U.S.-Mexico Border Wall Funding, North and South Korea Agree to Military Talks , Fix for Chip Processor Flaw and More

U.S.-Mexico Border Wall Funding, North and South Korea Agree to Military Talks, Fix for Chip Processor Flaw and More
  • ​U.S. President Trump's plan to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border would draw funding away from other ​security measures, the New York Times reports, including border surveillance, radar technology, patrol boats, and customs agents. "Mr. Trump's budget request for a wall represents more than half of the $33 billion spending blueprint for border security over the next decade," the article states; according to spending plans submitted to Congress last week, the 900 mile wall along the southern border would cost $18 billion over the next 10 years. U.S. Customs and Border P​rotection faces several proposed cuts by the administration to fund the wall, including money for a remote video surveillance system in South Texas, known for its drug smuggling and illegal border crossings. Among other cuts, the proposed funding plan would also slash nearly 200 of 500 canine units that agents say play a "key role in programs to prevent terrorism and drug smuggling."

  • After their first high-level meeting in two years, North and South Korea have agreed to hold military talks to defuse border tension, the BBC reports. A military hotline between the two nations was also reinstated, and North Korea will be sending a delegation to the 2018 Winter Olympic Games which are set to take place in South Korea in February. During the meeting, held in the Panmunjom "peace village" in a demilitarized zone near the border, several other points of contention between the two nations were discussed, including hostile missile tests conducted by the North, and the reunion of family members living in separate countries. The leaders of both nations watched via CCTV feed, the BBC reports. ​

  • Intel CEO Brian Krzanich addressed a recently-exposed chip processor flaw at the CES consumer technology show in Las Vegas last night, and said 90 percent of those chips will be updated to fix the vulnerability within a week. In January, Intel and other chip companies "acknowledged that potentially-exploitable flaws had been found in its chips that could let hackers access the most private areas of a user's computer or device." So far no consumer data breaches due to the flaw have been reported, according to USA Today. Krzanich added the remaining chips will be fixed by the end of January. Krzanich has been under fire for selling millions of dollars' worth of Intel stock after finding out about the security flaws. 

  • In other news, half a million green-card applicants will not be forced to leave the United States after the Trump administration clarified its policy on H-1B visa holders. Toyota announced it will tailor services for companies for self-driving cars to be used for tasks such as ride hailing and package delivery. And heavy rains in Southern California triggered mudslides and dangerous flooding, forcing residents to evacuate.