Yesterday, the Georgia Water Coalition, a consortium of 217 conservation, environmental, and other organizations, released its annual “Dirty Dozen Report.”  Click on the link below for a full copy of the Report.  The Report condemns water policy in Georgia’s, including efforts to capture and control water in Georgia during times of plenty for use during times of drought, Georgia’s reaction to EPA’s damaging overreach to “protect” water of the U.S.–down to the very last drop—and EPD’s decision limit 25-foot stream buffers to streams, before using water policy to oppose individual infrastructure projects. The Report’s focus on water policy leaves little room within the “Dirty Dozen” to address areas of real concern. Reaction to the Dirty Dozen Report’s condemnation of Georgia Water Policy, and the proposed Glades Reservoir in particular, was published in the Gainesville Times. Reaction to the Dirty Dozen Report’s condemnation of Georgia Water Policy and the…       Read More

Staples says probing possible payment card data breach Reuters Earlier this month, Sears Holdings Corp said it was the victim of a cyberattack that likely resulted in the theft of some customer payment cards at its … CSID Study Finds Most Small Healthcare Facilities Unprepared for Data Breach MarketWatch Only 16.7 percent are worried about losing patient data in the event of a data breach, however, most small healthcare facilities are unprepared for a … Why You Shouldn’t Count On General Liability To Cover Cyber Risk Dark Reading This, of course, is the whole reason companies like Travelers offer cyber liability insurance — a.k.a. cyber insurance — as an added type of coverage. TD Bank settles with NJ over data breach Asbury Park Press The money is part of a $850,000 settlement involving New Jersey and eight other states, which investigated the TD Bank data breach over the past 18…       Read More

An employee reports to his supervisor that he has a swollen, round skin lesion on his knee. It must be a spider bite, right? Not so fast. An increasing body of research has revealed in recent years that spider bites are often misdiagnosed, especially with respect to brown recluse spiders. In Georgia, for example, a recent study concluded that the brown recluse is not a common spider in Georgia, and that its presence was documented in less than 20% of all Georgia counties—31 to be exact–almost all of which are located in the northwestern Piedmont region of the state. Nevertheless, over a five year period, there were 963 reports of brown recluse spider bites in 103 Georgia counties. Similarly, over a six year period in Florida, where the brown recluse spider is even more rare, there were 844 reports of brown recluse bites. Vetter, R. S., N. C. Hinkle and…       Read More

Diversity Lottery– click here to read more. Visa Bulletin Nov 2014– click here to read more. Harvard student who took dying mom to Mexico gets humanitarian visa– click here to read more. Obama’s Immigration Executive Order Would Follow Predecessors’ Lead– click here to read more.

The Diversity Immigrant Visa Program, also known as diversity lottery, is a program that offers a limited number of immigrant visas (50,000) every year to immigrants from countries that have historically proven to have a low immigration rate to the United States. It was established with the Immigration Act in 1990 and was first set into practice in 1995. The Diversity Visas (“DVs”) are distributed among six geographic regions and no single country may receive more than seven percent of the available DVs in any one year. However, some countries that have a high number of people immigrating to the United States are excluded from the program. The applicants have to be natives from one of the eligible countries and have to fulfill the educational requirement of either a two year work experience or an education similar to the American high school. If selected the applicant and their spouse and…       Read More

The Global Entry Program is a U.S. Customs and Border Protection system similar to NEXUS and SENTRI. Global Entry provides an opportunity for low-risk, frequent traveling US citizens to  move rapidly through customs clearance upon return to the United States. A Global Entry pass allows a pre-approved US Citizen, lawful permanent resident, Dutch citizen, South Korean citizen, or Mexican national to skip the lengthy passport check wait, immigration interrogation, and customs declarations forms. Requisites for obtaining a Global Entry Pass include an application with supporting identification documents, an application fee,  intensive background checks, and an interview with US border officials. Once approved, a pass holder simply checks in at a Global Entry kiosk upon arrival instead of waiting in processing lines. A pass holder also enjoys the benefit of answering declaration of goods questions at the kiosk instead of preparing a paper declarations form. Global Entry is a viable option…       Read More

Under the Preference System of the Immigration Act of 1990, a prospective immigrant’s preference category can downgrade as a result of marriage. The family-sponsored preference categories include: 1) Unmarried sons and daughters of U.S. citizens; 2) Spouses, children, and unmarried sons and daughters of permanent resident aliens; 3) Married sons and daughters of U.S. citizens, and 4) Brothers and sisters of U.S. citizens. For example, an unmarried son or daughter of a U.S. citizen enjoys first preference under these categories. If the unmarried son or daughter gets married while his or her petition is still pending, he or she will automatically lower to the third preference category. On the other hand, a divorce can raise the preference category. Under the same scenario as above, if the married son or daughter of a U.S. citizen subsequently divorces, the now unmarried son or daughter converts to first preference. Generally, a prospective immigrant’s…       Read More

California Governor Jerry Brown has signed into law Senate Bill 1177, the Student Online Personal Information Protection Act (SOPIPA), restricting collection and marketing uses of K-12 student data. The Bill requires the operator of an internet website, online service or mobile application to implement and maintain reasonable security procedures and practices to protect the student data from unauthorized access, destruction, use, modification or disclosure. The Bill also restricts the disclosure of student data, and requires that the data be deleted upon request of the school or district. There are only specific limited circumstances under which disclosure of student data is allowed. The operator may use the deidentified student data to improve its educational products, or demonstrate the effectiveness of its products in their marketing. The second main aspect of the Bill restricts the use of student data for marketing. This is the reaction to the inBloom debacle, which has led…       Read More

Assembly Bill 1710 has strengthened California’s original security breach notification law, first passed in 2003. The Bill expands the applicability of the law to any company that merely maintains personal information of a California resident. The existing law had only been applicable to companies that own or license personal information. Companies that maintain such personal information are now required to comply with the obligation to “implement and maintain reasonable security procedures and practices. . . to protect the personal information from unauthorized access, destruction, use, modification, or disclosure.” The Bill also states that if a breached company is require to provide identity theft protection and mitigation services, it does so for at least 12 months with no cost to the affected person. The way the Bill is written, it is somewhat unclear if every breach requires that 12 months of free identity theft protection be offered. Another change prohibits the…       Read More