Morning Security Brief: Estimating the Cartel Death Toll, NIST Standard Could Mean Government Web Site Overhaul, and More

By Carlton Purvis

►Analysis by the blog Borderland Beat, an authority on cartel violence in Mexico, estimates 200,000 people have been killed in drug-related violence. Chivis Martinez says original estimates have excluded massacres connected to organized crime and numbers from states that don’t track narco-related deaths. Martinez also says messy reporting leads to inaccurate numbers: “It is known that cities and states that deaths will intentionally misidentify deaths as natural ‘accidental’ or even ‘suicide,’” Martinez writes. “Then there is the counting in of itself … Three agencies are at the same crime scene and one will report eight bodies, another five, and yet another 12.”

►The Coast Guard has established security zones for bridges in the Tampa Bay area where boats are prohibited from anchoring or loitering within 50 yards. The restrictions will last from August 25th through the Republican National Convention.

New NIST cybersecurity guidelines could lead government agencies to overhaul their Web sites, writes Ellen Messmer of NetworkWorld. “NIST's current standard calls for federal agencies to support Transport Layer Security 1.0 encryption, but the updated version is going to require TLS 1.1 and 1.2,” she writes. Older servers probably don’t support the new version so agencies will have to purchase new web server products to stay up to date, NIST says.

►In other news, Peter Bergen of The New American Foundation debunks a 22-minute short film that accuses President Barack Obama of leaking information about the raid that killed Osama bin Laden. ♦ McAfee expands its mobile security software, enhancing its privacy features. ♦ And Myanmar abolishes media censorship, a “dramatic move toward allowing freedom of expression in the long-repressed nation.” However, laws that allow detention of journalists “in the name of protecting national security,” remain unchanged.




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