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Category Archives: Legislation

Statement by the ODNI on Retention of Data Collected Under Section 215 of USA PATRIOT Act

July 27, 2015: “On June 29, 2015, the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court approved the Government’s application to resume the Section 215 bulk telephony metadata program pursuant to the USA FREEDOM Act’s 180-day transition provision. As part of our effort to transition to the new authority, we have evaluated whether NSA should maintain access to the historical metadata after the conclusion of that 180-day period.  NSA has determined that analytic access to that historical metadata collected under Section 215 (any data collected before November 29, 2015) will cease on November 29, 2015.  However, solely for data integrity purposes to verify the records produced under the new targeted production authorized by the USA FREEDOM Act, NSA will allow technical personnel to continue to have access to the historical metadata for an additional three months.  Separately, NSA remains under a continuing legal obligation to preserve its bulk 215 telephony metadata collection until civil litigation regarding the program is resolved, or the relevant courts relieve NSA of such obligations. The telephony metadata preserved solely because of preservation obligations in pending civil litigation will not be used or accessed for any other purpose, and, as soon as possible.”

Wireless carjackers can exploit vulnerabilities in cars, trucks, SUVs

Wired: “[Charlie Miller and Chris Valasek’s] full arsenal includes functions that at lower speeds fully kill the engine, abruptly engage the brakes, or disable them altogether. The most disturbing maneuver came when they cut the Jeep’s brakes, leaving me frantically pumping the pedal as the 2-ton SUV slid uncontrollably into a ditch. The researchers sayContinue Reading

Improving Program Management in the Federal Government

A White Paper by a Panel of the National Academy of Public Administration sponsored by the Project Management Institute July 2015 Improving. Program Management in the Federal Government. PANEL – Peter Marshall, Chair; Dan Chenok; Joseph Wholey. “…The recent high-profile failure of the Healthcare.gov launch is just one example from a long list of troubledContinue Reading

GAO Reports – DOD Business Systems Modernization, Insider Threats, Patient Protection, Senate Public Records, Space Launch System

DOD Business Systems Modernization: Additional Action Needed to Achieve Intended Outcomes, GAO-15-627: Published: Jul 16, 2015. Publicly Released: Jul 16, 2015. Insider Threats: DOD Should Improve Information Sharing and Oversight to Protect U.S. Installations, GAO-15-543: Published: Jul 16, 2015. Publicly Released: Jul 16, 2015. Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act: Observations on 18 Undercover TestsContinue Reading

CRS Report – Women in Combat, Issues for Congress

Women in Combat: Issues for Congress, Kristy N. Kamarck, Analyst in Military Manpower. July 14, 2015. “Over the past two decades of conflict, women have served with valor and continue to serve on combat aircraft, naval vessels, and in support of ground combat operations. The expansion of roles for women in the armed forces hasContinue Reading

EPIC Urges Investigation of “Always On” Consumer Devices

“EPIC has asked the Federal Trade Commission and the Department of Justice to conduct a workshop on ‘Always-On’ Consumer Devices. EPIC described the increasing presence of internet-connected devices in consumer’s homes, such as TVs, toys, and thermostats, that routinely record and store private communications. EPIC urged the agencies to conduct a comprehensive investigation to determineContinue Reading

Systemically Important or “Too Big to Fail” Financial Institutions

CRS – Systemically Important or “Too Big to Fail” Financial Institutions. Marc Labonte, Specialist in Macroeconomic Policy. June 30, 2015. “Although “too big to fail” (TBTF) has been a longstanding policy issue, it was highlighted by the near-collapse of several large financial firms in 2008. Financial firms are said to be TBTF when policy makersContinue Reading

GAO Reports – Financial Literacy, Managing for Results

Highlights of a Forum: Financial Literacy: The Role of the Workplace, GAO-15-639SP: Published: Jul 7, 2015. Publicly Released: Jul 7, 2015: “Employers are well-suited to play a role in promoting financial literacy. Participants noted that employers already provide information on employee benefits, have key information about employees’ lives, and are generally trusted to provide soundContinue Reading

Regulatory agencies post public sections of resolution plans

“The Federal Reserve Board and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) on Monday posted the public portions of annual resolution plans for 12 large financial firms.  Each plan must describe the company’s strategy for rapid and orderly resolution under the U.S. Bankruptcy Code in the event of material financial distress or failure of the company.Continue Reading

The USA Freedom Act: A Partial Response to European Concerns about NSA Surveillance

Swire, Peter. The USA Freedom Act: A Partial Response to European Concerns about NSA Surveillance. Working Paper GTJMCE 2015-1. Sam Nunn School of International Affairs  – Georgia Institute of Technology. “In June 2015, the Congress adopted and President Obama signed the USA Freedom Act, the biggest pro-privacy change to U.S. intelligence law in nearly 40Continue Reading

SEC and CFTC Turn to Swaps and Security-Based Swaps Enforcement

Harvard Law School Forum on Corporate Governance and Financial Regulation – July 5, 2015 – Annette L. Nazareth, Davis Polk & Wardwell:  “The week of June 15, 2015 saw two of the first publicly announced enforcement actions brought by the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (“CFTC”) to enforce security-based swapContinue Reading

CBO Answers to Questions About Dynamic Analysis

Keith Hall, CBO Director – “In May, the Congress adopted a concurrent resolution on the budget for fiscal year 2016. That resolution requires CBO, to the greatest extent practicable, to incorporate macroeconomic effects into its 10-year cost estimates for major legislation that Congressional committees approve. Such estimates must also include, when practicable, a qualitative assessmentContinue Reading