Special Section - Homeland & Cybersecurity - Washington Times
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Homeland & Cybersecurity

The latest coverage of the Department of Homeland Security and cyber threats around the globe.

John Wider holds up a sign becoming Muslims in the Tom Bradley International Terminal at Los Angeles International Airport, Thursday, June 29, 2017, in Los Angeles. A scaled-back version of President Donald Trump's travel ban took effect Thursday evening, stripped of provisions that brought protests and chaos at airports worldwide in January yet still likely to generate a new round of court fights. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

Judge warned State Dept. against 'running out the clock' on travel ban visas

By Stephen Dinan - The Washington Times

A federal judge expressed skepticism Monday over how the State Department has been carrying out President Trump's travel ban, saying she thinks the government is "running out the clock" on perhaps more than 100 immigrants who could be shut out when their chance for visas expires in little more than a month. Published August 21, 2017

Recent Stories

(Associated Press/File)

'Guccifer' hacker who exposed Clinton emails wishes to serve sentence in native Romania: Report

- The Washington Times

Marcel Lehel Lazar, the computer hacker known as "Guccifer" who first exposed Hillary Clinton's use of a private email server while secretary of state, said he'll fight against being extradited from his native Romania to the United States next year to serve the remainder of a 52-month prison sentence for hacking a handful of high-profile American politicos.

This summer's crackdowns on illicit bitcoin activity has been considerable, but the dramatic surge in the currency's overall value poses even more challenges. (Associated Press/File)

Military, intelligence agencies alarmed by surge in bitcoin value in 'dark web' fight

- The Washington Times

The value of the shadowy digital currency known as bitcoin has jumped to record highs this month, sending shock waves through America's defense and intelligence agencies, which fear its growth signals a surge in use by terrorists, drug kingpins, white-collar criminals and Russian cybercriminals who don't want to be tracked by the world's governments.

Clint Watts, a disinformation expert, says a propaganda tracking tool he helped develop found evidence the Kremlin is exploiting White House divisions online. (Associated Press)

Tracking tool charts how Russian bots target U.S. divisions

- The Washington Times

A former FBI special agent-turned disinformation expert says a propaganda tracking tool he helped develop took less than a week to pinpoint evidence of Kremlin efforts to exploit current White House political divisions at the highest levels of national security.

This image released by HBO shows Nikolaj Coster-Waldau as Jaime Lannister in an episode of "Game of Thrones," which aired Sunday, Aug. 6. An individual using the name "Mr. Smith" posted a fresh cache of stolen HBO files, including some apparently related to the show "Game of Thrones," online Monday, part of what the purported hacker has claimed is a much larger trove of stolen HBO material. (Macall B. Polay/HBO via AP)

Hackers demand millions in ransom for stolen HBO data

- Associated Press

A group of hackers posted a fresh cache of stolen HBO files online Monday, and demanded a multimillion-dollar ransom from the network to prevent the release of entire television series and other sensitive proprietary files.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions, accompanied by, from left, National Counterintelligence and Security Center Director William Evanina, Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats, speaks during a news conference at the Justice Department in Washington, Friday, Aug. 4, 2017, on leaks of classified material threatening national security.  (AP Andrew Harnik)

Sessions' pledged crackdown on leakers may prove tricky

- The Washington Times

President Trump's anger at his attorney general appears to have blown over, with the president offering a few kind words for Attorney General Jeff Sessions' plan to crack down on what have been a series of embarrassing leaks for the White House.

Law enforcement officials investigate an explosion at the Dar Al-Farooq Islamic Center in Bloomington, Minn., on Saturday, Aug. 5, 2017.  Bloomington police Chief Jeff Potts said Saturday that investigators are trying to determine the cause of the blast. Authorities say the explosion damaged one room but it didn't hurt anyone. (David Joles/Star Tribune via AP)

Minnesota mosque explosion 'deeper and scarier' than threats

- Associated Press

The Dar Al-Farooq Islamic Center in suburban Minneapolis, like other U.S. mosques, occasionally receives threatening calls and emails. Its leaders say they're more frightened now after an explosive shattered windows and damaged a room as worshippers prepared for morning prayers.

Illustration on Russian cyber attacks on Ukraine by Alexander Hunter/The Washington Times

Why Ukraine deserves cyberattack help from the West

The first sign that the world had been afflicted by one of the worst cyberattacks in history came in a relatively innocent message: "Oops, your important files are encrypted." It almost sounds accidental; it was not. The attack began on the morning of June 27 in Ukraine and quickly spread across the globe, infecting systems in France, Germany, Italy, Poland, United Kingdom, Australia and the United States.

This June 6, 2013, file photo shows the National Security Administration (NSA) campus in Fort Meade, Md., where the U.S. Cyber Command is located. U.S. officials say the Trump administration, after months of delay, is finalizing plans to revamp the nation's military command for defensive and offensive cyber-operations. The plan would eventually split it from the intelligence-focused National Security Agency in hopes of intensifying America's ability to wage cyber war against the Islamic State group and other foes. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky, File)

U.S. to create independent military cyber command

- Associated Press

After months of delay, the Trump administration is finalizing plans to revamp the nation's military command for defensive and offensive cyber operations in hopes of intensifying America's ability to wage cyberwar against the Islamic State group and other foes, according to U.S. officials.

This December 2015, file photo shows U.S. District Judge Derrick Watson in Honolulu. Watson on Thursday, July 13, 2017, expanded the list of family relationships needed by people seeking new visas from six mostly Muslim countries to avoid President Donald Trump's travel ban. Watson ordered the government not to enforce the ban on grandparents, grandchildren, brothers-in-law, sisters-in-law, aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews and cousins of people in the United States. (George Lee /The Star-Advertiser via AP, File)

Judge in Hawaii carves new hole in Trump travel ban

- The Washington Times

A federal judge took another swing at President Trump's travel ban late Thursday, ruling that the administration must expand the definition of family who are exempted from his policy -- and also dramatically expanding the number of refugees who can be admitted.

In this Friday, July 7, 2017, file photo U.S. President Donald Trump meets with Russian President Vladimir Putin at the G-20 Summit in Hamburg. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci, File)

Democrats back effort to block U.S.-Russia cyber deal

- The Washington Times

A Democratic bid to block the United States from establishing a cybersecurity alliance with Russia is gaining steam in Congress after President Trump discussed and then dismissed creating an "impenetrable" cybersecurity unit this week with his Kremlin counterpart.

President Trump wants $1.6 billion to build 60 miles of new barriers, 500 more Border Patrol agents, 1,000 more agents and officers to handle deportations from the interior of the U.S. and enough money to maintain an average of 44,000 detention beds to hold illegal immigrants. (Associated Press)

House funding bill sets up shutdown showdown over Trump's border wall

- The Washington Times

Republican House leaders on Tuesday earmarked $1.6 billion to begin building President Trump's border wall next year, including the money in their homeland security spending bill, setting up a fight with Democrats who have vowed to fight any funding for the wall, even if it means sending the federal government into a partial shutdown.

FILE - In this March 2, 2016 file photo, a family looks towards metal bars marking the U.S. border where it meets the Pacific Ocean, in Tijuana, Mexico.  (AP Photo/Gregory Bull, File)

House GOP allocates $1.6 billion for Trump border wall in 2018

- The Washington Times

House Republicans said Tuesday they've included $1.6 billion in funding for President Trump's border wall in their new homeland security spending bill, setting up fight with Democrats who have vowed to block any wall funding -- even if it means sending the government into a partial shutdown.

Failure to Interpret the Islamic Terror Threat Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

H.R. McMaster's own 'Dereliction of Duty'

National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster is guilty of the same deceits, expediencies and tergiversations for which he sharply rebuked our military leadership during the Vietnam War in "Dereliction of Duty." Mr. Master's defection from his own gospel to the catechisms of the multi-trillion dollar military-industrial-counterterrorism complex was no aberration.

Female soldiers of Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) line up before demonstrating skills during an open day of Stonecutter Island naval base in Hong Kong, Saturday, July 8, 2017, to mark the 20th anniversary of Hong Kong handover to China. China's sole operating aircraft carrier arrived on its first port call to Hong Kong on Friday as part of efforts to stir patriotism amid commemorations of the city's handover from British to Chinese rule 20 years ago. (AP Photo/Kin Cheung)

Beijing networks in U.S. maneuver up to 25,000 spies

Beijing's spy networks in the United States include up to 25,000 Chinese intelligence officers and more than 15,000 recruited agents who have stepped up offensive spying activities since 2012, according to a Chinese dissident with close ties to Beijing's military and intelligence establishment.

President Trump, who met with Russian President Vladimir Putin on the sidelines of the Group of 20 summit in Germany last week, felt compelled Sunday to respond to his critics. "I strongly pressed President Putin twice about Russian meddling in our election. He vehemently denied it. I've already given my opinion," Mr. Trump tweeted. Pictured at left is European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker. (Associated Press)

Trump tweets defend confrontation with Putin over election meddling

- The Washington Times

President Trump scored a series of successes on his trip to Europe for the Group of 20 summit, including finalizing a regional cease-fire in Syria and confronting Russian President Vladimir Putin, but he couldn't escape the dispute over Russian interference in the November election that clouds every accomplishment.

FILE - In this June 11, 2015, file photo, a hexacopter drone is flown during a drone demonstration in Cordova, Md. An appeals court has struck down a Federal Aviation Administration rule that required owners to register drones used for recreation.  (AP Photo/Alex Brandon, File)

Homeland Security concerned about drone terror strikes in the U.S.

- The Washington Times

The Islamic State has made great strides developing and using drone technology to attack opposition forces in the Middle East. Department of Homeland Security officials are concerned this expertise could be transferred to terror attacks in the West and specifically the United States.

Recent Opinion Columns

Erasing Radical Ideology Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

A Marshall Plan to defeat global terrorism

Global terrorism is spreading like a dangerous cancer that knows no borders. It cannot be defeated by the military alone. As the Islamic State's grip on Mosul is faltering today, so must its grip on the young minds of Iraq through instruction in religious freedom and reconciliation.

Cyber Warfare Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

Warfare goes digital in the 21st century

Russia's intelligence service hacks Democratic Party computer networks and puts out stolen emails in a bid to influence the 2016 election. China says it owns 90 percent of the South China Sea and begins building military bases under a vague historical claim to the strategic waterway. Iranian hackers break into American banks and a water control computer network at an upstate New York dam. Welcome to the new form of conflict in the 21st century: information warfare.

White House press secretary Sean Spicer speaks to the media during the daily press briefing at the White House, Tuesday, March 21, 2017, in Washington. Spicer discussed healthcare, immigration, and other topics. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

Fake legal standing

The Hawaii federal court's recent nationwide block of President Trump's new executive order on immigration is troubling. The court's decision turns on its head the important requirement that persons have legitimate "standing" to invoke the power of the federal courts.

Trump Claims of Eavesdropping of His Campaign Illustration by Linas Garsys/The Washington Times

Tweets and trials

Two of the government's highest ranking intelligence officials will go before a House committee next week to testify about President Trump's bombastic claim that his predecessor "tapped" his phones during the 2016 election.

President Donald Trump arrives for a St. Patrick's Day reception in the East Room of the White House in Washington, Thursday, March 16, 2017. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

Mr. Trump's travel ban

President Trump and the lower federal courts are playing a dangerous game of ping-pong, and the nation's security is paying for it. The president, who is responsible for the nation's safety, proposes and certain federal judges, who have no such responsibility dispose. The president proposes again, and again a judge or two dispose.

From The Vault

Huma Abedin, one of Hillary Clinton's top aides from her time in the State Department and again on the campaign trail, had shared the laptop with now-estranged husband Anthony Weiner. (Associated Press)

FBI feared Huma Abedin's laptop had been hacked, contained secret emails

- The Washington Times

The FBI believed Huma Abedin's laptop computer did have evidence she and her boss, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, mishandled classified information, according to a search warrant released Tuesday that shows the basis agents had for upending the presidential election with their controversial election-season probe.

In this July 25, 2016, file photo, John Podesta, Clinton Campaign Chairman, speaks during the first day of the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia. Podesta, a top adviser to Hillary Clinton, on Tuesday, Oct. 11, accused Roger Stone, a longtime Donald Trump aide, of receiving "advance warning" about WikiLeaks' plans to publish thousands of hacked emails and suggested the Republican candidate is aiding the unprecedented Russian interference in American politics. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)

John Podesta links Donald Trump's campaign to Russian email hacking

- Associated Press

Hillary Clinton's top adviser said the FBI is investigating Russia's possible role in hacking thousands of his personal emails, an intrusion he said Donald Trump's campaign may have been aware of in advance.