The US Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) this week announced it is delaying pending deployments of the Oracle Cerner electronic health record (EHR) system until June 2023 because of ongoing problems with the system.
"Right now, the Oracle Cerner electronic health record system is not delivering for Veterans or VA health care providers – and we are holding Oracle Cerner and ourselves accountable to get this right,” said Deputy Secretary of Veterans Affairs Donald Remy, in a statement.
Remy said VA is halting all electronic health record deployments to assess how the systems perform and to address patient concerns.
"Veterans and clinicians deserve a seamless, modernized health record system, and we will not rest until they get it," he said.
The EHR system has numerous problems, according to government reports. Among them is its tendency to route medical orders into "the unknown queue" where they languish unnoticed by medical staff.
The purpose for this queue is to allow the system to accept orders from healthcare providers that cannot be routed to the intended location. It consists of a drop-down menu containing a list of locations that, depending on the nature of the order, do not get mapped to an real location. These orders, associated with no place in particular, would end up in an unknown queue and would not get seen or processed by care providers. It's as if the system allowed patients to be scheduled for surgery at Hogwarts or to submit support tickets to /dev/null.
Screenshot of Oracle Cerner EHR system highlighting locations that don't actually exist ... Click to enlarge
Cerner, based in North Kansas City, Missouri, was awarded a $10 billion contract to modernize the VA's EHR system in 2018; Oracle, based in Redwood Shores, California, acquired the health technology company on June 8, 2022.
Cerner's VA engagement is not the first to run into headwinds. In 2015, the company won a $4.3 billion EHR modernization contract from the US Department of Defense. At a June 26, 2018 hearing before the House Committee on Veterans' Affairs, Beto O'Rourke, then a US Representative for Texas, cited an April 30, 2018 Defense Department report [PDF] that contained 156 complaints of critical deficiencies with the Cerner's Military Health System GENESIS deployment for the military.
"There were reports that clinicians literally quit because they were terrified that they might hurt or even kill one of their patients," Rep. O'Rourke (D) said, addressing then Acting Secretary of Veterans Affairs Peter O'Rourke. "The user score out of a possible 100 was 37."
The Pentagon continues to defend and deploy the system, though it remains a work-in-progress [PDF].
The VA healthcare system makeover faces similar issues, including latency and slow response times, and problems with patient scheduling, referrals, medication management, and assorted medical orders.
It's been delayed three times under the Biden administration. In July 2022, VA Secretary Denis McDonough postponed EHR deployments until January 2023 to ensure that the record system's issues had been resolved. And in July 2021, the VA decided to delay deployments at additional sites for six month after problems surfaced at its initial deployment in Spokane, Washington. The project was also delayed twice under the Trump administration.
The new EHR system, already operational at five locations, is slated to be deployed at 25 VA Medical Centers in FY 2023. Before that happens, serious problems need to be ironed out.
A July report from the VA Inspector General found more than a thousand safety events and at least one "catastrophic patient harm" attributed to system shortcomings.
"From October 24, 2020, through May 8, 2022, VHA [Veterans Health Administration] identified 1,134 total patient safety events related to the new EHR," said VA Deputy Inspector General David Case in a statement [PDF] for a July Senate hearing. "VHA’s analysis identified one catastrophic patient harm (death or major permanent loss of function) and two major patient harm cases (permanent lessening of bodily functioning), one of which was related to the unknown queue."
Oracle did not respond to a request for comment on Friday. ®
Microsoft Print to PDF option can help you save a webpage as PDF via any browser like Edge, Chrome, etc., and it is an in-built tool included in Windows 11/10. However, if you want to show or hide Microsoft Print to PDF printer in Windows 11/10, you can follow this tutorial. There are multiple methods you can follow, and they will let you get the same job done.
To show or hide Microsoft Print to PDF printer, use these tools or methods:
To learn more about these methods, continue reading.
It is possible to use the Command Prompt to remove or hide Microsoft Print to PDF option while saving a webpage to PDF or printing a document in Windows 10. Not only the Microsoft Print to PDF, but also you can remove almost any visible and non-connected print using this Command Prompt method.
To get started, open Command Prompt on your computer. For that, you can search for cmd in the Taskbar search box and click on the individual result. After that, type the following command and press the Enter button:
printui.exe /dl /n "Microsoft Print to PDF"
Once done, you will no longer be able to find Microsoft Print to PDF while printing a document or anything else. If you want to hide another printer, you have to replace Microsoft Print to PDF with the original name of the desired printer.
Like Command Prompt, you can use Windows PowerShell to hide or remove Microsoft Print to PDF option from the list of printers. As usual, you can use the same (with minor customization) command to remove any other printer that you no longer use on your Windows 10 computer.
To get started with the Windows PowerShell method, search for powershell in the Taskbar search box, and click on the respective search result. Then, type the following command and press the Enter button:
Remove-Printer -Name "Microsoft Print to PDF"
Note: If you use the Command Prompt or Windows PowerShell method to hide or remove the Microsoft Print to PDF printer, you have to use the Windows Features panel to remove and add the printer when you want to get it back. In other words, you can follow the fifth guide mentioned in the list here.
Read: Print to PDF is missing
Devices and Printers, in Control Panel, is such panel, where you can find all the connected devices, such as your monitor/s, mouse, speakers, fax machine, printers, etc. It is possible to manage those devices from this panel to not have to navigate to different paths for different devices.
Like said, you can add a new device and remove one when needed with the help of Devices and Printers. In other words, it is possible to remove Microsoft Print to PDF printer from Windows 10 using this section in Control Panel.
To get started, search for the control panel in the Taskbar search box and open the Control Panel by clicking the individual result. Make sure that the View by is set to Large icons. If so, click on the Devices and Printers option.
Next, right-click on the Microsoft Print to PDF printer and select the Remove device option.
Then, click on the Yes button in the confirmation window.
That’s all! Once the process is completed, you can’t find the Microsoft Print to PDF printer anymore.
This method is probably the easiest step you can follow as you can complete it within moments. Like all the other methods, you can remove any installed printer from the list of printers with the help of Windows Settings.
For getting started, you need to open Windows Settings on your computer. For that, you can open the Start Menu and click on the settings gear icon. Alternatively, you can press the Win+I keyboard shortcut to open the same.
Next, go to the Devices section and switch to the Printers & scanners tab. Here you can find all the connected and non-connected printers on your right-hand side. You have to select the Microsoft Print to PDF option and click on the Remove device option/button.
Then, click the Yes option in the confirmation popup.
Read: List Printers using the same printer driver, separately.
All the aforementioned methods help you hide the Microsoft Print to PDF printer temporarily. However, if you want to remove the entire package or feature, remove it from the Windows Features panel.For that, you can search for windows features in the Taskbar search box and click on the Turn Windows features on or off option in the search result.
Remove the tick from the Microsoft Print to PDF checkbox and click the OK button.
It will take some time to complete the process. Once done, you have to restart your computer to finish the step.
After restarting, you won’t find the Microsoft Print to PDF printer in Windows 11/10.
That’s all! Hope these methods helped you.
Read: Ways to Enable or Disable Optional Windows Features.
The MarketWatch News Department was not involved in the creation of this content.
Oct 14, 2022 (The Expresswire) -- Global “HR Core Administration Software Market” (2022-2028) research report offers inside and out examination on market size, share, drivers, limitations, etc. Besides, this report remembers the inexact investigation of various portions for terms of general development, advancement, opportunity, business methodologies, and so on for the gauge time of 2028. The report contains the essentials delivered and headways by various applications Share and The most latest pattern acquiring momentum in the market that builds mindfulness about the HR Core Administration Software market. The report supplies a complete investigation of business angles like worldwide HR Core Administration Software market size, ongoing technological advances, and developments. The examination report comprises of the presentation of the market, vital participants, amazing open doors, restrictions, product and type classification, and large market investigation.
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Market Analysis: Global HR Core Administration Software Market
The global HR Core Administration Software market is projected to reach USD million by 2028 from an estimated USD million in 2022, at a CAGR of % during 2023 and 2028.
Global HR Core Administration Software manufacturers include Automatic Data Processing, LLC, SAP SE, Ultimate Software Group, Inc., Linkedin (Microsoft), Oracle Corporation, Workday, Ceridian HCM, Inc., Kronos, Inc., Infor, IBM Corporation, Cornerstone OnDemand, Paycom Software, Inc., Intuit, SumTotal Systems, LLC (SkillSoft), Sage, Epicor Software, Accenture, Workforce Software, Zenefits, Ramco Systems, EPAY Systems, PeopleStrategy, Inc., etc. The top 2 companies hold a share about 80%. Europe and China are the largest market, with a share both about 40%. In terms of product, synthetic PBO is the largest segment, with a share over %. And in terms of application, the largest application is home pest care, followed by agricultural.
This report aims to provide a comprehensive presentation of the global market for HR Core Administration Software, with both quantitative and qualitative analysis, to help readers develop business/growth strategies, assess the market competitive situation, analyze their position in the current marketplace, and make informed business decisions regarding HR Core Administration Software. The HR Core Administration Software market size, estimations, and forecasts are provided in terms of output/shipments and revenue (millions), considering 2021 as the base year, with history and forecast data for the period from 2017 to 2028. This report segments the global HR Core Administration Software market comprehensively. Regional market sizes, concerning products by types, by application, and by players, are also provided. The influence of COVID-19 and the Russia-Ukraine War were considered while estimating market sizes.
For a more in-depth understanding of the market, the report provides profiles of the competitive landscape, key competitors, and their respective market ranks. The report also discusses technological trends and new product developments.
The report will help the HR Core Administration Software manufacturers, new entrants, and industry chain related companies in this market with information on the revenues, production, and average price for the overall market and the sub-segments across the different segments, by company, product type, application, and regions.
The Global HR Core Administration Software market is anticipated to rise at a considerable rate during the forecast period, between 2022 and 2028. In 2021, the market is growing at a constant rate and with the rising acquisition of strategies by leading players, the market is expected to rise over the projected horizon.
Final Report will add the analysis of the impact of COVID-19 on this industry.
According to our latest study, due to COVID-19 pandemic, the global HR Core Administration Software market size is estimated to be worth in 2021 and is forecast to a readjusted size by 2028 during review period. Online Sales accounting the HR Core Administration Software global market in 2021, is projected to value by 2028, growing in next six years. While HR Core Administration Software segment is altered between 2022 and 2028.
Moreover, it helps new businesses perform a positive assessment of their business plans because it covers a range of courses market participants must be aware of to remain competitive. The readers in the section will understand how the HR Core Administration Software market scenario changed across the globe during the pandemic, post-pandemic and Russia-Ukraine War. The study is done keeping in view the changes in aspects such as demand, consumption, transportation, consumer behavior, supply chain management, export and import, and production. The industry experts have also highlighted the key factors that will help create opportunities for players and stabilize the overall industry in the years to come.
COVID-19 and Russia-Ukraine War Influence Analysis
The readers in the section will understand how the HR Core Administration Software market scenario changed across the globe during the pandemic, post-pandemic and Russia-Ukraine War. The study is done keeping in view the changes in aspects such as demand, consumption, transportation, consumer behavior, supply chain management, export and import, and production. The industry experts have also highlighted the key factors that will help create opportunities for players and stabilize the overall industry in the years to come.
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Key Indicators Analyzed● Market Players and Competitor Analysis: The report covers the key players of the industry including Company Profile, Product Specifications, Production Capacity/Sales, Revenue, Price and Gross Margin 2017-2028 and Sales with a thorough analysis of the market's competitive landscape and detailed information on vendors and comprehensive details of factors that will challenge the growth of major market vendors. ● Global and Regional Market Analysis: The report includes Global and Regional market status and outlook 2017-2028. Further the report provides break down details about each region and countries covered in the report. Identifying its sales, sales volume and revenue forecast. With detailed analysis by types and applications. ● Market Trends: Market key trends which include Increased Competition and Continuous Innovations. ● Opportunities and Drivers: Identifying the Growing Demands and New Technology ● Porters Five Force Analysis: The report provides with the state of competition in industry depending on five basic forces: threat of new entrants, bargaining power of suppliers, bargaining power of buyers, threat of substitute products or services, and existing industry rivalry.
Key Companies and Market Share Insights
In this section, the readers will gain an understanding of the key players competing. This report has studied the key growth strategies, such as innovative trends and developments, intensification of product portfolio, mergers and acquisitions, collaborations, new product innovation, and geographical expansion, undertaken by these participants to maintain their presence. Apart from business strategies, the study includes current developments and key financials. The readers will also get access to the data related to global revenue, price, and sales by manufacturers for the period 2017-2022. This all-inclusive report will certainly serve the clients to stay updated and make effective decisions in their businesses. Some of the prominent players reviewed in the research report include:
List of TOP KEY PLAYERS in HR Core Administration Software Market Report are -
● Automatic Data Processing, LLC
● SAP SE
● Ultimate Software Group, Inc.
● Linkedin (Microsoft)
● Oracle Corporation
● Ceridian HCM, Inc.
● Kronos, Inc.
● IBM Corporation
● Cornerstone OnDemand
● Paycom Software, Inc.
● SumTotal Systems, LLC (SkillSoft)
● Epicor Software
● Workforce Software
● Ramco Systems
● EPAY Systems
● PeopleStrategy, Inc.
The HR Core Administration Software Market is Segmented by Types:
● Core HR and Personnel Management
● Payroll Administration
● Benefits Administration
● Time and Attendance
● Employee Engagement
● Workforce Planning and Analytics
The HR Core Administration Software Market is Segmented by Applications:
● Financial Services
● Professional/Technical Services
HR Core Administration Software Market Technology Analysis:
In the global coronavirus pandemic, remote working had been introduced as a trend. But with the various virus variants and waves hitting the global locations, remote working has become a necessity to keep up with the trends and maintain a proper flow of the supply chain and production mechanism. With the rising investment in the research and development department and activities, the HR Core Administration Software solutions are acting as an efficient resource that goes easy on formatting. To collaborate motivation with efficiency and personal goals with the organizational HR Core Administration Software industry objectives, the HR Core Administration Software market size is implementing strategies so that there is a feeling of belongingness and recognition integrated with the push and need to come up with comprehensive ideas for the global growth of the market during the forecast period that ends in the year 2028.
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Geographically, this report is segmented into several key regions, with sales, revenue, market share and growth Rate of HR Core Administration Software in these regions, from 2021 to 2027, covering● North America (United States, Canada and Mexico) ● Europe (Germany, UK, France, Italy, Russia and Turkey etc.) ● Asia-Pacific (China, Japan, Korea, India, Australia, Indonesia, Thailand, Philippines, Malaysia and Vietnam) ● South America (Brazil, Argentina, Columbia etc.) ● Middle East and Africa (Saudi Arabia, UAE, Egypt, Nigeria and South Africa)
Global HR Core Administration Software Market Regional Analysis
Geographically, the global HR Core Administration Software Market is segmented into North America, Europe, South America, Europe, Asia Pacific and the Middle East and Africa. Research has a leading market share of in 2019. The market volume of HR Core Administration Software in Southeast Asia is largely connected to downstream demand.
The objective of the report is to present a comprehensive analysis of the Global HR Core Administration Software Market including all the stakeholders of the HR Core Administration Software industry. The past and current status of the industry with forecasted market share, size and latest and future trends are presented in the report with the analysis of complicated data in simple language. The report covers all the aspects of the marketing 4.0 industry with a dedicated study of key players that includes industry top leading players, new consumers, shareholders.
Reasons to Buy This Report● This report will help the readers to understand the competition within the industries and strategies for the competitive environment to enhance the potential profit. The report also focuses on the competitive landscape of the global HR Core Administration Software market, and introduces in detail the market share, industry ranking, competitor ecosystem, market performance, new product development, operation situation, expansion, and acquisition. etc. of the main players, which helps the readers to identify the main competitors and deeply understand the competition pattern of the market. ● This report will help stakeholders to understand the global industry status and trends of HR Core Administration Software and provides them with information on key market drivers, restraints, challenges, and opportunities. ● This report will help stakeholders to understand competitors better and gain more insights to strengthen their position in their businesses. The competitive landscape section includes the market share and rank (in volume and value), competitor ecosystem, new product development, expansion, and acquisition. ● This report stays updated with novel technology integration, features, and the latest developments in the market ● This report helps stakeholders to understand the COVID-19 and Russia-Ukraine War Influence on the HR Core Administration Software industry. ● This report helps stakeholders to gain insights into which regions to target globally ● This report helps stakeholders to gain insights into the end-user perception concerning the adoption of HR Core Administration Software. ● This report helps stakeholders to identify some of the key players in the market and understand their valuable contribution.
This HR Core Administration Software Market Research/Analysis Report Contains Answers to your following Questions● Which Manufacturing Technology is used for HR Core Administration Software? What Developments Are Going On in That Technology? Which Trends Are Causing These Developments? ● Who Are the Global Key Players in This HR Core Administration Software Market? What are Their Company Profile, Their Product Information, and Contact Information? ● What Was Global Market Status of HR Core Administration Software Market? What Was Capacity, Production Value, Cost and PROFIT of HR Core Administration Software Market? ● What Is Current Market Status of HR Core Administration Software Industry? What’s Market Competition in This Industry, Both Company, and Country Wise? What’s Market Analysis of HR Core Administration Software Market by Taking Applications and Types in Consideration? ● What Are Projections of Global HR Core Administration Software Industry Considering Capacity, Production and Production Value? What Will Be the Estimation of Cost and Profit? What Will Be Market Share, Supply and Consumption? What about Import and Export? ● What Is HR Core Administration Software Market Chain Analysis by Upstream Raw Materials and Downstream Industry?
An exhaustive and professional study of the global HR Core Administration Software market report has been completed by industry professionals and presented in the most particular manner to present only the details that matter the most. The report mainly focuses on the most dynamic information of the global market.
Purchase this report (Price 2900 USD for single user license)-
Major Points from Table of Contents:
1 HR Core Administration Software Market Overview
1.1 HR Core Administration Software Product Scope
1.2 HR Core Administration Software Segment by Type
1.3 HR Core Administration Software Segment by Application
1.4 HR Core Administration Software Market Estimates and Forecasts (2017-2028)
2 HR Core Administration Software Estimates and Forecasts by Region
2.1 Global HR Core Administration Software Market Size by Region: 2017 VS 2021 VS 2028
2.2 Global HR Core Administration Software Market Scenario by Region (2017-2021)
2.3 Global Market Estimates and Forecasts by Region (2022-2028)
2.4 Geographic Market Analysis: Market Facts and Figures
3 Global HR Core Administration Software Competition Landscape by Players
3.1 Global Top HR Core Administration Software Players by Sales (2017-2021)
3.2 Global Top HR Core Administration Software Players by Revenue (2017-2021)
3.3 Global HR Core Administration Software Market Share by Company Type (Tier 1, Tier 2 and Tier 3) and (based on the Revenue in HR Core Administration Software as of 2020)
3.4 Global HR Core Administration Software Average Price by Company (2017-2021)
3.5 Manufacturers HR Core Administration Software Manufacturing Sites, Area Served, Product Type
3.6 Manufacturers Mergers and Acquisitions, Expansion Plans
4 Global HR Core Administration Software Market Size by Type
4.1 Global HR Core Administration Software Historic Market Review by Type (2017-2021)
4.2 Global Market Estimates and Forecasts by Type (2022-2028)
4.2.3 Global Price Forecast by Type (2022-2028)
5 Global HR Core Administration Software Market Size by Application
5.1 Global HR Core Administration Software Historic Market Review by Application (2017-2021)
5.2 Global Market Estimates and Forecasts by Application (2022-2028)
6 North America HR Core Administration Software Market Facts and Figures
6.1 North America HR Core Administration Software by Company
6.2 North America HR Core Administration Software Breakdown by Type
6.3 North America HR Core Administration Software Breakdown by Application
7 Europe HR Core Administration Software Market Facts and Figures
8 China HR Core Administration Software Market Facts and Figures
9 Japan HR Core Administration Software Market Facts and Figures
10 Southeast Asia HR Core Administration Software Market Facts and Figures
11 India HR Core Administration Software Market Facts and Figures
12 Company Profiles and Key Figures in HR Core Administration Software Business
13 HR Core Administration Software Manufacturing Cost Analysis
13.1 HR Core Administration Software Key Raw Materials Analysis
13.1.1 Key Raw Materials
13.1.2 Key Raw Materials Price Trend
13.1.3 Key Suppliers of Raw Materials
13.2 Proportion of Manufacturing Cost Structure
13.3 Manufacturing Process Analysis of HR Core Administration Software
13.4 HR Core Administration Software Industrial Chain Analysis
14 Marketing Channel, Distributors and Customers
14.1 Marketing Channel
14.2 HR Core Administration Software Distributors List
14.3 HR Core Administration Software Customers
15 Market Dynamics
15.1 HR Core Administration Software Market Trends
15.2 HR Core Administration Software Drivers
15.3 HR Core Administration Software Market Challenges
15.4 HR Core Administration Software Market Restraints
Browse complete table of contents at -
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To view the original version on The Express Wire visit HR Core Administration Software Market Trends, Size, Share, Top Players, Opportunities, Revenue, Regional Analysis, Future Growth by 2022-2028
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Daniel Hatter began writing professionally in 2008. His writing focuses on courses in computers, Web design, software development and technology. He earned his Bachelor of Arts in media and game development and information technology at the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater.
Election workers in US battleground states have been hit by a surge in phishing and malware-laced emails in the run up to their primaries and the upcoming 2022 midterm elections.…
That's according to Trellix security researchers, who said malicious emails sent to Arizona county election workers rose 78 percent, from 617 to 1,101, between the first and second quarter of the year, ahead of the state's August 2 primary. Those emails continued ramping, jumping 104 percent to 2,246 messages, by the third quarter of 2022.
In Pennsylvania, Trellix said it detected 1,168 malicious emails targeting county election workers in Q4 of 2021 and 4,460 in the first quarter of 2022 — a 282 percent spike. By the end of the second quarter of this year, the number grew another 69 percent to 7,555.
Pennsylvania held its primary election on May 17.
County-level workers managing election infrastructure are assumed to be "relatively the least sophisticated" of election organizers when it comes to cybersecurity defenses, hence the need to take a look at the threats and risks they face today, Team Trellix argued.
The security outfit said it has found no evidence of compromised election systems in any US state or county, and it has not yet attributed the phishing emails to a particular cybercrime gang or nation state.
"Our investigations into 2022 election-related cyber activity are ongoing and we will make more information available when possible," Trellix's Patrick Flynn, Fred House, and Rohan Shah said Wednesday.
However, the increase in cyberthreats against county election authorities coincides with a rise in physical threats and harassment against state and county workers as the November midterm elections draw closer.
"Our findings suggest the continuing effort to educate frontline election workers on phishing and other cyberthreats in the digital realm could be as important as security measures required to protect them in the physical realm in 2022 and beyond," the Trellix trio wrote.
The phishing schemes had two goals: stealing election worker credentials or delivering malware, which could allow access to other systems across the network.
Let's start with the credential-stealing phishes because, as John Podesta can attest to, falling victim to a phishing attack that compromises your email while in a pivotal political role rarely ends well.
According to Trellix, miscreants crafted and sent out phony password expiration alerts to trick election workers into clicking on a malicious link that took them to a website masquerading as an account administration page. Once they're on the bogus webpage, election workers are prompted to enter their work usernames and passwords and then change their passwords, if they want.
The attacker thus has the login credentials and can use them to access whatever election documents or voter records, depending on a particular election worker's access levels.
"The attacker could send voters incorrect election process information to mislead them into invalidating their votes or create confusion in the lead up to election day that undermines their confidence in the process," the researchers warned.
The login name and passwords could also be used to "identify other officials via organizational contact lists and use them to target individuals who might have higher level access to more critical election and voting tabulation processes."
And if that is all too much trouble, they could always sell the stolen credentials on dark web forums — Russian, Chinese, and Iranian nation-state backed gangs looking to target US midterms may want to bid on that info, if they don't already have it.
A second phishing scam the security shop observed used a trusted email thread — either a compromised message or a forged one — between an election worker and government contractor tasked with distributing absentee ballot applications.
Because the email appears to come from a trusted source, the election worker will be more likely to click on a malicious link or obtain a malware-laden file. Or at least this is the intended outcome.
Luckily, the scam email was blocked after sensors detected a malicious Microsoft malware download, the security firm said.
"Ultimately, this phishing scheme plays on the election worker's professional and moral commitment to help a trusted contractor struggling to register people to vote," the Trellix team noted. "It relies on the election officials' willingness to perhaps step outside an established submission process and click on the attacker's poisonous link to access the voter applications."
Trellix's latest research comes just days after two joint alerts from the FBI and Homeland Security's CISA warned of phishing emails targeting election workers [PDF] and said foreign agents will likely try to spread disinformation in the lead up to and after the midterms.
"As with previous election cycles, foreign actors continue to knowingly spread false narratives about election infrastructure to promote social discord and distrust in US democratic processes and institutions, and may include attempts to incite violence," the Feds noted [PDF].
CISA also provided a free toolkit to state and local election officials that aims to Improve their security posture and help them educate their employees and volunteers on how to avoid falling victim to phishing campaigns.
Trellix, for its part, suggests election workers — and everyone, really — should be on high alert for emails with "urgent calls to action," such as password changes.
As we saw with the latest Oktapus cybercrime spree, these are especially effective at stealing credentials and rarely legitimate.
Also, check the sender's email address and make sure the email domain actually belongs to the sender's organization. And, as always, don't trust files or links from unknown sources.
"The election worker should also be wary of anyone sending mysterious obtain or website links that really are not necessary given that completed applications can be sent via email or uploaded through the administrators' established websites," the researchers noted.
"Any effort to suggest workers should step out of the established processes to use a obtain link or go to a random web page should be questioned." ®
The Biden administration unveiled a set of far-reaching goals Tuesday aimed at averting harms caused by the rise of artificial intelligence systems, including guidelines for how to protect people’s personal data and limit surveillance.
The Blueprint for an AI Bill of Rights notably does not set out specific enforcement actions, but instead is intended as a White House call to action for the U.S. government to safeguard digital and civil rights in an AI-fueled world, officials said.
“This is the Biden-Harris administration really saying that we need to work together, not only just across government, but across all sectors, to really put equity at the center and civil rights at the center of the ways that we make and use and govern technologies,” said Alondra Nelson, deputy director for science and society at the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy. “We can and should expect better and demand better from our technologies.”
The office said the white paper represents a major advance in the administration’s agenda to hold technology companies accountable, and highlighted various federal agencies’ commitments to weighing new rules and studying the specific impacts of AI technologies. The document emerged after a year-long consultation with more than two dozen different departments, and also incorporates feedback from civil society groups, technologists, industry researchers and tech companies including Palantir and Microsoft.
It suggests five core principles that the White House says should be built into AI systems to limit the impacts of algorithmic bias, provide users control over their data and ensure that automated systems are used safely and transparently.
The resulting non-binding principles cite academic research, agency studies and news reports that have documented real-world harms from AI-powered tools, including facial recognition tools that contributed to wrongful arrests and an automated system that discriminated against loan seekers who attended a Historically Black College or University.
The white paper also said parents and social workers alike could benefit from knowing if child welfare agencies were using algorithms to help decide when families should be investigated for maltreatment.
Earlier this year after the publication of an AP review of an algorithmic tool used in a Pennsylvania child welfare system, OSTP staffers reached out to sources quoted in the article to learn more, according to multiple people who participated in the call. AP’s investigation found that the Allegheny County tool in its first years of operation showed a pattern of flagging a disproportionate number of Black children for a “mandatory” neglect investigation, when compared with white children.
In May, sources said Carnegie Mellon University researchers and staffers from the American Civil Liberties Union spoke with OSTP officials about child welfare agencies’ use of algorithms. Nelson said protecting children from technology harms remains an area of concern.
“If a tool or an automated system is disproportionately harming a vulnerable community, there should be, one would hope, that there would be levers and opportunities to address that through some of the specific applications and prescriptive suggestions,” said Nelson, who also serves as deputy assistant to President Joe Biden.
OSTP did not provide additional comment about the May meeting.
Still, because many AI-powered tools are developed, adopted or funded at the state and local level, the federal government has limited oversight regarding their use. The white paper makes no specific mention of how the Biden administration could influence specific policies at state or local levels, but a senior administration official said the administration was exploring how to align federal grants with AI guidance.
The white paper does not have power over the tech companies that develop the tools nor does it include any new legislative proposals. Nelson said agencies would continue to use existing rules to prevent automated systems from unfairly disadvantaging people.
The white paper also did not specifically address AI-powered technologies funded through the Department of Justice, whose civil rights division separately has been examining algorithmic harms, bias and discrimination, Nelson said.
Tucked between the calls for greater oversight, the white paper also said when appropriately implemented, AI systems have the power to bring about lasting benefits to society, such as helping farmers grow food more efficiently or identifying diseases.
“Fueled by the power of American innovation, these tools hold the potential to redefine every part of our society and make life better for everyone. This important progress must not come at the price of civil rights or democratic values,” the document said.
Linda Emma is a long-standing writer and editor. She is also a digital marketing professional and published author with more than 20 years experience in media and business. She works as a content manager and professional writing tutor at a private New England college. She holds a bachelor's degree in journalism from Northeastern University.
The Biden administration is scaling back its debt relief program for millions of Americans over concerns about legal challenges from the student loan industry as well as a new lawsuit from Republican-led states.
In a reversal, the Education Department said on Thursday it would no longer allow borrowers who have federal student loans that are owned by private entities to qualify for the relief program. The administration had previously said those borrowers would have a path to receive up to $10,000 or $20,000 of loan forgiveness.
The policy change comes as the Biden administration this week faces its first major legal challenges to the loan forgiveness program, which Republicans have railed against as an illegal use of executive power that is too costly for taxpayers.
On Thursday, a group of six GOP attorneys general sued to block loan forgiveness. The states of Arkansas, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, and South Carolina asked a federal judge to strike down the debt cancellation program, arguing that it’s illegal and unconstitutional.
The student loans that are guaranteed by the federal government but held by private entities account for a relatively small, and shrinking, subset of all outstanding federal student debt. They comprise just several million of the roughly 45 million Americans with federal student loans.
But there are significant business interests that depend on the federally guaranteed loan program — a wide range of private lenders, banks, guaranty agencies, loan servicers and investors. That industry is widely seen, both inside and outside the administration, as presenting the greatest legal risk to the debt relief program.
Many of those companies face economic losses when they lose borrowers who convert their federally guaranteed loans into new loans that are made directly by the Education Department through a process known as consolidation.
Administration officials said when they announced the debt relief program in August that borrowers with federally guaranteed loans should consolidate their loans in order to receive loan forgiveness.
The Education Department said Thursday that borrowers who already took those steps to receive loan forgiveness would still receive it. The agency said it would still provide debt relief to borrowers “who have applied to consolidate into the Direct Loan program prior to Sept. 29, 2022.” But the department said that path is no longer available to borrowers after the new guidance.
“Our goal is to provide relief to as many eligible borrowers as quickly and easily as possible, and this will allow us to achieve that goal while we continue to explore additional legally available options to provide relief to borrowers with privately owned FFEL loans and Perkins loans, including whether FFEL borrowers could receive one-time debt relief without needing to consolidate,” an Education Department spokesperson said in a statement.
The privately held federal student loans featured prominently in the new lawsuit filed by GOP attorneys general on Thursday.
The lawsuit, filed in federal court in Missouri, is based, in part, on the theory that the states are harmed directly by the Biden administration taking steps to forgive federal student loans held by private entities.
For example, in the lawsuit, Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt argues that the Missouri Higher Education Loan Authority, a quasi-state entity, which owns and services federally guaranteed student loans, faces economic harm from the debt relief program.
Nebraska Attorney General Doug Peterson argues in the lawsuit that some of his state’s pension fund is invested in securities that are backed by federally guaranteed loans. The lawsuit says the Biden relief program could cut in half the size of that market and hurt the state’s investments in it.
Some of the other states, however, argue that the entire student debt relief program — not just the federally guaranteed part — will cause them economic injury. They argue they’ll face lost tax revenue as a result of Biden’s student debt relief program for all types of federal student loans.
The Education Department spokesperson said the policy change would affect "only a small percentage of borrowers.” The most latest federal data, as of June 30, shows there were 4.1 million federal borrowers with $108.8 billion of loans held by private lenders.
Administration officials argued that the policy change would directly affect far fewer than millions of borrowers because a large share of the borrowers were never set to receive the relief in the first place or have other avenues to obtain relief.
Some 1.6 million borrowers with privately held federal student loans also have a direct loan, according to an administration official. Those borrowers will still be able to obtain debt relief on their direct loan, the official said, though it is possible that they will receive less overall relief.
Another 1.5 million borrowers have a certain type of privately held federal loan — an FFEL consolidation loan — would have faced a complex process for making their loans eligible for relief, according to an administration official.
Combined with some additional drop-off for borrowers who exceed the income limits of the program, administration officials argue that only about 770,000 borrowers would be directly affected by the policy change.
Earlier this month, the Biden administration released data estimating that 42.4 million borrowers across the country would be eligible for its debt relief program.
It’s not clear why the Biden administration decided on Thursday to pull the plug on allowing the subset of federal student loan borrowers to participate in the program. Industry officials and a wide range of policy experts had long warned — even before the administration’s August announcement — about the legal complexities associated with the federal government forgiving federally guaranteed student loans.
Top Education Department officials and industry groups had for weeks been negotiating a compromise deal in which the companies were compensated for their losses and would avoid suing the administration over the issue.
Those discussions have not yet produced a deal, but the administration signaled on Thursday they would continue negotiating.
The Education Department said on its website Thursday it “is assessing whether there are alternative pathways to provide relief to borrowers with federal student loans not held by [the Education Department], including FFEL Program loans and Perkins Loans, and is discussing this with private lenders.”
WARRENTON, N.C. (AP) — President Joe Biden’s top environment official visited what is widely considered the birthplace of the environmental justice movement Saturday to unveil a national office that will distribute $3 billion in block grants to underserved communities burdened by pollution.
Forty years after a predominantly Black community in Warren County, North Carolina, rallied against hosting a hazardous waste landfill, Michael Regan, the first Black man to serve as administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, announced he is dedicating a new senior level of leadership to the environmental justice movement they ignited.
The Office of Environmental Justice and External Civil Rights — comprised of more than 200 current staff members in 10 U.S. regions — will merge three existing EPA programs to oversee a portion of Democrats’ $60 billion investment in environmental justice initiatives created by the Inflation Reduction Act. The president will nominate an assistant administrator to lead the new office, pending Senate confirmation.
“In the past, many of our communities have had to compete for very small grants because EPA’s pot of money was extremely small,” Regan said in an interview. “We’re going from tens of thousands of dollars to developing and designing a program that will distribute billions. But we’re also going to be sure that this money goes to those who need it the most and those who’ve never had a seat at the table.”
Biden has championed environmental justice as a centerpiece of his climate agenda since his first week in office, when he signed an executive order pledging 40% of the overall benefits from certain federal clean energy investments to disadvantaged communities overwhelmed by pollution.
Now, Regan said, this new office intertwines environmental justice with the central fabric of the EPA, equating it to other top offices like air and water, and cementing its principles in a way that will outlive the administration.
North Carolina in 1978 designated Warren County, a small, predominantly Black farming community along the Virginia border, as a disposal site for truckloads of soil laced with highly carcinogenic chemical compounds that later contaminated the water supply.
As the first trucks rolled into town in 1982, hundreds of residents flooded the streets, blocking their path to the landfill. Though they were unable to shut down the operation after six weeks of nonviolent protests and more than 500 arrests, their efforts have been lauded by civil rights leaders as the impetus for a global uprising against environmental racism in minority communities.
Wayne Moseley, 73, was one of the initial protesters arrested on the first day of the demonstration. The Raleigh resident commuted to Warren County to march on behalf of his mother, whose health prevented her from participating. He called Saturday’s ceremony “a homecoming” for himself and many other protesters he hadn’t seen for 40 years.
“We became a family, no Black or white, no rich or poor — we were all one,” Moseley said. “The state was hell-bent on putting that dump site here. I knew we couldn’t stop it, but we could elevate the consciousness of not only the state but the nation.”
Dollie Burwell, a protest leader known in the community as “the mother of the movement,” honored the bravery of her late daughter Kimberly Burwell, who was only 8 years old when she joined her mother on the frontlines.
“She stood up and led so many children in the protests,” Burwell said of her daughter during the ceremony. “She was not afraid of being arrested. But she was afraid of her family and friends getting cancer” from carcinogenic compounds in the soil.
Government officials have routinely targeted low-income communities of color like Warren County to host hazardous waste facilities since the early 1900s. And the neglect of critical infrastructure in predominantly Black communities, ranging from Flint, Michigan, to Jackson, Mississippi, has led to problems still seen today.
An April study by the University of California, Berkeley and Columbia University found that the majority of Black and Latino neighborhoods that received low scores in a discriminatory federal housing program known as redlining were home to twice as many oil wells as majority white communities. According to the Clean Air Task Force, Black Americans are 75% more likely than white Americans to live near a factory or plant and nearly four times as likely to die from exposure to pollutants.
The Rev. Dr. William Barber II, a prominent social activist and leader of the Poor People’s campaign, said he sees Regan's announcement as “a great starting point” and will continue to demand more of the Biden administration.
“Our votes are not support. Our votes are our demands,” Barber said in an interview. “This is not about right versus left, it’s about right versus wrong. This is about a lifestyle versus disability because when you poison the land and the water, you hurt people’s everyday life.”
Regan, who is from Goldsboro, North Carolina, said he grew up listening to local civil rights leaders like Barber and Burwell — the early inspirations for his work at the EPA.
“I’m taking all of these experiences (from my childhood) and matching that with the vision of the president,” Regan said. “We’re using this opportunity to not only honor those who came before us, but we’re building on the work that they started. We’re standing on their shoulders and trying to reach higher heights.”
Just 45 days out from the midterm election, Regan is among several Cabinet members visiting North Carolina this month to promote the president’s achievements, including the visits of Vice President Kamala Harris on Sept. 1 and Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen next Tuesday in Durham. Democrats have set their sights on the Southern swing state as a potential pickup in the narrowly divided U.S. Senate and other key offices.
This version has been updated to clarify that Regan is the first Black man to serve as EPA administrator.
Hannah Schoenbaum is a corps member for the Associated Press/Report for America Statehouse News Initiative. Report for America is a nonprofit national service program that places journalists in local newsrooms to report on undercovered issues. Follow her on Twitter @H_Schoenbaum.
Hackers backed by the North Korean government are weaponizing well-known pieces of open source software in an ongoing campaign that has already succeeded in compromising "numerous" organizations in the media, defense and aerospace, and IT services industries, Microsoft said on Thursday.ZINC—Microsoft's name for a threat actor group also called Lazarus, which is best known for conducting the devastating 2014 compromise of Sony Pictures Entertainment—has been lacing PuTTY and other legitimate open source applications with highly encrypted code that ultimately installs espionage malware.
The hackers then pose as job recruiters and connect with individuals of targeted organizations over LinkedIn. After developing a level of trust over a series of conversations and eventually moving them to the WhatsApp messenger, the hackers instruct the individuals to install the apps, which infect the employees' work environments.
"The actors have successfully compromised numerous organizations since June 2022," members of the Microsoft Security Threat Intelligence and LinkedIn Threat Prevention and Defense teams wrote in a post. "Due to the wide use of the platforms and software that ZINC utilizes in this campaign, ZINC could pose a significant threat to individuals and organizations across multiple sectors and regions."
PuTTY is a popular terminal emulator, serial console, and network file transfer application that supports network protocols, including SSH, SCP, Telnet, rlogin, and raw socket connection. Two weeks ago, security firm Mandiant warned that hackers with ties to North Korea had Trojanized it in a campaign that successfully compromised a customer's network. Thursday's post said the same hackers have also weaponized KiTTY, TightVNC, Sumatra PDF Reader, and muPDF/Subliminal Recording software with code that installs the same espionage malware, which Microsoft has named ZetaNile.
Lazarus was once a ragtag band of hackers with only marginal resources and skills. Over the past decade, its prowess has grown considerably. Its attacks on cryptocurrency exchanges over the past five years have generated billions of dollars for the country's weapons of mass destruction programs. They regularly find and exploit zero-day vulnerabilities in heavily fortified apps and use many of the same malware techniques used by other state-sponsored groups.
The group relies primarily on spear phishing as the initial vector into its victims, but they also use other forms of social engineering and website compromises at times. A common theme is for members to target the employees of organizations they want to compromise, often by tricking or coercing them into installing Trojanized software.
The Trojanized PuTTY and KiTTY apps Microsoft observed use a clever mechanism to ensure that only intended targets get infected and that it doesn't inadvertently infect others. The app installers don't execute any malicious code. Instead, the ZetaNile malware gets installed only when the apps connect to a specific IP address and use login credentials the fake recruiters provide to targets.
The Trojanized PuTTY executable uses a technique called DLL search order hijacking, which loads and decrypts a second-stage payload when presented with the key "0CE1241A44557AA438F27BC6D4ACA246" for use as command and control. Once successfully connected to the C2 server, the attackers can install additional malware on the compromised device. The KiTTY app works the same way.
Like KiTTY and PuTTY, the malicious TightVNC Viewer installs its final payload only when a user selects ec2-aet-tech.w-ada[.]amazonaws from the drop-down menu of pre-populated remote hosts in the TightVNC Viewer.
Thursday's post continued:
The trojanized version of Sumatra PDF Reader named SecurePDF.exe has been utilized by ZINC since at least 2019 and remains a unique ZINC tradecraft. SecurePDF.exe is a modularized loader that can install the ZetaNile implant by loading a weaponized job application themed file with a .PDF extension. The fake PDF contains a header “SPV005”, a decryption key, encrypted second stage implant payload, and encrypted decoy PDF, which is rendered in the Sumatra PDF Reader when the file is opened.
Once loaded in memory, the second stage malware is configured to send the victim’s system hostname and device information using custom encoding algorithms to a C2 communication server as part of the C2 check-in process. The attackers can install additional malware onto the compromised devices using the C2 communication as needed.
The post went on:
Within the trojanized version of muPDF/Subliminal Recording installer, setup.exe is configured to check if the file path ISSetupPrerequisites\Setup64.exe exists and write C:\colrctl\colorui.dll on disk after extracting the embedded executable inside setup.exe. It then copies C:\Windows\System32\ColorCpl.exe to C:\ColorCtrl\ColorCpl.exe. For the second stage malware, the malicious installer creates a new process C:\colorctrl\colorcpl.exe C3A9B30B6A313F289297C9A36730DB6D, and the argument C3A9B30B6A313F289297C9A36730DB6D gets passed on to colorui.dll as a decryption key. The DLL colorui.dll, which Microsoft is tracking as the EventHorizon malware family, is injected into C:\Windows\System\credwiz.exe or iexpress.exe to send C2 HTTP requests as part of the victim check-in process and to get an additional payload.
POST /support/support.asp HTTP/1.1
User-Agent: Mozilla/4.0 (compatible; MSIE 7.0; Windows NT 6.1; Win64; x64;
Trident/4.0; .NET CLR 2.0.50727; SLCC2; .NET CLR 3.5.30729; .NET CLR 3.0.30729;
InfoPath.3; .NET4.0C; .NET4.0E)
bbs=[encrypted payload]= &article=[encrypted payload]
The post provides technical indicators that organizations can search for to determine if any endpoints inside their networks are infected. It also includes IP addresses used in the campaign that admins can add to their network block lists.