Last week many of the major countries of the world were cyber attacked and hijacked with malware. Even today we may be seeing repercussions here and abroad. What it has done is ratched up the concerns of the world over malevolent attacks.
Cyber security has been a growing concern for many years. Certainly on the Hill it has been talked nearly to death without a lot of positive results. As usual Congress simply jabbers and rarely has pushed to achieve on an issue of growing and great concern. Just as the email scandals of the DNC and Hillary Clinton have shown as well as the CIA cyber warfare tactics leaks, anyone in any business from individuals to mortuaries to conglomerates are at risk.
As expertise and the internet have become integral to our lives, we become more vulnerable to bad actors who have malicious or dangerous agendas. Some are simply hackers who enjoy the challenge but far more increasingly dangerous are those who have serious agendas.
Here are some interesting bits of information concerning cybersecurity that you may have been too busy to see or like me not so sure of understanding.
On May 11, 2017, STRENGTHENING THE CYBERSECURITY OF FEDERAL NETWORKS AND CRITICAL INFRASTRUCTURE – President Trump issued an executive order to address cybersecurity within the federal government. Some are praising it and others are saying that congress must prepare a bill to work within the governmental system to strengthen it to encompass all aspects of business and personal security.
NextGov posted this in response to his EO. “Hill Leaders: You Need Us To Make The Cyber Executive Order Work”. As the article notes there are a lot of similarities between the Trump and Obama EO’s just as there is a great deal of similarities between many in congress now and when cyber security became a concern years ago.
“Hill cyber leaders generally praised President Donald Trump’s cybersecurity executive order, which dropped Thursday afternoon, but stressed Congress’ role in ensuring successful implementation of the order’s directives to protect government and critical infrastructure systems.
Rep. Jim Langevin, who co-founded the Congressional Cybersecurity Caucus, praised the order’s focus on centralizing cybersecurity within government. He also noted strong similarities between the order and Obama administration cyber efforts.
…Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs scheduled a markup Wednesday for a slew of federal agency operations and workforce-related bills. The schedule includes the Federal Agency Customer Experience Act, which would simplify the process agencies go through to gather public feedback about their customer service, and the OPEN Government Act, which would require agencies keep their data open and accessible for transparency’s sake and to spark private-sector innovation.”
On May 14, 2017, BizPac Review posted an article by Michael Dorstewitz entitled “‘Hero’ 22-year-old finds kill switch for global cyber-attack, Trump orders emergency meeting after chilling warning …”
An extensive worldwide cyber attack was stopped in its tracks by a 22-year-old British cybersecurity researcher.
Before it was thwarted using a simple domain registration, the attack had affected a large number of major government, financial and health service networks in North and South America, Asia, Europe Africa and Australia.
Finally, NextGov also ran a really intriguing article that for the cyber junky patriots may be “manna”. This has been done as a pilot program but looks according to this article to become a great asset for those who are looking for ways to help the country to protect all of us from cyber attacks and such, while also earning a small “finders fee”.
“GSA Tech Office Launches Cyber Bug Bounty Program”
May 12, 2017
The cybersecurity company that ran a bug bounty program for the Army and is running ongoing programs for the Pentagon and Air Force will run a similar program for the government’s technology user experience wing, that office announced Friday.
The program run by HackerOne will offer cash rewards ranging from $300 to $5,000 to security researchers who spot dangerous vulnerabilities in websites and applications run by the General Services Administration’s Technology Transformation Service.
TTS did not give a start date for the program.
It will be one of the first civilian government implementation of a cybersecurity concept embraced by top tech companies including Google and Amazon.
The general idea is that an organization’s internal security staff is unlikely to find every exploitable bug in its systems so it’s a good idea to incentivize ethical hackers to uncover them before their nefarious cousins do.
…A trial of the HackerOne-run Hack the Pentagon program turned up 1,189 bugs in Defense Department systems and resulted in $75,000 in payouts to hackers. The Hack the Army program turned up 118 bug reports that the service patched and resulted in about $100,000 in payouts.
It doesn’t matter who writes what so long as those involved are patriots that are trustworthy with a high degree of professionalism.
What matters is what is done to get this national security measure through the hoops and the country safer. Period. Congress can no longer drag their partisan heels.
We citizens want our personal information, infrastructure, and business interests secure.
GET IT DONE.