AUTHOR ARCHIVES

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.
Results 81-90 of 2618

Speed Dialer Aims to Profit off IRS' Terrible Customer Service

February 8, 2016 FROM NEXTGOV arrow A former high-frequency trader fed up with waiting on the phone for an Internal Revenue Service customer service agent has developed, in essence, bots that are continuously near the front of the call queue and will switch places with you for a few bucks. The short-staffed IRS call center is...

OPM Head Pledges to Help Resolve Mystery Over Who Spotted the Big Breach

February 4, 2016 FROM NEXTGOV arrow The nominee to head the hacked Office of Personnel Management says she is working with Congress to answer the question of whether a vendor discovered an OPM network breach during a product demonstration, contrary to her predecessor's testimony that the agency detected the hack. The night before Acting OPM Director...

Oversight Committee Chair Subpoenas OPM Director for Hack Documents

February 3, 2016 FROM NEXTGOV arrow The top Republican on the House's federal watchdog committee has subpoenaed Office of Personnel Management Acting Director Beth Cobert to supply documents relating to a severe breach of personal information on U.S. national security employees. The hack of background check records in OPM systems, which was discovered last April, predates...

Could a More Secure Online Browser Protect Background Check Hack Victims?

February 3, 2016 FROM NEXTGOV arrow The former head of the CIA's European division whose intimate secrets were bared by a sweeping U.S. background check hack says the $330 million worth of identity monitoring services the federal government is offering victims will not protect them online. Richard “Hollis” Helms, a 45-year-veteran of the intelligence community, has...

DHS-Supported Scans of Private Networks Prompt Suspicions of Domestic Surveillance

February 1, 2016 FROM NEXTGOV arrow A new Department of Homeland Security-supported information security service that scans private sector networks could expand domestic surveillance, civil liberties groups say, citing documents associated with the activity. Under the "Enhanced Cybersecurity Services" program, DHS feeds government intelligence about network threats to approved Internet Service Providers so they can immunize...

Hackers Social Engineer Amazon Worker, Bug Wendy’s Payment System and Defraud Boeing Supplier

February 1, 2016 FROM NEXTGOV arrow In case you missed our coverage this week in ThreatWatch, Nextgov’s regularly updated index of cyber breaches: Fraud Victim Claims a Duped Amazon Customer Service Rep Opened His Digital Life to Hackers “All a hacker needs to unlock your whole damn life is your name, email address, and a mailing...

DHS Chief Defends $6 Billion Federal Firewall after Stinging Audit

February 1, 2016 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Updated 4:50 p.m. to include a statement from Sen. Tom Carper, D-Del., ranking member of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee. Department of Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson on Jan. 31 defended the past accomplishments and future potential of a counterhack tool that was criticized in a recent...

US Homeland Security's $6B Firewall Has More Than a Few Frightening Blind Spots

January 29, 2016 A firewall run by the Department of Homeland Security meant to detect and prevent nation-state hacks against the government functions ineffectively, according to a sanitized version of a secret federal audit. EINSTEIN relies on patterns of attacks, called signatures, to spot suspicious traffic, but it does not scan for 94...

DHS $6 Billion Firewall May Not Be Effective In Keeping Hackers Out of Government, Audit Says

January 28, 2016 FROM NEXTGOV arrow A firewall run by the Department of Homeland Security meant to detect and prevent nation-state hacks against the government functions ineffectively, according to a sanitized version of a secret federal audit. EINSTEIN relies on patterns of attacks, called signatures, to spot suspicious traffic, but it does not scan for 94...

What Does the Chemical Safety Board Have in Common with OPM and Target?

January 28, 2016 FROM NEXTGOV arrow The government board that investigates industrial chemical accidents does not keep track of computer systems it has outsourced to contractors, which could jeopardize information confidentiality, a federal inspection has found. The perpetrators behind many notorious data breaches exploited similar vulnerabilities. The U.S. Chemical Safety and Hazard Investigation Board, or CSB,...