Federal | Agencies | Legislative
ALEXANDRIA, Va., Jan. 17, 2018 -- NATSO Foundation President Lisa Mullings today told members of the House Committee on Homeland Security that the truckstop and travel plaza industry plays a vital role in combating human trafficking that takes place along the nation's Interstate Highway System. NATSO was invited to participate as an example of the positive role that the private sector can play in the fight against human trafficking.
"As an industry, our primary goal was not only to rally behind an important cause but also to have a real impact," said Mullings. "The multi-faceted approach taken by the truckstop and travel plaza industry illustrates that private enterprise can make a consequential difference in the fight against human trafficking. When companies take the time to learn about it and invest resources into combatting it, it can make a real difference in changing lives for the better. We thought it was important for Congress to know this."
Mullings briefed the House Homeland Security Committee about the multi-pronged anti-human trafficking initiative undertaken by the NATSO Foundation on behalf of the entire truckstop and travel plaza industry.
Specifically, Mullings cited the NATSO Foundation's partnership with the Department of Homeland Security's Blue Campaign to distribute public awareness materials that truckstops can post in their locations.
As an industry that caters to millions of travelers every year, truckstops and travel plazas and their employees are in a key position to help identify and report suspected incidents of human trafficking. Although there is no official estimate for the total number of U.S. human trafficking victims, it is estimated that hundreds of thousands of adults and minors are victims of human trafficking each year in the United States — many of whom are moved from state to state along our Interstate Highway System.
"Our partnership with DHS and the law enforcement community helps ensure that the millions of Americans who stop at truckstops and travel plazas nationwide are educated about human trafficking and able to assist in the transportation sector's fight against this crime," Mullings said.
The NATSO Foundation has been helping members of the truckstop and travel plaza community engage in the fight against human trafficking since 2012. The NATSO Foundation's goal is to provide the truckstop and travel plaza industry with the necessary tools to train owners, operators and employees so that those individuals are equipped to help if they encounter a victim of this horrible crime.
The NATSO Foundation provides the industry with an online education course, titled "The Role of Truckstops in Combating Human Trafficking," to help truckstops and travel plazas train their staff in recognizing and responding to suspected incidents of human trafficking. The course is available on the NATSO Foundation's website free of charge so that any member of the truckstop and travel plaza industry can leverage this educational resource. The course can be accessed at www.natso.com/onlinelearning.
The NATSO Foundation is the research, education and public outreach subsidiary of NATSO. NATSO is the trade association of America's travel plaza and truckstop industry. Founded in 1960, NATSO represents the industry on legislative and regulatory matters; serves as the official source of information on the diverse travel plaza and truckstop industry; provides education to its members; conducts an annual convention and trade show; and supports efforts to generally improve the business climate in which its members operate.
HID Global to Collaborate with ThreatMark on its New Cyber Threat Solutions for Banking and Finance Sectors
ID Global®, a worldwide leader in trusted identity solutions, today announced that it has signed a collaboration agreement with ThreatMark, a threat and fraud detection technology company, to develop new capabilities that will enhance the ability of financial institutions to detect cyber threats, such as malware, application hacking, phishing, account takeover, identity theft and fraudulent transactions.
HID’s expertise in Identity & Access Management (IAM) includes multi-factor authentication, credential management system software and identity verification capabilities in complex environments. HID’s capabilities complement ThreatMark’s expertise in cyber-criminal detection and fraud prevention. The two companies will work together to extend threat and fraud detection in order to meet today’s ever-increasing risk from cyber attacks.
“With cyber threats continuously evolving, HID Global is committed to advancing and extending our threat detection capabilities,” said Martin Ladstaetter, Vice President Products for IAM Solutions at HID Global. “Working with ThreatMark not only provides a partnership with a very successful company with domain know-how, but it also gives us visibility into an even broader attack surface that needs to be addressed, ensuring that we are staying ahead of cyber threats today and in the future.”
“Collaborating with HID gives ThreatMark the opportunity to combine our expertise to improve the overall security ecosystem through threat and fraud detection,” said Michal Tresner, CEO ThreatMark. “ThreatMark has differentiated itself by providing innovative deep behavioral profiling technology that, together with advanced analytics, can help to understand how cyber-criminal work. Collaboration with companies like HID Global allow us to broaden our reach and develop better integrated solutions.”
HID Global provides the broadest range of market-leading IAM solutions as the only company that can truly deliver a converged physical and logical identity management solution for high assurance and multi-factor authentication. ThreatMark’s solution integrated with HID Global’s portfolio for securing both consumer and employee transactions in banking and finance will greatly enhance security while maintaining a frictionless user experience that is important to the banking industry.
About HID Global
HID Global powers the trusted identities of the world’s people, places and things. We make it possible for people to transact safely, work productively and travel freely. Our trusted identity solutions give people convenient access to physical and digital places and connect things that can be identified, verified and tracked digitally. Millions of people around the world use HID products and services to navigate their everyday lives, and over 2 billion things are connected through HID technology. We work with governments, educational institutions, hospitals, financial institutions, industrial businesses and some of the most innovative companies on the planet. Headquartered in Austin, Texas, HID Global has over 3,000 employees worldwide and operates international offices that support more than 100 countries. HID Global® is an ASSA ABLOY Group brand. For more information, visit www.hidglobal.com.
ThreatMark is highly specialized research and development laboratory combining hacker level security know how with latest machine learning technology to combat cyber threats and online fraud. ThreatMark’s research into malware detection, artificial intelligence and behavioral biometry, is applied into the production environment of global banks, lending and payment providers and other online businesses that trust ThreatMark during their everyday operation.
ThreatMark solutions are designed to address the weakest link in security – the human factor. By monitoring subtle changes of the complex human behavior during their online business interactions even the stealthiest cyber-attack or fraud attempt can be identified and mitigated in the real-time. To learn more please visit www.threatmark.com
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DHS, DOJ Report: Three Out of Four Individuals Convicted Of International Terrorism and Terrorism-Related Offenses Were Foreign-Born
Block MEMS, LLC (Block) has been awarded Phase II of the Intelligence Advanced Research Programs Activity (IARPA) Program for the standoff detection of explosives and toxic chemical threats. Block was chosen for Phase II in a competitive down-selection process.
Under Phase I, Block successfully demonstrated the ability to detect trace quantities of explosives and other threats on multiple surfaces at 1 and 5 meter standoff distances in a few seconds.
A critical achievement under Phase I has been the development of a benchtop system based on quantum cascade lasers and an innovative chemical detection algorithm. The algorithm combines powerful data processing techniques, simulations of light/material interactions, and modeling of anticipated detected signatures in order to eliminate the effect of clutter, reduce false alarm rates, and improve limits of detection.
The IARPA program is called "Standoff Illuminator for Measuring Absorbance and Reflectance Infrared Light Signatures" (SILMARILS). The contract value of the program is now at $10.7 Million. The program is managed by the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio.
Dr. Anish Goyal, Block's VP of Technology and Principal Investigator of the SILMARILS Program at Block, commented, "I am very pleased to receive the second Phase of the SILMARILS Program. The achievements of the previous Phase have taken a significant step towards the ultimate goal of the SILMARILS Program to be able to detect explosives and other chemicals at standoff distances of 30 and 50 meters. The ability to not only detect Chemical Warfare Agents (CWAs), but Explosives and Pharmaceutical Based Agents (such as Fentanyl) as well at these standoff distances is addressing a strong need within the Intelligence Community, the Defense Department and the Department of Homeland Security."
Dr. Petros Kotidis, Block's CEO added, "We are honored to receive this award and I am very proud of the accomplishment of the Block team under the SILMARILS Program. The technology being developed under this program has far reaching applications within the Security Markets, as it will eventually enable the highly sought-after capability of Standoff Detection of trace chemical threats. Ranging from protection of soft targets against explosive terrorist attacks and faster check-in lines at transportation terminals and airports, to detection of Chemical Warfare Agents (CAWs) and better surveying of contaminated ground and surfaces, the SILMARILS capability will revolutionize the field of chemical security."
On January 3, 2018, select DHS employees received notification letters that they may have been impacted by a privacy incident related to the DHS Office of Inspector General (OIG) Case Management System. The privacy incident did not stem from a cyber-attack by external actors, and the evidence indicates that affected individual’s personal information was not the primary target of the unauthorized unauthorized transfer of data.
Message Received by Affected DHS Employees
This message is to inform you of a privacy incident involving a database used by the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) Office of the Inspector General (OIG). You may have been impacted by this privacy incident if you were employed by DHS in 2014, or if you were associated with a DHS OIG investigation from 2002 through 2014.
On May 10, 2017, as part of an ongoing criminal investigation being conducted by DHS OIG and the U.S. Attorney’s Office, DHS OIG discovered an unauthorized copy of its investigative case management system in the possession of a former DHS OIG employee.
This privacy incident involved the release of personally identifiable information (PII) contained in the DHS OIG case management system and affects two groups of individuals. The first group consists of approximately 247,167 current and former federal employees that were employed by DHS in 2014 (the “DHS Employee Data”). The second group is comprised of individuals (i.e., subjects, witnesses, and complainants) associated with DHS OIG investigations from 2002 through 2014 (the “Investigative Data”).
The privacy incident did not stem from a cyber-attack by external actors, and the evidence indicates that affected individual’s personal information was not the primary target of the unauthorized exfiltration.
All individuals potentially affected by this privacy incident are being offered 18 months of free credit monitoring and identity protection services. Notification letters were sent to all current and former employees who were potentially affected by the DHS Employee Data on December 18, 2017. Due to technological limitations, DHS is unable to provide direct notice to the individuals affected by the Investigative Data. Therefore, if you were associated with a DHS OIG investigation from 2002 through 2014, you may contact AllClear ID at (855) 260-2767 for information on credit monitoring and identity protections services.
The Department of Homeland Security takes very seriously the obligation to serve the Department’s employees and is committed to protecting the information in which they are entrusted. Please be assured that we will make every effort to ensure this does not happen again. DHS is implementing additional security precautions to limit which individuals have access to this information and will better identify unusual access patterns. We will continue to review our systems and practices in order to better secure data. DHS OIG has also implemented a number of security precautions to further secure the DHS OIG network.
We sincerely apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused. See below for additional information you may find useful.
Phillip S. Kaplan Chief Privacy Officer U.S. Department of Homeland Security
RESTON, Va.-- Leidos (NYSE: LDOS), a FORTUNE 500® science, information technology, and engineering company, was awarded a prime contract by the Naval Surface Warfare Center Carderock Division (NSWCCD) to support the Southeast Alaska Measurement Facility (SEAFAC) signature silencing program. The single-award, cost-plus fixed-fee, indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract has a five year period of performance and a total contract value of approximately $42 million. Work will be performed primarily in Ketchikan, Alaska, and Poulsbo, Wash.
NSWCCD provides support for technical products over a wide range of scientific areas related to surface and undersea platforms including maritime science and technology. As the Navy's primary acoustic engineering measurement facility in the Pacific, SEAFAC provides the capability to perform evaluations to determine the sources of radiated acoustic noise, to assess vulnerability, and to develop quieting measures.
Leidos has supported SEAFAC for more than 20 years with expertise in submarine acoustics, civil, naval, architecture, ocean, mechanical, electrical, and electronic engineering, program management, and complex logistics in remote locations. Under the contract, Leidos will continue to provide logistics, maintenance, operations, and program management assistance services in support of Navy and Marine signature silencing programs for naval ships and undersea systems. Leidos supports the operations and maintenance of SEAFAC during and between acoustic trials, including the operation, maintenance, and repair of all SEAFAC assets and support systems, as well as provide communications and emergency services.
"We look forward to continuing to provide innovative logistics, maintenance and operations expertise to ensure SEAFAC is able to maintain a technical advantage in undersea systems," said Leidos Group President Mike Chagnon.
VIENNA, Va., Dec. 29, 2017 -- This is a big day for public safety. With yesterday's close of the FirstNet opt-in/opt-out period, the unanimous decisions of states and territories across America are in. Fifty states, 2 territories and the District of Columbia opted in to the First Responder Network Authority and AT&T's* plan to design and build a dedicated wireless broadband network for their respective public safety communities. This gives first responders nationwide a groundbreaking new choice for their communications.
FirstNet is America's first-ever nationwide public safety broadband network. The recommendation for a separate, dedicated network for first responders was made by the 9/11 Commission based on the communication challenges public safety experienced during the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. Since then, it's been clear that the needs of public safety demand more than the networks of the past.
"Our FirstNet offering will forever change the way first responders communicate," said Chris Sambar, senior vice president, AT&T – FirstNet. "Securing 53 opt-ins is significant for the public safety personnel that this network will serve. And we're honored to give first responders across the country quick access to this life-saving solution."
FirstNet – purpose built with and for public safety – brings first responders their own world-class network to help them connect to the critical information they need every day and in every emergency.
"With every state saying 'yes' to the FirstNet plan, America's first responders now have a nationwide interoperable network they can rely on 24/7/365 – like their mission," said First Responder Network Authority Chief Executive Officer Mike Poth. "I applaud these governors for their decision and congratulate public safety for its advocacy and partnership throughout the process. With more than 50 states and territories participating in FirstNet, public safety is assured of an enduring, self-sufficient network to serve them for years to come."
Many states spent an exhaustive amount of time researching their options. New Hampshire – for example – spent more than 2 years exploring vendors who could design and build its statewide public safety broadband network. Ultimately, New Hampshire and the other states that issued requests for proposal opted in, indicating that we offered public safety the best solution with the least risk.
Decisions from the 3 Pacific territories of American Samoa, Guam and Northern Marianas Islands are not due until March 12, 2018.
What's Ahead in 2018
Now that opt-in decisions are in, the First Responder Network Authority is expected to give AT&T the official green light in early 2018 for its aggressive network build, including new site builds. This will help cover unserved or underserved areas. And it will help drive investment and job creation.
AT&T will spend about $40 billion over the life of the contract to deliver FirstNet. And the First Responder Network Authority is providing success-based payments of $6.5 billion over the next 5 years as well as 20 MHz of high-value spectrum to support FirstNet's build.
FirstNet will also bring first responders a host of new capabilities in 2018. These will help make their communications simpler, safer, faster, more collaborative and more secure.
"FirstNet is the network for public safety. 2017 was about planning, preparing and moving quickly to bring public safety a meaningful option – one they can rely on without delay. We'll build on that groundwork in 2018 with transformative capabilities that will make FirstNet the most valuable communications system for first responders," Sambar said. "And since this is likely the biggest innovation that most first responders will see in their careers, we can't wait to bring it to as many emergency responders as possible."
Planned advancements that AT&T's FirstNet subscribers can expect in the new year are:
- Increased coverage and capacity from AT&T's FirstNet build. Plus, access to mobile dedicated network assets that can be deployed for additional coverage and support when needed.
- Launch of the AT&T-built FirstNet nationwide, dedicated evolved packet core network with end-to-end encryption. All FirstNet traffic will be routed through this multi-million-dollar core to give first responders the separate, highly secure, non-commercial network they deserve.
- Access to a dedicated Security Operations Center, offering 24/7/365 support.
- Roll out of a range of next-generation public safety tools. This includes mission-critical push-to-talk and device offerings, like BYOD, to bring value to urban and rural first responders.
- Continued innovation with the FirstNet app ecosystem. This will be supported by FirstNet-focused hackathons in the new year to help fuel development.
"As first responders, we face an incredible amount of risk every day. So, to have a network that is focused on driving innovative capabilities to improve our safety is game changing," said Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo. "2017 was a pivotal year for public safety. And with the advancements planned for 2018, it's only going to get better."
For more information on FirstNet, please go to FirstNet.gov/mediakit and att.com/FirstResponderNews. More information on a governor's decision can be found here. Additional details on the benefits of opting in and the buildout plans can be found here. And information on subscribing to FirstNet can be found at FirstNet.com.
Cautionary Language Concerning Forward-Looking Statements
Information set forth in this news release contains financial estimates and other forward-looking statements that are subject to risks and uncertainties, and actual results might differ materially. A discussion of factors that may affect future results is contained in AT&T's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. AT&T disclaims any obligation to update and revise statements contained in this news release based on new information or otherwise.
AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) helps millions around the globe connect with leading entertainment, business, mobile and high speed internet services. We have the nation's largest and most reliable network** and the best global coverage of any U.S. wireless provider. We're one of the world's largest providers of pay TV. We have TV customers in the U.S. and 11 Latin American countries. Nearly 3.5 million companies, from small to large businesses around the globe, turn to AT&T for our highly secure smart solutions.
AT&T products and services are provided or offered by subsidiaries and affiliates of AT&T Inc. under the AT&T brand and not by AT&T Inc. Additional information about AT&T products and services is available at about.att.com. Follow our news on Twitter at @ATT, on Facebook at facebook.com/att and on YouTube at youtube.com/att.
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**Coverage not avail. everywhere. Based on overall coverage in U.S. licensed/roaming areas. Reliability based on voice and data performance from independent 3rd party data
RESTON, VIRGINIA - January 2, 2018, Serco Inc., a provider of professional, technology, and management services, announced today that it has been awarded a position on the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Public Assistance Technical Assistance Contract (PA TAC) IV. Serco will provide the people and resources needed to support the Public Assistance Program during major disasters and emergencies. To support a select region of the United States, Serco received a single-award indefinite delivery, indefinite quantity (ID/IQ) contract that has a ceiling value of $600 million over the next five years.
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security's FEMA Public Assistance Program, provides assistance to states, local government entities, tribes and non-profit organizations so that communities can quickly respond to and recover from declared major disasters or emergencies. Under this new contract, Serco is responsible for hiring and deploying a staff to supplement FEMA's recovery efforts. The Company will provide advisory and assistance services, technical assessments, cost analysis, as well as project management support to see relief efforts through to completion.
As the sole-awardee for Zone 2, Serco is responsible for 17 states across the mid-west including Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Arkansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, Colorado, Utah, Wyoming, North and South Dakota, and Montana.
"In 2017, there were over 200 federally declared natural disasters across the United States. Serco stands ready to support FEMA and the citizens of our nation," said Dave Dacquino, Chairman and CEO of Serco Inc. "We are hard at work preparing our high-quality team of project managers, engineers, environmental planners, biologists, financial analysts, accountants, estimators and other professionals needed to support the next time disaster strikes. We look forward to supporting FEMA to assist state and local governments and other eligible applicants in responding to, and recovering from Presidentially-declared disasters."
Serco has over two decades of experience delivering technical and advisory services in support of mission-critical programs and contingency planning operations for the U.S. Federal government. Under various programs supporting the Department of Defense and Federal civilian agencies, Serco supports deployable medical systems solutions to enable medical personnel to provide world-class healthcare; and was responsible for the redeployment associated with base closure, including project development, planning and scheduling, and retrograde processing.
DRESDEN, Germany- Cognitec Systems, the face recognition company, has significantly extended the feature set of its FaceVACS-DBScan product. The latest release combines the company’s renowned image database search technology with powerful video inspection tools for a multitude of investigation use cases.
“This tool will bring a new level of search automation and efficiency to the investigative workflow.”
FaceVACS-DBScan LE enables fast import of video footage and detailed investigations of the extracted facial images. Agents can find known or unknown persons in multiple videos to quickly narrow down suspect investigations. The investigation can reveal, for example, if a suspect was seen in various locations within a set time window, always with the same group of persons, or in one location too many times during the day.
With one click, the investigator can add the facial image seen in a video frame to a local database. If a person is already known, the technology can quickly compare the facial image to all connected databases and instantly display a candidate list of possible matches.
“Searching through hours of video material continues to be one of the most tedious investigation tasks for law enforcement professionals,” says Alfredo Herrera, Cognitec CEO. “This tool will bring a new level of search automation and efficiency to the investigative workflow.”
This product release maintains established features that have been in successful use for years by law enforcement professionals worldwide. Investigators can compare facial images from any source to multi-million image databases and instantly view a match list of the most similar faces. The use of image enhancement tools can improve match results, and side-by-side image inspections allow for precise match evaluation of probe and candidate image.
Cognitec develops market-leading face recognition technologies and applications for enterprise and government customers around the world. Various independent evaluation tests have proven the premier performance of the FaceVACS® software. Cognitec’s portfolio includes products for facial database search, video screening and analytics, border control, ICAO compliant photo capturing and facial image quality assessment. Corporate headquarters are located in Dresden, Germany; other offices in Rockland, MA and Sydney, Australia.
U.S. Department of Transportation to Release $100 Million in Grant Funds for Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority Green Line Extension
WASHINGTON –The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) today announced that it will issue $100 million in grant funding to the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) for its Green Line Extension (GLX) light rail project.
The grant represents the first installment of Capital Investment Grants (CIG) Program funding for the GLX after the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) signed a Full Funding Grant Agreement (FFGA) with MBTA for the 4.7-mile light rail line from Cambridge to Medford.
“Governor Charlie Baker’s commitment to responsibly manage taxpayer dollars in the building of this project was persuasive,” said U.S. Secretary of Transportation Elaine L. Chao. “The region can now look forward to an enhanced transportation network as the Green Line is extended to serve tens of thousands of area residents daily.”
FTA is providing these funds after MBTA completed a series of reviews to redesign the GLX project to contain costs without sacrificing schedule. MBTA’s strengthened project management team and governance structure, including a Fiscal and Management Control Board created in 2015 by Governor Baker and the Massachusetts Legislature, were critical factors in moving the FFGA grant forward.
“Thanks to the hard work and collaboration of Secretary Chao, State Transportation Secretary Pollack, and the cities of Cambridge, Somerville and Medford, this important project is moving ahead,” said Governor Baker. “The Green Line Extension project will provide important public transit service that will have a transformational impact for this region of the Commonwealth to accommodate riders and spur economic growth.”
The FFGA, signed in 2015, provides $996 million in federal funds toward the $2.3 billion total cost of the GLX.
“FTA is proud to support the transportation needs of the greater Boston area by helping to extend rail service into some of its most densely populated communities,” said FTA Deputy Administrator K. Jane Williams. “The GLX project will provide improved mobility and expanded transit service to riders traveling throughout the MBTA system.”
The project adheres to the scope and benefits identified in the FFGA, including six new light rail stations, replacement or rehabilitation of eight bridges, and a new pedestrian/bike path. The GLX is projected to open in January 2022. MBTA is the largest transit provider in New England and the fifth largest in the country based on ridership.