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06/05/2020
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SBA says it blocked bogus foreign accounts

Amid the Small Business Administration's early struggles with its system for coronavirus relief loans, there was a bright spot: The agency's cloud cybersecurity tools quickly identified and blocked North Korean, Chinese and Russian accounts making bogus applications for loans. The agency moved to the cloud three years ago but didn't realize just how powerful its security tools were until it deployed them against foreign adversaries, said Guy Cavallo, deputy chief information officer, during an AFFIRM webinar Thursday. "We’ll make an exception if there’s an American businessperson traveling abroad," Cavallo said. "But our overseas warning, when we turned it on, went off like a Christmas tree.” Dave Nyczepir has more from Cavallo.


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Big bases are next on DOD's 5G list

The rollout of the Department of Defense's 5G wireless technology program will not have a small footprint. The number of installations marked as "test beds" for the networks is now 12, adding Fort Hood, Texas; Naval Base Norfolk, Virginia; Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii; Joint Base San Antonio, Texas; the National Training Center at Fort Irwin, California; Camp Pendleton, California; and Tinker Air Force Base, Oklahoma. The announcement comes weeks after the release of the DOD’s 5G strategy, which outlines how the department will work with private sector companies as the U.S. tries to keep pace with China and its 5G giant Huawei. Jackson Barnett has the latest.


OPM has a plan for returning from telework

The federal government's human resources agency has set guidance for its own return to the office. The Office of Personnel Management's return from max telework will occur on a facility-by-facility basis across its more than 20 properties. OPM will continue to encourage telework in phases 1 and 2 of reopening, particularly with employees whose transit and parking options remain disrupted or who have children without dependent care. Other agencies like the departments of Energy, Agriculture and Interior, and the Environmental Protection Agency have also issued similar guidance and plans. Dave explains the announcement.


Inside the CMMC's memorandum of understanding

Earlier this week, we got our hands on a key document in the Pentagon's ongoing saga over the Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification (CMMC) for defense contractors. Signed in March, the memo clarifies some of the standards that the body will require for the potential third-party assessors and for its own organization. Among the details: The third-party assessors for higher-security contractors will need ISO 17020 certification. The process to get it generally takes 6 months. Jackson dives in.


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