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The DOJ announced a Cyber Digital Task Force on Tuesday. Anadolu Agency / Getty

Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced a new, multi-agency Cyber-Digital Task Force on Tuesday. It will advise Sessions on internet and security related topics.

Between the lines: The Department of Justice listed several priorities for the force at its onset in a press release, headed by the "study of efforts to interfere with our elections." Special Prosecutor Bob Mueller announced Friday the indictment of 13 Russians for an information campaign in the 2016 election, leaving the White House scrambling to demonstrate it took the Russia issue seriously after more than a year of undercutting its importance.

Buried deep: Midway through that list of goals, the DOJ lists "the use of technology to avoid or frustrate law enforcement" as a starting focus. The wish list includes either legislation or an industry agreement that tech companies not use unbreakable encryption, which the Department believes thwarts investigation.

The details: The Task Force will include representatives from the "Department’s Criminal Division, the National Security Division, the United States Attorney’s Office community, the Office of Legal Policy, the Office of Privacy and Civil Liberties, the Office of the Chief Information Officer, the ATF, FBI, DEA, and the U.S. Marshals Service," plus additional members at the deputy attorney general's discretion.

Other topics of focus: The group will also look at critical infrastructure security, data theft, and botnets that "attack American citizens and businesses."

Go deeper

Updated 1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Health: Coronavirus cases rose 10% in the week before Thanksgiving.
  2. Politics: Supreme Court backs religious groups on New York coronavirus restrictions.
  3. World: Expert says COVID vaccine likely won't be available in Africa until Q2 of 2021 — Europeans extend lockdowns.
  4. Economy: The winners and losers of the COVID holiday season.
  5. Education: National standardized tests delayed until 2022.
3 hours ago - Health

Standardized testing becomes another pandemic victim

Photo: Edmund D. Fountain for The Washington Post via Getty

National standardized reading and math tests have been pushed from next year to 2022, the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) announced Wednesday.

Why it matters: There’s mounting national evidence that students are suffering major setbacks this year, with a surge in the number of failing grades.

4 hours ago - World

European countries extend lockdowns

A medical worker takes a COVID-19 throat swab sample at the Berlin-Brandenburg Airport. Photo by Maja Hitij via Getty

Recent spikes in COVID-19 infections across Europe have led authorities to extend restrictions ahead of the holiday season.

Why it matters: "Relaxing too fast and too much is a risk for a third wave after Christmas," said European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen.