Data Privacy Legislation for Washington Businesses

Ascension Technical Group is hosting a interactive TEAM’S session on April 8th at 10AM-11AM PDT. You can register now and we’ll send you a TEAM request.

The Webinar will provide analysis on the draft Washington Data privacy Act (WPA), its impact on business and detail the associated penalties for data privacy breeches.

This  webinar will help businesses determine potential security vulnerabilities and identify a mitigation strategy. The cyber breech discussion, will review the benefits of an in-depth security assessment that includes reviewing current policies, procedures, technical environments and other security related functions. Details will be provided on applicable standards including, ISO/IEC 27001, NIST 800-53, ISA 62443, COBIT 5, CIS CSC, CCPA, GDPR and PCI DSS.

Topics that will be covered include:

  • Data Security & Privacy
  • Awareness and Training with related policies, procedures, and agreements.
  • Governance, Analysis & Mitigation
  • Information Protection Processes
  • Identity Management, Authentication and Access Control
  • Protective Technology, Anomalies and Events, Detection Processes
  • Response & Recovery Planning
  • Law Enforcement

We look forward to your participation in this interactive TEAM’s Session on  April 8th at 10 AM -11 AM PDT.

Nearshore – Alternative for App Development during the Coronavirus Pandemic

With today’s pandemic and the economic uncertainty, companies are now looking for creative ways to move forward. Teams are considering alternatives solutions in order to maintain existing development,  or contemplating  new development opportunities with concern over meeting deadlines and budgets.

Ascension Development Group may have a solution for you.  We have clients that use our Nearshore development teams to help them on a daily or project basis.  The teams are based in Mexico. Many of the PM’s were educated in the US and many of the developers and testers as well, speak English. 

What does this mean to you and your company?   Here are some of the benefits to your organization:

•          Acceleration of delivery time

•          Meet  objectives alignments between business and IT

•          Expand  project portfolio  visibility

•          Increases team  productivity

•          Cost  reduction, realizing   a  25-40% saving versus US hourly rates

•          Two hour time difference in Mexico vs.  10 to 16 hours Offshore in the Far East

If you would like  more information on our Nearshore Practice or set-up an appointment  and discuss next steps. Please contact  Mel Silver @ 425.466.3459 Phone or email me. mel@ascension-tg.com, Website: www.ascension-tg.com

How Privacy Legislation affect your business.

There is current legislation and standing law that will affect your firm’s ability to manage Consumer Data. Legislation is now in process that will affect Human Resource Data of your employee’s next year.  Washington State has legislation almost completed today.  If you wish to book a free one-on-one briefing, please select the button below and we can call you to advise you of the current issues relating to privacy and security.

Ascension partnering with Insperity, was scheduling, an Executive Briefing regarding Privacy legislation that affects your business.  We wanted to invite you or members of your team.  Due to the warranted restrictions in preventing the spread of the COVID-19 virus, we are moving the briefing to later this Spring or Summer. However, if you wish to book a free one-on-one briefing, please select the button below and we can call you to advise you of the current issues relating to privacy and security.

Washington State Privacy Law — Senate and House are meeting to hopefully compromise.

After the House of Representatives passed an amended Privacy Bill on the evening of March 6th, the Senate received the Bill and responded ” Senate refuses to concur in House amendments.” The Senate “Asks House to recede from amendments.”

Today, the “House insists on its position and asks Senate for a conference. Conference committee appointed. Representatives Hudgins, Hansen, Dufault.” And the “conference committee request was granted.”

Now, hopefully the committee jointly can work out the details and come to some compromise that helps both the consumer and business.

You can find updated information regarding the bill at https://app.leg.wa.gov/billsummary/?billNumber=6281&year=2020&initiative=False


Washington State Consumer Privacy Law is one step closer to reality.

Tonight, I was watching the debate for Senate Bill SB 6281, Personal Data Privacy Law, in the Washington State House of Representative. There were many amendments to the Bill and many were not adopted to provide clarification for this upcoming law.

However, with the debate heated up and some legislators believing that the bill would fail, the bill did pass. The vote was 56 Yea and 41 Nay, 1 excused.

The next steps are for the Senate to review and vote on the changes made by the House of Representatives. Then off to the Governor if passed.

You can find updated information regarding the bill at https://app.leg.wa.gov/billsummary/?billNumber=6281&year=2020&initiative=False

Ransomware destroys evidence – Suspects go Free!

A West Palm Beach news station WPTC.com, has reported that Police in Stuart Florida, had to let six suspected drug dealers go free, based on lack of evidence. Evidence that was stored on computers at the Stuart Police Department. It has been reported that hackers, using Ransomware, have locked files which would have been positive proof to enable prosecutors to put the suspected drug dealers behind bars.

Ransomware presents a clear and present danger to most companies, governments and non-profits. Here are some of the basic suggestions to help reduce the threat of ransomware:

  • Patch Management of systems should always be frequent and tracked thoroughly.
  • Misuse or misconfiguration of remote access techniques that allow outsiders to penetrate systems and networks undetected.
  • Access Management issues. Users should be classified and given the least amount of privileges to allow them to effectively do their work.  Most administrators are not providing a clear and effective means for granting and managing user rights.
  • Misconfiguration and/or lack of monitoring Anti-Virus/Malware systems.
  • Backup verification and validation. Making sure the backup are working correctly.
  • Of course, Security Awareness is the cornerstone of prevention.

Just letting you know, Ascension will be holding Privacy & Security presentations starting in April, if you wish to attend or wish to contact us regarding this new development, please email us at paul@ascension-tg.com or call at 425-750-0760.

West Palm Beach Article: https://www.wptv.com/news/local-news/stuart/police-evidence-lost-in-stuart-hack-attack-six-suspected-drug-dealers-walk-free

Washington State Senate passes sweeping Consumer Privacy Law

Overwhelmingly the Washington State Senate passes a sweeping Consumer Privacy Law, posed to be one of the strongest consumer data privacy protection statute in the country.

Senators voted 46-1, in favor of Senate Bill 6281, sponsored by Sen. Reuven Carlyle of Seattle. In the Bill, the following summary was provided to outline the scope of the new law:

  • Provides Washington residents with the consumer personal data rights of access, correction, deletion, data portability, and opt out of the processing of personal data for specified purposes.
  • Specifies the thresholds a business must satisfy for the requirements set forth in this act to apply.
  • Identifies certain controller responsibilities such as transparency, purpose specification, and data minimization.
  • Requires controllers to conduct data protection assessments under certain conditions.
  • Authorizes enforcement exclusively by the attorney general.
  • Provides a regulatory framework for the commercial use of facial recognition services such as testing, training, and disclosure requirements.

As of today, the bill has been advanced to the House of Representatives and currently is in the Innovation, Technology & Economic Development Committee. Scheduled for public hearing in the House Committee on Innovation, Technology & Economic Development on Feb 21 at 10:00 AM.

Ascension will be holding Privacy & Security presentations starting in April, if you wish to attend or wish to contact us regarding this new development, please email us at paul@ascension-tg.com or call at 425-750-0760.

"The appearance of U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) visual information does not imply or constitute DoD endorsement."

Finding Humanity in Big Data

At the beginning of Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2003, I was assigned as the Senior Intelligence Officer for the 1st Battlefield Coordination Detachment (1st BCD) at the Combined Air Operations Center on Prince Sultan Air Base in Saudi Arabia.  As the name of our unit implies, our mission was to coordinate ground and air operations for the invasion of Iraq.  This was a monumental task and the amount of information that passed through our desks was almost unfathomable.  It is difficult to paint a complete picture, but we were coordinating the movement of two entire Armies; with hundreds of thousands of ground troops, from multiple nations; hundreds of air assets, ranging from combat, intelligence, refueling, command/control and troop transport aircraft to Army helicopters and drones.  On top of all that, everything was constantly and simultaneously moving.  Talk about big data.

In order to monitor all this activity, we had no less than about 15 separate battlefield operations systems daisy-chained together, but with fewer than that many soldiers on shift to operate all the computers.  Information was flying across the screens faster than the ticker at the New York Stock Exchange.  The Combined Air Force Component Command used a system of kill boxes to coordinate air interdiction targets on the battlefield and it was the 1st BCD’s mission to deconflict fires between the ground and air component commands.  The air and ground components agreed to open a certain kill box north of Baghdad, which meant that everyone agreed there were no friendly forces in the area.  However, out of the thousands of icons representing maneuver forces on the ground, I noticed a small blue blip on the screen.  Fortunately, just before the invasion, the Army fielded the Blue Force Tracking system, which was an emitter to show where units were located.  I did a quick investigation and discovered a U.S. Special Operations Detachment operating well forward of the main battle area (as Green Berets are supposed to do), so I denied opening the kill box.  If the Blue Force Tracking system was not fielded, if one of the battlefield operations systems did not work properly, and if I stepped away from my station for a few minutes, that SOF detachment would likely have been destroyed.  There is perhaps nothing more tragic in war than friendly or civilian casualties.

In business, it is hard to detect the human element in big data.  We tend to focus on processing massive amounts of information as quickly as possible.  However, as leaders we must look at our systems from the customers’ perspective.  Customers have a lot of online choices these days, but a human touch goes a long way to earning lasting loyalty.  An occasional personal note or phone call to a customer following an online transaction adds humanity to big data; especially if there is a negative experience.  People see that and know the company values them as a person, rather than just a transaction or anonymous account number.

Ascension has the expertise to assist your company in customer relationship management.  We can help your company with the transformation between technology and cultural changes.

By John Winters, Colonel U.S. Army {Retired}

NEW PRIVACY LAWS AFFECT BUSINESS TODAY

Currently the Washington State Legislative will likely pass a very strong Consumer Data Privacy law. As many of you know, California has already made the first step in clear language dictating that businesses must change the manner in which Consumer data is managed and protected. That legislation is called California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA). Many other states are in the process of legislation this year like CCPA and/or GDPR.

With the California current law and Washington’s new law, Consumers have rights to the following:  

  • Personal Information Rights
    • Requiring business not to sell their personal data
    • Requiring opt IN rather than Opt OUT practices
  • Right to be Forgotten
    • A Consumer can require a business to permanently remove any and all Personal Information 
  • Right to Know
    • Personal Information disclosure by company to a person of what personal information exists and how it is used
  • Right to equal service and price
    • Consumer will have the right to object to any profiling, direct marketing and statistical research on current or historical Consumer data. Including clear restrictions on any discriminatory actions by a company against Consumers who wish to exercise their right to privacy.


In our discussions with Policy makers, Washington state as well as other states will have adopted very strong data privacy laws that protects consumer’s. We encourage business to begin considering how to accommodate these near-term changes. 

For more Privacy related information please request below:

(This information will not be resold or used in any other way, other than to contact you regarding Privacy Legislation)