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Surface Transportation

- A report from the Mineta Transportation Institute analyzes case studies of terrorist attacks against surface transportation targets, including what time of day terrorists tend to strike.

Terrorism

- Jubair Ahmad has been sentenced to 12 years in prison for providing material support to a terrorist organization by producing a video, recruiting, and raising money for Lashkar-e-Tayyiba. Read more about the government’s evidence.

Encrypted Data

- The government may compel an individual to reveal the password to an encrypted hard drive if the government is already aware of what material resides in the hard drive, an appellate court has ruled.

Data Theft

- The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit has ruled that an employee did not violate the federal Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA) when he downloaded confidential information from his employer with the intent to start his own business. The CFAA, the court noted, was designed to prevent hacking and does not apply in this case because the employee had access to the information for work purposes. The decision conflicts with CFAA rulings from the Fifth, Seventh, and Eleventh circuits.

Drug Testing

- A new Florida law requires that state employees be randomly tested for drugs and alcohol. Read the law to find out how the testing program will work and who will be tested.

Securing the Cities

- The Department of Homeland Security’s Directorate of Science and Technology gives an overview of the program to create a domestic nuclear and radiological detection infrastructure inside the United States.

Harassment

- A California appeals court has ruled that a company can be held liable for harassing statements made by employees on a blog. Even though the blog was accessed by employees while they were off-duty, the court ruled that once the company learned of the blog, it had a duty to act to stop the harassment.

DNA

- A federal appeals court has upheld a California law that requires DNA collection from all adults arrested for felonies in the state. The court ruled that the collection of DNA is similar to the collection of fingerprints, which law enforcement has routinely collected for decades.

Whistleblower Protection

- An employee of a privately held company (as opposed to a publicly held company that comes under regulatory authority of the Securities and Exchange Commission) is not covered by the whistleblower protections offered under Sarbanes-Oxley, according to a recent appellate decision. The employee is not protected even if his employer provides services to a public entity that is covered by the act.

Cybersecurity

- States have not made enough improvements in the areas of cybersecurity, according to the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s National Preparedness Report. Find out what other areas need improvement.

Conscience Clauses

- A federal district court has ruled that pharmacists cannot be compelled to dispense emergency contraceptives. The pharmacists claim that providing the medication violates their religious beliefs but a state law requires all pharmacies to stock and dispense the medication. The court ruled that the state’s regulations violate the constitutional right to free exercise of religion.

Passenger Screening

- Read through a PowerPoint presentation explaining the International Air Transport Association’s vision for the “Checkpoint of the Future.”

Watch List

- A Malaysian national may challenge her inclusion on the U.S. government’s No-Fly List, according to a federal appeals court. The plaintiff, ruled the court, has significant ties to the United States as a university professor who lectures and travels extensively. The court ruled that the plaintiff has the right to try and establish that she does not belong on the government watch list.
 




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