversations over this global network. But for the Internet to growContinue Reading

Multiple data security breaches reported by FDIC

Washington Post: “In yet another example of fragile security in federal cyber systems, data for 44,000 Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. customers were breached by an employee leaving the agency. The breach occurred in February and was outlined in an internal FDIC memorandum obtained by The Washington Post. The March 18 memo from Lawrence Gross Jr.,Continue Reading

NIST Report on Post-Quantum Cryptography

NISTIR 8105 Report on Post- Quantum Cryptography. Lily Chen, Stephen Jordan, Yi-Kai Liu, Dustin Moody, Rene Peralta, Ray Perlner, Daniel Smith-Tone. Computer Security Division Applied and Computational Mathematics Division Information Technology Laboratory. This publication is available free of charge from: http://dx.doi.org/10.6028/NIST.IR.8105. April 2016 U.S. Department of Commerce. “In recent years, there has been a substantialContinue Reading

UK Gov – Password Guidance Simplifying Your Approach

UK Center for the Protection of National Infrastructure – Password Guidance Simplifying Your Approach – By simplifying your organisation’s approach to passwords, you can reduce the workload on users, lessen the support burden on IT departments, and combat the false sense of security that unnecessarily complex passwords can encourage. “Passwords are an essential part ofContinue Reading

Judicial Conference Committee seeks to implement wider law enforcement surveillance

Follow up to Supreme Court expands surveillance powers of intelligence agency via EFF – With Rule 41, Little-Known Committee Proposes to Grant New Hacking Powers to the Government – The government hacking into phones and seizing computers remotely? It’s not the plot of a dystopian blockbuster summer movie. It’s a proposal from an obscure committeeContinue Reading