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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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Bill Banning Porn, Personal Email on Agency Computers Under Fire on Unrelated Grounds

July 6, 2016 As the House moved to take up legislation that would prevent employees from accessing personal email and pornography on government computers, the White House threatened to veto the measure because of objections to civil service provisions included in the legislative package. House Republicans have positioned the package as a piece...

DHS: Security Holes in All Symantec Programs a ‘Very Serious Event’

July 5, 2016 On Tuesday, the Homeland Security Department warned of severe security holes in all Symantec and Norton antivirus programs, including those widely used throughout the government. Late last year, Congress granted DHS new powers to scan agency networks for intruders using a federal firewall called EINSTEIN. DHS spokesman Scott McConnell said...

Justice Wants Drones to Try Reconstructing Car Crashes

July 5, 2016 The Justice Department plans to run drone tests to measure how well unmanned aircraft systems can help reconstruct automobile crashes. Trials are expected to take place in various jurisdictions across the country. The National Criminal Justice Research, Test and Evaluation Center on Thursday is scheduled to begin seeking interest from...

Hackers Leak Muslim Dating Site Messages, Command Zombie Security Cameras to Crash Sites Worldwide and Hit up Vegas Hard Rock

July 1, 2016 In case you missed our coverage this week in ThreatWatch, Nextgov’s regularly updated index of cyber breaches: Private Messages from ‘Muslim Match’ Dating Site Leaked A hacker grabbed a horde of credentials and profiles from the specialty dating site and posted the data online, along with more than half a...

The Intelligence Community Will Monitor Wearables to Find the Perfect Spy

June 30, 2016 Secret agents typically use tracking devices to monitor foreign adversaries, but now, U.S. spies will assess their own capabilities by outfitting (willing) intelligence personnel with body sensors. Yes, spies have plans to spy on themselves with wearables. "Selecting and evaluating a workforce that is well-suited for the psychological and cognitive...

Check Out The US Military's Sandbox of Silly-Putty That Predicts Disasters and War

June 29, 2016 The Defense Department is playing around with a shape-shifting, color-changing sandbox to limit the carnage from the next deadly flood, wildfire or other catastrophe. That is the promise behind the "Tangible Landscape." Made up of kinetic sand, a toy that feels like the stuff on the beach but has the...

What the Military Is Learning From a Chameleon Sandbox

June 29, 2016 The Defense Department is playing around with a shape-shifting, color-changing sandbox to limit the carnage from the next deadly flood, wildfire or other catastrophe. That is the promise behind the "Tangible Landscape." Made up of kinetic sand, a toy that feels like the stuff on the beach but has the...

Lawmakers Want to See If Dumbing Down Smart Grids Might Thwart Hackers

June 28, 2016 Some Senate Republicans and Democrats want to see if unplugging critical parts of the power grid from the internet can help prevent digital attacks. Their proposed $11.5 million Securing Energy Infrastructure Act (S. 3018) would commission the National Laboratories to study electricity companies willing to pull offline their most-vital control...

Corrected: OPM Updates Data Breach Information Website

June 27, 2016 Editor’s Note: The original version of this article erroneously stated that the Office of Personnel Management had acknowledged for the first time that the 2015 background check breach had potentially impacted tens of millions more people than had been originally disclosed. OPM had in fact previously published information on the...

Hackers Plunder Clinton Foundation, Bankrupt Cryptocurrency VC Fund and Log into GoToMyPC

June 27, 2016 In case you missed our coverage this week in ThreatWatch, Nextgov’s regularly updated index of cyber breaches: It Looks Like the DNC Hackers Also Plundered the Clinton Foundation The Bill, Hillary and Chelsea Clinton Foundation is among the organizations breached by suspected Russian government-sponsored cyber spies in the lead up...