FCW Insider: Feb. 20

The latest news and analysis from FCW's reporters and editors.

Acting Deputy Transportation Security Administration chief Patricia Cogswell said that as screening tech has improved, insider threats have become an increasingly attractive attack vector for bad actors. Derek B. Johnson takes a look.

The U.S. Air Force is taking an inclusive approach to tech reskilling with its DigitalU program. The training is for everyone – not just self-selecting candidates. Lia Russell reports.

Steve Kelman shares some tips for keeping a data-driven message compelling, not confusing.

A former top acquisition official is among 11 individuals who received pardons or clemency Feb. 18 from President Donald Trump, Nick Wakeman reports. David Safavian was administrator of the Office of Federal Procurement Policy when he was arrested in 2005.

The Navy has realigned cybersecurity spending into a new category that includes the Joint Regional Security Stacks program. Get more on this and other Navy IT budget info from Lauren C. Williams.

Quick Hits

*** Rep. Raja Krishnamoorthi (D-Ill.) is asking Amazon for documents regarding its video doorbell system Ring's numerous partnerships with local governments and law enforcement. A series of media reports over the past year have documented how the company provides free Ring systems to law enforcement, allows police to access to customer videos without their consent and coordinates with police departments on press releases to the public. 

Krishnamoorthi, who chairs the House Oversight and Reform Subcommittee on Economic and Consumer Policy, asked for a range of information, including copies of all agreements the company has reached with local governments going back to 2013, details on integration of any facial recognition tools and instances where law enforcement has requested video footage from Ring. He also asked the company to set up a briefing with the committee by the end of the month.

*** The Defense Department's policy chief, John Rood, is resigning Feb. 28. Rood took the position in late 2017 and has since tackled various tech policy initiatives including intellectual property theft, cyber and election meddling. Rood submitted his resignation letter per the president’s request Feb. 19. According to press reports, Rood contested the wisdom of delaying security aid to Ukraine and had other policy differences with President Trump.

Dr. James Anderson, the current senior official performing the duties of the deputy undersecretary of defense for policy will take over Rood’s responsibilities until a permanent replacement is selected and confirmed, DOD press secretary Alyssa Farah said in a statement.