Hillicon Valley: Social media giants fail to block 84 percent of antisemitic content: report | White House cyber chief backs new federal bureau to track threats

Hillicon Valley: Social media giants fail to block 84 percent of antisemitic content: report | White House cyber chief backs new federal bureau to track threats
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Welcome and Happy Monday! Follow our cyber reporter, Maggie Miller (@magmill95), and tech team, Chris Mills Rodrigo (@millsrodrigo) and Rebecca Klar (@rebeccaklar_), for more coverage. 

A new report published Monday found that social media platforms are failing to block the vast majority of reported antisemitic content, with Facebook and Twitter in particular showing the “poorest rate of enforcement action.”

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Meanwhile, the nation’s top cybersecurity official on Monday endorsed the idea of a new bureau that would track and analyze cybersecurity incidents to help understand trends and potential future attacks, while the newly unveiled $1.2 trillion bipartisan Senate infrastructure package includes several cybersecurity provisions. 

FALLING SHORT: Major social media platforms failed to block 84 percent of antisemitic content that was reported to them through their own tools, according to a new report. 

The analysis by the Center for Countering Digital Hate (CCDH) looked at 714 posts breaking platform standards on anti-Jewish hate across Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube and TikTok between May 28 and June 29. 

The posts in total had an aggregated reach of up to 7.3 million impressions, according to the report, which estimated impressions based on the number of followers of the account or group hosting the post or the number of views of the post if provided by the platform. 

Facebook and Twitter showed the “poorest rate of enforcement action,” according to the center's report. 

Read more about the report and the platforms’ responses

 

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NEW BUREAU (MAY BE) IN THE WORKS: National Cyber Director Chris Inglis on Monday made the case for establishing an office within the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to track and analyze cybersecurity incidents in order to ensure the nation has an early warning system to understand adversary efforts to target U.S. organizations. 

Inglis, who was unanimously confirmed by the Senate as the nation’s first White House national cyber director in June, pushed for the establishment of a Bureau of Cyber Statistics within DHS as a means to help tackle the increasing number of major cyberattacks over the past year. 

“Unless we can kind of ride across the boundaries that jurisdictionally divide us, we’re not going to find out the trends until they afflict all of us, and we therefore have to appeal to a collection of that data by something, somehow so that we can get our arms around this,” Inglis said during a virtual event hosted by the Atlantic Council on Monday.

The idea for the new office was first floated by the Cyberspace Solarium Commission (CSC), a congressionally established organization made up of members of Congress, federal officials and industry leaders which produced a report last year on ways to defend the U.S. in cyberspace. 

Read more about the proposed bureau here.

 

INFRASTRUCTURE INCOMING: A bipartisan group of senators on Sunday unveiled the finalized legislative text of a $1.2 trillion, eight-year infrastructure bill.

The 2,702-page measure is substantially narrower than the multitrillion-dollar plan envisioned by President BidenJoe BidenHaiti prime minister warns inequality will cause migration to continue Pelosi: House must pass 3 major pieces of spending legislation this week Erdoğan says Turkey plans to buy another Russian defense system MORE earlier this year but includes a wide range of funding for roads, bridges, transit, broadband and water.

It also includes large amounts of funding for cybersecurity initiatives. These include a $1 billion fund to go towards state and local governments over four years to help defend against cyber threats, along with language to strengthen grid security against cyberattacks. 

Read the massive bill here.

 

BANNED: YouTube has barred Sky News Australia, owned by billionaire media mogul Rupert Murdoch, from posting content on the platform over violating YouTube’s COVID-19 misinformation policy. 

The platform removed videos from Sky News and issued a “strike” to the channel, YouTube spokesperson Ivy Choi said. 

The strike means the channel is barred from posting videos for one week. If a channel receives three strikes within 90 days, it will be permanently banned, based on the platform’s guidelines. 

“We have clear and established COVID-19 medical misinformation policies based on local and global health authority guidance, to prevent the spread of COVID-19 misinformation that could cause real-world harm,” Choi said in a statement. 

Read more here

 

IT’S SETTLED: Zoom Video Communications Inc. has settled a privacy lawsuit for $85 million over the violation of user privacy rights and hacking, Reuters reported.

The case alleges that the teleconferencing software program was sharing personal data with various social media platforms, including Facebook and LinkedIn, and was allowing “Zoombombing,” where hackers would disrupt meetings by sharing pornographic images and racial slurs.

A preliminary settlement, which still requires approval from a judge, was filed on Saturday.

Read more here

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ICYMI: DON’T RUSH THE RETURN: After an unprecedented year that saw record numbers of women leaving the workforce, tech employees and advocates are urging the industry to continue its tradition as innovators and rethink workplace models to offer the flexibility and ease that could help retain women in the field.

As companies grapple with plans to return-to-office — with shifting timelines amid a resurgence of COVID-19 cases — advocates are cautioning businesses not to overlook lessons learned from the pandemic that already exacerbated existing inequity issues.

“Don't rush back to what was before just because of what was before,” said Brenda Darden Wilkerson, president and CEO of the non-profit AnitaB.org.

Read more here

What we’re watching this week:

-The Senate Intelligence Committee will hold a hearing Wednesday to examine Chinese national security threats, including recent Chinese-linked cyber incidents. 

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-The Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee on Wednesday will markup several pieces of cybersecurity-related legislation, including bills to help state and local governments defend themselves and another addressing threats from deepfakes. 

-The Senate Commerce Committee will consider a bill Wednesday to address concerns over security risks potentially involved with Chinese telecommunications companies. 

-CISA Director Jen Easterly will give a keynote address at the Black Hat conference on Thursday, while DHS Secretary Alejandro MayorkasAlejandro MayorkasHaiti prime minister warns inequality will cause migration to continue O'Rourke slams White House's treatment of Haitian migrants: 'Didn't have to happen' Sunday shows preview: Pelosi announces date for infrastructure vote; administration defends immigration policies MORE will speak at the conference later the same day. 

An op-ed to chew on: A new kind of hero? Last week’s emotional TV may be a sign

Lighter click: Out-of-doggy experience

NOTABLE LINKS FROM AROUND THE WEB: 

To Fight Vaccine Lies, Authorities Recruit an ‘Influencer Army’ (The New York Times / Taylor Lorenz)

‘I will not be silenced’: Women targeted in hack-and-leak attacks speak out about spyware (NBC / Olivia Solon)

Your Facebook Account Was Hacked. Getting Help May Take Weeks — Or $299 (NPR / Shannon Bond)

Inside a ransomware negotiation: This is how ‘asshole’ Russian hackers shake down companies (The Daily Beast / Shannon Vavra)