DOT and FAA Finalize Regulations for Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems

Regulations will create new opportunities for business and government to use drones

 New Drone Regulations

WASHINGTON – Today, the Department of Transportation’s Federal Aviation Administration has finalized the first operational rules (PDF) for routine commercial use of small unmanned aircraft systems (UAS or “drones”), opening pathways towards fully integrating UAS into the nation’s airspace. These new regulations work to harness new innovations safely, to spur job growth, advance critical scientific research and save lives.

“We are part of a new era in aviation, and the potential for unmanned aircraft will make it safer and easier to do certain jobs, gather information, and deploy disaster relief,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. “We look forward to working with the aviation community to support innovation, while maintaining our standards as the safest and most complex airspace in the world.”

According to industry estimates, the rule could generate more than $82 billion for the U.S. economy and create more than 100,000 new jobs over the next 10 years.

The new rule, which takes effect in late August, offers safety regulations for unmanned aircraft drones weighing less than 55 pounds that are conducting non-hobbyist operations.

The rule’s provisions are designed to minimize risks to other aircraft and people and property on the ground. The regulations require pilots to keep an unmanned aircraft within visual line of sight. Operations are allowed during daylight and during twilight if the drone has anti-collision lights. The new regulations also address height and speed restrictions and other operational limits, such as prohibiting flights over unprotected people on the ground who aren’t directly participating in the UAS operation.

The FAA is offering a process to waive some restrictions if an operator proves the proposed flight will be conducted safely under a waiver. The FAA will make an online portal available to apply for these waivers in the months ahead.

“With this new rule, we are taking a careful and deliberate approach that balances the need to deploy this new technology with the FAA’s mission to protect public safety,” said FAA Administrator Michael Huerta. “But this is just our first step. We’re already working on additional rules that will expand the range of operations.”

Under the final rule, the person actually flying a drone must be at least 16 years old and have a remote pilot certificate with a small UAS rating, or be directly supervised by someone with such a certificate. To qualify for a remote pilot certificate, an individual must either pass an initial aeronautical knowledge test at an FAA-approved knowledge testing center or have an existing non-student Part 61 pilot certificate. If qualifying under the latter provision, a pilot must have completed a flight review in the previous 24 months and must take a UAS online training course provided by the FAA. The TSA will conduct a security background check of all remote pilot applications prior to issuance of a certificate.

Operators are responsible for ensuring a drone is safe before flying, but the FAA is not requiring small UAS to comply with current agency airworthiness standards or aircraft certification. Instead, the remote pilot will simply have to perform a preflight visual and operational check of the small UAS to ensure that safety-pertinent systems are functioning property.  This includes checking the communications link between the control station and the UAS.

Although the new rule does not specifically deal with privacy issues in the use of drones, and the FAA does not regulate how UAS gather data on people or property, the FAA is acting to address privacy considerations in this area. The FAA strongly encourages all UAS pilots to check local and state laws before gathering information through remote sensing technology or photography.

As part of a privacy education campaign, the agency will provide all drone users with recommended privacy guidelines as part of the UAS registration process and through the FAA’s B4UFly mobile app. The FAA also will educate all commercial drone pilots on privacy during their pilot certification process; and will issue new guidance to local and state governments on drone privacy issues. The FAA’s effort builds on the privacy “best practices” (PDF) the National Telecommunications and Information Administration published last month as the result of a year-long outreach initiative with privacy advocates and industry.

Part 107 will not apply to model aircraft.  Model aircraft operators must continue to satisfy all the criteria specified in Section 336 of Public Law 112-95 (PDF) (which will now be codified in Part 101), including the stipulation they be operated only for hobby or recreational purposes.

Article Provided By: Federal Aviation Administration

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So you’re caught in a data breach. Now what?

data breach

Reacting to a data breach can feel like you’re shuffling deck chairs on the Titanic or slamming the barn door after the horses have bolted. But there are some concrete steps you can take to minimize the harm from breaches and make yourself safer in case it happens again.

Last week, we found out when a hacker started selling a massive database of LinkedIn customer information that a 2012 data breach affected 167 million accounts, 161 million more accounts than originally reported. Other major breaches include those of Target in 2013JPMorgan Chase in 2014, and the U.S. government’sOffice of Personnel Management in 2015.

Many of the steps you can take after learning that your data has been involved in a breach might feel ineffective, says Paul Stephens of the Privacy Rights Clearinghouse, a consumer advocacy organization. But consumers are not as powerless as they might feel, he adds.

“Consumers need to get in the mindset that you assume that you’ve been breached and [are] proactive to begin with,” he says. “If you go with that premise, then I think a lot of the breach fatigue will be eliminated.”

Think of having your personal information stolen in a data breach like getting sick. You don’t (or at least shouldn’t) just roll over and moan until it goes away: To prevent it from getting worse as your body recovers, you take some medication or homeopathic remedies. If you find that your data is part of a breach, you can do certain things to recover faster and make it harder for hackers to harm you after future breaches.

A Data Breach, also known as security breaches, take on various forms. Someone could have stolen your credit card information from a point-of-sale terminal through a scheme known as skimming. Someone could have stolen information about you from a computer, phone, or hard drive. Or, more commonly, someone could have hacked into a massive customer database containing information about you.

Responding to  a data breach is complicated, in no small part because of the patchwork of state and federal laws governing how companies that have been breached are required to notify you. In the United States, 47 states require varying degrees of notification. You may not immediately or even directly learn that your data has been involved in a breach. You might receive a notification via email or a physical letter, or read or listen to a news report about it.

“Often, consumers aren’t given accurate information by the entity that was breached,” Stephens says. “Checking your credit report is not going to do a thing if the only thing that was in the breach was your credit card number.”

Taking the correct action for the kind of breach you’re involved in, and making sure that your accounts are as secure as possible before another breach occurs, can go a long way. Here are five things to do, if you hear that your information has been involved in a data breach.

DETERMINE WHETHER IT’S LEGIT

Make sure that the breach actually happened, and that you’re not falling prey to a phishing attack or other scam to get you to hand over your vital data. Contact the organization, which can include looking for a message about the breach on its website, looking up its phone number (not the one in the email sent to you) and calling it directly, or keeping an eye out for media reports of the breach.

Do not respond to the email, call the phone number included in the email, or click any links in the email, as the email could be an attempt to steal your personal information known as phishing. If you’re concerned about the veracity of the breach notification, we’ve compiled some tips to avoid phishing scams and phone call scams.

FIGURE OUT WHAT WAS STOLEN

The actions you take depend on the information stolen. Was it a credit or debit card number? A username or password? Or was it something more closely related to your identity, such as your date of birth, Social Security number, driver’s license number, or passport number? Your next actions depend on what’s been pilfered.

UPDATE YOUR AUTHENTICATION METHOD

Don’t let accounts with potentially compromised passwords linger. Compromised accounts can lead to more fraudulent activity in your name, and they can be used to send even more phishing spam. Wherever possible, choose new passwords at least 16 characters in length that include uppercase and lowercase letters, as well as numbers, symbols, and spaces. Do not reuse passwords.

Also, wherever possible, take advantage of two-factor authentication, which provides an extra layer of security to your accounts. So even if someone steals your password, he or she can’t access your account. Here’s our regularly updated guide to two-factor authentication.

And when answering identity verification questions such as, “What is your mother’s maiden name?” or “What was your first car?” you should lie. Make the lie easy for you to remember and hard for others to guess—the answer to the question about your mother’s maiden name could be something like, “Donald Trump is scary.”

REPLACE YOUR CARD(S), AND MONITOR YOUR CREDIT

If the breach involves your bank or credit card information, contact the financial institution immediately. It will guide you through fraud protection, a process that most likely will place a hold on your account until it can issue you a new card or account number.

Ask the institution to watch for fraudulent activity on your account, and ask a major credit-reporting agency (Equifax, Experian, or Trans Union) to monitor your account for fraud. If you’ve been offered free credit monitoring as part of a breach notification, take advantage of it.

CONTACT THE GOVERNMENT

If the stolen data includes government-issued identification, such as your Social Security number, or identity numbers that can’t be changed, such as your birth date, get in touch with the authorities. The U.S. government has a site dedicated to helping people who need to change their government-issued identification numbers at IdentityTheft.gov.

There are pre-emptive steps you can take too. For example, the IRS offers residents of some states a unique identification number to cut down on tax return fraud.

REGISTER FOR FUTURE DATA BREACH NOTIFICATION

Security expert Troy Hunt runs a free subscription site called Have I Been Pwned, which will notify you by email if your information has been stolen as part of a data breach.

If your email has been part of a breach, and you’re using the same password as before the breach, it’s likely been compromised and you need to change it immediately.

Although it can be easy to slip into “breach fatigue,” it’s not enough for consumers to presume they’ve been breached. “Why wait for the breach to happen?” asks Stephens, who encourages consumers to take action “before it occurs.”

Article Provided By: The Paralla

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Why is everyone covering up their laptop cameras?

Stickers and slides serve to ease concerns that spooks could be watching our every move, as even the FBI director says he puts tape on his cameras

cameras

For the past half decade, the technology industry has been racing to build better cameras into the hardware we use every day.

Yet the surveillance age has inspired an odd cottage industry battling against this trend: a glut of cheap stickers and branded plastic slides designed to cover up the front-facing cameras on phones, laptops, and even televisions.

For years, security researchers have shown that hackers can hijack the cameras to spy on whoever is on the other end. To put that in perspective, think of all the things your devices have seen you do.

Such warnings have finally caught on. Last month, the FBI director, James Comey, told an audience: “I put a piece of tape over the camera because I saw somebody smarter than I am, had a piece of tape over their camera.”

The corporate swag company Idea Stage Promotions describes its Webcam Cover 1.0 as “the HOTTEST PROMOTIONAL ITEM on the market today”. The cable channel USA Networks sent journalists a “Mr. Robot” webcam cover for the popular hacker thriller’s upcoming season.

Covering cameras isn’t new for those who know that the internet is always watching. Eva Galperin, a policy analyst for the Electronic Frontier Foundation, says that since she bought her first laptop with a built-in camera on the screen, a MacBook Pro, in 2007, she’s been covering them up.

EFF started printing its own webcam stickers in 2013, as well as selling and handing out camera stickers that read: “These removable stickers are an unhackable anti-surveillance technology.”

“People purchase these regularly,” a spokesman said.

The fear over web cameras has penetrated deep into popular culture. The trailer for Oliver Stone’s forthcoming biopic Snowden, on the US spy contractor, features a clip of actor Joseph Gordon-Levitt, who plays the title character, looking nervously at his laptop camera during an intimate moment with his girlfriend.

So are we all being paranoid? Well, it’s not science fiction. Researchers in 2013showed how they could activate a Macbook’s camera without triggering the green “this-thing-is-on” light. One couple claimed a hacker posted a video of them having sex after hacking their smart TV. And federal court records shows that the FBI does know how to use laptop cameras to spy on users as well.

So, naturally, where there’s fear, there is money to be made.

The DC-based CamPatch describes itself as “the Mercedes Bens [sic] of putting tape over your webcam”. Its founders started the company in 2013 after hearing a briefing from Pentagon cybersecurity experts on how webcams were a new “attack vector”, said Krystie Caraballo, CamPatch’s general manager.

Caraballo wouldn’t disclose financials other than to say the company has had “six-figure revenues for the last several years” and that it has distributed more than 250,000 patches. The company advertises bulk pricing “as low as $2.79”.

Yet not everyone is on the camera-covering bandwagon. Brian Pascal, a privacy expert who has worked for Stanford and Palantir Technologies says a cost-benefit analysis led him to conclude he’d rather have a usable camera, which he can use to record his son. But he acknowledged such stickers are a way for people signal that they too worry about Big Brother.

“Security actions without threat modelling are just performative,” said Pascal.

Others just haven’t gotten around to it yet.

“Because I’m an idiot,” replied Matthew Green, an encryption expert at Johns Hopkins University when asked why he doesn’t cover his cameras. “I have no excuse for not taking this seriously … but at the end of the day, I figure that seeing me naked would be punishment enough.”

Of course, webcam paranoia is likely to be only the first of many awakenings as consumers bring more devices into their lives that can be turned into unwitting spies. Amazon.com has had enormous success with its Echo smart speaker that, by default, is always listening for its owners’ commands. Google plans to release a similar product this year called Google Home.

In a hearing on Capitol Hill in February, the US director of national intelligence,James Clapper, acknowledged how the so-called “internet of things” could be used “for identification, surveillance, monitoring, location tracking, and targeting for recruitment, or to gain access to networks or user credentials”.

Article Provided By: theguardian

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Real Time Translator

In-Ear Translator That Translates Foreign Languages In Real Time

Most of us have found ourselves in the awkward situation of trying to communicate in a foreign language. Sometimes it’s funny. Sometimes it’s embarrassing. And sometimes it’s downright disastrous. But thanks to a new translator device that easily fits into your ear, the days of struggling to speak the local lingo might soon be a thing of the past.

The device is called The Pilot system and Waverly Labs is the company behind this brilliantly simple yet potentially groundbreaking idea. When it hits the shelves in September, the system will allow the wearer to understand one of several foreign languages through real-time in-ear translator. A handy app will allow you to toggle through the languages you want, and the selection includes French, Spanish, Italian, and English. It’ll retail for $129, and you can pre-order one here. Or you can just keep talking to people really loudly and slowly in English. Good luck with that.

The creator says he came up with the idea for the translator when he met a French girl. Here’s how it works in action:

The gadget comprises two earpieces that easily fit into your ears

translator

It will allow real-time in-ear translations in French, Spanish, Italian, and English

Translator

A handy app will allow you to toggle through the languages you want

Article Provided By: boredpanda

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