How Cambridge Analytica and the Trump campaign changed Big Tech forever

CNBC | December 26, 2019

How Cambridge Analytica and the Trump campaign changed Big Tech forever
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg had made it about an hour into his two-day marathon testimony in front of Congress before the M-word came up. Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., was the first to float the term as lawmakers began their grilling at the April 2018 hearing. The senators wanted to know how the data from 87 million Facebook profiles was able to be harvested and sold to a political consulting firm, Cambridge Analytica, without users’ consent. “You don’t think you have a monopoly?” Graham asked Zuckerberg. Pausing and tripping slightly over his response, Zuckerberg said, “Doesn’t feel like that to me,” to a chorus of stilted laughter.

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GOVERNMENT BUSINESS

Databricks Receives FedRAMP High Authority to Operate Across Public Sector

Databricks | November 27, 2020

Databricks, the Data and AI Company, today declared that Microsoft Azure Databricks has gotten a Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program (FedRAMP) High Authority to Operate (ATO). This approval approves Azure Databricks security and consistence for high-sway information investigation and AI over a wide scope of public area, industry, and endeavor use cases. FedRAMP is a normalized way to deal with security evaluation, approval, and nonstop checking for cloud administrations as characterized by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). The ATO was allowed by the FedRAMP Joint Authorization Board (JAB) which comprises of delegates from the Department of Defense (DoD), Department of Homeland Security (DHS), and the General Services Administration (GSA). "At Veterans Affairs, we included Azure Databricks as part of our Microsoft Azure Authority to Operate (ATO)," said Joseph Fourcade, Lead Cyber Security Analyst, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Enterprise Cloud Solutions Office (ECSO). "When Databricks received FedRAMP High approval, we were able to move quickly to inherit that same Azure ATO and approve Azure Databricks for production workloads. Timing couldn't have been better, as we have been working with a number of VA customers implementing Databricks for critical programs." "Numerous federal agencies are looking to build cloud data lakes and leverage Delta Lake for a complete and consistent view of all their data," said Kevin Davis, VP, Public Sector at Databricks. "The power of data and AI are being used to dramatically enhance public services, lower costs and improve quality of life for citizens. Using Azure Databricks, government agencies have aggregated hundreds of data sources to improve citizen outreach, automated processing of hourly utility infrastructure IoT data for enabled predictive maintenance, deployed machine learning models to predict patient needs, and built dashboards to predict transportation needs and optimize logistics. FedRAMP High authorization for Azure Databricks further enables federal agencies to analyze all of their data for improved decision making and more accurate predictions." "We are pleased to add Azure Databricks to our portfolio of services approved for FedRAMP at the high impact level in Microsoft Azure Government," said Lily Kim, General Manager of Azure Government at Microsoft. "Azure Government provides the most trusted cloud for mission-critical government workloads. FedRAMP High approval for Azure Databricks enables government customers to build fast and reliable data lakes for innovative new use cases, such as risk management and predictive analytics." With this certification, clients would now be able to utilize Azure Databricks to handle the U.S. government's generally touchy, unclassified information in distributed computing conditions, including information that includes the insurance of life and monetary resources. From customized medical care and instruction to space investigation and energy research, Azure Databricks empowers associations to quicken new development while limiting danger when working with exceptionally touchy, private and public area information. With FedRAMP, associations have a steady method to assess the security of cloud arrangements utilizing NIST and FISMA characterized principles. FedRAMP offers a few degrees of affirmation and Azure Databricks has met the entirety of the necessities for approval for the most significant level of confirmation. Sky blue Databricks gets numerous other Azure administrations together with the FedRAMP High approval, empowering public area, undertaking and industry vertical clients to make and send cloud-based applications with certainty. About Databricks Databricks is the data and AI company. Thousands of organizations worldwide — including Comcast, Condé Nast, Nationwide and H&M — rely on Databricks' open and unified platform for data engineering, machine learning and analytics. Databricks is venture-backed and headquartered in San Francisco, with offices around the globe. Founded by the original creators of Apache Spark™, Delta Lake and MLflow, Databricks is on a mission to help data teams solve the world's toughest problems.

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GOVERNMENT BUSINESS

IBM and Raytheon Technologies to Collaborate on Artificial Intelligence, Cryptography and Quantum Technologies

IBM | October 13, 2021

IBM and Raytheon Technologies will jointly develop advanced artificial intelligence, cryptographic and quantum solutions for the aerospace, defense and intelligence industries, including the federal government, as part of a strategic collaboration agreement the companies announced today. Artificial intelligence and quantum technologies give aerospace and government customers the ability to design systems more quickly, better secure their communications networks and improve decision-making processes. By combining IBM's breakthrough commercial research with Raytheon Technologies' own research, plus aerospace and defense expertise, the companies will be able to crack once-unsolvable challenges. "The rapid advancement of quantum computing and its exponential capabilities has spawned one of the greatest technological races in recent history – one that demands unprecedented agility and speed. Our new collaboration with Raytheon Technologies will be a catalyst in advancing these state-of-the-art technologies – combining their expertise in aerospace, defense and intelligence with IBM's next-generation technologies to make discovery faster, and the scope of that discovery larger than ever." Dario Gil, senior vice president, IBM, and director of Research In addition to artificial intelligence and quantum, the companies will jointly research and develop advanced cryptographic technologies that lie at the heart of some of the toughest problems faced by the aerospace industry and government agencies. "Take something as fundamental as encrypted communications," said Mark E. Russell, Raytheon Technologies chief technology officer. "As computing and quantum technologies advance, existing cybersecurity and cryptography methods are at risk of becoming vulnerable. IBM and Raytheon Technologies will now be able to collaboratively help customers maintain secure communications and defend their networks better than previously possible." The companies are building a technical collaboration team to quickly insert IBM's commercial technologies into active aerospace, defense and intelligence programs. The same team will also identify promising technologies for jointly developing long-term system solutions by investing research dollars and talent. About IBM IBM is a leading global hybrid cloud and AI, and business services provider, helping clients in more than 175 countries capitalize on insights from their data, streamline business processes, reduce costs and gain the competitive edge in their industries. Nearly 3,000 government and corporate entities in critical infrastructure areas such as financial services, telecommunications and healthcare rely on IBM's hybrid cloud platform and Red Hat OpenShift to affect their digital transformations quickly, efficiently, and securely. IBM's breakthrough innovations in AI, quantum computing, industry-specific cloud solutions and business services deliver open and flexible options to our clients. All of this is backed by IBM's commitment to trust, transparency, responsibility, inclusivity, and service. About Raytheon Technologies Raytheon Technologies Corporation is an aerospace and defense company that provides advanced systems and services for commercial, military and government customers worldwide. With four industry-leading businesses ― Collins Aerospace Systems, Pratt & Whitney, Raytheon Intelligence & Space and Raytheon Missiles & Defense ― the company delivers solutions that push the boundaries in avionics, cybersecurity, directed energy, electric propulsion, hypersonics, and quantum physics. The company, formed in 2020 through the combination of Raytheon Company and the United Technologies Corporation aerospace businesses, is headquartered in Waltham, Massachusetts.

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GOVERNMENT FINANCE

GovOS Launches Business Licensing & Tax Filing Solutions for Local Government

GovOS | December 23, 2021

GovOS, a leading provider of digital transformation solutions for local governments, today announced the launch of its full-featured, end-to-end solutions for business licensing and tax filing. Built on the MUNIRevs | LODGINGRevs technology acquired earlier this year, GovOS Business Licensing and GovOS Tax Filing underscore the company's commitment to providing local governments with the tools they need to accelerate digitization efforts in their communities. Designed to enhance revenue collection and reduce the amount of valuable staff time spent processing paperwork, both GovOS Business Licensing and GovOS Tax Filing apply automation and intelligence features to improve the accuracy of these vital government processes. Local governments can now look to GovOS to help streamline administration of tax remittance and renewals of business licenses to better enable local business growth. "On a local government's journey to digital transformation, the collection of taxes and the issuance of business licenses are vital functions that bridge online civic services and community engagement. Together with our Application Studio platform and Short-Term Rental solution, local governments have the ways and means to keep business running as usual, no matter what curveballs get thrown at them." Kevin Lafeber, President, GovOS Business Licensing With the GovOS Business Licensing solution, local business owners can complete the entire licensing process online. The system ensures ease of use for every size business and helps business owners register and remain in compliance with local government regulations. Key features include: Data-driven insights to better understand market demographics Dynamic workflows allowing for customized registration requirements and the creation and adjustment of workflows as needed An intuitive online portal that guides business owners through the permitting process and informs them of any status changes or notifications Best-in-class customer success team to monitor and respond to all product questions/concerns Tax Filing Built by tax professionals who worked in the government space, the GovOS Tax Filing solution provides intuitive forms and auto-calculations. These core design elements eliminate staff time wasted on checking for math errors or calculating missed revenue due to penalties or interest. The system automatically collects every dollar in real time. Key features include: Auto calculations to prevent incorrect forms from being submitted A single digital cart that can process multiple tax forms Automatic tax deposits each day to any account Tax form customization to tailor any form as needed Fee adjustments on forms to provide a discount or apply a penalty Solution Adoption Within Local Jurisdictions To date, more than 30 jurisdictions have started using one or both GovOS solutions. For the Little Rock, AR Convention & Visitors Bureau, GovOS Business Licensing gives new and existing local businesses a quick and easy way to register, apply for and receive permits, and pay taxes. "With GovOS, our local business owners simply use our online portal to register and apply for a wide range of permits that we have available," said Kasey L. Summerville, Senior Director of Tax Revenue, Little Rock Convention & Visitors Bureau. "We then use GovOS Business Licensing to automatically calculate estimated and final tax assessments based on data in our jurisdiction and create custom workflows to send vendors notifications of payment, and even allow them to pay those final assessments online. We now have over 89% of businesses in our jurisdiction registered in Business Licensing, and the feedback from both citizens and staff has been very positive." Mark Colvin, Finance Manager for the City of Wheat Ridge, CO says that the GovOS Business Licensing and Tax Filing products have streamlined their process for working with short-term rentals in their jurisdiction. "Wheat Ridge is west of Denver and like many others, we've seen the number of short-term rentals in our municipality increase exponentially over the last few years," said Mark. "Thus, when the city adopted a short-term rental ordinance in early 2021 with a rollout in May 2021, we knew we needed a platform that we could implement and use with relative ease. The GovOS Business Licensing platform is user-friendly and straightforward to apply for licenses and remit taxes, and it has allowed our team to streamline workflows for approving and issuing licenses. Implementation was smooth and easy, and so far the response has been positive." About GovOS GovOS is the leading digital transformation platform for local governments. Headquartered in Austin, TX, GovOS serves government agencies of all sizes across the United States. Through its secure and integrated suite of cloud-based solutions, governments can automate and streamline operations, provide seamless access to resources and information, and deliver cutting-edge digital services to businesses, residents and agencies.

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Texting is simple, concise and compatible with virtually every mobile device, operating system and wireless carrier making it extremely accessible when a government official or employee wants to communicate with staff or community members in a time-crunched world.