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North Dakota CIO heads to the crypto mines

Shawn Riley, North Dakota’s CIO for the past six years, is resigning to join the cryptocurrency-mining company Bitzero International as its new CEO of American operations, Gov. Doug Burgum announced yesterday. During Riley’s tenure, North Dakota became the first state to authorize a shared-service approach to cybersecurity across state government, operating a network that now has more than 250,000 daily users across 400 public entities. North Dakota was also the founding member of the Joint Cybersecurity Operations Command Center. Riley's new company, Bitzero, is backed in part by "Shark Tank" co-host Kevin O'Leary. Lindsay McKenzie has the story.

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New York's new privacy officer looks to build trust

New York State's first-ever chief privacy officer, Michele Jones, told StateScoop yesterday that she plans to spend the first several months in her new role evaluating data-privacy frameworks and determining which best suits New York’s sprawling state government. She said the goal is to give the state’s more than 19 million residents assurances that the data they share with agencies is safe. “Agencies don’t need to share all their data,” Jones said. “There’s a lot of talk to create one big database.” Benjamin Freed reports.

State legislature among recent targets of Chinese APT

A long-running Chinese-linked cyberespionage group targeted a U.S. state legislature’s network in July, marking the outfit’s first confirmed attack against the U.S. in years, according to analysis published today by Symantec. The threat group, alternatively known as Budworm or APT27, among other names, took advantage of two Log4j vulnerabilities to compromise Apache Tomcat service on servers and install web shells. From there, the group's operators used their access to install malware and remote access trojans. CyberScoop's AJ Vicens reports.

'National Accuracy Clearinghouse' for SNAP data could challenge some states, local governments

The Department of Agriculture is finally moving forward with the National Accuracy Clearinghouse, an interstate data system to identify individuals receiving duplicate Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program benefits. In an interim final rule, published earlier this month, the USDA outlines how the clearinghouse will help identify individuals receiving SNAP benefits from multiple states and applicants providing inaccurate information to benefits administrators. The USDA says the system will improve program efficacy and save $463 million over five years, while also creating safeguards that prevent SNAP recipients from having their benefits mistakenly taken away. States have five years to come into compliance, but achieving that may prove burdensome, experts told StateScoop. Lindsay dives into the issue.

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