SHIELDS UP: Readout of CISA Call With Critical Infrastructure Partners on potential Cyberattacks Against the U.S

WASHINGTON – The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) convened a three-hour call on March 22, 2022 with over 13,000 industry stakeholders to provide an update on the potential for Russian cyberattacks against the U.S. homeland and answer questions from a range of stakeholders across the nation.

As President Biden noted yesterday, evolving intelligence indicates that the Russian Government is exploring options to conduct potential cyberattacks against the United States. CISA echoed the President’s warning on the call today and reinforced the urgent need for all organizations, large and small, to act now to protect themselves against malicious cyber activity.

On the three-hour call, CISA Director Jen Easterly, Deputy Executive Assistant Director for Cybersecurity Matt Hartman, and Tonya Ugoretz, Deputy Assistant Director for the FBI’s cyber division, encouraged organizations of all sizes to have their Shields Up to cyber threats and take proactive measures now to mitigate risk to their networks. They encouraged those on the line to visit CISA.gov/Shields-Up to take action to protect their organizations and themselves and urged all critical infrastructure providers to implement the mitigation guidelines enumerated on CISA.gov/Shields-Up, including:

  • Mandate the use of multi-factor authentication on your systems to make it harder for attackers to get onto your system;
  • Update the software on your computers and devices to continuously look for and mitigate threats;
  • Back up your data and ensure you have offline backups beyond the reach of malicious actors;
  • Run exercises and drill your emergency plans so that you are prepared to respond quickly to minimize the impact of any attack;
  • Encrypt your data;
  • Sign up for CISA’s free cyber hygiene services; and
  • Educate your employees to common tactics that attackers will use over email or through websites, and encourage them to report if their computers or phones have shown unusual behavior, such as unusual crashes or operating very slowly.

Director Easterly urged all organizations, regardless of size, to contact CISA immediately if they believe they may have been impacted by a cyber incident. When cyber incidents are reported quickly, CISA can use the information to render assistance and help prevent other organizations and entities from falling victim to a similar attack. All organizations should report incidents and anomalous activity to report@cisa.gov or call the 24/7 CISA Central Operations Center at (888) 282-0870.  

Today’s event built on a series of briefings that CISA has been convening since late 2021 with U.S. Government and private sector stakeholders at both classified and unclassified levels. This outreach was provided to Federal Civilian Executive Branch Agencies, Sector Risk Management Agencies, private sector partners, state, local, tribal, and territorial (SLTT) governments, and international partners. To date, CISA has hosted or participated in more than 90 engagements reaching tens of thousands of partners. 

–Source: CISA.gov


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2020 Census Data is Out, Apportionment Results Delivered to the President

WASHINGTON—The U.S. Census Bureau announced today that the 2020 Census shows the resident population of the United States on April 1, 2020, was 331,449,281.

The U.S. resident population represents the total number of people living in the 50 states and the District of Columbia. The resident population increased by 22,703,743 or 7.4% from 308,745,538 in 2010.

“The American public deserves a big thank you for its overwhelming response to the 2020 Census,” Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo said. “Despite many challenges, our nation completed a census for the 24th time. This act is fundamental to our democracy and a declaration of our growth and resilience. I also want to thank the team at the U.S. Census Bureau, who overcame unprecedented challenges to collect and produce high-quality data that will inform decision-making for years to come.”

“We are proud to release these first results from the 2020 Census today. These results reflect the tireless commitment from the entire Census Bureau team to produce the highest-quality statistics that will continue to shape the future of our country,” acting Census Bureau Director Ron Jarmin said. “And in a first for the Census Bureau, we are releasing data quality metrics on the same day we’re making the resident population counts available to the public. We are confident that today’s 2020 Census results meet our high data quality standards.” 

The new resident population statistics for the United States, each of the 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico are available on census.gov

  • The most populous state was California (39,538,223); the least populous was Wyoming (576,851).
  • The state that gained the most numerically since the 2010 Census was Texas (up 3,999,944 to 29,145,505).
  • The fastest-growing state since the 2010 Census was Utah (up 18.4% to 3,271,616).
  • Puerto Rico’s resident population was 3,285,874, down 11.8% from 3,725,789 in the 2010 Census.

In addition to these newly released statistics, today Secretary Raimondo delivered to President Biden the population counts to be used for apportioning the seats in the U.S. House of Representatives. In accordance with Title 2 of the U.S. Code, a congressionally defined formula is applied to the apportionment population to distribute the 435 seats in the U.S. House of Representatives among the states.

The apportionment population consists of the resident population of the 50 states, plus the overseas military and federal civilian employees and their dependents living with them overseas who could be allocated to a home state. The populations of the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico are excluded from the apportionment population because they do not have voting seats in Congress. The counts of overseas federal employees (and their dependents) are used for apportionment purposes only.

  • After the 1790 Census, each member of the House represented about 34,000 residents. Since then, the House has more than quadrupled in size (from 105 to 435 seats), and each member will represent an average of 761,169 people based on the 2020 Census.
  • Texas will gain two seats in the House of Representatives, five states will gain one seat each (Colorado, Florida, Montana, North Carolina, and Oregon), seven states will lose one seat each (California, Illinois, Michigan, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia), and the remaining states’ number of seats will not change based on the 2020 Census. 

Upon receipt of the apportionment counts, the president will transmit them to the 117th Congress. The reapportioned Congress will be the 118th, which convenes in January 2023.

“Our work doesn’t stop here,” added acting Director Jarmin. “Now that the apportionment counts are delivered, we will begin the additional activities needed to create and deliver the redistricting data that were previously delayed due to COVID-19.”

Redistricting data include the local area counts states need to redraw or “redistrict” legislative boundaries. Due to modifications to processing activities, COVID-19 data collections delays, and the Census Bureau’s obligation to provide high-quality data, states are expected to receive redistricting data by August 16, and the full redistricting data with toolkits for ease of use will be delivered by September 30. The Census Bureau will notify the public prior to releasing the data.

Source: U.S. Census

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Advisory Outlining New Data Privacy Rights Issued for California Consumers

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SACRAMENTO – California Attorney General Xavier Becerra has issued an advisory for consumers highlighting their new rights as part of the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA), which went into in effect on January 1, 2020. The advisory describes consumers’ basic privacy rights under the CCPA and methods for consumers to exercise those rights, information about the data broker registry, and new guidelines related to data security. Enforcement of CCPA is the responsibility of the Office of the Attorney General.

Sacramento-DGS-CapitolBldg“Knowledge is power, and in today’s world knowledge is derived from data. When it comes to your own data, you should be in control,” said Attorney General Becerra. “In California we are rebalancing the power dynamic by putting power back in the hands of consumers. I encourage all Californians to take a moment to understand their new rights and exercise these rights to take control of their personal data.”

CCPA grants new rights to California consumers

  • Right to know – Consumers may request that businesses disclose what personal information is collected, used, shared or sold by the business, in both categories and specific pieces of information;
  • Right to delete — Consumers may request that a business delete the consumer’s personal information held by both the business and by extension, the business’s service providers;
  • Right to opt-out  Consumers may direct a business to cease the sale of the consumer’s personal information. As required by the law, businesses must provide a “Do Not Sell” information link on their websites or mobile apps;
  • Rights for minors regarding opt-in consent — Children under the age of 16 must provide opt-in consent, with a parent or guardian consenting for children under 13; and
  • Right to non-discrimination — Businesses may not discriminate against consumers in terms of price or service when a consumer exercises a privacy right under CCPA.

Businesses subject to CCPA

Not all California businesses are subject to CCPA. A business is subject to CCPA if the business:

  • Has gross annual revenue in excess of $25 million;
  • Buys, receives, or sells the personal information of 50,000 or more consumers, households, or devices; or
  • Derives 50 percent or more of its annual revenues from selling consumers’ personal information.

In addition, as proposed by the draft regulations, businesses that handle the personal information of more than four million consumers will have additional record-keeping obligations.

Data Broker Registry 

As required by California Civil Code section 1798.99.80, a data broker must register with the Attorney General at https://www.oag.ca.gov/data-broker/register. The law mandates that a data broker shall pay a registration fee and provide information including primary physical, email, and internet website addresses, as well as any additional information or explanation the data broker chooses to provide concerning its data collection practices. The registry is accessible to consumers.

Consumers’ private right of action in the case of a data breach 

Businesses are required to implement and maintain reasonable security procedures and practices to protect consumers’ personal information, and CCPA authorizes a consumer to institute a civil action if their personal information, as defined in subparagraph (A) of paragraph (1) of subdivision (d) of Section 1798.81.5 is subject to an unauthorized breach as a result of a business’s failure to reasonably secure this data.

Consumers were able to begin exercising the rights listed above under the CCPA on January 1, 2020. Under Civil Code 1798.100 – 1798.199, businesses subject to CCPA were required to begin complying with the law on January 1, 2020.

Consumer complaints may be reported at oag.ca.gov/report or by calling (800) 952-5225. A factsheet regarding the CCPA and the draft regulations proposed by Attorney General Becerra are available at oag.ca.gov/ccpa.


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