U.S. regulator weighs action against Facebook over how its apps interact: report

Reuters | December 13, 2019

The U.S. Federal Trade Commission is considering asking a court to stop Facebook Inc from moving ahead with plans to integrate its WhatsApp, Instagram and Messenger subsidiaries, The Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday, citing people familiar with the matter. Facebook shares closed 2.7% lower, reflecting fears the potential regulatory move could be a first step toward forcing the company to sell apps WhatsApp and Instagram, its fast-growing acquisitions.

Spotlight

The Government today unveiled its new Foreign Policy White Paper, outlining Australia’s foreign policy direction for the decade ahead. The Paper was launched today by Foreign Affairs Minister the Hon Julie Bishop MP, Trade Minister the Hon Steven Ciobo MP, and Prime Minister the Hon Malcolm Turnbull MP. The Paper has already attracted provisional bipartisan support from Labor Foreign Affairs Spokesman Senator the Hon Penny Wong MP.

Spotlight

The Government today unveiled its new Foreign Policy White Paper, outlining Australia’s foreign policy direction for the decade ahead. The Paper was launched today by Foreign Affairs Minister the Hon Julie Bishop MP, Trade Minister the Hon Steven Ciobo MP, and Prime Minister the Hon Malcolm Turnbull MP. The Paper has already attracted provisional bipartisan support from Labor Foreign Affairs Spokesman Senator the Hon Penny Wong MP.

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GOVERNMENT BUSINESS

CCC helps GDMS Canada win $24 million contract with Portugal

CANADIAN COMMERCIAL CORPORATION (CCC) | October 18, 2022

Canadian Commercial Corporation (CCC) is pleased to announce General Dynamics Mission Systems–Canada has won a $24 million contract to help the Portuguese Air Force modernize its fleet of P-3C aircraft to support Maritime patrol and reconnaissance activities. This was secured through a government-to-government (G2G) contract between CCC and the Portuguese Air Force. G2G contracts are part of CCC's International Prime Contractor service that brings qualified Canadian companies to foreign government buyers. General Dynamics will provide equipment and technology to upgrade the communications and mission electronics. The upgrades to Portugal's P3-C fleet are modeled on modernizations that General Dynamics provides to the Royal Canadian Air Force. The Mission Management System offered to Portugal now comprises over 50 installations worldwide on both Maritime Patrol Aircraft and Maritime Patrol Helicopters. Portugal is a member of NATO. The upgrades will allow the Portuguese Air Force, as a NATO member, to maintain the capabilities required to contribute to new and existing NATO activities. In addition to maritime patrol and reconnaissance activities, Portugal's air force also provides air policing, air transport, search and rescue, and medical evacuations. "CCC is proud to simplify and expedite the acquisitions of Canadian expertise and technology by Portugal – a NATO ally and important trading partner," - Mathieu Lacroix, CCC's Account Director, Aerospace Sector. We are very pleased to partner with the Portuguese Air Force, leveraging Canada's investment and long-term commitment to the P3 fleet, said Matt Young, Sr. Director of International Air and Naval Systems, General Dynamics Mission Systems–Canada. As standards and threats evolve, we are proud to support our customers around the world to meet the changing environment. ABOUT CANADIAN COMMERCIAL CORPORATION (CCC): We are Canada's government to government contracting agency. We help build successful commercial relationships between Canadian businesses and governments around the world by creating and supporting the successful completion of commercial contracts of public and national importance. We are also the official channel for Canadian companies looking to do business with the U.S. military. ABOUT GENERAL DYNAMICS MISSION SYSTEMS–CANADA: General Dynamics Mission Systems–Canada delivers advanced system solutions to Canadian and international customers. Headquartered in Ottawa, Ontario, it is one of the largest defence and security companies in Canada and is a world-class prime contractor and systems integrator for land, sea, air and cyber solutions.

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CYBERSECURITY

U.S. Department of Defense Awards Accrete Multi-Million Dollar AI Production OT Software Licensing Contract

Accrete | November 18, 2022

Accrete has secured a five-year multi-million dollar Production Operational Technology (OT) software licensing contract from the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) for Argus™, Accrete's highly configurable, dual-use open-source threat detection AI software solution, worth tens of millions of dollars. The exact contract value and deal terms cannot be disclosed per government guidelines. Argus continuously analyzes the open-source web to predict anomalous and nefarious behavior hidden in plain sight. Argus performs work that would otherwise require thousands of intelligence analysts at an estimated cost of hundreds of millions of dollars a year in areas critical to national security such as supply chain risk management, vulnerability research, intellectual property theft, social media intelligence, insider threat detection, and anti-money laundering. Argus reads, understands, and learns from an exploding universe of dynamic, unstructured data, including news, blogs, think tank publications, strategy papers, social media chatter, financial filings, microprocessor manuals, and binaries in multiple languages. The AI software automatically extracts, normalizes, and maps relationships between entities, models influence, and surfaces behavioral anomalies indicative of potentially illicit activity that are too complex for humans to identify. "We are at the dawn of an entirely new type of conflict, driven by rapid advances in artificial intelligence. Whereas nuclear proliferation threatened entire populations, AI proliferation individualizes warfare by manipulating targeted groups through digital means. Using AI, bad actors can propagate disinformation to exploit ignorance and weaken civil society causing billions of dollars of damage to the U.S. economy, As a prime defense contractor licensing configurable dual-use AI software directly to the DoD, Accrete is in a unique position to scale its business with the Defense, Intelligence, and Special Operations communities, as well as other government and enterprise customers, and bolster national security as well as intelligence competitiveness in previously unimaginable ways." -Prashant Bhuyan, Founder, CEO, and Chairman of Accrete, Inc. In 2020, the Defense Innovation Unit (DIU), which former Defense Secretary Ashton Carter established in collaboration with former Google CEO Eric Schmidt to strengthen U.S. national security by accelerating DoD adoption of commercial technology, awarded Accrete with an Other Transaction Authority (OTA) Prototype contract after Accrete outperformed 65 other companies in a competitive review. The DoD accepted the Argus prototype within 15 months, and Accrete worked closely with the DIU and the DoD to transition the OTA Prototype contract into a first-of-its-kind multi-year Production OT AI software licensing deal. William Wall, who leads Accrete’s federal sales subsidiary, Accrete AI Government, and formerly served as a U.S. Special Forces Lieutenant Colonel and with the Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC), said, "We are extremely excited to announce this award, especially as this is the first production OTA that our DoD customer has ever awarded. There are very few start-up technology companies that successfully navigate the extremely challenging OTA process through prototype acceptance and transition into a multi-year production OT software licensing agreement. Our success is a testament to the efficacy, scalability, and configurability of our AI technology and, more importantly, to our employees' relentless focus on providing solutions that are tightly aligned with end-user requirements. As we continue to scale, Accrete looks forward to providing its growing customer base with powerful dual-use AI solutions that not only drive efficiency through the automation of analytical work but also produce mission-critical insights beyond human capacity.” Zachary Smith, Accrete AI Government’s Program Manager and retired special agent who spent most of his 23-year Air Force career focused on countering human, technical, and cyber-based threats, observed, "Based on Argus' blazing speed and scale, in seconds, analysts will be able to research and visualize complex relationships that would have taken at least a month of steady research and annotation. Within the framework of the DoD's acquisition risk review process, Argus will enable supply chain risk analysis to be more efficient and effective while delivering enhanced value at a lower cost per insight." Accrete's continuously learning AI technology enables the templatization of analytical workflows. Templates such as Argus for Threat Detection learn from sparse data and are configurable for use cases including supply chain influence, social media intelligence, reverse engineering, and logistics disruption for both government and commercial customers. In addition to helping the DoD predict bad actors that may be intentionally obscuring identities to influence the supply chain, Argus has also been enabling the U.S. Air Force to reverse engineer binaries from microprocessor manuals to detect vulnerabilities in firmware. Accrete’s dual-use AI solutions have also been proven in industry, including media and entertainment companies automating talent scouting to predict emerging talent from social chatter; insurance brokers automating lead generation to find the shortest path to the hottest lead; private equity and venture firms automating pitch deck review through smart table extraction; and automobile dealerships automating the writing of marketing content. About Accrete: Accrete's mission is to create AI so powerful that it amplifies human reasoning and enables government entities and commercial enterprises to grow in previously unimaginable ways. Accrete, founded in 2017, delivers configurable dual-use AI solutions that automate complex analytical work for both government and enterprise customers with a focus on defense, intelligence, and cybersecurity. Accrete has 128 employees globally and is headquartered in Lower Manhattan with offices in Alexandria, Va. and Wellesley, Mass.

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EMERGING TECHNOLOGY

Consensus' ECFax Digital Cloud Faxing Solution Achieves Veterans Affairs ATO in Partnership with Federal Contractor, Cognosante

Cognosante | November 11, 2022

Consensus Cloud Solutions, Inc. (NASDAQ: CCSI), a leader in enterprise cloud faxing and interoperability solutions, today announced that its government offering, Enterprise Cloud Fax (ECFax), available through a partnership with prime contractor Cognosante, has achieved Authority to Operate (ATO) from Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and is in process of final certification with the Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program (FedRAMP) PMO at the highest security impact level. Supporting VA's ECFax program marks Consensus' official entry into the U.S. federal government marketplace. The ECFax digital cloud faxing program offers government cloud faxing and secure information exchange solutions including advanced fax annotation, mobile apps, and a secure fax API that integrates into existing business applications, such as a CMS or EHR system. ECFax provides high volume, HIPAA-compliant, secure faxing in the cloud. With the ATO from VA, ECFax can now be implemented at over 2,000 US Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) locations. "We are delighted that our solution has reached ATO status. Our official entry into the federal market, supporting VA in partnership with government contractor, Cognosante, is a significant milestone in Consensus' history, We remain committed to providing federal agencies with the technology and services they need to accelerate and streamline workflow processes, and securely exchange and validate data in an era of digital transformation." -Scott Turicchi, Chief Executive Officer, Consensus Cloud Solutions. Philip Dietz, General Manager of Cognosante's Military and Veteran Health Business Unit commented: Attaining ATO is a critical step to implementation. By achieving ATO, we have demonstrated that ECFax meets the government's most rigorous security and quality assurance protocols for data protection. VA and its partners can be confident that the most sensitive veteran healthcare information will be handled with the attention it deserves. About Consensus Cloud Solutions: Consensus Cloud Solutions, Inc. (NASDAQ: CCSI) is the world's largest digital fax provider and a trusted global source for the transformation, enhancement and secure exchange of digital information. We leverage our 25-year history of success by providing advanced solutions for regulated industries such as healthcare, finance, insurance and manufacturing, as well as state and federal government. Our solutions consist of: cloud faxing, digital signature, robotic process automation, interoperability and workflow enhancement; and intelligent data extraction using natural language processing and artificial intelligence that result in improved outcomes. Our solutions can be combined with best-in-class managed services for optimal implementations. About Cognosante: Cognosante is a mission-driven technology company delivering innovative and transformative solutions that improve the health and safety of Americans. With more than a decade of experience working with Federal and state government agencies, we aim to expand access to care, improve care delivery, deliver solutions addressing social determinants of health, and ensure safety and security through multi-faceted technology and customer experience (CX) solutions. Our broad range of capabilities includes enterprise IT and cloud, data science, telehealth, interoperability, public health surveillance, clinical performance, eligibility and enrollment, and consumer engagement.

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