At a glance.
- US continues to mull response to Holiday Bear and the SolarWinds compromise.
- CISA assumes responsibility for the dot gov domain.
- Big Tech woos US legislators and regulators.
Responses, seen and unseen.
As we’ve seen, Washington is preparing a blend of “seen and unseen” responses to Russia for Holiday Bear's snuffle through the SolarWinds Orion platform. Computing relays unidentified officials’ comments that “a series of clandestine actions across Russian networks that are intended to be evident to President Vladimir Putin and his intelligence services and military, but not to the wider world” could occur this month. (Observers are calling out the New York Times for quietly retracting its initial characterization of the planned actions as a “cyberstrike.”)
The Cipher Brief spotlights a shadowy threat that’s not receiving much media attention: Beijing’s intensive mining of domestic, commercial, and intelligence data for strategic purposes, while the US falls behind in data processing capabilities. The article recommends remedying data overwhelm and stovepiping with innovations in AI that allow for the following:
- “Automated Data Triage”
- “Automated Correlation”
- “Target Profiling: Network, Spatial, and Temporal Analytics”
- “AI Driven Trend and Pattern Analysis”
- “Learning User Behavior”
CISA assumes responsibility for the dot gov domain.
DotGovGSA says that the DOTGOV Act of 2020 will turn over control of the .gov domain from the General Services Administration, which has managed the domain for over twenty years, to the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency. As BleepingComputer reports, the agencies say they're collaborating “to ensure a seamless transition,” to be completed next month. CISA will work to provide low-cost .gov access, set up a user-friendly Domain Name Service management hub, and support reliability and security efforts. Dot gov sites help users locate official communications.
Big Tech’s charm offensive.
Google, Facebook, Amazon, and tech lobbyist American Edge have for the past several weeks engaged in a “PR assault” and “all-out blitz” on Washington, D.C., according to Wired. News sites, search results, podcasts, and other platforms have been peppered with the entities’ respective messages. Google is plugging its backing of minority businesses, Facebook is emphasizing its support for regulatory reform, Amazon is underscoring its fifteen dollar minimum wage, and American Edge is stressing the “long-term national security consequences that the United States faces if it relinquishes its technology leadership role.”
While the three tech giants spent a collective $47 million in lobbying last year, Wired deems the “very public attempt to win over the hearts not just of the people holding the gavels but also the wider DC influencer class” to be “a bit more unusual” than the lobbying gambits we've grown familiar with in recent years.