News in Brief

Citizen broadband, DHS duplication and more

FCC refines plans for 'Citizens Broadband'

The Federal Communications Commission is proceeding with a spectrum-sharing plan that will carve out 150 MHz for use in a new Citizens Broadband Radio Service.

The spectrum, in the 3.5 GHz band, is currently used in radar and satellite communications. The FCC is proposing a "three-tiered sharing paradigm" that would give priority to military and commercial users while allocating shared spectrum to low-power, highly localized applications via a dynamic spectrum management system that acts "as a traffic cop for spectrum," FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler said.

FCC officials are expected to announce the results of a vote on the draft report and an order approving the plan at its April 17 meeting.

Hurd bill addresses IT duplication at DHS

Freshman Rep. Will Hurd (R-Texas), a former CIA undercover officer and cybersecurity vendor, is looking to make his mark on federal IT with his debut bill.

The legislation would require the Department of Homeland Security to conduct an audit of the number of IT systems in use departmentwide, report to Congress on which of the systems are duplicative and offer a strategy for reducing unnecessary duplication.

Hurd is a member of the House Homeland Security Committee and is chairman of the Oversight and Government Reform Committee's IT Subcommittee.

GitHub hit by advanced DDOS attack

Popular coding website GitHub was hit by a distributed denial-of-service attack that began March 26. The attack, which limited users' access to GitHub's website, continued through March 30, though the San Francisco-based firm said later in the day that all systems were "reporting at 100 percent."

The hackers employed "sophisticated new techniques that use the Web browsers of unsuspecting, uninvolved people to flood with high levels of traffic," according to a GitHub blog post.

An increasing number of federal agencies are turning to GitHub's collaborative environment for IT development.

Survey: Agencies fall short on using analytics to fight fraud

In a recently released MeriTalk survey, only 15 percent of federal IT executives said their agencies have fully deployed analytics to fight fraud.

That contrasts with 59 percent of respondents who said their agencies were targeted by fraudsters at least daily and 73 percent who said it happened at least weekly.

MeriTalk, a public/private IT organization, surveyed 72 federal IT executives in November 2014.

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