U.S. State Department cyber attack

News / U.S. State Department cyber attack

U.S. State Department cyber attack

The U.S. State Department was recently the victim of a cyber attack. Notifications of a possibly serious breach of security were made by the Cyber Command unit of the Department of Defence. It’s uncertain as to when the breach was detected, however it is believed to have happened a few weeks ago. 

The State Department has reportedly not experienced any significant disruptions and has not had its operations impeded in any way. The department is taking its responsibility to safeguard its information very seriously, however due to the security measures they are not in a position to disclose the nature or severity of the alleged incidents at this time. They also have no leads on suspected perpetrators of this attack. 

Earlier this month, a report from Homeland Security and the Governmental Affairs Committee stated that none of the eight federal agencies they reviewed for security had even met the essential cyber security standards and protocols to secure the personal identification information of American citizens as well as equipment and programs on the agency’s networks. 

This recent attack has proved to be a reminder of the fact that anyone and everyone, individual or organisation, is susceptible to be hit. If you have any type of online presence you automatically become a target to cyber criminals, no matter how protected you are. If an institution like the State Department is susceptible to hacking, then the average person needs to consider how easy it will be for a cybercriminal to cause irreparable damage for them.   

Today, with the continuing evolution and creativity of cyber crime, it’s a matter of how quickly a threat can be identified and then stopped. An organisation like the U.S. State Department has massive networks which are presumably under attack by the likes of nation-state hackers, terrorists and other threat actors on a daily basis. However, considering the lack of data pertaining to the attack it would be presumptuous to speculate the intentions of whomever was behind the attack. US allies across Europe, Asia and Africa are cautioned to be on high alert due to the perception by some that the US is distracted and therefore would give leeway for more attacks to take place. 

Having a way of finding attacks, such as the one on the State Department is the only option in ensuring the return of defenders to higher ground than threat actors. Advanced prevention methods, building a strong infrastructure and adapting to advanced hacking techniques is more important than ever in an ever evolving digital world.

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