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18 May 14. Cisco boss calls on Obama to rein in surveillance. Cisco’s chief executive has written to President Barack Obama warning of a collapse of trust in US technology after evidence emerged showing the National Security Agency breaking into his company’s equipment. In a letter seen by the Financial Times, John Chambers called for “standards of conduct” to rein in government surveillance so that national security objectives do. The letter was dated the day after pictures circulated on the internet showing NSA staff opening boxes of Cisco gear so that the US security agency can monitor internet traffic after the equipment has been shipped to customers. Mr Chambers complained that the NSA actions would undermine confidence among customers of US technology firms. A spokesperson for Cisco confirmed that its chief executive had sent the letter but declined to comment any further. “We simply cannot operate this way, our customers trust us to be able to deliver to their doorsteps products that meet the highest standards of integrity and security,” the letter from Mr Chambers states. There have been allegations that the NSA has intercepted IT equipment in transit from manufacturers to customers to help monitor and gain information on surveillance targets. The equipment modified by the NSA included routers, servers and other computer network devices exported from the US, according to the reports. The NSA responded that “the implication that NSA’s foreign intelligence collection is arbitrary and unconstrained is false” but would not address specific incidences. Absent a new approach where the industry plays a role, but in which you, Mr President, can lead, we are concerned that our country’s global technological leadership will be impaired. (Source: FT.com)

21 May 14. nFocus Solutions®, the leading provider of performance management solutions to more than 4,500 clients nationwide, has reached an agreement with General Dynamics C4 Systems to become the exclusive domestic supplier of GeoSuite®. GeoSuite is a software tool that enables first responders, law enforcement and other public safety professionals to view, collect and share real-time and historical data with one another, throughout a mission. The tool is now part of a line of software from nFocus Solutions designed to improve the effectiveness of community services. The web-based, highly mobile GeoSuite tool fuses information from a wide variety of resources, combining it with relevant intelligence to form a real-time picture of a situation on a single display. This capability keeps public safety professionals better informed, which leads to faster and more effective decision making and improved safety. The GeoSuite system was recently used during a first responder and public safety training event at Texas A&M’s Disaster City®. Hundreds of first responders from Texas public safety organizations, including the Texas National Guard, used GeoSuite to maintain a real-time flow of information and situational awareness among the participants. The three-day training event focused on disaster recovery efforts following a simulated tornado. In addition to other capabilities, GeoSuite captured images of a simulated collapsed structure, sending, with a tap on their computer screen, the information to training participants including medical, utility and hazardous material personnel working in the simulated debris field. (Source: Yahoo!/BUSINESS WIRE)

20 May 14. Israel makes headway in cyber security. SenseCy is part of a new generation of cyber security companies that have risen in the past few years to challenge incumbents such as Intel Security, formerly McAfee, that are best known for their PC antivirus software. Cyber attacks are rising, up 14 per cent last year, according to data from Cisco, and boardrooms are getting increasingly worried

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