Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
December 22, 2014

Posts in "Federal Tech"

November 10, 2014

Postal Service Network Breach Compromises Employee Data

Small USPS Truck 330x185 Postal Service Network Breach Compromises Employee Data

Courtesy of USPS

Data belonging to more than 800,000 United States Postal Service employees has been compromised in a computer network breach.

The breach, discovered in mid-September, is being investigated by the FBI. Remediation of the hack did not begin until this weekend, although planning began immediately, according to the agency.

“Acting too quickly could have caused more data to be compromised,” USPS spokesman David Partenheimer said in a statement.

Names, dates of birth, Social Security numbers, addresses, dates of employment and other information are among the compromised data. According to the agency, employees at all levels were affected, from letter carries to the postmaster general.

However no customer credit card information from online purchases at or at post offices were exposed.

New security measures were implemented over the weekend to prevent future breaches, Partenheimer said. Enacting the new safeguards caused system outages and slowed the delivery of external email.

Notification of employees began on Monday. USPS is providing free credit-monitoring services for one year.

November 3, 2014

The Week Ahead: Antitrust, Crypto-Currencies and Farming & Space Tech Transfer

Attention will be focused on the mid-term elections this week, but there are other events happening as well that cover issues including antitrust, crypto-currencies and farming and space tech transfer.

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September 30, 2014

Bureau of Engraving and Printing Should Evaluate Currency Reader Program, GAO Says

GAO Currency Reader1 445x282 Bureau of Engraving and Printing Should Evaluate Currency Reader Program, GAO Says

The Bureau of Engraving and Printing has started the process of distributing thousands of currency readers to the blind and visually impaired and a recommendation recently released by the Government Accountability Office pretty much boils down to this: evaluate the program to figure out if it actually works.

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September 29, 2014

The Week Ahead: Sports Blackout Rules, Net Neutrality & Education Technology

In addition to the Federal Communications Commission being scheduled to vote on a proposal to eliminate the sports blackout rule, several net neutrality-related events are happening this week, including the FCC’s economics-focused Open Internet roundtable session.

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August 18, 2014

Wikipedia, Cybersecurity, and Aspen Forum This Week

Events on Wikpedia, cybersecurity, startups, and government use of technology to lower costs are on tap this week and the Technology Policy Institute’s Aspen Forum in Colorado continues early this week.

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July 18, 2014

3D Printing in Space: There’s Much to Learn, Report Says

188124497 445x296 3D Printing in Space: Theres Much to Learn, Report Says

This 3D printer creation by Joshua Harker, shown in Paris in November, was not printed in space. (Joel Saget/AFP/Getty Images)

Three-dimensional printing has been a hot topic lately, with Home Depot even starting to sell the machines in some stores and the National Institutes of Health maintaining an exchange for 3D printer files. What about using 3D printing in space? There are potential benefits, but we still don’t know the full scope of this technology, and its capabilities in the short-term have been exaggerated, says a new report by the National Research Council.

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July 3, 2014

Government Email Preservation: A Chat With CREW’s Melanie Sloan

Controversy over missing Internal Revenue Service emails has been in the headlines recently, but Melanie Sloan and Anne Weismann at Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington argue the real problem is a systemic issue with federal agency record-keeping. In a recent opinion piece in the Washington Post, they write that Congress has long known that federal agencies have not been preserving records but hasn’t done anything about it.

Technocrat talked with Sloan, the group’s executive director, and here’s some of what she said:

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July 2, 2014

VoIP Deployment by Energy Department Could’ve Been Better, Report Says

An audit recently released by the Energy Department’s inspector general on the department’s efforts to deploy Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) telephone networks states that the department deployed “separate, potentially duplicative” systems. And it gives a couple of pretty detailed and interesting accounts of situations it came across.

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June 23, 2014

AT&T-DirecTV Merger, FCC Funding, Digital Health Care This Week

Hold onto your seats because a slew of events and congressional hearings and markups are slated for the next few days, including multiple subcommittee meetings on the proposed AT&T-DirectTV merger.

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June 20, 2014

An Exhaustive Look at From Two Senate Republicans

In releasing a report on what went wrong with the rollout of, two GOP senators put out a rhetoric-heavy news release that criticized the 2010 health care law and scolded the Obama administration for implementing it. But as CQ HealthBeat’s Kerry Young notes, the purpose of the report itself is “at least partly to help the organization’s new chief” — Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Mathews Burwell — “keep from repeating the same errors.”

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