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State Department monitoring internet outages in Iran amid protests

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The State Department on Wednesday said it was monitoring reports of internet outages and slowdowns in Iran amid ongoing anti-government protests spurred by a water shortage in the country. State …

Source: https://thehill.com/policy/international/565321-state-department-monitoring-internet-outages-in-iran-amid-protests
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The Article Was Written/Published By: Celine Castronuovo

New bill strips Facebook, Twitter of Section 230 immunity for spreading vaccine falsehoods

New bill strips Facebook, Twitter of Section 230 immunity for spreading vaccine falsehoods

Enlarge (credit: CHANDAN KHANNA / AFP)

A new bill introduced Thursday would hold Facebook, Twitter, and other social media companies responsible for amplifying conspiracies and falsehoods about vaccines, COVID cures, and other health misinformation.

“For far too long, online platforms have not done enough to protect the health of Americans,” said Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), one of the bill’s sponsors. “These are some of the biggest, richest companies in the world, and they must do more to prevent the spread of deadly vaccine misinformation.”

If signed into law, the Health Misinformation Act would strip Facebook, Twitter, and other social media companies of some immunity under Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, which currently prevents Internet firms from being held liable for most content posted on their platforms. The carveout proposed by Klobuchar and Sen. Ben Ray Luján (D-NM) would eliminate that legal shield in instances where a platform “promotes health misinformation through an algorithm,” the bill says.

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Source: https://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2021/07/new-bill-strips-facebook-twitter-of-section-230-immunity-for-spreading-vaccine-falsehoods/
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The Article Was Written/Published By: Tim De Chant

25 States Are Forcing Face Recognition on People Filing for Unemployment

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We acclimatize to dangerous tech creep in a series of fuck-it moments until the point at which we realize a foreseeably bad network is so pervasive, we reluctantly adopt it and move on. There was a time when social media, Amazon shopping, and home surveillance seemed optional—until they weren’t. Now in many states,…

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Source: https://gizmodo.com/25-states-are-forcing-face-recognition-on-people-filing-1847350707
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The Article Was Written/Published By: Whitney Kimball

Warren: Canceling $50K in student debt could ‘transform an entire generation’

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Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) is reigniting her push for canceling $50,000 in student debt per borrower, arguing the move could “transform an entire generation.””It would help nearly everyone w…

Source: https://thehill.com/homenews/senate/564388-warren-cancelling-50000-in-student-debt-could-transform-an-entire-generation
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The Article Was Written/Published By: Mychael Schnell

Virginia will use a $700 million grant to roll out statewide broadband

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Virginia will use $700 million in American Rescue Plan funding to expedite broadband buildouts in underserved communities throughout the state, Governor Ralph Northam announced on Friday. With the investment, Virginia says it’s on track to become one of the first states in the US to achieve universal broadband access.

An estimated 233,500 homes and businesses throughout the Commonwealth fall under what the Federal Communications Commission would consider an underserved location. They don’t have an internet connection that can achieve download speeds of 25Mbps down. The state estimates the additional funding will allow it to connect those places to faster internet by the end of 2024, instead of 2028, as previously planned. What’s more, the “majority” of those connections will be completed within the next 18 months.

“It’s time to close the digital divide in our Commonwealth and treat internet service like the 21st-century necessity that it is — not just a luxury for some, but an essential utility for all,” Governor Northam said.

Across nine provisions, President Biden’s $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan provides approximately $388 billion in funding for state and local governments to address the digital divide in their communities. Virginia is only one of the states across the country that plans to use that money to build faster internet infrastructure. In May, California Governor Gavin Newsom proposed a $7 billion investment in public broadband.

Source: https://www.engadget.com/virginia-700-million-american-rescue-plan-funding-204544367.html?src=rss
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The Article Was Written/Published By: Igor Bonifacic

New Connecticut Cybersecurity Laws Enacted

“…The new Connecticut law prohibits punitive damages being assessed against organizations in the wake of a data breach if they’ve implemented “reasonable” security controls. The law states that the court may not assess such damages if the organization created, maintained and complied with a written cybersecurity program that offers administrative, technical and physical safeguards for protecting personally identifiable information as well as restricted information.

The new state law stipulates that organizations must conform with revisions and amendments to industry-recognized cybersecurity frameworks, laws and regulations within six months after any changes are published.

“Cybersecurity is largely unregulated today; there is no national statutory minimum standard of information security, making it difficult to improve cybersecurity on a wholesale basis,” says Curtis Dukes, executive vice president and general Manager, security best practices, at the Center for Internet Security. “Connecticut’s cybersecurity bill introduces a critical interim step – incentivizing the adoption of cyber best practices … to improve cybersecurity and protect citizen data.”…

Read More: 2 State Cybersecurity, Data Privacy Laws Enacted https://www.govinfosecurity.com/2-state-cybersecurity-data-privacy-laws-enacted-a-17059

Pentagon cancels $10 billion cloud contract that Amazon and Microsoft fought over

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The Department of Defense announced Tuesday it’s calling off the $10 billion cloud contract that was the subject of a legal battle involving Amazon and Microsoft.

Source: https://www.nbcnews.com/tech/tech-news/pentagon-cancels-10-billion-cloud-contract-amazon-microsoft-fought-rcna1349
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The Article Was Written/Published By: Lauren Feiner, CNBC and Amanda Macias, CNBC

Read the Pentagon’s Big Declassified UFO Report Right Here

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The truth is finally out here. On Friday, the Pentagon released its highly anticipated report summarizing previously classified information about the military’s research into UFOs—or as it prefers to call them, Unidentified Aerial Phenomena (UAP). What bombshell revelations does the report contain? Well, it’s only…

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Source: https://gizmodo.com/read-the-pentagons-big-declassified-ufo-report-right-he-1847175792
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The Article Was Written/Published By: Rhett Jones

El Salvador to Give Every Citizen $30 in Bitcoin for Downloading Govt Crypto App

El Salvador will give every adult citizen $30 in bitcoin, provided they download and register the government’s cryptocurrency app, known as Chivo, according to President Nayib Bukele.

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Source: https://gizmodo.com/el-salvador-to-give-every-citizen-30-in-bitcoin-for-do-1847171236
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The Article Was Written/Published By: Matt Novak

House committee approves bill that could break up Amazon, Apple, and Google

Monopoly board game.

Enlarge (credit: Getty Images | MichaelJay)

The House Judiciary Committee approved antitrust legislation that could prohibit platform operators like Amazon, Apple, Google, and Facebook from favoring their own products and services, and the legislation could even break up industry giants by forcing them to eliminate or sell certain divisions. Companies could also face fines of 15 percent of their annual revenue.

Bills introduced by Democrats were approved in a hearing that began Wednesday morning, recessed at 5 am EDT Thursday, reconvened late Thursday morning, and finished around 3 pm. The final and most controversial bill approved was the Ending Platform Monopolies Act, which “eliminates the ability of dominant platforms to leverage their control over across multiple business lines to self-preference and disadvantage competitors in ways that undermine free and fair competition,” a press release from Antitrust Subcommittee Chairman David Cicilline (D-R.I.) on June 11 said.

The 21-20 vote went mostly along party lines, but Republicans Ken Buck (R-Colo.) and Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) supported the bill. Democrats who opposed it were Zoe Lofgren (D-Calif.); Eric Swalwell (D-Calif.); Lou Correa (D-Calif.); and Greg Stanton (D-Ariz.).

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Source: https://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2021/06/house-committee-oks-big-tech-breakups-and-massive-fines-in-antimonopoly-push/
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The Article Was Written/Published By: Jon Brodkin

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