Mark's Feed
Dec 6, 2013

Feds issue urgent safety order to Metro-North after rail crash

WASHINGTON, Dec 6 (Reuters) – Federal regulators issued an
emergency order on Friday requiring the company that operates
the New York commuter train involved in the deadly crash last
Sunday to implement urgent temporary safety measures.

The Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) said it ordered
Metro-North Railroad, operator of the train that derailed as it
entered a sharp curve in New York’s Bronx borough, to take
specific, immediate steps to make sure its crews did not exceed
speed limits.

Dec 4, 2013

Derailed NY train had alert mechanism, but not in driver’s car: source

By Mark Hosenball

(Reuters) – The New York commuter train that derailed killing four people on Sunday had a safety system designed to keep its engineer alert but it was not installed in the car from which he was controlling the train, a source familiar with the railroad’s operations said.

The engineer, William Rockefeller, 46, told authorities he became dazed and lost focus shortly before the crash as the train took a curve at three times the speed limit, investigators said.

Dec 3, 2013

Driver in fatal New York train crash ‘lost focus’: source

By Mark Hosenball

(Reuters) – The driver of a New York commuter rail train that derailed on Sunday, killing four people, told investigators he “lost focus” shortly before the crash, according to a law enforcement source.

The seven-car Metro-North train was traveling at 82 miles per hour, nearly three times the 30-mph (48-kph) speed limit for the curved section of track where it crashed, investigators have said. The brakes were applied just seconds before it derailed.

Nov 27, 2013

U.S. nears decision to split leadership of NSA, Cyber Command: sources

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The White House is nearing a decision on splitting up the eavesdropping National Security Agency and U.S. Cyber Command, which conducts cyber warfare, a proposed reform prompted in part by revelations of NSA’s widespread snooping, individuals briefed on the matter said on Wednesday.

As part of the emerging plan, the NSA likely would get a civilian director for the first time in its 61-year history, the individuals said.

Nov 25, 2013

Spies worry over “doomsday” cache stashed by ex-NSA contractor Snowden

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – British and U.S. intelligence officials say they are worried about a “doomsday” cache of highly classified, heavily encrypted material they believe former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden has stored on a data cloud.

The cache contains documents generated by the NSA and other agencies and includes names of U.S. and allied intelligence personnel, seven current and former U.S. officials and other sources briefed on the matter said.

Nov 14, 2013

NSA chief says Snowden leaked up to 200,000 secret documents

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Former U.S. National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden leaked as many as 200,000 classified U.S. documents to the media, according to little-noticed public remarks by the eavesdropping agency’s chief late last month.

In a question-and-answer session following a speech to a foreign affairs group in Baltimore on October 31, NSA Director General Keith Alexander was asked by a member of the audience what steps U.S. authorities were taking to stop Snowden from leaking additional information to journalists.

Nov 13, 2013

U.S. to name Nigeria’s Boko Haram as terrorist group: sources

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The State Department will formally designate the Nigerian Islamist militant group Boko Haram as a “foreign terrorist organization” on Wednesday, congressional sources and others briefed on the matter said.

The designation is significant because it directs U.S. law enforcement and regulatory agencies to block business and financial transactions with Boko Haram, which wants to impose Islamic law in northern Nigeria and has ties to al Qaeda.

Nov 8, 2013

Senate panel approves beefed-up oversight of drone attacks

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Senate Intelligence Committee has quietly approved a plan to step up both public and internal government oversight of the use of armed drones to kill suspected militants overseas, including American citizens.

The committee voted in closed session earlier this week to approve legislative language that would require U.S. spy agencies to make public statistics on how many people were killed or injured in missile strikes launched from U.S.-operated drones.

Nov 8, 2013

U.S., Germany discuss intelligence cooperation after Merkel affair

WASHINGTON, Nov 8 (Reuters) – After disclosures that the
U.S. National Security Agency tapped German Chancellor Angela
Merkel’s cellphone, Washington and Berlin are discussing new
rules to govern dealings between their spy agencies, U.S. and
European officials said.

Senior German officials, including the chiefs of Germany’s
foreign intelligence service, the BND, and its domestic security
agency, the BfV, met with Obama administration and U.S.
intelligence officials last weekend to discuss how to reshape
intelligence cooperation.

Nov 8, 2013

Exclusive: Snowden persuaded other NSA workers to give up passwords – sources

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Former U.S. National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden used login credentials and passwords provided unwittingly by colleagues at a spy base in Hawaii to access some of the classified material he leaked to the media, sources said.

A handful of agency employees who gave their login details to Snowden were identified, questioned and removed from their assignments, said a source close to several U.S. government investigations into the damage caused by the leaks.