Thursday, January 28, 2016

:: NIST Requests Comments on Computer Security Publication on Randomness

"The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) is seeking public comment on its latest draft of a publication intended to help computer security experts use randomness to protect sensitive data.
Television with fuzzy screen 
Thermal noise is one of the physical phenomena that can be used as a source of randomness, and it helps to create the visual representation of “snow” that was once a familiar sight to owners of analog televisions.
Credit: ©Shutterstock/trekandshoot
The Second Draft of Special Publication (SP) 800-90B, Recommendation for the Entropy Sources Used for Random Bit Generation, aims to help security specialists judge whether the source of random numbers they use as part of the data encryption process is sufficiently unpredictable. NIST is requesting public comments by May 9, 2016, on the draft document, which is available at NIST’s CSRC website.
Random numbers are a crucial element in cryptography, which is often used to protect private messages by encrypting them into a form that cannot be understood without knowledge of a secret value generated using the random number.
Creating the randomness needed requires the use of an entropy source, which includes a natural source of entropy, often a physical phenomenon such as thermal noise—the random motions of particles due to their temperature. Entropy sources that comply with SP 800-90B are intended to provide assurance that cryptographic algorithms provide the security needed to protect information.
“This draft document proposes a lot of tests that you can use to validate your entropy source to tell you how good a job it is doing,” says NIST’s Elaine Barker, one of the publication’s authors. “When you’re assessing your process for generating randomness, you want to make sure nothing is broken and that it is performing consistently. We would like the public’s input on ways we can improve these tests.”
The document is one of three interrelated publications that NIST has been developing: The first, SP 800-90A Rev. 1, specifies several random-number generation algorithms, all of which require an entropy source to provide a complete random number generator. SP 800-90B helps to assess an entropy source’s performance. The third publication, SP 800-90C, shows users how to combine the algorithms in SP 800-90A and the entropy sources in SP 800-90B into effective random-number generators.
Barker says that the team is also planning a public workshop to discuss both SP 800-90B and -90C. The workshop (preliminary announcement here) will be held on NIST’s Gaithersburg, Md., campus on May 2-3, 2016. Registration will be required. “We hope to have an updated draft version of SP 800-90C posted online before the workshop as well,” she says.
When completed, NIST’s Cryptographic Algorithm Validation Program (CAVP) and Cryptographic Module Validation Program (CMVP) plan to validate entropy sources using the tests and requirements provided in SP 800-90B.
SP 800-90B is available for free download here. To submit comments, use the provided template and send them with subject line “Comments on Draft SP 800-90B” to by May 9, 2016. Submissions received by the deadline will be used to improve the document, which is now undergoing its second public comment review.

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

:: Influence the Future of Cybersecurity Education—Join the NICE Working Group

"Addressing the nation’s rapidly increasing need for cybersecurity employees, the National Initiative for Cybersecurity Education (NICE) is seeking members from the public and private sectors and academia to join its new working group and encourages interested individuals to participate in a kickoff teleconference the afternoon of January 27, 2016.

NICE Logo 
"NICE, which is led by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), is a public-private partnership that promotes a robust network of cybersecurity education, training and workforce development to meet the nation’s demand for skilled cybersecurity employees to protect information systems. The number of job openings in the field greatly exceeds the number of trained workers. The NICE Working Group will collaborate to develop concepts, design strategies and pursue actions to advance cybersecurity education, including sharing existing education initiatives and identifying new ones.
The working group has chairs representing academia, private industry and government, and will have six subgroups:
  • Collegiate,
  • Competitions,
  • Workforce Framework,
  • Training and Certifications,
  • Career Development and Workforce Planning, and
  • Kindergarten through 12th Grade.
The kickoff teleconference is Wednesday, January 27, from 3:30 to 5 p.m. ET. NICE program leaders will discuss group goals, member roles and responsibilities, meeting schedules and deadlines. The meetings are planned for the fourth Wednesday of each month.
For more information on the public working group, visit the working group page. For call-in numbers for the teleconference, email

Friday, January 22, 2016

FCC Meeting Sunshine Notice ~ Jan 28 ~ 2016 Broadband Progress Report ~ EAS ~ Online Public File Obligations Cable and Sat

See links below to the Sunshine Notice announcing the January 28, 2016 Open Commission Meeting

The link(s) for the document are as follows:

For your convenience see the agenda below:

January 21, 2016


The Federal Communications Commission will hold an Open Meeting on the subjects listed below on Thursday, January 28, 2016, which is scheduled to commence at 10:30 a.m. in Room TW-C305, at 445 12th Street, S.W., Washington, D.C.

TITLE:  Expansion of Online Public File Obligations to Cable and Satellite TV Operators and Broadcast and Satellite Radio Licensees (MB Docket No. 14-127)
SUMMARY:  The Commission will consider a Report and Order which modernizes the public inspection file rules by requiring cable and satellite TV operators and broadcast and satellite radio companies to post public inspection files on the FCC’s online database.
TITLE:  Amendment of Part 11 of the Commission's Rules Regarding the Emergency Alert System (PS Docket No. 15-94) and Wireless Emergency Alerts (PS Docket No. 15-91)
SUMMARY:  The Commission will consider a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to strengthen the Emergency Alert System (EAS) by promoting participation on the state and local levels, supporting greater testing and awareness of EAS, leveraging technological advances, and bolstering EAS security.
TITLE:  Inquiry Concerning the Deployment of Advanced Telecommunications Capability to All Americans in a Reasonable and Timely Fashion, and Possible Steps to Accelerate Such Deployment Pursuant to Section 706 of the Telecommunications Act of 1996, as Amended by the Broadband Data Improvement Act (GN Docket No. 15-191)
SUMMARY:  The Commission will consider the 2016 Broadband Progress Report examining whether advanced telecommunications capability is being deployed to all Americans in a reasonable and timely fashion, pursuant to Section 706 of the Telecommunications Act of 1996.
            *                        *                                 *                               *
The Commission will consider the following subjects listed below as a consent agenda and these items will not be presented individually:

TITLE:  Mitchell F. Brecher Request for Inspection of Records (FOIA Control No. 2014-338)
SUMMARY:  The Commission will consider a Memorandum Opinion and Order concerning the Application for Review filed by Mitchell F. Brecher regarding the denial of his request for inspection of records under the Freedom of Information Act.
TITLE:  SMS/800 Inc. Request for Inspection of Records (FOIA Control No. 2015-044)
SUMMARY:  The Commission will consider a Memorandum Opinion and Order concerning the Application for Review filed by SMS/800 Inc. regarding the release of records pertaining to SMS/800 Inc. in response to a request for inspection of records under the Freedom of Information Act filed by Mark Lewyn.
TITLE:  Rachel A. Avan Request for Inspection of Records (FOIA Control No. 2014-572)
SUMMARY:  The Commission will consider a Memorandum Opinion and Order concerning the Application for Review filed by Rachel A. Avan regarding the denial of her request for inspection of records under the Freedom of Information Act.
TITLE:  Russell Carollo Request for Inspection of Records (FOIA Control No. 2015-553)
SUMMARY:  The Commission will consider a Memorandum Opinion and Order concerning the Application for Review filed by Russell Carollo regarding the partial denial of his request for inspection of records under the Freedom of Information Act.

TITLE:  Application of The KBOO Foundation for a New NCE(FM) Station in Chehalis, Washington
SUMMARY:  The Commission will consider a Memorandum Opinion and Order concerning an Application for Review filed by CVEF challenging the grant of an application and waiver requests filed by KBOO Foundation for a new NCE FM station.

TITLE:  Application for Renewal of License and Request for Extension of Special Temporary Authorization for Class A Television Station WEBR-CD in Manhattan, New York
SUMMARY:  The Commission will consider a Memorandum Opinion and Order concerning an Application for Review filed by Jose Luis Rodriguez seeking review of the grant of a license renewal and STA of WEBR-CD, Manhattan, New York. 

The meeting site is fully accessible to people using wheelchairs or other mobility aids.  Sign language interpreters, open captioning, and assistive listening devices will be provided on site.  Other reasonable accommodations for people with disabilities are available upon request.  In your request, include a description of the accommodation you will need and a way we can contact you if we need more information.  Last minute requests will be accepted, but may be impossible to fill.  Send an e-mail to: or call the Consumer & Governmental Affairs Bureau at 202-418-0530 (voice), 202-418-0432 (TTY).

Additional information concerning this meeting may be obtained from the Office of Media Relations, (202) 418-0500; TTY 1-888-835-5322.  Audio/Video coverage of the meeting will be broadcast live with open captioning over the Internet from the FCC Live web page at

For a fee this meeting can be viewed live over George Mason University's Capitol Connection.  The Capitol Connection also will carry the meeting live via the Internet. To purchase these services, call (703) 993-3100 or go to


Tuesday, December 22, 2015

:: FCC RFC Petition Seeking Modernization of the Rural Health Care Program

"On December 7, 2015, Schools, Health & Libraries Broadband Coalition, California Telehealth Network, New England Telehealth Consortium, Health Information Exchange of Montana, Utah Telehealth Network, Colorado Telehealth Network, and Southwest Telehealth Access Grid (together, referred to as Petitioners) filed a consolidated petition for rulemaking seeking to amend Part 54 of the Commission's rules with a series of reforms to the Rural Health Care (RHC) program"

Petition for Rulemaking by Schools, Health & Libraries Broadband Coalition, California Telehealth Network, New England Telehealth Consortium, Health Information Exchange of Montana, Utah Telehealth Network, Colorado Telehealth Network, and Southwest Telehealth Access Grid Seeking Amendment of Part 54 of the Commission's Rules to Further Modernize the Rural Health Care Program, CC Docket No. 02-60 (filed Dec. 7, 2015)

CC Docket No. 02-06

Comment Date: January 14, 2016

Reply Comment Date: January 29, 2016

Released: 12/15/2015. WIRELINE COMPETITION BUREAU INVITES COMMENT ON PETITION FOR RULEMAKING FILED BY SCHOOLS, HEALTH, & LIBRARIES BROADBAND COALITION, ET AL, SEEKING FURTHER MODERNIZATION OF THE RURAL HEALTH CARE PROGRAM. (DA No. 15-1424). (Dkt No 02-60 ). Comments Due: 01/14/2016. Reply Comments Due: 01/29/2016. WCB . Contact: Radhika Karmarkar at (202) 418-7400, email:

Monday, December 14, 2015

NTIA Digital Economy Board of Advisors

On November 9, 2015, the Secretary of Commerce unveiled the Department of Commerce's new Digital Economy Agenda, which will help businesses and consumers realize the potential of the digital economy to advance growth and opportunity.  The Agenda focuses on four key objectives: promoting a free and open Internet worldwide; promoting trust online; ensuring access for workers, families, and companies; and promoting innovation.  To support the Agenda, the Secretary of Commerce has directed the creation of a Digital Economy Board of Advisors to enable the Department to have a mechanism for receiving regular advice from leaders in industry, academia, and civil society.

The Board's primary duty will be to provide independent advice and recommendations to the Secretary, through the Assistant Secretary for Communications and Information, on a broad range of policy issues impacting the digital economy.  The Board will serve as a centralized forum for gathering consensus input from a wide range of stakeholders and experts.  The Board's mission is to provide advice in furtherance of increasing domestic prosperity, improving education, and facilitating participation in political and cultural life through the application and expansion of digital technologies. 

The Board's advice will focus on ensuring that the Internet continues to thrive as an engine of growth, innovation, and free expression.  In carrying out its duties, the Board's activities may include, but are not limited to:

  • Gathering information and providing an analysis of challenges related to the global free flow of information on the Internet, including policies that could restrict cross-border information flows;
  • Providing advice on other policy matters that impact the digital economy, such as expanding broadband capacity, enhancing cybersecurity, protecting privacy, and examining the role of intermediaries;
  • Promoting the development of new digital technologies; and
  • Analyzing the impact of the Internet on job growth and the economy as a whole.

The Department will use the advice provided by the Board to inform its decision-making process and advance Administration goals.

Application Review and Qualification Requirements:

The Assistant Secretary will review the nominations and make recommendations to the Secretary for appointments.  Among other factors, the Secretary and Assistant Secretary will consider nominees' experience and knowledge of digital economy issues in addition to:

  • Educational background (e.g., advanced degree in engineering, economics, law, business, or public policy);
  • Professional experience and accomplishments (e.g., nature of work, job function, projects, or publications); and
  • Current employment and membership in associations (e.g., technology developers, manufacturers, academia, civil society, service providers with customers in domestic and international markets).

A nominee will also need to certify that he or she is not:

  • A registered federal lobbyist pursuant to the Lobbying Disclosure Act of 1995 (2 U.S.C. 1601 et seq.); and
  • An agent of a foreign principal required to register pursuant to the Foreign Agents Registration Act of 1938, as amended (22 U.S.C. 611 et seq.).

Members of the Board will be appointed as Special Government Employees (SGEs). As SGEs, members must comply with certain federal conflict of interest statutes and ethics regulations, including some financial disclosure requirements.  Nominations should state that the nominee has been consulted and is willing to serve as a Special Government Employee.

To permit evaluation of possible sources of conflicts of interest, selected candidates will be asked to provide information concerning financial interests, consultancies, research grants, and/or contracts that might be affected by recommendations of the Board.

All appointments will be made without regard to political affiliation or discrimination on the basis of age, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, disability, or cultural, religious, or socioeconomic status. 

How to apply:

Applicants must submit nominations electronically using the online form.  All nominations must provide the following information:

  • A letter of nomination stating the full name, affiliation, and contact information for the nominee, the basis for the nomination, and the nominee's field(s) of expertise;
  • A biographical sketch of the nominee and/or a copy of his/her curriculum vitae; and
  • If applicable, the name, return address, email address, and daytime phone number at which the nominator can be contacted. 

Individuals may nominate themselves or other individuals.  Professional associations and other organizations may nominate one or more qualified persons for membership on the Board.

Please do not include any sensitive personally identifiable information such as a Social Security number when submitting the application and attachments.


Nominations must be submitted electronically using the online nomination formon or before midnight Eastern Standard Time on December 23, 2015.

Further Information:

For further information, please refer to the Federal Register Notice announcing the establishment of the Board and calling for nominations. 

Questions may be directed to Evelyn Remaley, Designated Federal Officer (DFO), at (202) 482-3821 or

Tuesday, December 01, 2015

This is Cybertelecom

Established in 1997, Cybertelecom is an educational not-for-profit project focusing on Federal Internet law and policy. The project is an educational resource providing individuals with the opportunity to learn about and discuss federal laws, judicial interpretations, and regulatory developments. The project includes:
You're feedback is appreciated.  Oh, and ya gotta read our disclaimer.