White House Reportedly Considering Lifting the Oil Exports Ban
White House officials have asked the US Energy Department to analyze the possible impacts of a ban on exports of gasoline, diesel, and other refined petroleum products, an indication that the controversial idea is gaining traction in some parts of the Biden administration. The request follows a tense meeting between top administration officials and oil industry executives and comes amid growing concern that high gasoline prices pose a political threat to Democrats in the November elections, according to people familiar with the discussions.
An export ban would mark the most radical step yet by the Biden administration to tackle gasoline prices that surged over the summer and have risen again recently, just four weeks before midterm elections that will decide whether Democrats maintain control of the House and Senate. Oil producers and energy analysts have criticized the idea, saying it could backfire by ultimately raising costs even more for US consumers, while disrupting markets and cutting off European allies in their time of need.
Administration officials have grown increasingly frustrated with what they see as a lack of action by industry in response to repeated warnings about low fuel inventories. Energy Department officials have been meeting with leaders from the West Coast, East Coast and Midwest to examine regional concerns.
Hackers Maintained Deep Access Inside Military Organization's Network, U.S. Officials Reveal
U.S. cybersecurity, law enforcement, and intelligence officials revealed on Tuesday that sophisticated hackers infiltrated a likely U.S. military contractor and maintained “persistent, long-term” access to their system.
The National Security Agency, the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency and the FBI released a detailed, joint advisory containing the notification, explaining that in November 2021 CISA responded to a report of malicious activity on an anonymous “Defense Industrial Base (DIB) Sector organization’s enterprise network.” CISA uncovered a likely compromise, and said that some of the intruders had “long-term access to the environment.” After breaking in, officials said, hackers leveraged an open-source toolkit known as Impacket to “programmatically” construct and manipulate network protocols.
Impacket is a collection of Python libraries that “plug into applications like vulnerability scanners, allowing them to work with Windows network protocols,” Katie Nickels, director of threat intelligence at Red Canary, said via email. Hackers favor Impacket because it helps them retrieve credentials, issue commands and deliver malware onto systems, she said.
All American Marine Awarded Contract for Alaska Tour Vessel
All American Marine (AAM) has been awarded a contract to build a high-speed, long-range, eco-tour vessel for Phillips Cruises and Tours. The vessel will operate in Whittier, Alaska, upon completion. The vessel will be built in AAM’s facility on Bellingham Bay and is scheduled for delivery by May 1, 2024. The new passenger vessel will add to the Phillips Cruises fleet of boats that operate in Prince William Sound on daily sightseeing tours.