Morning Security Brief: New Orleans Verdict, Cybersecurity Survey, I-95 Drug Bust, and More.

By Carlton Purvis

►The final chapter to the Danzinger shootings began Friday after a jury convicted five New Orleans Police Department (NOPD) officers who were accused of shooting unarmed civilians in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina and covering up the murders for five years. The incident happened on Danzinger Bridge in 2005. Two men were killed and four others wounded. “The four officers on trial for shooting at unarmed civilians were found to have violated the civil rights of six people in total. Prosecutors won on virtually every point, save for their contention that the shootings amounted to murder,” the Times-Picayune reports. An additional officer who wasn’t involved in the shootings was convicted of trying to cover them up. The indictment says he went as far as trying to frame civilians and making up fake witnesses during his investigation of the murders. Before Friday, five other officers had already pleaded guilty to roles in the shootings and cover-ups. “The Danziger verdicts come at a pivotal moment for the long-troubled NOPD, which has been and remains under heavy scrutiny from the U.S. Justice Department,” the Times-Picayune reports.

►A routine traffic stop on Interstate 95 in South Carolina resulted in the second largest drug bust in the state’s history on Thursday. Interstate 95 is known for being a corridor for drug trafficking form Florida to New York. A moving van carrying furniture was pulled over Thursday for a traffic violation. Deputies say a drug sniffing dog alerted on the vehicle, and a search of the trailer turned up 233 pounds of pure cocaine, individually packed and hidden in furniture, The Morning News reports. The value was estimated at $10 million, but could be more after it was cut and processed by dealers. 

►Eighty-four percent of cybersecurity experts believe the threat is higher now than it was a year ago, according to a study published last week by the East West Institute. The report surveyed 450 “government and technical leaders” from 40 countries at the Second Worldwide Cybersecurity Summit to assess today’s threats compared to a year ago. Also from the report, 66 percent surveyed said home users need to take more responsibility for cybersecurity; 70 percent think government policies are far behind developing technology; And 61 percent doubt their country could defend itself from a sophisticated cyberattack.

►In other news, San Francisco is using a Homeland Security grant to install cameras into city buses that can be watched real-time from the bus yard. ⇒ Hackers at Defcon showed nine different ways to break one of the government’s most popular electronic door access systems. ⇒ Forbes examines when businesses can and cannot use aerial drones. ⇒ And PC World reports on India’s moves toward aggressive monitoring of social media for terrorist activity.




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