Weather Service Internet Systems Are Crumbling As Key Platforms Are Taxed and Failing

An anonymous reader shares an excerpt from a Washington Post article, written by Matthew Cappucci and Jason Samenow: The National Weather Service experienced a major, systemwide Internet failure Tuesday morning, making its forecasts and warnings inaccessible to the public and limiting the data available to its meteorologists. The outage highlights systemic, long-standing issues with its information technology infrastructure, which the agency has struggled to address as demands for its services have only increased. In addition to Tuesday morning’s outage, the Weather Service has encountered numerous, repeated problems with its Internet services in recent months, including: a bandwidth shortage that forced it to propose and implement limits to the amount of data its customers can download; the launch of a radar website that functioned inadequately and enraged users; a flood at its data center in Silver Spring, Md., that has stripped access to key ocean buoy observations; and
multiple outages to NWS


Original URL: http://rss.slashdot.org/~r/Slashdot/slashdot/~3/los-UmYqsEI/weather-service-internet-systems-are-crumbling-as-key-platforms-are-taxed-and-failing

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WH’s AI EO is BS

An executive order was just issued from the White House regarding “the Use of Trustworthy Artificial Intelligence in Government.” Leaving aside the meritless presumption of the government’s own trustworthiness and that it is the software that has trust issues, the order is almost entirely hot air.
The EO is like others in that it is limited to what a president can peremptorily force federal agencies to do — and that really isn’t very much, practically speaking. This one “directs Federal agencies to be guided” by nine principles, which gives away the level of impact right there. Please, agencies — be guided!
And then, of course, all military and national security activities are excepted, which is where AI systems are at their most dangerous and oversight is most important. No one is worried about what NOAA is doing with AI — but they are very concerned with what three-letter agencies and the Pentagon


Original URL: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/Techcrunch/~3/gw8et3pjbBs/

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Trump calls TikTok a hot brand, demands a chunk of its sale price

Today the president appeared to bless the budding Microsoft-TikTok deal, continuing his evolution on a possible transaction. After stating last Friday that he’d rather see TikTok banned than sold to a U.S.-based company, Trump changed his tune over the weekend. TikTok is owned by China-based company ByteDance, which owns a portfolio of apps and services.
A weekend phone call between Satya Nadella, the CEO of Microsoft, and the American premier appeared to change his mind, leading to the software company sharing publicly on Sunday that it was pursuing a deal.
Then today the president, endorsing a deal between an American company and ByteDance over TikTok, also said that he expects a chunk of the sale price to wind up in the accounts of the American government.
The American president has long struggled with basic economic concepts. For example, who pays tariffs. But to see Trump state that he expects to receive a chunk


Original URL: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/Techcrunch/~3/tOgGdP1srL4/

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Maryland Bill Would Outlaw Ransomware, Keep Researchers From Reporting Bugs

A proposed law introduced in Maryland’s state senate last week would criminalize the possession of ransomware and other criminal activities with a computer. However, CEO of Luta Security Katie Moussouris warns that the current bill “would prohibit vulnerability disclosure unless the specific systems or data accessed by the helpful security researcher were explicitly authorized ahead of time and would prohibit public disclosure if the reports were ignored.” Ars Technica reports: The bill, Senate Bill 3, covers a lot of ground already covered by U.S. Federal law. But it classifies the mere possession of ransomware as a misdemeanor punishable by up to 10 years of imprisonment and a fine of up to $10,000. The bill also states (in all capital letters in the draft) that “THIS PARAGRAPH DOES NOT APPLY TO THE USE OF RANSOMWARE FOR RESEARCH PURPOSES.”

Additionally, the bill would outlaw unauthorized intentional access or attempts to access “all


Original URL: http://rss.slashdot.org/~r/Slashdot/slashdot/~3/u3u_LY0qVpE/maryland-bill-would-outlaw-ransomware-keep-researchers-from-reporting-bugs

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Trump tweet gets it wrong on net neutrality ruling

President Trump this morning randomly addressed a recent court ruling on net neutrality, calling it a “great win” that will “lead to many big things including 5G.” Perhaps he didn’t read the ruling closely, because it in fact is an enormous blow to the FCC and the “unhinged” logic on which it based the rollback of net neutrality.
You can find a full analysis of the decision here, but Trump’s tweet ought to be addressed directly, because it is wrong in several ways.

We just WON the big court case on Net Neutrality Rules! A great win for the future and speed of the internet. Will lead to many big things including 5G. Congratulations to the FCC and its Chairman, Ajit Pai!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 7, 2019

First and most important, the FCC didn’t win this. Certainly it was a partial victory in that it wasn’t struck down and many of


Original URL: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/Techcrunch/~3/Tr0KJAKaPM4/

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Government Shutdown: TLS Certificates Not Renewed, Many Websites Are Down

More than 80 TLS certificates used by US government websites have expired so far without being renewed, leaving some websites inaccessible to the public. From a report: NASA, the US Department of Justice, and the Court of Appeals are just some of the US government agencies currently impacted, according to Netcraft. The blame falls on the current US federal government shutdown caused by US President Donald Trump’s refusal to sign any 2019 government budget bill that doesn’t contain funding for a Mexico border wall he promised during his election campaign. This has resulted in hundreds of thousands of government workers being furloughed across all government agencies, including staff handling IT support and cybersecurity. As a result, government websites are dropping like flies, with no one being on hand to renew TLS certificates.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.


Original URL: http://rss.slashdot.org/~r/Slashdot/slashdot/~3/_sLJQUTMqeA/government-shutdown-tls-certificates-not-renewed-many-websites-are-down

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Washington DC Made GitHub Its Official Digital Source For Laws

“Recently, I found a typo in the District of Columbia’s legal code and corrected it using GitHub,” writes D.C. based “civic hacker” Joshua Tauberer, adding “My feat highlights the groundbreaking way the District manages its legal code.”
The District does something with its legal code that no other jurisdiction in the world does (to my knowledge): it publishes the law on GitHub…. This isn’t a copy of the DC law. It is an authoritative source. It is where the DC Council stores the digital versions of enacted laws, and this source feeds directly into the Council’s DC Code website…. This is a milestone in the advancement of open government and open legal publishing.
No one should expect that editing the law on GitHub is going to become the new normal, however. My edit wasnâ(TM)t substantive. This sort of “technical correction,” as lawyers would call it, didnâ(TM)t need to be passed


Original URL: http://rss.slashdot.org/~r/Slashdot/slashdot/~3/mlP0UtZfh3w/washington-dc-made-github-its-official-digital-source-for-laws

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A Swedish ISP has blocked Elsevier’s website in protest for forcing it to block Sci-Hub

Bahnhof’s page blocking access to Sci-Hub. (Screenshot: TechCrunch)
A little known fact about Swedes: when they get angry, they will often scribble down a note on paper — sometimes anonymously — and leave it where it will be seen, rather than confront a person face-to-face.
One extremely angry Swedish pro-freedom internet provider took that passive aggression to a whole new level.
On Thursday, Stockholm-based Bahnhof was ordered by a Swedish copyright court to block Sci-Hub, a pirate site dedicated to free access to academic papers and research. The site, operated by a Kazakh student Alexandra Elbakyan, has faced court orders and threats of site blocks across Europe, following lawsuits from academic publishers like Elsevier, which brought the most recent case.
Bahnhof was forced to block 20 domains associated with Sci-Hub, according to the company’s response to the court order.
Resigned to the fact that it was unlikely to win an appeal, the internet provider called


Original URL: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/Techcrunch/~3/9xxCpyEF73E/

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FCC To Officially Rescind Net Neutrality Rules On Thursday

An anonymous reader quotes a report from Reuters: The U.S. Federal Communications Commission is expected to publish on Thursday its December order overturning the landmark Obama-era net neutrality rules, two sources briefed on the matter said Tuesday. The formal publication in the Federal Register, a government website, means state attorneys general and advocacy groups will be able to sue in a bid to block the order from taking effect. The Republican-led FCC in December voted 3-2 to overturn rules barring service providers from blocking, slowing access to or charging more for certain content. The White House Office of Management and Budget still must sign off on some aspects of the FCC reversal before it takes legal effect. Congressional aides say the publication will trigger a 60-legislative-day deadline for Congress to vote on whether to overturn the decision. U.S. Senate Democrats said in January they had the backing of 50 members


Original URL: http://rss.slashdot.org/~r/Slashdot/slashdot/~3/NgizjbBlaiI/fcc-to-officially-rescind-net-neutrality-rules-on-thursday

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