OVERNIGHT CYBERSECURITY: Gulf nations want cyber pact with US

Welcome to OVERNIGHT CYBERSECURITY, your daily rundown of the biggest news in the world of hacking and data privacy. We're here to connect the dots as leaders in government, policy and industry wrap their arms around cyberthreats. What lies ahead for Congress, the administration and the latest company under siege? Whether you're a consumer, a techie or a D.C. lifer, we're here to give you ...


--CYBER NOT FORGOTTEN: Gulf nation leaders will push President Obama for better cybersecurity cooperation during a Thursday summit at Camp David. The request is part of a broader security guarantee U.S. Gulf allies are seeking as they warily eye the rise of extremist threats in the region and the near-completion of nuclear talks with Iran that would lift sanctions on the country. Some cyber military experts expect sanctions relief to jumpstart Iran's cyber program, which has launched destructive digital assaults on Gulf nations before. Those incidents -- particularly a mammoth 2012 cyberattack on oil giant Saudi Aramco -- show the fallibility of critical infrastructure networks in the region, officials said. "There are concerns that this is a vulnerability across the Gulf states," said Colin Kahl, the vice president's national security advisor, during a Monday conference call with reporters. During talks this week, the administration is aiming to codify and expand efforts to harden network security with Gulf states, Kahl added. To read our full piece, click here.

--IRAN'S COMING CYBER BOOST?: To read our piece about how a successful nuclear deal with Iran might give a jolt to the country's cyber warfare program, click here.

--ASSUME BATTLE STANCES: As the House prepares to vote Wednesday on a bill to rein in the National Security Agency's spying powers, reform-minded senators are starting to dig in their heels ahead of an anticipated upper chamber fight. Senate Minority Leader Harry ReidHarry Mason ReidThe Hill's 12:30 Report - Presented by Connected Commerce Council - Biden faces reporters as his agenda teeters Biden hits one-year mark in dire straits 'All or nothing' won't bolster American democracy: Reform the filibuster and Electoral Count Act MORE (D-Nev.) took to the floor Monday to urge his colleagues to quickly take up the House's NSA reform bill, which is expected to pass with considerable support. Libertarian-leaning Sen. Rand PaulRandal (Rand) Howard PaulThese Senate seats are up for election in 2022 I'm furious about Democrats taking the blame — it's time to fight back Rand Paul cancels DirecTV subscription after it drops OAN MORE (R-Ky.), a 2016 hopeful, also vowed to filibuster efforts to reauthorize certain controversial surveillance programs. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellThese Senate seats are up for election in 2022 WATCH: The Hill recaps the top stories of the week Effort to overhaul archaic election law wins new momentum MORE (R-Ky.) and many of his GOP colleagues are backing a "clean" re-upping of the NSA's most contested authorities, including the dragnet phone records collection program. Senate leaders have said they will not take up stalled cybersecurity legislation to boost the public-private exchange of hacking data until the NSA reform debate is settled. To read about Reid's comments, click here. To read about Paul's filibuster plans, click here.


--National Security Agency Director Adm. Michael Rogers wants Congress to know that passing cybersecurity legislation is one of the most important ways lawmakers can help the country thwart cyberattacks.

"One of the greatest things I think Congress can do here is to create a legal framework that enhances this idea of the free flow of information both ways," said Rogers, who also heads the U.S. Cyber Command, during remarks at George Washington University.

Companies maintain they want to share more data with the government about the cyber threats they face, but are concerned about exposing themselves to shareholder lawsuits and government regulatory action. Rogers called those "very legitimate concerns." The legislation currently on ice in the Senate would shield companies from legal liability when sharing cyber threat data with the government. To read more about Rogers' comments, click here.


--A former Apple intern figured out a way to run a full Web browser on an Apple Watch. Surprise, surprise, it looks miserable to operate. Check out the video.

--These digital thieves may be trying to hold your computer files hostage, but at least they're doing it with some clever "Breaking Bad" references. Check our piece here.


This gargantuan New Yorker profile of Silicon Valley impresario Marc Andreessen is probably required reading for everyone out in the Bay Area today.

But if you don't feel like wading through thousands of exhaustively reported words, Venture Beat's got you covered with the major takeaways, in listicle format, of course.



--Winners of a #Hack4Congress national competition will present their ideas to lawmakers and their staffers at 10 a.m.

--The Hudson Institute will hold a discussion on the cyber threat posed by Russia and China at 10:30 a.m. Former House Intelligence Committee Chairman Mike Rogers (R-Mich.) will speak.


--The Atlantic Council will hold a webinar on the Pentagon's new Silicon Valley outreach strategy at 9 a.m.

--The Hudson Institute will host a discussion on NSA reform at 11:30 a.m. Rep. Mike Pompeo (R-Kan.) will make remarks.


--Microsoft will hold a panel discussion on cyber crime policies at 8:30 a.m. at its Innovation & Policy Center. Rep. John Ratcliffe (R-Texas) and James Trainor, acting assistant director of the FBI's Cyber Division, will speak.

--A Senate Foreign Relations subcommittee will hold a hearing on cybersecurity at 10 a.m.

--The House Financial Services Committee will hold a hearing on protecting consumers from data breaches at 10 a.m.


Links from our blog, The Hill, and around the Web.

Google will temporarily shutter its online map editing feature after a user hacked the system to draw a park in the shape of the Android cartoon droid peeing on the Apple logo. (The Hill)

Hackers used flaws in a third-party software program to gain access to U.S. Investigations Services (USIS), the government's main security clearance contractor. (The Hill)

What would happen if a cyberattack shut down U.S. shipping ports? (Slate)

Hackers claiming affiliation with the Islamic state threatened cyberattacks on the U.S. and Europe Monday, but nothing serious materialized. (International Business Times)

report found state governments are struggling to hire cybersecurity experts. (TechWire)

Hackers target companies that are hiring by bugging resumes. (Forbes)

U.S. officials this week are trying to extradite a notorious dark Web administrator. (Motherboard)

What does Russia and China's cybersecurity pact mean for the U.S.? (PBS NewsHour)

A debate over whether policymakers should let companies strike back against hackers. (Wall Street Journal)


--Obama's 2013 plan to stop foreign hackers has had mixed results. (New York Times)

--The federal government employee accused of spying for China, until she wasn't. (New York Times)


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