NEWS

Morning Security Brief: Google and Privacy, Suspicious Activity Reports, Cybersecurity, and More

By Sherry Harowitz

► As part of a settlement that is the culmination of a two year investigation into whether Google violated privacy laws in the way it gathered information for its maps, "a coalition of 38 states has drawn up numerous specific steps for Google to take, ranging from educating its engineers to educating its lawyers," states The New York Times in an article on how Google may have finally learned its lesson. "Ms. Hazelbaker, the Google spokeswoman, said the company had also hired privacy experts and tightened controls. Google has said it is now thinking about privacy issues at the start of product development," The NYT piece notes.

► The Government Accountability Office has issued a report on the sharing of suspicious activity reports (SARs) among state and federal authorities. It notes that "The NSI leverages technologies—the ISE Shared Spaces and the FBI’s eGuardian system—to facilitate the collection, dissemination, and utilization of ISE-SARs. Previously, federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement entities generally stored SARs at the local agency level and used nonstandard methods—such as telephone, fax, or e-mail—to share SARs with the FBI." The report finds that sharing is working well overall but that "some state and local officials said that additional feedback on how the SARs are used could help them better contribute" to the process.

► Also in the news, ReadWrite has a piece looking at the recent spate of hacks, and it interviews experts about whether this means hackers are winning. ExtremeTech has a story about opposition to The Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA). And Reuters has a piece on how Iran has significantly stepped up support of Syrian President

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