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Trump’s Cybersecurity Opportunity

Donald Trump needs to go bold in the fight against the large and growing cyber threat to federal information technology systems and data. The president elect can get a head start by building on and implementing the plans and actions now percolating in the Obama administration.

The country has learned hard lessons about network breaches, from the intrusion into the Office of Personnel Management and other federal agencies to the WikiLeaks hacks. The private sector faces a similar threat, as demonstrated recently by the service disruptions that affected Amazon, Twitter and other websites.

Early this year, the Obama administration set in motion a plan to strengthen government systems against attack, including a cybersecurity workforce strategy “to identify, recruit, develop, retain, and expand the pipeline of the best, brightest, and most diverse cybersecurity talent.” The new administration must accelerate these efforts, giving agencies the tools, talent, funding and authority to respond to cyber threats in real time.

It won’t be easy. Agencies with tight budgets compete with typically higher-paying private companies for technology professionals, but it’s essential that government step up its cybersecurity game.  

Tens of thousands of malicious attacks hit government systems annually. Known cyber incidents affecting agencies...

How to Cope With Post-Election Stress

Collective trauma is “a shared experience of threat and anxiety in response to sudden or ongoing events that lead to some threat to a basic sense of belonging in society,” says Jack Saul, the director of the International Trauma Studies Program. “It usually is a disruption to the social and moral order.”

One could argue that those who opposed Donald Trump’s election have been through a collective trauma that has left them feeling rattled and afraid. Women and people of color have good reason to be anxious, given the sexist and racist things Trump said during the campaign, given his threats against the women who accused him of sexual assault, given how he has painted Mexicans as criminals, given that he was endorsed by the Ku Klux Klan, given so, so many things. People have very real fears rooted in policies Trump has promised to enact in office—including a ban on Muslim immigrants and the deportation of millions of immigrants. 

It’s more than plausible to interpret the election of someone who openly espouses such views to the nation’s highest office as a disruption of the social and moral order.

Of course, this fear and anxiety is...

Forcing Employees to Act Happy Only Makes Them More Miserable

In theory, cheerful employees make companies look like they’re good employers, which woos consumers. But as it turns out, mandating a positive attitude at work can actually backfire on bosses.

Take the case of Thomas Nagle, an employee at a Trader Joe’s in Manhattan, who last week filed a complaint with the National Labor Relations Board, a government agency in charge of enforcing US labor law. Nagle alleges he was fired for having a bad attitude, according to the New York Times, and repeatedly reprimanded by managers who found his smile and demeanor to be insufficiently “genuine.” He also described pressure tactics by his less-than-cheery Trader Joe’s managers, who used the store’s loudspeaker, for instance, to chastise workers for talking to each other while working.

The quirky supermarket chain with 459 locations in the US trades on the happy and helpful demeanor of its Hawaiian-shirt-clad employees. The California company has long encouraged workers to be sunny by granting bonuses to the super solicitous, and by mandating cheeriness in its employee handbook. For example, it instructs workers to create a “wow customer experience” and encouraging them to “delight” in shopping there.

Cheeriness directives may sound absurd, but...

How to Cure Your Post-Election Stress

The 2016 US presidential election has dragged on for an almost sickeningly long time. The toxicity between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump has gotten to the point where no one wants to know anything more about either of them.

So now that we’re mere hours (hopefully) from counting the final votes to decide the next leader of the free world, political tensions are running at their highest. “In my 28 years of practice, I’ve never seen anything like this,” says Nancy Molitor, a clinical psychologist practicing outside of Chicago, “It’s not just the divisiveness, it’s the prolonged stress.”

The final, undecided moments are enough to make anyone a little crazy—especially after you’ve done all you can by casting your own vote. Here’s how to stay calm during the uncertainty, or at least not let your post-election stress get the best of you.

Acknowledge your anxiety

The two main candidates are polarizing, not just in terms of policy, but also personality. Aside from the 6% to 10% of voters who are undecided, most of us feel unwaveringly passionate about our candidate, and fear the other would be a catastrophic mistake.

Since we each get...

What Percentage of Employees Check Work Emails From Home?

On Oct. 28, in yet another unexpected twist to an already exhausting campaign cycle, James Comey, the director of the FBI, sent a letter to eight Congressional committee chairs revealing that the agency would be reviewing a number of emails “that appear to be pertinent to the investigation” of Hillary Clinton’s email server. After the announcement, The New York Times reported that the new emails were, in fact, found in the course of the investigation into the alleged sex crimes of former Representative Anthony Weiner. The content of the emails remains unknown, as is how they got onto Weiner’s laptop; one plausible explanation based on the information revealed so far suggests that they are work emails that Weiner’s estranged wife, top Clinton aide Huma Abedin, accessed at home on his computer.

An investigation by The Atlantic has revealed that this is an exceedingly normal behavior. A 2013 study by the American Psychological Association found that more than half of all workers surveyed checked their work messages, including texts, emails, and voicemails, from smartphones or other home devices. A 2014 survey by Gallup found that nearly 80 percent of respondents view the ability to continue working from home...

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