Skip to main content
Header

Tech News Roundup - 09/26/2017

Tech News Roundup

Go Back
09/26/2017

Key Issues

Tech Politics

If Congress, administration want IT modernization, better cyber, fix the workforce.The 27th annual survey of federal chief information officers by Grant Thornton and the Professional Services Council should serve as a warning to Congress and the Trump administration. (Federal News Radio)
Self-driving car advocates launch ad campaign to prod Congress. A coalition of supporters of self-driving cars said on Tuesday that it will run ads this week in social media and Washington newspapers, in an effort to convince the U.S. Congress to adopt sweeping legislation to boost the nascent industry. (Reuters)
Ajit Pai should be fired, petition says before Senate re-confirmation vote. Net neutrality advocacy group Free Press is gathering signatures on a petition to "fire" Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai, who needs a re-confirmation vote from the Senate in order to continue serving on the FCC. (Ars Technica)
Will Hurd: MGT Act will show who best federal CIOs are. With the Modernizing Government Technology Act making solid progress in Congress, Rep. Will Hurd sees a big test ahead for top-level federal CIOs. (FedScoop)
Taxes
Steven Mnuchin, a Newcomer, Tilts at Washington’s Hardest Target: The Tax Code. Steven Mnuchin is facing the biggest test of his short political career. (Wall Street Journal)
Privacy
Geolocation Privacy Protection Act vetoed by Illinois governor. Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner vetoed legislation on Friday that would prevent businesses from accessing and utilizing data from citizens' personal phones without express consent. (StateScoop)

Global Trade
Tesla China Dream Edges Closer to Reality. China is considering relaxing rules requiring foreign auto makers to have a local partner, according to people with knowledge of the situation, a move that could pave the way for Tesla Inc. to manufacture vehicles in the country. (Wall Street Journal)

Artificial Intelligence
Survey: AI Might Have an Issue with Public Trust. Artificial intelligence could do...well, a lot of things. But before it can, it has some public relations hurdles to overcome. (GovTech)
Microsoft Aims to Make Business AI Cheaper, Faster, Simpler. Microsoft Corp. plans Monday to unveil its first product in a new line of software aimed at taking on International Business Machines Corp. and others in the growing market to apply artificial intelligence to everyday business needs. (Wall Street Journal)
AI bias in hiring, loans, dating? This search tool aims to create a level playing field In the past few years, studies have raised concerns about potential bias in machine-learning systems. Researchers suggest algorithms can be as fallible as the people who create them and may inadvertently reinforce human prejudices. (ZDNet)
Immigration
New travel order tasks countries with data sharing. The president's new order sharpening travel restrictions for a number of countries come as Customs and Border Security has been closing in on a long-sought key biometric system that can track visa overstays. (Federal Computer Week)
Meet the 10 Members of House Republicans’ DACA Task Force. House Republicans want to ensure any legislation replacing the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, or DACA, would have the support of the majority of their conference before it goes to the floor. (Roll Call)
Public Sector
Washington State Reveals Upcoming Federal Cybersecurity Pilot, After DHS Confirms Attempted Election Breaches. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) officials said three months ago that people linked to the Russian government had attempted to hack election-related sites and information in 21 states. But on Sept. 22, DHS made it official, contacting election officials in those states to more formally notify them of having been targeted. (GovTech)
Trump Aide Says Modernizing Federal It Is Administration's Cold War Moment. The federal government's reliance on outdated technology and need to modernize systems is one problem Republicans, Democrats and most everyone else can agree on, according to Matt Lira, special assistant to the president for innovation, policy and initiatives. (Nextgov)
Survey: Most CIOS Say A Majority Of Their Applications Are Out Of Date. About 72 percent of federal chief information officers said the majority of applications in their agencies are legacy systems, a new survey finds. (Nextgov)
Cybersecurity
Tech industry groups urge G7 to tackle cybersecurity. Fifteen technology and other industry advocacy groups are urging G7 members to "focus on ensuring the free flow of data across borders, removing trade barriers, protecting people's privacy, and thwarting cyberattacks," ahead of the group of major economies meeting in Italy this week. (ITI Mentioned, Inside Cybersecurity)
Deloitte hit by data breach. Corporate finance giant Deloitte suffered a cyber-attack that compromised confidential data, including the private emails of some of its clients, the company has confirmed. (BBC News)
SEC launching enforcement initiatives on cyber threats, retail investors. The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission said on Monday it was launching two enforcement initiatives to enhance efforts to address cyber threats and protect retail investors. (Reuters)
SEC Chairman Says Agency Didn't Do Enough to Size Up 2016 Hack. The chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission is expected to say Tuesdaythat his agency may have mishandled a breach of its system for disclosing market-moving news and promise to intensify how it defends itself against hackers. (Wall Street Journal)
Exposure of your sensitive data isn't a bug, it's a feature. Another day, another breach. Equifax, SEC, Deloitte and the next one is coming soon. Nothing surprising there anymore, not for customers, not for the breached companies. So why does this keep happening and why isn't there a change in how we treat our own information, personal or business? (TechCrunch)
Equifax manages 1,200 times more data than the Library of Congress. That's why people are so worried. After working largely out of the spotlight for decades, America's thousands of credit-reporting companies found themselves in trouble in the late 1960s as lawmakers grew concerned about the massive troves of sensitive information the firms had collected on private citizens. (Washington Post)
China Fines Social-Media Giants for Hosting Banned Content. Chinese internet regulators said they have hit operators of three of the country's biggest social-media platforms with the maximum fine allowable under a new cybersecurity law for hosting fake news, pornography and other forms of banned content. (Wall Street Journal)

Workforce/Diversity
White House Unveils Coding Education Initiative With Support from Tech Industry. President Donald Trump unveiled an effort to boost computer science training in U.S. classrooms, a measure that won him a show of support from Silicon Valley and other business leaders after recent tensions between the White House and American corporations. (Wall Street Journal)
President Donald Trump and his daughter Ivanka are unveiling a new federal computer science initiative with major tech backers. President Donald Trump will issue a new directive Monday to supercharge the U.S. government's support for science, tech, engineering and mathematics, including coding education, as the White House seeks to train workers for high-demand computer-science jobs of the future. (Recode)
Where the software industry is growing outside Silicon Valley. Software companies are contributing an outsized share of growth to the U.S. economy - and not just in Silicon Valley. (Recode)

Tech Business
Tech stocks tumble; Facebook, Netflix and Nvidia drop 4.5% or more. Technology stocks slammed into reverse Monday, and the losses overshadowed gains in other areas of the market, sending broad U.S. indexes down. (AP)

ITI Member News

Russian operatives used Facebook ads to exploit America's racial and religious divisions. The batch of more than 3,000 Russian-bought ads that Facebook is preparing to turn over to Congress shows a deep understanding of social divides in American society, with some ads promoting African American rights groups, including Black Lives Matter, and others suggesting that these same groups pose a rising political threat, say people familiar with the covert influence campaign. (Washington Post)
19 minutes with Microsoft's CEO: A new book, a new culture and and 'complete nonsense answer'. Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella has long been a fan of dropping literary references into business conversation. He quoted Nietzsche in an investor call. He's paraphrased Oscar Wilde in an employee memo. He's tweeted book lists that include Plato and Piaget, and shared insights about teamwork from a nonfiction tale of the rowing team that won the 1936 Olympics. (Washington Post)
Mark Zuckerberg built Facebook into a behemoth whose power he underestimates. When it comes to business, Facebook co-founder Mark Zuckerberg is undeniably a visionary. (Los Angeles Times)
I Helped Create Facebook's Ad Machine. Here's How I'd Fix It. This month, two magnificently embarrassing public-relations disasters rocked the Facebook money machine like nothing else in its history. (Wired)

Why Facebook Will Struggle To Regulate Political Ads. In 2011, Facebook asked the Federal Election Commission to exempt it from rules requiring political advertisers to disclose who's paying for an ad. Political ads on TV and radio must include such disclosures. But Facebook argued that its ads should be regulated as "small items," similar to bumper stickers, which don't require disclosures. The FEC ended up deadlocked on the issue, and the question of how to handle digital ads has languished for six years. (Wired)
Nothing Is Too Strange for Cities Wooing Amazon to Build There. Business leaders in Tucson have tried to mail Amazon's chief executive, Jeff Bezos, a 21-foot cactus. The largest conference room in the Tulsa, Okla., mayor's office has been converted to a war room, with 50 volunteers poring over videos of Mr. Bezos. (New York Times)
Apple shares flirt with correction territory. Shares of Apple Inc dipped on Monday and flirted with correction territory following a report that the company had told suppliers to scale back shipments of parts for its upcoming iPhone X. (Reuters)
Twitter defends decision not to remove Trump tweet threatening North Korea. Twitter is defending its decision not to suspend President Donald Trump over a tweet about North Korea that seems to violate its prohibition on threats of violence. (USA Today)
Intel brings the cores with 8th gen Coffee Lake processors. Gamers rejoice, Intel's latest desktop processors are around the corner -- and they're designed for you. (CNET News)
How Do You Turn Around A Tech Giant? With Empathy, Microsoft CEO Says Satya Nadella's new book is called Hit Refresh (like when you reload a webpage). And in it, the CEO of Microsoft doesn't focus on the remarkable story of his climb from middle-class kid in India to head of an American tech giant. Instead, he explores at length a feeling he's working to cultivate in himself: empathy. (NPR)
Accenture adds McClure to federal exec team. Accenture has hired former General Services Administration executive Dave McClure to the leadership team within the firm's federal services subsidiary. (Washington Technology)

Today on the Hill

The Senate will convene at 10:00 AM and resume consideration of the motion to proceed to S.1519, National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2018.
The House will meet at 10:00 a.m. for morning hour and 12:00 p.m. for legislative business. First votes expected: 1:15 p.m. - 2:15 p.m. Last votes expected: 4:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Share this News Roundup on: