Report calls for science community to become more involved in spectrum policy

While technology companies and wireless service providers have been actively engaged spectrum policy discussions, a new report urges the scientific community to also find its seat at the table.

Spotlight: Senators want DOJ stingray rules extended to DHS

In a Sept. 29 letter, Sens. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) urged DHS Secretary Jeh Johnson to "adopt a default warrant requirement, as DOJ did" for the use of cellphone duping technology, called stingrays.

DHS funding development of smartphone 'brain chip' that learns user behavior, confirm identities

With $2.2 million in Homeland Security Department funding, Boeing is partnering with a software company to develop a smartphone "brain chip" to verify that the phone's owner is who they say they are.

DigitalGov posts tips for negotiating terms of service agreements for agency-built mobile apps

Coordination among the team, establishing timelines and collaborating with a larger mobile community are three essential tips for negotiating terms of service agreements when federal agencies are ready to launch their native mobile apps.

Consumer advocacy groups, new industry coalition spar over use of unlicensed spectrum

A consumer advocacy group said that a new telecommunications industry coalition formed "to promote the consumer benefits" of unlicensed spectrum and new licensed technologies such as LTE-U designed to operate in such bands actually threatens Wi-Fi competition and those benefits.

Malware that infected iOS apps has roots in CIA project, says report

The malicious software, called XcodeGhost, infects an app developer's computer and then is incorporated into any app made, without their knowledge. It's a technique first demonstrated at the Central Intelligence Agency's annual top-secret Jamboree conference in 2012.

ACLU urges Capitol Hill lawmakers, staff to use secure, encrypted communications apps, tools

For instance, the ACLU pointed out that encrypted smartphone apps like Signal and WhatsApp are free and easily downloadable from major app stores, while Apple has built encrypted voice, video and text communications apps into its operating system.

Lawmakers push FCC to limit RF radiation exposure from cellular antennas

In a Sept. 17 letter to the commission, Sen. Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut and Rep. Anna Eshoo of California wrote that that "excessive exposure to RF radiation leads to well-documented potential harms, especially to workers who spend time near the antenna and in the line of the antenna's beam."

Public safety group advises states on how to fund Next Generation 911

States have several funding models at their disposal when planning how they will support the rollout of Next Generation 911 networks and services, according to the National Association of State 911 Administrators.

New app aims to help first responders conduct better search and rescue operations

The Science and Technology Directorate's First Responders Group said the "Lost Person Behavior" app, which was released in the spring, provides search guidance, protocols and strategies that are used by specialized search and rescue teams.

Senators propose path to determine if unlicensed technologies can share 5.9 GHz allocated for V2V

Sens. John Thune (R-S.D.), Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) and Cory Booker (D-N.J.) are urging the Federal Communications Commission to work closely with the Transportation and Commerce departments to conduct feasibility testing in that spectrum.

Federal IT pros: Employee workarounds are biggest IT security threat

Nearly one-third of respondents from a new survey by Dimensional Research and Dell said federal employees using workarounds are the greatest threat to information technology security in the government.

Federal law enforcement agents must now get warrant to use stingrays, new DOJ policy says

Stingrays or cell-site simulators are devices that impersonate cellphone towers to pinpoint a cellphone's location. While the department maintained that the technology is critical for certain investigations, the new "enhanced policy" marks a significant shift for the agency.


FAA, MITRE hope mobile app can help address general aviation safety issues in long run

In the past year, only a couple of hundred users have downloaded a prototype of a free mobile device app that's designed to help private aircraft pilots record digital flight data with the aim of improving safety. But the app's developer said it gives federal regulators a start to better address general aviation safety issues.

DHS awards $10.4M to companies, universities to research, enhance mobile device security

The department's Science and Technology Directorate said the awards will focus on four technical areas, including mobile device instrumentation, mobile security management tools, transactional security methods, and mobile device layer protection.

10 mobile tools that will bring the post office to the phone, according to the USPS OIG

In anticipation of a second wave of digital disruption, the U.S. Postal Service's Inspector General released a report outlining 10 mobile-focused efforts that the agency could utilize to better "equip people with a post office on their phone" and prevent competitors from gaining footholds in the space.

Default smartphone encryption would deter thefts of millions of devices, privacy expert says

Kevin Bankston, director of New America's Open Technology Institute, called smartphone theft a "criminal epidemic," in which there were 3.1 million victims in 2013, nearly double from the prior year.

Before you fly your drones, new FAA app can help inform you of restrictions

Model aircraft hobbyists and other drone users can tap into a new government smartphone application that will give them information on whether it's safe and legal to fly their vehicles at a particular location.

How a modular approach can future-proof digital content

Modularity is a web design concept that has benefits far beyond the desktop world, according to a recent post from the General Services Administration's DigitalGov team.

36% of US smartphone owners use mobile messaging apps

Standard cellphone text messaging could soon give way to newer mobile messaging apps, according to a new survey from Pew Research Center that reveals surprisingly high adoption rates. Thirty-six...