The Importance of Public Service #ChangeAgents by David A. Bray

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Here is the Webcast of Dr David A. Bray’s Quello Lecture on ‘The Importance of Public Service #ChangeAgents in Exponential Times’, which was given at MSU’s Quello Center on 21 September 2015.

David Bray – The Importance of Public Service #ChangeAgents in Exponential Times from Quello Center on Vimeo.

Abstract

Technology is rapidly changing our world, the 7 billion networked devices
in 2013 will double 14 billion in 2015 to anywhere between 50 to 200 billion in 2020. The ability to work and collaborate securely anywhere, anytime, on any device will reshape public service. We must ensure security and privacy are baked-in at code development level, testing
from ground up and automating alerts. Legal code and digital code must work together, enabling more inclusive work across government workers, citizen-led contributions, and public private partnerships. All together, these actions will transform Public Service to truly be “We the (Mobile, Data-Enabled, Collaborative) People” working to improve our world.

Dr. David A. Bray is a 2015 Eisenhower Fellow, Visiting Associate on Cyber Security with the University of Oxford, and Chief Information Officer for the Federal Communications Commission.

He began working for the U.S. government at age 15 on computer simulations at a Department of Energy facility. In later roles he designed new telemedicine interfaces and space-based forest fire forecasting prototypes for the Department of Defense. From 1998-2000 he volunteered as an occasional crew lead with Habitat for Humanity International in the Philippines, Honduras, Romania, and Nepal while also working as a project manager with Yahoo! and a Microsoft partner firm. He then joined as IT Chief for the Bioterrorism Preparedness and Response Program at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, leading the program’s technology response to during 9/11, anthrax in 2001, Severe Acute Respiratory System in 2003, and other international public health emergencies. He later completed a PhD in Information Systems from Emory University and two post-doctoral associateships at MIT and Harvard in 2008.

In 2009, Dr. Bray volunteered to deploy to Afghanistan to help “think differently” on military and humanitarian issues and in 2010 became a Senior National Intelligence Service Executive advocating for increased information interoperability, cybersecurity, and protection of civil liberties. In 2012, Dr. Bray became the Executive Director for the bipartisan National Commission for Review of Research and Development Programs of the United States Intelligence Community, later receiving the National Intelligence Exceptional Achievement Medal. He received both the Arthur S. Flemming Award and Roger W. Jones Award for Executive Leadership in 2013. He also was chosen to be an Eisenhower Fellow to meet with leaders in Taiwan and Australia on multisector cyber strategies for the “Internet of Everything” in 2015.

Dr. Bray has served as the Chief Information Officer for the Federal Communications Commission, leading FCC’s IT Transformation since 2013. He was selected to serve as a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and as a Visiting Associate for the Cybersecurity Working Group on Culture at the University of Oxford in 2014. He also has been named one of the “Fed 100” for 2015 and the “Most Social CIO” globally for 2015, tweeting as @fcc_cio.

Discussion of this talk is also available online at:

David Bray – The Importance of Public Service #ChangeAgents in Exponential Times – Discussion from Quello Center on Vimeo.

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The Evil Web?

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THE EVIL WEB

A. Michael Noll

September 26, 2015

© 2015 AMN, blogged with the permission of the author.

A. Michael Noll

A. Michael Noll

Along with spam and the pirating of copyrighted material, the Internet has become a dangerous and evil place. The Web has become today’s electronic wild west with the piracy of copyrighted material, identity theft, privacy invasion, and voracious amounts of spam – to list some evils of the Web.

In early 2012, Federal authorities went after a Web site that was pirating copyrighted material. In retaliation to the closing of the site and the criminal charges, hackers attacked the Web sites of Federal agencies.

Anyone who purchases stolen property is committing a crime. But it is not just copyrighted videos and music that is being stolen much to the anguish of Hollywood and the music industry. Academics obtain “pdf” files of textbooks and make them available at university websites so their students do not have to purchase the books, in effect, robbing authors and publishers of royalties and income.

Computer and Internet security are big issues today. Web sites are penetrated, and personal information is stolen leading to credit card fraud and identify theft. Over a weekend in mid January 2012, online shoe-site Zappos was hacked, and millions of customers’ information compromised. In 2007, Alcatel-Lucent somehow loss a data disk containing personal information about all its pensioners. Viruses and spoofing all contribute to making the Internet a dangerous place.

In most cases, businesses that are hacked or that misplace disks clearly have not taken adequate security precautions. Consumers need protection – legal and technological — from the evils of the Internet and the storage of electronic information.

Decades ago I worked on computer security and privacy issues on the staff of the White House Science Advisor. I learned then that the best way to keep information secure was not to make it available over any kind of network. The best firewall is a disconnected plug. But if information had to be made available, in as few cases as possible, then encryption was the best form of protection. There also had to be a need to know. Somehow all this advice seems to have been forgotten and ignored by many Internet sites.

There are other sensible protections. Customers should be given an option as to whether personal information is stored or not. The personal information that is stored should be on a separate computer that is not accessible over the Internet. All information – not just credit card information – clearly should be encrypted, with passwords and keys strongly protected. Audit trails are needed so that any penetration can be quickly determined and documented.

Today’s Internet crooks work from home or cozy offices – hacking their way into various web sites, spoofing legitimate web sites, stealing identities, pirating copyrighted material, and spamming the universe in promotion of whatever they are selling. And since each crime and each few bits of information seem insignificant, the Internet crooks get away with it. And, meanwhile, the Internet community at the slightest mention of any controls pleads about keeping the Internet free and open.

In mid January 2012, the Internet community – led by Google – mounted a massive campaign against the legislation that would have placed some limits on the Web. The claim was made that any such legislation would be censorship. However, Google and other search sites routinely determine the order of listings – and even what sites are listed – in effect, acting as the censors.

So what all the hoopla really is all about is who should set the terms of censorship – industry (which is guided solely by making a profit) or the government (which might more likely be guided by protecting the public and intellectual). A solution would be for search engines and Internet service providers to offer users the option to impose censorship and the terms of that censorship on sites.

In the end in 2012, Congress caved to all the pressure from the liberal Internet community – the White House had already fallen under the influence of Silicon Valley. And so any legislative protection died – and the Internet remains free and open – a lawless and dangerous place.

The Internet and Web are no longer new and innovative – electronic information, data communication, and the packet switching of the Internet are all relatively mature technologies that have been available for decades. If the Internet and Web community are not able to police and control themselves, then the only other option is government control and policing. Hollywood learned long ago that it was far better for it to police itself than suffer government regulation. One option would be for Internet access providers to offer a censored and protected level of service.

It is clear that the authorities do not seem willing – or able – to do much to stop all the evils of the Internet. Perhaps the time has come for a group of Internet vigilantes to patrol cyberspace to protect copyright, eliminate spam, and attack the servers of the Internet spammers and crooks.

A. Michael Noll is Professor Emeritus of Communication at the Annenberg School at the University of Southern California, and a Quello Research Associate.

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I Change My City – through the Internet: Venkatesh Kannaiah on Ichangemycity.com

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I Change My City is a Web site ichangemycity.com that enables residents to report problems, from streets in need of repair to trash pickups, and more. In addition to identifying the problems, the system enables the public to determine if and when something has been done to address the problem.

In this video, Venkatesh Kannaiah, a senior editor for Ichnagemycity.com provides a clear overview of how this site operates and plays a role in addressing urban problems in cities across India, and worldwide, such as through similar Web-based platforms.

Venkatesh Kannaiah is a senior editor from India with wide-ranging experience working at news agencies, print outlets and online publications. He was a Knight International Journalism Fellow for India working to build networks of journalists and ‘right to information’ activists in south India. He has headed editorial teams at Sify.com, AOL India, MSN India and is now working as Head of Content for Ipaidabribe.com and Ichangemycity.com – part of a non-profit, Janaagraha Centre for Citizenship and Democracy, based out of Bangalore.

You can watch the video of part of his 20 July 2015 seminar at the Quello Center that dealt with Ichangemycity.com at:

Venkatesh Kannaiah – I Change My City from Quello Center on Vimeo.

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Paid a Bribe? Venkatesh Kannaiah’s Quello Seminar on Ipaidabribe.com

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Ipaidabribe.com was an innovator in the development of bribery websites that enable individuals to report bribery in ways that can be used to create information at the level of specific offenders but also aggregated information to identify the kinds of services and regions of a nation that are most plagued by corruption in the form of bribery. Bill Dutton has used this web site as an example of the potential of the Internet to support a ‘Fifth Estate’.

In this video, Venkatesh Kannaiah, a senior editor for Ipaidabribe.com provides a clear overview of how this site operates and plays a role in increasing accountability for corruption across India. and particularly in Bangalore, where the site is based. Venkatesh Kannaiah is a senior editor from India with wide-ranging experience working at news agencies, print outlets and online publications. He was a Knight International Journalism Fellow for India working to build networks of journalists and ‘right to information’ activists in south India. He has headed editorial teams at Sify.com, AOL India, MSN India and is now working as Head of Content for Ipaidabribe.com and Ichangemycity.com – part of a non-profit, Janaagraha, based out of Bangalore, the Janaagraha Centre for Citizenship & Democracy.

You can watch the video of his 20 July 2015 seminar at:

Venkatesh Kannaiah – I Paid a Bribe from Quello Center on Vimeo.

Your comments are welcomed.

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