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05/26/2021
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Matt Olsen, head of Uber's security and former general counsel at the National Security Agency, is the White House's pick for an influential role at the Justice Department. The TSA preps pipeline requirements. And Facebook is feeling nostalgic. This is CyberScoop for May 26, 2021.

Meet the White House pick for DOJ's national security division

The White House has nominated Matt Olsen to run the Justice Department’s National Security Division, a move that would put the Uber security executive and former civil servant at the helm of some of the most sensitive cases in the U.S. Olsen, who now works as Uber’s chief trust and security officer, previously worked as the director of the National Counterterrorism Center during the Obama administration and served as the general counsel of the National Security Agency. The Biden administration announced his nomination on Wednesday. Jeff Stone has the news.


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TSA to require pipeline operators to report hacks after Colonial

Weeks after cybercriminals forced the shutdown of a major fuel artery, the Biden administration plans to require pipeline operators to report hacks to authorities. It’s a move from voluntary guidelines to mandatory measures, and is only the latest sign that the Biden administration views the status quo in federal cyber protections as untenable. Sean Lyngaas reports.


Foreign influence on Facebook targets US most often

The U.S. was the country most frequently targeted by foreign influence operations on Facebook between 2017 and 2020, the company announced Wednesday. The other top most-affected countries include Ukraine, the U.K., Libya and Sudan. Myanmar was the most-frequently targeted by domestic influence operations. Read the report here.


GCHQ’s data interception violated right to privacy

The U.K.’s GCHQ’s bulk interception of online communications violated the right to privacy, the European Court of Human Rights has ruled, in a legal challenge that begun after Edward Snowden’s revelations in 2013. The court also rules that the spy agency’s sharing of intelligence with foreign partners was not illegal. Read the decision here.


Senate counter-China legislation chockablock with cyber goodies

A bipartisan Senate bill that Democrats hope to pass this week known as the U.S. Innovation and Competition Act — meant to counter China and bolster America's science and technology — is loaded with cybersecurity provisions. Among them is a Cyberspace Solarium Commission recommendation to create a cyber recovery and response fund that can be used when DHS declares a "significant incident." It also includes sanctions for China over its actions in cyberspace; establishment of a five-year, $100-million-per-year "Digital Connectivity and Cybersecurity Partnership” to aid foreign countries; and removal of TikTok from government devices. Senate Republican leadership has expressed reservations about the process for the bill moving through the chamber, however, and the House hasn't weighed in on it yet. Here's a section-by-section breakdown.


A debate over what something in cyber should be called? Imagine that!

The Colonial Pipeline ransomware attack has shaken up the way the U.S. government approaches pipeline security and brought new scrutiny on ransom payments. But the incident has also prompted a debate on how to label criminal hacking groups that enjoy apparent protections from governments. Talos on Wednesday suggested calling such groups privateers. Sean has more.


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