White House Releases National Strategy for 5G Security

White House | March 25, 2020

The White House this week released its National Strategy to Secure 5G of the United States to formally frame how the nation will safeguard fifth-generation wireless infrastructure at home and abroad. The 7-page policy document sets forth the president’s “vision for America to lead the development, deployment, and management of secure and reliable 5G communications infrastructure worldwide, arm-in-arm with [its] closest partners and allies.” Its release marks President Trump’s initial move to meet the requirements laid out in the Secure 5G and Beyond Act, which he signed Monday. The new law directs the president to produce a strategy “to ensure security of next generation wireless communications systems and infrastructure,” within 180 days of its enactment.

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EMERGING TECHNOLOGY

US Government Gives Grants Worth $2.8B to Build Up EV Batteries Supply Chain

Microsmallcap | November 10, 2022

The United States is continuing to build its domestic EV battery supply chain. The Biden administration has awarded grants totaling $2.8 billion for developing electric vehicle (EV) battery manufacturing facilities in the United States, as the country works to reduce its reliance on Asia. President Joe Biden has set a goal of electrifying half of all new vehicles sold by 2030. Demand for critical minerals critical for EV batteries is expected to skyrocket in the next decade due to increased EV sales, which Biden is calling "one of the most significant economic transitions since the Industrial Revolution." According to the US Department of Energy, the approved projects will eventually supply enough lithium to produce 2 million EVs, enough graphite to produce 1.2 million EVs, and enough nickel to produce 400,000 EVs per year. Albemarle (NYSE:ALB), Talon Metals (TSX:TLO) (OTCPK:TLOFF), and American Battery Technology Co (OTCQB:ABML) are among the companies that have received funding. Meanwhile, FE Battery Metals Corp. (CSE:FE) (OTCQB:FEMFD) and Sayona Mining Limited (OTCQB:SYAXF) are driving the electric future with their lithium mining projects. The drill program is based on the historical and 2021 Phase 1 exploration data as well as the company's surface trenching and sampling program results. Several historical drill hole collars were also located on the Property, which helped in the current program's location and orientation of drill holes. A B-20 drill rig is deployed for this work, which can drill up to a 1,000-meter-deep hole. To date a total of 42 drill holes with a cumulative core drilling of over 7,500 m has been completed on the Property. In October, FE Battery Metals announced the results of drill holes LC21-33 to 37 at Augustus. Among the highlights of the results was drill hole LC21-35 intersecting an 11.20-meter-wide zone with 0.91% lithium oxide (Li2O) at 146 meters, including a 5 meter zone with 1.03% Li2O at 146 meters and 3.2 meter with 1% Li2O at 154 meters. This drill hole also has a lower seven meters wide zone with 0.54% Li2O at 165 meters drilled depth and several other smaller intercepts with variable lithium grades. The company also recently announced a corporate restructuring to spin off assets related to its current exploration properties located in Quebec and Ontario into a wholly-owned subsidiary. According to the company, each FE Battery Metals shareholder will receive one common share of Spinco for every post-consolidation share held. Companies Are Advancing Critical Minerals Projects Albemarle (NYSE:ALB) subsidiary, Albemarle Lithium UK Limited, has completed the $200 million acquisition of Guangxi Tianyuan New Energy Materials. In September 2021, a definitive agreement was announced to acquire Tianyuan. Tianyuan's operations include a lithium conversion plant with a designed annual conversion capacity of up to 25,000 metric tonnes LCE and the ability to produce battery-grade lithium carbonate and lithium hydroxide. Albermarle has received a nearly $150 million grant from the US Department of Energy. The grant funding is intended to cover a portion of the estimated cost of building a new commercial-scale lithium concentrator facility in the US at the company's Kings Mountain, North Carolina. Talon Metals (TSX:TLO) (OTC Pink:TLOFF) announced that it has updated its mineral resource estimate for its Tamarack Nickel project in Minnesota. The total indicated mineral resource is estimated to be 8.56 million tonnes grading 1.73% nickel plus by-products (2.34% NiEq) containing 148,000 tonnes of nickel. Compared to Talon's previous indicated mineral resource estimate (PEA #3), this represents a 98% increase in contained nickel in the indicated category. The total inferred resource estimate is now around 8.46 million tonnes grading 0.83% nickel plus by-products (1.19% NiEq) containing 70,000 tonnes of nickel, in addition to the total indicated mineral resource. Talon Metals' wholly-owned subsidiary, Talon Nickel (USA) LLC has been selected as a recipient of President Joe Biden's Bipartisan Infrastructure Law's first set of projects to expand domestic manufacturing of batteries for EVs and the electrical grid, as well as materials and components currently imported from other countries. Sayona Mining Limited (OTC:SYAXF) has developed a transport solution for its North American Lithium (NAL) operation, with a contract to deliver NAL spodumene (lithium) concentrate to port awarded to a Québec rail operator. Solurail Logistique Inc., a Val d'Or company specializing in bulk transhipment and rail logistics, will be in charge of transporting lithium from the NAL operation in La Corne to the Port of Trois-Rivières for delivery to customers under the terms of the agreement. The C$43 million contract includes the rental of 110 rolling stock (railway vehicles), with the equipment ready for NAL's restart of production in the first quarter of 2023. Sayona Mining is targeting the further expansion of its Québec lithium resource with the launch of a pre–feasibility study for its emerging Moblan Lithium Project (Sayona 60%; SOQUEM 40%) in northern Québec. Continuing Sayona's focus on maximizing economic benefits for local stakeholders, InnovExplo will conduct the pre–feasibility study, targeting completion by May 2023. American Battery Technology Co (OTCQB:ABML) has completed its Phase 2 drill program, which included six additional sites in addition to the 16-holes sampled in Phase 1 drilling, completing the 22-hole plan at its 10,340-acre Tonopah Flats Lithium Project. American Battery Technology has been chosen as a recipient of competitive funding under the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law for expanding domestic manufacturing of battery-grade lithium hydroxide for lithium-ion batteries for electric vehicles, focusing on domestic production. In collaboration with grant partners DuPont Water Solutions, the University of Nevada, Reno, and Argonne National Laboratory, American Battery Technology was awarded $57 million from the Department of Energy for this project to design, build, commission, and operate a first-of-its-kind commercial-scale facility. This facility will be used to demonstrate its novel process for producing battery cathode grade lithium hydroxide from unconventional Nevada-based lithium-bearing sedimentary resources.

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CYBERSECURITY

HUMAN Security and Carahsoft Partner to Provide Holistic Digital Attack Defense and World Class Threat Intelligence to the Public Sector

Carahsoft | November 21, 2022

HUMAN Security, Inc. (formerly White Ops)--the global leader in safeguarding enterprises from digital attacks with modern defense, and Carahsoft Technology Corp., the Trusted Government IT Solutions Provider®, today announced a partnership. Under the agreement, Carahsoft will serve as HUMAN’s Master Government Aggregator®, making the company’s industry-leading bot, fraud, and account abuse protection services available to the Public Sector through Carahsoft’s reseller partners and National Cooperative Purchasing Alliance (NCPA), E&I Cooperative Services Contract, OMNIA Partners, and The Quilt contracts. “As digital attacks have become increasingly sophisticated and targeted, agencies need a modern defense strategy to protect their operational efficiencies from threats and digital attacks, With the addition of the Human Defense Platform to our cybersecurity offerings, agencies can trust they are protected against digital attacks, fraud and account abuse. We look forward to working with HUMAN and our reseller partners to help our joint customers stay ahead of the threat landscape and protect their organizations from emerging cyber risk.” -Rich Maigue, Sales Director who leads the HUMAN Security Team at Carahsoft. The Human Defense Platform provides advanced technology, profound insights, and full lifecycle approach that rapidly protects many of the world’s largest entities against sophisticated digital attacks including, bots, transaction fraud, account takeover, data exfiltration and system compromises, and other malicious attacks. HUMAN’s software as a service (SaaS) solution is powered by massive observability by verifying the humanity of more than 20 trillion digital interactions a week (over 50% of the global internet population and 3 billion unique devices a month) on behalf of its customers. With this observability advantage and network effect, paired with threat intelligence for continuous adaptation, HUMAN is able to stay ahead of adversaries and disrupt their campaigns while protecting valuable customer and employee data, platforms and applications. Past examples of disruptions in collaboration with the government includes disrupting 3ve bringing together the FBI, Google, Facebook and many others in the industry; and the takedown of Methbot. The first lesson I learned in the Air Force was to always go into battle with a distinct advantage. Unfortunately, when it comes to cybercrime, strategies built around defensive security don’t apply this same principle. At best, many are playing not to lose. HUMAN plays to win. Our unique approach with modern defense leverages internet observability, collective protection across hundreds of customers, and actionable threat intelligence and disruptions, enables us to win against cybercriminals, said Tamer Hassan, HUMAN Co-Founder and CEO, and a former decorated Air Force pilot who served multiple tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan. By partnering with Carahsoft and its reseller partners, we’re able to not only protect Government and military entities and Public Sector institutions from sophisticated bot attacks, fraud, and account abuse, but we’re able to adapt quickly to defend them from threats yet to come. HUMAN’s modern defense approach protects customers along every step of the digital journey. The following featured solutions are part of the Human Defense Platform: HUMAN Bot Defender For digital businesses that need to protect their web and mobile applications and APIs, HUMAN Bot Defender is a behavior-based bot management solution that efficiently detects and mitigates the most sophisticated bot attacks. Unlike competing solutions that provide protection from only basic bot attacks, are hard to integrate and limit your infrastructure choices, HUMAN Bot Defender effortlessly integrates into any existing infrastructure and scales as your traffic grows to safeguard your online revenue and competitive edge. HUMAN Account Defender HUMAN Account Defender safeguards online accounts by detecting and neutralizing compromised and fake accounts on apps and websites. It stops fraud and abuse, reduces customer risk and cuts your fraud team’s workload. Account Defender uses behavioral analysis to continuously monitor accounts post-login for suspicious behavior. It generates an evolving risk score based on all activity in an account rather than relying on a single point-in-time check, such as only at login or at the point of transaction. When a risk threshold is met, automated actions such as locking the account are triggered. Code Defender HUMAN Code Defender is a client-side web application security solution that provides comprehensive real-time visibility and granular control into modern website’s client-side supply chain attack surface. Leveraging behavioral analysis and advanced machine learning, Code Defender identifies vulnerabilities and anomalous behavior to reduce the risk of non-compliance. It provides comprehensive client-side mitigation, partnering granular control over legitimate JavaScript with Content Security Policy (CSP) mitigation capabilities to identify high risk PII, PCI and vulnerability incidents. About HUMAN: HUMAN is a cybersecurity company that safeguards 500+ customers from sophisticated bot attacks, fraud and account abuse. We leverage modern defense—internet visibility, network effect, and disruptions—to enable our customers to increase ROI and trust while decreasing end-user friction, data contamination, and cybersecurity exposure. Today we verify the humanity of more than 20 trillion digital interactions per week across advertising, marketing, e-commerce, government, education and enterprise security, putting us in a position to win against cybercriminals. Protect your digital business with HUMAN. About Carahsoft: Carahsoft Technology Corp. is The Trusted Government IT Solutions Provider®, supporting Public Sector organizations across Federal, State and Local Government agencies and Education and Healthcare markets. As the Master Government Aggregator® for our vendor partners, we deliver solutions for Cybersecurity, MultiCloud, DevSecOps, Big Data, Artificial Intelligence, Open Source, Customer Experience and Engagement, and more. Working with resellers, systems integrators and consultants, our sales and marketing teams provide industry leading IT products, services and training through hundreds of contract vehicles.

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GOVERNMENT INSURANCE, INFRASTRUCTURE

Cartegraph and Center for Digital Government Share Results of Infrastructure Funding and Technology Survey

Cartegraph | October 31, 2022

Cartegraph released findings from its inaugural “State of Infrastructure Funding and Technology” research report today. The organization partnered with the Center for Digital Government to survey hundreds of U.S. state and local government leaders on their jurisdictions’ pressing infrastructure needs and readiness to utilize federal funding. The survey findings revealed challenges in leveraging new funding sources and concerns surrounding deferred maintenance, workforce shortages and outdated technology. Seventy-three percent of respondents indicated the most pressing need for improving the condition of their jurisdiction’s infrastructure is funding—both for maintenance and new projects. However, 63% of those surveyed reported that their community is not fully prepared to apply for and use federal funds. The most common challenges in leveraging funds for infrastructure were staffing (38%), identifying funding (33%), applying for funding (31%), out-of-date technology or equipment (25%), and identifying or prioritizing needs (24%). Among the survey’s other key findings: In Need of Improvement: Sixty-three percent of respondents rated their infrastructure as fair or worse. Roads (58%), broadband (35%), bridges and tunnels (34%), stormwater (34%), and buildings and facilities (34%) were identified as the top five infrastructure areas in need of improvement. Fix It First: After funding challenges, survey respondents listed addressing their deferred maintenance backlog as their next most pressing need. Three in four respondents involved with infrastructure projects reported deferred maintenance costs as a concern. Staffing Shortage Woes: More than one in three respondents faces staffing challenges. Finance departments are particularly under pressure, with 48% reporting staffing issues. Behind the Times: Jurisdictions still rely on outdated technology to track and manage assets according to respondents at least somewhat involved in infrastructure projects. Forty-eight percent of those surveyed rely on spreadsheets, 34% use paper records and 12% have no system in place. Technology Impacts Performance: Those using off-the-shelf or custom software to manage their infrastructure were 42% more likely to rate their processes and systems as good or better. Those using spreadsheets and paper records were over 2.5 times as likely to report their processes and systems as poor or worse. Further, those using off-the-shelf or custom software were 46% more likely to rate the overall condition of their infrastructure as good or better. Those using spreadsheets and paper records were 36% more likely to report the condition as poor or worse. For a complete report of findings, respondent demographics, expert quotes and additional resources, please visit cartegraph.com/infrastructure. About Cartegraph: Cartegraph, an OpenGov company, builds safer, more resilient and sustainable communities through better stewardship of buildings and critical infrastructure. They offer powerful, intuitive SaaS solutions that help government agencies, utilities and educational institutions manage their physical assets and associated operations. With Cartegraph software, users optimize the life of their infrastructure, deploy maintenance resources efficiently and increase productivity to drive high-performance operations. About the Center for Digital Government: The Center for Digital Government is a national research and advisory institute on information technology policies and best practices in state and local government. Through its diverse and dynamic programs and services, the Center provides public and private sector leaders with decision support, knowledge, and opportunities to help them effectively incorporate new technologies in the 21st century.

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EMERGING TECHNOLOGY

Cyara Awarded a Place on Crown Commercial Service’s G-Cloud 13

Cyara | November 14, 2022

Cyara, provider of the award-winning Automated Customer Experience (CX) Assurance Platform, today announced that it has been named as a supplier on Crown Commercial Service’s (CCS) G-Cloud 13 agreement. Launching on 9th November, G-Cloud 13 will provide the UK central government departments and all other public sector bodies with a range of cloud hosting and software services, together with associated support services. Replacing G-Cloud 12, G-Cloud 13 builds upon its predecessor’s framework, providing the public sector with access to multiple suppliers and cloud services with the latest cloud technologies and innovations—all with a quick and easy route to market. Cyara can be found in Lot 2, Cloud Software (SaaS), and offers the following products and services: Cyara Botium for Public Sector - Conversational AI/Chatbot Testing Cyara Cruncher for Public Sector - CX Performance Testing Cyara Velocity for Public Sector - CX Regression Testing Cyara Pulse for Public Sector - CX Monitoring Organisations procuring Cyara’s services through G-Cloud 13 will benefit from its support with migration for any cloud contact centre provider — including Amazon Connect and Genesys Cloud. In addition, Cyara offers automated testing, monitoring, and quality assurance across omni-channel CX technologies, including IVRs and chatbots, ensuring organisations can provide a consistently smooth customer experience, whilst reducing cost. “The UK public sector faces twin challenges: it needs to cope with growing demand for services while at the same time prepare for significant budget cuts, Cloud-based contact centres and chatbots help meet these challenges, but only if they work optimally – otherwise they can negatively impact the citizen experience and end up wasting taxpayers' money. By automating testing and monitoring, Cyara’s CX assurance solutions remove these risks, helping service providers innovate faster, boost efficiency and ensure a high-quality experience for all their users.” -Alok Kulkarni, CEO and Co-Founder at Cyara. About Cyara’s Automated CX Assurance Platform: The award-winning Cyara Automated CX Assurance Platform enables companies to deliver better CX with less effort, cost, and risk. Cyara supports the entire CX software development lifecycle, from design to functional and regression testing, load testing, chatbot testing and production monitoring, ensuring enterprises can build flawless customer journeys across voice and digital channels. About Cyara: Cyara is the world’s leading Automated Customer Experience (CX) Assurance platform, headquartered in Silicon Valley. Cyara’s cloud-based omnichannel assurance solutions for voice quality and chatbot testing accelerate the delivery of flawless customer journeys for enterprises while reducing the risk of customer-facing defects. Every day, major global brands trust the Cyara Platform to deliver customer smiles at scale. About Crown Commercial Service: Crown Commercial Service (CCS) supports the public sector to achieve maximum commercial value when procuring common goods and services. In 2021/22, CCS helped the public sector to achieve commercial benefits equal to £2.8 billion – supporting world-class public services that offer best value for taxpayers.

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