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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White House hopes new website will help create jobs

January 13, 2012 The Obama administration is building a new online presence to empower job creators with the information -- and financing -- they need to reverse the nation's unemployment figures. Read the whole story at

Get ready to push some paper for cloud moves

January 12, 2012 FROM NEXTGOV arrow A critical part of a fast-track strategy that allows agencies to digitally borrow each other's cloud security guarantees will not be available when the operation gets under way this summer, federal officials told Nextgov. The mantra of the new effort, called the Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program, or FedRAMP,...

Fake US-CERT Emails Contain Banking Virus Traced to Russia

January 11, 2012 FROM NEXTGOV arrow A variant of the notorious Zeus virus has been circulating the offices of government agencies through an email from hackers who are aping the sender address @US-CERT.GOV, the true U.S. Computer Emergency Readiness Team disclosed Wednesday evening. Researchers outside of US-CERT traced the malicious software to a botnet -- a...

ICANN maintains security stance on website suffix expansion plan

January 11, 2012 FROM NEXTGOV arrow ICANN's Rod Beckstrom says the new program includes protective measures absent from the existing system.Rick Rycroft/AP file photo On Tuesday, amid objections from lawmakers and federal officials, the head of the global nonprofit organization that governs website names defended security protections in place for Thursday's planned kickoff of a program...

Real Federal Cyber Squad Warns of Sham Federal Cyber Squad's Emails

January 10, 2012 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Hackers posing as members of the U.S. Computer Emergency Readiness Team are emailing feds using the bogus sender address SOC@US-CERT.GOV, according to federal officials. The real U.S. CERT -- we think -- issued an alert saying that today it began receiving reports of a phishing campaign that uses spoofed US-CERT...

Contractors dealt blanket cloud security specs

January 9, 2012 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Homeland Security CIO Richard Spires said the process "will evaluate IT services offered by vendors on behalf of federal agencies." The White House is speeding ahead on a program to expedite security clearances for cloud products, having just notified contractors of about 170 specific protections soon to be required. The...

Defense overhaul's emphasis on the cloud carries supply chain risks

January 6, 2012 FROM NEXTGOV arrow iStockPhoto The shift of military operations to the cloud -- part of a Defense Department downsizing -- will require protecting electronics manufactured in Asia from supply chain tampering, say some private security auditors. But that won't necessarily mean inspecting every network component made in China. As the military ends campaigns...

Defense overhaul's emphasis on the cloud carries supply chain risks

January 6, 2012 The shift of military operations to the cloud -- part of a Defense Department downsizing -- will require protecting electronics manufactured in Asia from supply chain tampering, say some private security auditors. But that won't necessarily mean inspecting every network component made in China. Read the whole story at

FDA fielding app to track drug side effects during emergencies

January 5, 2012 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Martina Kalaba/Newscom This story has been updated. The Food and Drug Administration is building a surveillance app for clinicians and regulators to monitor patients having bad reactions to experimental drugs administered during public health crises, agency officials said. The so-called Real-Time Application for Portable Interactive Devices, or RAPID, will collect...

Feds turn to dating websites and facial recognition tools to catch crooks

January 4, 2012 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Federal detectives have reason to believe that a man pictured in an online dating profile under a pseudonym carjacked a young mother in Florida, killing her and taking her child. But they cannot identify the man. They have no fingerprints to run against the FBI's national biometric database because he...

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