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Can the Government’s Buying Power Create a More Secure Internet of Things?

October 4, 2017 Lawmakers believe by adopting cybersecurity standards for the internet-connected devices it purchases, the federal government can drive the tech industry into building safer and better-protected products for the internet of things. “The internet of things presents an opportunity to improve and enhance nearly every aspect of our society, economy and...

from govexec

Senate Panel Approves 60% Increase in Buyout Payments for Feds

October 4, 2017 The Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee passed a bill on Wednesday that would raise the maximum buyout payment for federal employees from $25,000 to $40,000. The legislation comes as agencies look for ways to downsize their workforces in response to directives from the Trump administration. Congress set the...

Senate Panel Passes FITARA Extension in Block of IT Bills

October 4, 2017 The Senate Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee approved legislation on Wednesday that would extend the Federal Data Center Consolidation Initiative and eliminate the sunset periods for a handful of key consolidation requirements. The committee forwarded the FITARA Enhancement Act to the Senate along with a handful of other bills...

Former Lawmaker Says Anti-Sex Trafficking Bill Too Narrow, Could 'Sow Chaos'

October 3, 2017 One former lawmaker worries that a bill intended to curb online sex trafficking is too narrowly focused and could “sow chaos” by eliminating a consistent standard for prosecuting crimes committed on the internet. “We need to have a solution to this problem that is consistent across more than 4,000 federal...

Senate Gives Ajit Pai Another Term at FCC

October 3, 2017 On Monday evening, the Senate voted 52-41 to reconfirm Ajit Pai for a four-year term as chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, despite pushback from Democrats who took issue with his controversial position on net neutrality. Pai served as FCC commissioner before President Donald Trump tapped him to chair the...

from govexec

Senate Overseers to Consider Bill Raising Maximum Buyout Payment By $15K

October 2, 2017 Lawmakers will mark up a bill this week that promises to raise the maximum buyout payment officials can offer federal employees by $15,000, as agencies generate plans to downsize their workforces in response to directives from the Trump administration. The legislation, introduced last Thursday by Sen. James Lankford, R-Okla., would...

Democrats Push for Billions to Bring High-Speed Internet to Everyone

September 29, 2017 Democratic lawmakers hope to draw rural communities into the online economy by making high-speed internet available to the 34 million Americans who don’t have access to “quality” broadband services. The plan comes as part of the party’s “Better Deal” economic agenda, which aims to increase opportunities for people left behind...

Social Media is ‘First Tool’ of 21st-Century Warfare, US Lawmaker Says

September 29, 2017 One lawmaker believes Russia’s use of social media to influence last year’s election demonstrated how warfare has moved away from the battlefield and toward the internet. And the U.S. has been slow to adjust, Sen. Mark Warner, D-Va., said Thursday. “We may have in America the best 20th-century military that...

Social Media is ‘First Tool’ of 21st-Century Warfare, Lawmaker Says

September 28, 2017 One lawmaker believes Russia’s use of social media to influence last year’s election demonstrated how warfare has moved away from the battlefield and toward the internet. And the U.S. has been slow to adjust, Sen. Mark Warner, D-Va., said Thursday. “We may have in America the best 20th-century military that...

from govexec

Lawmakers Open Bipartisan Investigation Into Top Agency Officials' Travel Costs

September 27, 2017 A congressional oversight panel is beginning an investigation into the travel costs of top White House and agency officials after reports that Cabinet members have spent hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars for private-jet flights many claim were unnecessary. House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Rep. Trey Gowdy, R-S.C.,...