New Cyber Division, Broadband Map for Maternal Health, Robocall Rules to Take Effect in August

The new cyber section will serve as a resource to respond to highly technical cyber threats.

New Cyber Division, Broadband Map for Maternal Health, Robocall Rules to Take Effect in August
Photo of Assistant Attorney General Matthew Olsen

June 22, 2023 — Assistant Attorney General Matthew Olsen announced Tuesday in remarks at the Hoover Institution in Washington that the Department of Justice is establishing a new national security cyber section within the national security division.

The new section will focus on disrupting and dismantling threats from malicious nation-states.

It “will allow NSD to increase the scale and speed of disruption campaigns and prosecutions of nation-state threat actors, state-sponsored cybercriminals, associated money launderers, and other cyber-enabled threats to national security,” he said.

The National Security Cyber section is a response to Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco’s comprehensive cyber review in 2022 that warned against the evolving nature of cyber threats. Experts are warning against looming cyber threats and are calling for the U.S. to bolster its response to malicious cyberactivity.

“Hostile nations are accelerating their use of cyber-enabled means to carry out a range of threatening activity,” said Olsen.

“Having prosecutors that are fully dedicated to national security cyber cases will deepen our expertise,” Olsen said. The new section will serve as a resource to respond to highly technical cyber threats which require time and expertise not available in other sections.

“Cybersecurity is a matter of national security,” he continued. “Our cyber adversaries are innovative and constantly adjusting their tactics to hide from our investigators… NSD is committed to matching our adversaries by adjusting our tactics.”

FCC updates broadband health map to incorporate maternal health

The Federal Communications Commission announced Tuesday an update to its mapping broadband health in America platform to incorporate maternal health data.

The data will assist policymakers, public health experts, researchers and other stakeholders to better explore the intersection of maternal health and broadband availability, read the press release.

The maping broadband health in America platform is the FCC’s effort to explore the role of broadband connectivity in the health of American citizens. It is used to inform policy and program prescriptions, future innovations and investment decisions.

“The FCC is playing an increasingly greater role in advancing connected health and our latest effort to explore the ways in which broadband access can have an impact on the health and wellness of moms and moms-to-be is crucial work,” said FCC Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel in comments.

Data shows that the United States is the only developed country with increasing maternal mortality rates. In December, President Joe Biden signed into law the Data Mapping to Save Moms’ Lives Act, which directed the FCC to consult with the CDC and incorporate public data on maternal mortality into the platform.

In addition, the platform maps areas where critical telehealth resources are most needed, including areas where there are no hospitals or birth centers offering maternal care.

According to the press release, the commission plans to convene relevant stakeholders and seek public input in the coming months on how to build on this milestone to meet the maternal health crisis with broadband solutions.

FCC robocall mitigation obligations effective August

Rules that will require providers that receive and deliver phone traffic to implement call authentication standards mandated under the FCC’s STIR/SHAKEN robocall regime will be effective August 21, reported the Federal Register Wednesday.

The new rules, adopted in the March open meeting, will adjust previous standards that required only the originating and terminating providers to implement analytical tools intended to ensure, among other things, that the phone numbers appearing on caller I.D. are actually from the holder of the number to stop scam calls, to include intermediary providers.

“By requiring the next provider in the call path to authenticate those calls, the FCC closes a gap in the caller ID authentication regime and facilitates government and industry efforts to identify and block illegal robocalls,” the commission said in a news release.

The compliance deadline for the new authentication obligations for the first non-gateway intermediate provider in the call chain is December 31, 2023.

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