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Joseph Marks

Senior Correspondent

Joseph Marks covers cybersecurity for Nextgov. He previously covered cybersecurity for Politico, intellectual property for Bloomberg BNA and federal litigation for Law360. He covered government technology for Nextgov during an earlier stint at the publication and began his career at Midwestern newspapers covering everything under the sun. He holds a bachelor’s degree in English from the University of Wisconsin in Madison and a master’s in international affairs from Georgetown University.

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DHS: Sharing Election Threat Info With States Won't Be One-Size-Fits-All

October 18, 2017 When the Homeland Security Department alerted state governments about Russian attempts to probe their election systems in 2016, it followed an ad hoc, one-size-fits-all process, mostly reaching out through existing cybersecurity relationships with governors’ offices. As a result, the officials running those elections—which are often politically firewalled from governors—were sometimes...

Sharing Election Threat Info with States Won’t be One-Size-Fits-All, DHS Says

October 18, 2017 When the Homeland Security Department alerted state governments about Russian attempts to probe their election systems in 2016, it followed an ad hoc, one-size-fits-all process, mostly reaching out through existing cybersecurity relationships with governors’ offices. As a result, the officials running those elections—which are often politically firewalled from governors—were sometimes...

4 Ideas to Prevent the Next Equifax

October 17, 2017 The breach of more than 140 million people’s personal information at the credit rating agency Equifax is a fait accompli. We can’t turn back the clock on it or mitigate the damage. There are ways, however, to make the next major breach of a credit rating agency either less likely...

DHS to Order Agencies Implement Email, Website Encryption Tools

October 16, 2017 The Homeland Security Department plans to issue a binding directive Monday requiring agencies to implement a slew of new email security protections. The directive will give agencies three months to implement a tool called DMARC that helps prevent hackers from spoofing an email’s sender, Assistant Secretary Jeanette Manfra said during...

House Boosts Federal Bonuses, Aims to Protect Social Security Numbers And Oh Russia

October 13, 2017 Before the House headed out for a break, it voted to move ahead with the conference of the annual defense authorization bill. The conference process for the National Defense Authorization Act—though it hasn’t officially started yet—reconciles the differences between the House and Senate versions and their many, many amendments. One...

House Bill Would Allow Companies to Hack Back—With Limits

October 13, 2017 Companies would have broader authority to fight back after hackers breach their networks and steal data under legislation introduced Friday by a bipartisan pair of House lawmakers. The Active Cyber Defense Certainty Act wouldn’t let companies return digital fire against their attackers by stealing or destroying files. They could, however,...

DHS Nominee Would Be Agency’s First Homegrown Cyber Leader

October 12, 2017 President Donald Trump’s pick to lead the Homeland Security Department could mark a tectonic shift in the amount and type of focus government places on its cyber protections, former officials told Nextgov Thursday. Trump appointed Kirstjen Nielsen, a former Homeland Security chief of staff and now deputy chief of staff...

A Law is Expiring That Allows Ethical Hackers to Help Protect U.S. Elections

October 11, 2017 A division of the Library of Congress could play a key role in ensuring future U.S. elections are protected against cyberattacks that alter vote tallies or other digital meddling, the authors of a major report on election hacking said Tuesday. That division, the U.S. Copyright Office, approved a slate of...

Trump to Pick Kelly Deputy for Top Homeland Security Post

October 11, 2017 President Donald Trump announced plans to nominate former Homeland Security Department chief of staff Kirstjen Nielsen to the department’s top spot Wednesday. Nielsen moved to the White House with her boss, former Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly, when he became Trump’s chief of staff in July. She served most recently...

NIST’s Physical Security Falls Short, Undercover Audit Finds

October 11, 2017 Undercover federal auditors were able to gain unauthorized access to secured areas in both the Maryland and Colorado campuses of the government’s science and technology standards agency, according to a report released Wednesday. The report doesn’t describe which areas of the Commerce Department’s National Institute of Standards and Technology campuses...