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FCW Insider: April 5

Democrats on the House Committee on Oversight and Reform are urging appropriators to oppose funding of the Trump administration's proposed merger of the Office of Personnel Management and General Services Administration. Chase Gunter has more.

Justice Department lawyers argued before a federal appeals court that union complaints about three workforce executive orders that curtailed union activity and made firing feds easier should have been brought to the Federal Labor Relations Authority instead of federal court. Chase has the news from the courthouse.

Department of Veterans Affairs senior officials pushed back on a U.S. Digital Service report that recommended scrapping a tech tool planned to administer eligibility tests for community care under the MISSION Act. The law takes effect June 6 and VA says the tool will be ready. Adam Mazmanian reports.

FBI Director Christopher Wray told appropriators the bureau lacks the necessary personnel to handle the growing data analysis workload that has become central to many of the department's investigations. Derek B. Johnson explains.

Quick Hits

*** Karen Evans, assistant secretary for Cybersecurity, Energy Security and Emergency Response at the Department of Energy, said cyber threat information sharing to bolster infrastructure defenses is at the heart of the agency’s newly proposed Clean Energy Manufacturing Innovation Institute for Cybersecurity in Energy Efficient Manufacturing. The institute would be overseen by DOE's Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy and Evans's organization, known as CESER.

The $70 million funding opportunity request for the institute isn't a traditional offering, she said at an April event hosted by Cyberscoop. She pointed to the institute’s focus on supply chain cybersecurity new technologies emerging to support new energy systems.

"It's looking for a better understanding of how to evolve the threat in energy efficient manufacturing, to develop new cybersecurity technologies that will be associated with next-generation efficient energy markets," Evans said.

*** The same day the FBI director was testifying on the Hill about the need to foster greater cooperation between law enforcement and the private sector on cybersecurity, the head of a global investment bank and financial services company told shareholders that hackers and other digital threats "may very well be the biggest threat to the U.S. financial system."

In his annual letter to shareholders, JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon said his organization spends almost $600 million a year on cybersecurity efforts and have more than 3,000 employees on staff focused on data security, and it's still not enough.

"The financial system is interconnected, our adversaries are smart and relentless -- so we must continue to be vigilant,” Dimon said. “The good news is that the industry (and many other industries), along with the full power of the federal government, is increasingly being mobilized to combat this threat."

Posted on Apr 05, 2019 at 1:03 AM


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