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Timothy B. Lee

Timothy B. Lee

Timothy B. Lee covers technology policy, including copyright and patent law, telecom regulation, privacy, and free speech. He also writes about the economics of technology. He has previously written for Ars Technica and Forbes. You can follow him on Twitter or send him email.

Brian Fung

Brian Fung

Brian Fung covers technology for The Washington Post, focusing on electronic privacy, national security, digital politics and the Internet that binds it all together. He was previously the technology correspondent for National Journal and an associate editor at the Atlantic. His writing has also appeared in Foreign Policy, Talking Points Memo, the American Prospect and Nonprofit Quarterly. Follow Brian on Google+ .

Andrea Peterson

Andrea Peterson

Andrea Peterson covers technology policy for The Washington Post, with an emphasis on cybersecurity, consumer privacy, transparency, surveillance and open government. She also delves into the societal impacts of technology access and how innovation is intertwined with cultural development.

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Posted at 09:24 AM ET, 02/01/2012

The Circuit: Cybersecurity, Facebook, digital tools in schools

LEADING THE DAY: The House subcommittee on cybersecurity will mark up the Promoting and Enhancing Cybersercurity and Information Sharing Effectiveness (PrECISE) Act, which has provisions to secure infrastructure, such as utility grids and financial services systems, from cyberattack.

The bill would task the Department of Homeland Security with assessing threats to these systems and create a separate, quasi-governmental office to coordinate information between the private sector and the government.

Facebook filing for IPO?: Facebook is expected to file its S-1 paperwork Wednesday in preparation to become a publicly traded company. Of particular interest to policy wonks should be the section of the filing on possible risk factors, which could include privacy legislation or regulation.

Facebook recently settled with the Federal Trade Commission over privacy concerns, which could help it as the social network as it heads into its IPO. But Facebook executives have expressed concerns that privacy legislation could hamper innovation.

Digital tools in schools: Federal Communications Commission Chairman Julius Genachowski and Education Secretary Arne Duncan will talk about how best to pull American schools into the digital age at the Newseum in Washington on Wednesday.

The town hall event will profile teachers around the country who are effectively using technology in the classroom and will also feature a video from Sal Khan, the founder of the YouTube-based Khan Academy, which enables educators and others to produce lessons for the Web.

Microsoft targets Google with ads: Capitalizing off of the backlash Google is facing over the company’s new privacy policy, Microsoft is rolling out new ads saying that the company provides more privacy choices. Microsoft, which is trying to compete with Google in the smartphone and tablet markets, says that it’s not as interested in collecting data for behavioral advertising.

Lawmakers say Google questions remain: Lawmakers said Tuesday that they still have questions regarding Google’s privacy policies after receiving an explanatory letter from the company.

Reps. Cliff Stearns (R-Fla.) and Ed Markey (D-Mass.) said they had lingering concerns about the policy, particularly about whether the company will allow its account holders to opt out of data collection and integration between its services. Stearns praised Google for responding quickly and simplifying its policies but said that he would like Google to brief lawmakers before the policy goes into effect March 1.

In his statement, Markey said that while he understands that integrating data makes good business sense for Google, the policy “undermines privacy safeguards” in place for consumers.

In the firm’s letter, Google’s director of public policy, Pablo Chavez, acknowledged the lawmakers’ concerns.

“Some have expressed concern about whether consumers can opt out of our updated privacy policy,” Chavez wrote. “We understand the question at the heart of this concern. We believe the relevant issue is whether users have choices about how their data is collected and used.”

By  |  09:24 AM ET, 02/01/2012

 
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