Mark's Feed
Feb 4, 2014

U.S. probed if Obamacare software written overseas; no sign from Belarus

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. health officials have investigated whether some of the software code underlying Obamacare’s technology infrastructure was produced by people connected to the government of Belarus, but so far have found no evidence of that being the case.

Caitlin Hayden, a spokeswoman for the White House National Security Council, confirmed that U.S. intelligence agencies recently retracted a report that questioned whether some of the software connected to the health reform law was developed in Belarus and could contain malicious code.

Jan 31, 2014

U.S. government names Navy man to head beleaguered NSA

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama nominated on Thursday the U.S. Navy’s top cyber warrior to head the National Security Agency, a move seen as a vote of confidence in a unit that is under fire for spying on Americans and their allies.

Navy Vice Admiral Michael Rogers, a cryptologist and head of U.S. Fleet Cyber Command, is not expected to immediately make major changes to the NSA, shaken by revelations by former contractor Edward Snowden.

Jan 30, 2014

Target representative guarded in U.S. panel briefing: sources

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A Target Corp (TGT.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) representative briefed Congressional investigators by telephone on Thursday about the retail chain’s recent massive data breach, but offered few fresh details, citing continuing law enforcement investigations.

Isaac Reyes, an official with Target’s government relations department, spoke by phone to officials from the House of Representatives Oversight Committee, two sources familiar with the session told Reuters.

Jan 30, 2014

Target says criminals attacked with stolen vendor credentials

BOSTON/WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Target Corp said on Wednesday that the theft of a vendor’s credentials helped cyber criminals pull off a massive theft of customer data during the holiday shopping season in late 2013.

It was the first indication of how networks at the No. 3 U.S. retailer were breached, resulting in the theft of about 40 million credit and debit card records and 70 million other records with customer information such as addresses and telephone numbers.

Jan 29, 2014

U.S. spy chiefs call for action on data breach disclosure

WASHINGTON, Jan 29 (Reuters) – U.S. spy agency chiefs on
Wednesday called on Congress to draft stricter requirements for
how retailers and other private businesses should inform
government agencies and customers about big breaches of personal
and financial data.

The intervention by intelligence chiefs came as Attorney
General Eric Holder confirmed that the Justice Department was
investigating the massive hacking of consumer data from No. 3
U.S. retailer Target Corp during the holiday shopping
season late last year.

Jan 29, 2014

U.S. intelligence head wants Snowden, ‘accomplices’ to return documents

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The top U.S. intelligence official called on Wednesday for Edward Snowden and journalists who obtained documents the former contractor took without authorization from the National Security Agency to return the materials to authorities.

At a hearing where the heads of five U.S. intelligence agencies ratcheted up rhetoric calling Snowden a “grave threat” to the nation, U.S. Director of National Intelligence James Clapper made comments that appeared to accuse journalists who wrote stories based on Snowden’s leaks.

Jan 29, 2014

U.S. spy chiefs say number of foreign militants in Syria rises

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – More than 7,000 foreign militants are fighting for the rebels in Syria’s civil war and some are being trained to return home and conduct attacks, U.S. spy chiefs told lawmakers on Wednesday.

The estimate, given at a Senate intelligence hearing, was much higher than earlier figures of 3,000 to 4,000 foreign fighters in Syria, and came after news emerged this week that Congress had secretly approved more funding to send weapons to “moderate” rebels.

Jan 28, 2014

No evidence Russia helped Snowden to steal U.S. secrets: Feinstein

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The chairwoman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, Senator Dianne Feinstein, said on Tuesday she has seen no evidence that Russian spies helped former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden steal U.S. eavesdropping secrets.

The Democrat’s comments on the MSNBC TV channel contrast with statements by her Republican counterpart in the House of Representative Intelligence Committee, Mike Rogers.

Jan 27, 2014

Congress secretly approves U.S. weapons flow to ‘moderate’ Syrian rebels

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Light arms supplied by the United States are flowing to “moderate” Syrian rebel factions in the south of the country and U.S. funding for months of further deliveries has been approved by Congress, according U.S. and European security officials.

The weapons, most of which are moving to non-Islamist Syrian rebels via Jordan, include a variety of small arms, as well as some more powerful weapons, such as anti-tank rockets.

Jan 23, 2014

U.S. officials say Russia not sharing Olympic threat specifics

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Russia is not cooperating enough in sharing intelligence with the United States about possible threats by militants to attack participants at the Winter Olympics in Sochi, U.S. security officials say.

“I’d say that Russia has not been forthcoming in sharing specific threat information,” said a senior U.S. official.