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Abortion rights advocates worry that easy online access to personal information puts them in danger. A digital rights group wants the FTC to investigate increasingly popular daycare apps. And Republicans want the Justice Department to brief Congress on conservative group hacks. This is CyberScoop for Sept. 29.

A data broker dilemma

When you search online for Maleeha Aziz, deputy director of the Texas Equal Access Fund, it’s clear she’s one of the many Americans who had an abortion. She testified in front of Congress about her experience traveling out of state to get the procedure and isn’t afraid of sharing her story as part of the work she does as a reproductive rights advocate. But as the nationwide fight over abortion access becomes increasingly violent, Aziz is worried that if personal information such as her address gets into the wrong hands it could put her and her family in danger. “Every time there’s a knock on my door, I’m stressing out and tensing up thinking is that an anti or a solicitor,” says Aziz, who over the summer installed security cameras around her home. “It doesn’t make me feel good to know my address is out there and anyone can just show up at my house.” Tonya Riley reports.

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Republicans want details on conservative hacks

House Republicans on Wednesday asked U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland to brief a congressional committee by Oct. 5 on what they say are “politically-motivated cyberattacks intended to silence supporters of conservative causes.” The Republicans pointed to a string of hacks dating back to September 2021, when hackers claiming to be carrying out an Anonymous operation attacked the Texas Republican Party website after the state passed an anti-abortion law. More recently, in July 2022, pro-choice hacktivists leaked roughly 74 gigabytes of data from a Florida hosting company that serviced a number of conservative and religious organizations. AJ Vicens reports.

What's going on with daycare apps?

The Federal Trade Commission should review privacy and security concerns with daycare and early education apps, the Electronic Frontier Foundation urged in a letter to the agency Wednesday. The letter builds on the EFF director of engineering Alexis Hancock’s research, which uncovered a variety of security concerns including the insecure cloud storage of photos of children. In one instance, the daycare app Tadpoles for Parents was sending children’s data to Facebook with no mention in its privacy policy. The company never responded to EFF’s concerns. Tonya Riley writes.

Hackers earn $75K from the DOD

The Department of Defense paid out $75,000 in bounties recently to ethical hackers who discovered nearly 350 bugs inside its networks. The payouts were part of the ongoing bug bounty initiative in which vetted hackers are invited to find and disclose network vulnerabilities to the DOD in exchange for payment. Allowing these so-called white hat hackers to alert the Pentagon to the vulnerabilities discovered allows the department to fix them before they’re found and exploited by adversaries. Mark Pomerleau covers it for DefenseScoop.

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