DHS report makes recommendations for greater open source software use in government

A report commissioned by the Homeland Security Department's Science and Technology Directorate says barriers to using and developing open source software must be addressed as IT budgets across government continue to tighten.

Security and the perceptions of security are just as problematic as "non-security" challenges to open source software, or OSS, says the report's authors ñ David Wheeler, a research staff member at the Institute for Defense Analyses, and Tom Dunn, senior research engineer at the Georgia Tech Research Institute.

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Freedom of Information Request Backlog Hits 50,000 at DHS

Those seeking documents from the Department of Homeland Security will likely have to wait for their requests to be filled. According to a new report released this month from the DHS Privacy Office, the agency now has a backlog of more than 50,000 Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests, The Hill reported, with most of those related to immigration records.

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NFOIC’s State FOIA Friday for May 4, 2012

A few state FOIA and local open government news items selected from many of interest that we might or might not have drawn attention to earlier in the week:

NARA Survey Shows Continued Govt-wide Records Mis-Management

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NFOIC’s FOI Friday for April 20, 2012

A few open government and FOIA news items selected from many of interest that we might or might not have drawn attention to earlier:

Jessica Dorrell, Bobby Petrino Scandal Shows Power Of FOIA

Bobby Petrino is just the latest Arkansas coach to reveal a bit too much on a state issued cell phone. Petrino was dismissed by Arkansas athletic director Jeff Long on before his phone records became available, but the revealing records won't make it any easier for him to land his next job.

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Money saved at misdiagnosed veterans’ expense

From Courthouse News Service:

NEW HAVEN (CN) – The Vietnam Veterans of America says the Pentagon has "systematically and wrongfully discharged" more than 22,000 veterans since 2001 "on the basis of so-called 'personality disorder'" – rather than post-traumatic stress disorder – to deny them medical care and save the Pentagon $12.5 billion in medical and disability payments.

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DHS program to monitor social media users draws lawsuit

From Nextgov:

Privacy advocates are suing the Homeland Security Department to obtain information on a program that monitors the social media interactions of citizens following a federal vendor's private sector plans to sabotage certain groups' online activities with similar technology.

Homeland Security officials have expanded an ongoing initiative that tracks public online communications in the interests of public safety, according a February DHS notice.

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