National Briefs: No change at the top

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WASHINGTON -- The Obama administration has decided to preserve a controversial arrangement by which a single military official is permitted to direct both the National Security Agency (NSA) and the military's cyberwarfare command, U.S. officials said.

The decision by President Barack Obama comes amid signs that the White House is not inclined to impose significant new restraints on the NSA's activities.

Some officials, including top U.S. intelligence officials, had argued that the NSA and Cyber Command should be placed under separate leadership to ensure greater accountability and avoid an undue concentration of power.

Phone unlocking deal

WASHINGTON -- U.S. wireless carriers agreed to be more transparent about how to unlock phones while preserving their system of contracts and discounts to keep customers loyal.

Under pressure from regulators, Verizon Wireless, AT&T Inc., Sprint and T-Mobile US said Thursday they'll let consumers use smartphones on other networks after contracts expire and give them explicit instructions on how to modify, or unlock, their gadgets to do so. They'll also notify customers when phones are eligible for unlocking.

Man held in car bomb plot

WICHITA, Kan. -- A Kansas man who prosecutors say sympathized with violent terrorists was arrested Friday as part of an FBI sting after he drove a vehicle loaded with what he thought were explosives to a Wichita airport.

Investigators allege that Terry Lee Loewen planned to attack Wichita's Mid-Continent Regional airport in a plot aimed at supporting al-Qaida.

Mr. Loewen, a 58-year-old avionics technician, worked at the airport for Hawker Beechcraft.

The materials in the car were inert, and no one at the airport was in any immediate danger, authorities said.

-- Compiled from news services


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