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How to: close the digital divide

The National Association of Counties published a report Wednesday outlining for local governments some of the steps they can take to improve access to high-speed internet as the health crisis winds down. J.D. Clark, a judge in Wise County, Texas, who helped develop the work, said it's a "deep dive" into the work ahead for elected officials, internet service providers and community members. Ryan Johnston breaks it down.

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Cyber task force with a mission

Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly this week created a cybersecurity task force with the aim of protecting the state from an increasingly fierce barrage of cyberattacks. The 15-member group, which includes state Chief Information Technology Officer DeAngela Burns-Wallace, is tasked with developing a “comprehensive plan” to protect the state’s networks and digital services. The group forms as the software publisher Kaseya this week rebooted its servers after a ransomware attack disrupted services for its many private- and public-sector customers. Colin Wood has the story.

By land and air

The public-safety tech firm Carbyne on Wednesday announced a new partnership with Edgybees, which makes software that handles aerial footage from drones and manned aircraft. The partnership, the companies’ chief executives told StateScoop, will provide public safety officials using Carbyne’s platform an aerial view of the scenes where they’re responding. Colin has this one.

Gold and silver certs

Bloomberg Philanthropies recognized 16 city governments, including Detroit, Minneapolis and Portland, Oregon, for their work to become more data-driven during the COVID-19 pandemic, the nonprofit announced on Wednesday. The 16 cities were newly certified by What Works Cities, the philanthropy’s data initiative, as local governments with exceptionally sophisticated data-analysis programs and transparent public-data practices. Ryan has more.

Don't forget to scan

The nonprofit National Cybersecurity Center last week launched an app to promote cybersecurity hygiene among state lawmakers. The “NCC-Resolute Cybersecurity app” contains a collection of best practices and cybersecurity resources, including incident-response plan templates, cybersecurity hygiene checklists, FAQs, a glossary of common cybersecurity terms, and a cybersecurity-vulnerability assessment. Ryan has more details.

How does that make you feel?

New Orleans is using data and social-media analysis to gauge how residents want the city to spend $375 million in federal stimulus funding, while quelling concerns of corruption or misuse that still exist from the city’s Hurricane Katrina recovery. The city government is working with ZenCity, a firm that trawls social media to understand how residents feel about various issues. "We all know that there’s an expectation we’re all corrupt, selfish, lazy jerks, and we know that’s a narrative we’re going to have to manage,” said Liana Elliot, the city’s deputy chief of staff. Get the full story.

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