Overnight Tech: Officials, tech to discuss terrorism on social media

LEDE: Technology companies and top Obama administration officials are meeting Friday to discuss ways to blunt the spread of terrorism on social media. 

Facebook, Twitter, and Google all confirmed they would be a part of the meeting. Apple is also said to be attending. A source said one agenda item would address how to amplify alternative messages online to undercut the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria. 

Most tech and social media companies already have policies to quickly remove violent or terror-related content when prompted, but have concerns about efforts to mandate them to report threats.

Lawmakers have put increasing pressure on social media companies to bolster their efforts to combat terror post on their platforms in the wake of a pair of attacks late last year. 

The Wall Street Journal, which first reported the news, said the debate about encryption could also be a secondary topic of conversation. 

WHITE HOUSE, NSA, FBI, JUSTICE, STATE ALL PARTICIPATING: Multiple sources confirmed a list of at least nine administration officials slated to join the talks: Deputy Secretary of State Tony Blinken, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, FBI Director James Comey, Attorney General Loretta Lynch, White House Chief of Staff Denis McDonoughDenis McDonoughTrump administration must release Clinton emails State Department tried to hide Sunday shows preview: McMaster hits circuit for second straight week Obama chief of staff: 'The president cannot order a wiretap' MORE, Obama counterterrorism assistant Lisa Monaco, White House tech advisor Todd Park, White House Chief Technology Officer Megan Smith, and National Security Agency Director Mike Rogers.

LEGERE STEPS UP FIGHT WITH RESPECTED TECH GROUP: In a Twitter chat Thursday, the Electronic Frontier Foundation asked T-Mobile CEO John Legere whether the company’s controversial Binge On program altered video streams or just limited the bandwidth allotted to them. Legere’s answer: “It includes a proprietary technology and what the technology does is not only detect the video stream but select the appropriate bit rate to optimize to the mobile device. That’s part A of my answer. Part B of my answer is, who the f--- are you, anyway, EFF? Why are you stirring up so much trouble? And who pays you?”

EMERGENCY ALERTS, BROADBAND PROGRESS ON JANUARY FCC AGENDA: The FCC is tentatively set to consider three items at its January open meeting, including this year’s Broadband Progress Report, an item to update the public inspection file for cable and satellite and a notice of proposed rulemaking on improving emergency alerts. “We propose strengthening EAS by promoting participation on the state and local levels, supporting greater testing and awareness of EAS, leveraging technological advances, and bolstering EAS security,” Chairman Tom Wheeler wrote in a blog post. “The goal is to promote community preparedness and ensure that Americans are best served by the warnings and alerts they receive during emergencies.”

DATA BREACH AT TWC: A data breach at Time Warner Cable may have exposed passwords belonging to as many as 320,000 customers. The firm says the source of the breach may have been a phishing attack or a breach at one of the companies that stores Time Warner’s data. The Hill’s Cory Bennett has more here.

A LITTLE CONTEXT: The news of the breach comes a day after Federal Communications Commission Chairman Tom Wheeler emphasized the importance of data security at companies regulated by the agency. “If you’re going to be collecting information about me, they’ve got a responsibility to make sure it’s held securely,” he said. 

POLL SHOWS PARENTS SNOOP ON ONLINE BEHAVIOR: About six in 10 parents say they have checked which websites their teens are looking at and seen the social media profiles of their children. More than nine in 10 parents say they have talked with their teen about appropriate things to share or view online, according to a new Pew Research poll released Thursday. 


At 8:30 a.m., the Technology Policy Institute is hosting a talk on the future of the FCC’s net neutrality rules.


The National Security Agency said on Thursday it was “confident” in its powers under a new phone records collection scheme, a claim that backs up assertions from Sen. Ted CruzTed CruzSenate Republicans reluctant to rush vote on healthcare bill Healthcare bill 'not the last step' to repealing ObamaCare, Republican says Dem senator: GOP's healthcare approach will 'devastate Medicaid' MORE (R-Texas).

Uber will implement additional data security measures as part of a settlement with New York’s attorney general.

The biggest U.S. tech powers have joined forces to oppose a proposed British surveillance law that could give government investigators greater access to encrypted digital data.

T-Mobile chief John Legere is publicly sparring with the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), questioning the group's funding sources and asking, "Who the f--- are you?"

Top Obama administration officials will meet with Silicon Valley executives on Friday about ways to combat terrorists’ use of social media.


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