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Aliya Sternstein

Senior Correspondent Aliya Sternstein reports on cybersecurity and homeland security systems. She’s covered technology for more than a decade at such publications as National Journal's Technology Daily, Federal Computer Week and Forbes. Before joining Government Executive, Sternstein covered agriculture and derivatives trading for Congressional Quarterly. She’s been a guest commentator on C-SPAN, MSNBC, WAMU and Federal News Radio. Sternstein is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania.
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Hackers Peruse Dow Jones Subscribers, Breach Samsung Pay’s Tech Provider and Slurp 11,000 Outlook Passwords

October 13, 2015 FROM NEXTGOV arrow In case you missed our coverage this week in ThreatWatch, Nextgov’s regularly updated index of cyber breaches: Banking Details on Dow Jones Subscribers Possibly Breached It appears criminals hacked the Wall Street Journal-publisher’s systems to access customer contact information with the intent of sending deceptive mailings. Dow Jones also owns...

OPM to Fully Do Away with Passwords for Network Access – In 2 Years

October 13, 2015 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Following one of the most devastating government data breaches ever revealed, the Office of Personnel Management is on track to replace password logins with two-step identification for accessing agency networks in two years, according to new goals set by the Obama administration. Suspected Chinese espionage artists allegedly used a contractor's...

Breach Patrol: The Surprisingly ‘Not Sexy’ Life of 24/7 White Hat Hackers

October 13, 2015 FROM NEXTGOV arrow The idea I’d originally pitched to my editors was to embed with black hat hackers, the kind increasingly glamorized in pop culture -- "CSI: Cyber," "Scorpion" and other Hollywood productions. Such an arrangement would offer a nose-close view of the cyberspace threats confronting this country. But the legality and safety...

How to Boost DHS Cyber Division Morale? Change Its Name.

October 8, 2015 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Congress late last year elevated the information security mission of the Department of Homeland Security, but that did not do much to elevate the morale of the personnel serving that mission. Employee satisfaction is dropping more at Homeland Security -- 15 percent since 2010 -- than at any other major...

After USPS Phishing Hack, Audit Shows Postal Workers Still Click on Links

October 7, 2015 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Months after a suspected malicious email attack breached U.S. Postal Service personnel data, a quarter of agency employees fell for a simulated email scheme, according to an internal watchdog. As previously reported, unknown hackers accessed the Social Security numbers of about 800,000 USPS employees, along with medical information on 485,000...

House Expected to Green-light Bipartisan Bill Barring DHS from Reshuffling

October 6, 2015 FROM NEXTGOV arrow The full House is set to pass legislation that would halt plans by the Department of Homeland Security to embolden the agency’s cyberthreat information-sharing hub -- without first delivering a strategy to Congress. The bipartisan measure was approved Sept. 30 by the Committee on Homeland Security and is expected to...

$460M CYBERCOM Contract Will Create Digital Munitions

October 5, 2015 The first job under a forthcoming $460 million U.S. Cyber Command contract to outsource all mission support involves, among other activities, a lot of digital munitions-making. An 84-page draft task order released Sept. 30 runs the gamut of hacking and counterhacking work, plus traditional IT support activities. The proposed solicitation...

$460 Million CYBERCOM Contract Coming this Month; ‘Cyber Joint Munitions’ Help Wanted

October 5, 2015 FROM NEXTGOV arrow The first job under a forthcoming $460 million U.S. Cyber Command contract to outsource all mission support involves, among other activities, a lot of digital munitions-making. An 84-page draft task order released Sept. 30 runs the gamut of hacking and counterhacking work, plus traditional IT support activities. The proposed solicitation...

Hackers Prey on Scottrade Clients, Penetrate Bank Lobbying Giant and Steal from T-Mobile Customers

October 5, 2015 FROM NEXTGOV arrow In case you missed our coverage this week in ThreatWatch, Nextgov’s regularly updated index of cyber breaches: Crooks Home In on Scottrade Client Contact Info The hackers appeared to want contact information even though the system that was penetrated contained Social Security numbers, email addresses and other sensitive data. In...

Too Much Intel Sharing Still Happens at the Speed of Red Tape

October 1, 2015 The Department of Homeland Security is congressionally mandated to convey secret tips on cyber threats across industry and government. President Barack Obama stood up a center for U.S. spies to transmit similar reports internally. And the Senate is debating a bill that would make it easier for companies to inform...