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by CSO Contributor

Kissinger Leads Group Calling for Patience on 9/11 Recommendations; U.S. Orders Airlines to Release Passenger Data; Cat Stevens Detained by DHS; Ireland Blocks Calls to 13 Countries to Foil Net Scam

Sep 22, 20043 mins
Build AutomationCSO and CISO

Kissinger Leads Group Calling for Patience on 9/11 Recommendations

A group of influential former secretaries of defense, state and ex-members of the Senate urged Congress on Tuesday to delay legislation on the 9/11 panel’s recommendations until after the election, according to a story in The New York Times. The joint statement, which read in part, “racing to implement reforms on an election timetable is precisely the wrong thing to do.” Signatories included former Secretaries of State Henry A. Kissinger and George P. Schultz, former Defense Secretarties William S. Cohen and Frank C. Carlucci and several former senators David L. Boren, Bill Bradley, Sam Nunn, Gary Hart and Warren B. Rudman. According to the Times, the Senate Governmental Affairs Committee is scheduled to vote Wendesday on sending legislation to the floor that addresses many of the points raised by the 9/11 panel.

For more details, read the full article in The New York Times.

U.S. Orders Airlines to Release Passenger Data

Airlines will be required to turn over millions of passenger records to the government by November in order for the Transportation Security Administration to test its Secure Flight program, which is a computer-assisted passenger screening system. According to a report by the Washington Post, the system aims to compare each passenger’s reservation information with a list of suspected terrorists. The system will also attempt to verify the identitiy of each person’s identity in order to not falsely idenfity someone as a terrorist who has a similar name. The TSA expects to launch Secure Flight by the spring of 2005. Privacy-rights groups are skeptical of the system, according to the Post. Critics argue that the TSA hasn’t clearly defined how a person who shouldn’t be on the list can get removed from it.

For more details, read the full article in Washington Post.

Cat Stevens Detained by DHS

U.S. security officials detained Cat Stevens, now known as Yusuf Islam, after diverting a Washington, D.C.-bound flight from London to Bangor, Maine, after discovering the singer had been allowed to board the plane despite being on the government’s no-fly list. Agenst questioned Islam, who is scheduled to be deported to Europe Wednesday, according to the Washington Post. A spokesman for the Transportation Security Administration told the Post that the flight was diverted because it would be unsafe to let the plane pass through the nation’s Northeast corridor airspace, which would have taken in over New York City and Washington, D.C. It was not clear how Islam was allowed to board the plan in the first place, but Customs and Border Protection agents discovered the mistake during a routine check of passenger manifests against the watch lists.

For more details, read the full article in the Washington Post.

Ireland Blocks Calls to 13 Countries to Foil Net Scam

Ireland’s telecom regulator has blocked direct dialing to 13 countries, most of which are in the South Pacific Islands, in an attempt to protect Internet users from rogue autodialer programs that hijack users’ modems and run up long distance phone charges. The Commission for Communications Regulation (ComReg) said the extreme move came in response to thousands of consumer complaints. The scam affects dial-up users, and according to a story by IDG News, some home users have unwittingly racked up monthly phone bills as high as $2,000 USD. Telecom operators have until Oct. 4 to block calls to the 13 countries on the list.

For more information, read the IDG News Service story in InfoWorld.