Public Sector Cybersecurity Weekly Briefing 9-29-2017

Election Systems of 21 States Targeted by Russian Government Hackers Ahead of 2016 election: DHS
More revelations about the scope of the Russian government’s cyber-campaign on behalf of Donald Trump in the November 2016 presidential election came to light Friday afternoon, when DHS officials called election officials in twenty-one states to inform them that their states’ election systems had been targeted by Russian government hackers trying to influence the U.S. presidential election. Among the states whose election systems were targeted by Russian government operatives: Alabama, Arizona, Colorado, Connecticut, Illinois, Iowa, Maryland, Minnesota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Washington, and Wisconsin.


VIDEO: Mike Hamilton’s Interview with Kiro 7 News Regarding the Attempted Hacks


Government Cyber Security Market in the US – Top 3 Drivers | Technavio 
·       Increasing frequency and complexity of cyber attacks
·       Availability of IT spending budget
·       Adoption of the hybrid model


Is the US Ready for Election Hacking 2018?  No Way.
Klobuchar says her Helping State and Local Governments Prevent Cyber Attacks Act would help combat foreign interference by providing state and local governments with information and resources they need to keep our elections secure and improve voter confidence. […] [The] bill provides for a grant program that helps provide states with $325 million in grant funds to implement these best practices. So far, Congress has shown no interest in taking up the problem. Klobuchar’s plan has somewhere between zero and no chance of becoming law.


Hack of U.S. Regulator a Blow to Confidence in Financial System
Ironically, the SEC now must point a finger at itself for delaying the disclosure which it requires from publicly traded companies. “The breach itself appears to be fairly minor, but it erodes trust in government organizations where companies are required by law to report confidential or insider information,” said Tatu Ylonen, a computer researcher and founder of SSH Communications Security.


TV Broadcasts in California Interrupted to Show “End of the World” Alert
According to Orange County, these weird warning messages appeared on mainstream TV channels and affected Spectrum and Cox cable users. Some of the warning videos have been uploaded on YouTube. In one of the videos, we can hear a breathless voice stating that the “space program” has been contacted with and “they are not what they claim to be.” The whole message read: “The space program made contact with… They are not what they claim to be. They have infiltrated a lot of, uh, a lot of aspects of military establishment, particularly Area 51. The disasters that are coming—the military—I’m sorry the government knows about them…”


A Notice by the Homeland Security Department on 09/18/2017
The Department of Homeland Security, therefore, is updating the […] National File Tracking System of Records notice to […] (11) update record source categories to include publicly available information obtained from the internet, public records, public institutions, interviewees, commercial data providers, and information obtained and disclosed pursuant to information sharing agreements[.]


Cyber Attack Continues to Impact Montgomery County Services
The ransomware attack brought Montgomery County’s computer systems to a halt. Friday, the county commission called an emergency meeting to authorize funds to work through the attack, which included paying a ransom to the hackers. The county paid more than $37,000, and the files were returned. According to a news release from the county commission, data is still being unencrypted and the revenue office’s software remains down.


Stay up to date on the Public Sector Information Security news that you need to know by signing up for our Public Sector Briefing Here.


Critical Informatics and the Critical Informatics logo are the trademarks of Critical Informatics, Inc. All other brand names, trademarks, service marks and copyrights are the property of their respective owners.  © 2017 Critical Informatics, Inc. All rights reserved.