Hillicon Valley: Apple cutting iPhone production | Senior citizens more likely to share fake news on Facebook | Graham says AG nominee will let Mueller finish probe | Dems warn shutdown hurting IT recruitment

Hillicon Valley: Apple cutting iPhone production | Senior citizens more likely to share fake news on Facebook | Graham says AG nominee will let Mueller finish probe | Dems warn shutdown hurting IT recruitment
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Welcome! Follow the cyber team, Olivia Beavers (@olivia_beavers) and Jacqueline Thomsen (@jacq_thomsen), and the tech team, Harper Neidig (@hneidig).


MORE BAD NEWS FROM APPLE: Apple has scaled back its planned production of the three newest iPhone models for the first quarter of 2019, Reuters reported Wednesday.

The news outlet, citing reports from the Nikkei Asian Review, said Apple has requested lower production of the XS, XS Max and XR models of the iPhone. The reduction came as a result of weakened iPhone demand in China, which is the world's largest smartphone market.


The request to cut production came prior to Apple slashing its earnings forecast last week.

Apple did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

In a CNBC interview broadcast Tuesday, Apple CEO Tim Cook touted the company's prospects moving forward and downplayed the impact of an ongoing trade dispute between China and the U.S.

Last week, Cook said there is no widespread boycott of Apple products in China after reports emerged that the company was facing backlash over the trade dispute.

Read more on Apple's woes here.


WHO WILL FACT CHECK GRANNY? Facebook users over the age of 65 were much more likely to have shared fake news stories on the site during 2016 presidential campaign than any other age group, according to a new study from researchers at Princeton University and New York University.

The study, published in the journal Science Advances on Wednesday, found that users 65 years and older were more than twice as likely to share links from fake news sites as those in the next oldest age group of 45 to 65 years old. And they were nearly seven times as likely to share such links as users in the youngest age group surveyed.

The journal article found that sharing fake news links was rare among its respondents. Only 8.5 percent of those surveyed were found to have shared any such links.

It also found that those on the conservative end of the political spectrum were more likely than those identifying as liberals to have shared fake news items.

Read more on the study here.


BEZOS ANNOUNCES DIVORCE: Jeff Bezos and his wife, MacKenzie, are getting a divorce, the Amazon founder and Washington Post owner announced Wednesday.

"As our family and close friends know, after a long period loving exploration and trial separation, we have decided to divorce and continue our shared lives as friends," Bezos wrote in a note posted to Twitter. "We feel incredibly lucky to have found each other and deeply grateful for every one of the years we have been married to each other."

"Though the labels might be different, we remain a family, and we remain cherished friends," he added.

Bezos, 54, and Mackenzie, 48, were married in early 1993, according to the Post. They met while working at a New York-based hedge fund. They have four children.

The two undertook a number of charitable efforts together. In September, they announced a $2 billion philanthropic fund to finance a new network of preschools and contribute to nonprofits assisting homeless families.

The couple made their first major political donation last year, giving $10 million to a super PAC dedicated to helping veterans in both parties get elected to Congress.

More here.


GRAHAM SAYS MUELLER SAFE FROM BARR: Sen. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamSunday shows preview: 2020 candidates look to South Carolina Where do we go from here? Conservation can show the way Barr to attend Senate GOP lunch on Tuesday MORE (R-S.C.) said ahead of a high-stakes confirmation hearings that President TrumpDonald John TrumpSchiff blasts Trump for making 'false claims' about Russia intel: 'You've betrayed America. Again.' Poll: Sanders leads 2020 Democratic field with 28 percent, followed by Warren and Biden More than 6 in 10 expect Trump to be reelected: poll MORE's nominee for attorney general will let special counsel Robert MuellerRobert (Bob) Swan MuellerCNN's Toobin warns McCabe is in 'perilous condition' with emboldened Trump CNN anchor rips Trump over Stone while evoking Clinton-Lynch tarmac meeting The Hill's 12:30 Report: New Hampshire fallout MORE finish his investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election.

"I can assure you he has a very high opinion of Mr. Mueller and he is committed to letting Mr. Mueller finish his job," Graham said on Wednesday after a meeting with William Barr, according to Reuters.

The Senate Judiciary Committee, which Graham chairs, is scheduled to hold hearings next week for Barr.

The nominee has drawn criticism from Democrats for writing an unsolicited memo last year to the White House criticizing Mueller's investigation, saying that the probe into possible obstruction of justice on Trump's part was based on a "fatally misconceived" theory.

Some Democrats, including Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerWhite House preparing to ask Congress for funds to combat coronavirus: report Schumer cites security, DHS ban in questioning TSA use of TikTok Russian interference reports rock Capitol Hill MORE (D-N.Y.), have argued that the memo disqualifies Barr from heading the Department of Justice (DOJ) and thus overseeing the Mueller probe.

Schumer on Wednesday called on Trump to withdraw Barr's nomination.

More on the nominee here.


SHUTDOWN'S LATEST CASUALTY: Rep. Robin KellyRobin Lynne KellyLawmakers with first-hand experience using food stamps call on Trump not to cut program Hillicon Valley: FCC moves against Huawei, ZTE | Dem groups ask Google to reconsider ads policy | Bill introduced to increase data access during probes Dems call out Oracle for lack of diversity on its board MORE (D-Ill.) warned Wednesday that the ongoing government shutdown will hurt the federal government's ability to attract top IT staff.

In a statement, Kelly -- the chair of the House Oversight subcommittee on IT -- said the partial shutdown "will also make it more difficult for the government to attract and maintain the high-quality IT workforce needed to delivery 21st century government services."

"How can we ever hope to recruit or maintain IT talent when hardworking government workers are told: 'sorry, you aren't getting paid, but you still need to come to work' or 'sorry, but no paycheck this week because of politics?'" she said. "Large private sector companies never say this to their employees and these are our competitors when it comes to IT talent recruitment."


Kelly said that she would vote in favor of a House bill to fund the Department of Homeland Security, as well as other bills to fund other federal agencies impacted by the partial shutdown.


A LIGHTER CLICK: This is what we call "self-growth."



How a Russian firm helped catch an alleged NSA data thief. (Politico)

Samsung phone users perturbed to find they can't delete Facebook. (Bloomberg)

Ignore 5G, for now. (Wired)

Health is Apple's next really big thing. (Axios)

Government shutdown hits cybersecurity recruitment fair. (CyberScoop)