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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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The Navy Is Stepping Up Its Cyber Defenses

April 8, 2015 Executing hack attacks to support maritime missions will take the Navy out of its traditional comfort zone at the intersection of the land and the sea. Part of a soon-to-be-released cyber strategy will focus on building the force’s capacity to conduct cyberattacks from anywhere around the Earth, said Kevin Cooley, ...

Navy’s Forthcoming Cyber Strategy Aims for Global Capability

April 8, 2015 Executing hack attacks to support maritime missions will take the Navy out of its traditional comfort zone at the intersection of the land and the sea. Part of a soon-to-be-released cyber strategy will focus on building the force’s capacity to conduct cyberattacks from anywhere around the Earth, said Kevin Cooley, ...

Exclusive: FAA Computer Systems Hit by Cyberattack Earlier this Year

April 6, 2015 Hackers earlier this year attacked a Federal Aviation Administration network with malicious software, agency officials said Monday. In early February, FAA discovered "a known virus" spread via email on "its administrative computer system," agency spokeswoman Laura Brown told Nextgov. "After a thorough review, the FAA did not identify any damage ...

Immigration Ruling Also Halted Buildout of Digital Work Permit System

April 6, 2015 A February court ruling that suspended President Barack Obama's executive action to legalize millions of undocumented foreign children and their parents has partially paused development of the nation’s first-ever online immigration application system. The decade-overdue website, which is not expected to be fully operational until 2018 or 2019, only accepts ...

Hackers Compromise British Airways Fliers, Photoshop ‘Headteacher’ Porn Star, and Snap Up Aetna Patient Records

April 3, 2015 In case you missed our coverage this week in ThreatWatch, Nextgov’s regularly updated index of cyber breaches: Autocorrect Strikes Again: Private Details on Obama, World Leaders Mistakenly Emailed to Asian Cup The passport numbers and other sensitive information on heads of state attending last fall’s G20 summit were accidentally compromised ...

TSA Just Handed a $15,000 Prize to Mystery Baggage Profilers

April 3, 2015 The Transportation Security Administration announced that two parties have won an agency-sponsored contest to figure out a way to assess the threat-level of an individual passenger’s suitcase. But the award notice, published online, does not identify the victors or what they proposed. Or even how much money they won. The ...

Lost Your Green Card? Now You Can Replace it Online

March 31, 2015 A website supposed to fully computerize what is now a paper-based immigration system by 2013 has scored a small win, by adding a form for replacing green cards, according to federal officials. The addition of the Form I-90 application brings the total number of transactions available on ELIS (a tribute ...

Why the Pentagon's Cybersecurity Dollars Don't Add Up

March 31, 2015 For at least the past four years, the Pentagon has struggled to count up how much defense spending goes toward a "thing" called cybersecurity. Vocabulary plays a part, but also there are Defense Department organizational issues contributing to the murkiness of what this year's $5.5 billion “cyber” investment will buy. ...

Pentagon Rolls Out 'NSA-Proof' Smartphones

March 31, 2015 The Defense Department has rolled out supersecret smartphones for work and maybe play, made by anti-government-surveillance firm Silent Circle, according to company officials. Silent Circle, founded by a former Navy Seal and the inventor of privacy-minded PGP encryption, is known for decrying federal efforts to bug smartphones. And for its ...

Pentagon Personnel Now Talking on 'NSA-Proof' Smartphones

March 30, 2015 The Defense Department has rolled out supersecret smartphones for work and maybe play, made by anti-government-surveillance firm Silent Circle, according to company officials. Silent Circle, founded by a former Navy Seal and the inventor of privacy-minded PGP encryption, is known for decrying federal efforts to bug smartphones. And for its ...