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Threats to network infrastructure grow

Computer network infrastructures are increasingly vulnerable to cyber attacks, according to a warning sent by the U.S. Computer Emergency Readiness Team. “The advancing capabilities of organized hacker groups and cyber adversaries create an increasing global threat to information systems,” the Sept. 20 alert states.
“The rising threat levels place more demands on security personnel and network administrators to protect information systems. Protecting the network infrastructure is critical to preserve the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of communication and services across an enterprise.” Network infrastructure is made up of linked devices that transport communications…

Stratcom nominee on growing cyber threats

The nominee to be the next U.S. Strategic Command commander warned that China and Russia pose growing threats to cyber space. “Our potential adversaries have studied the U.S. way of warfare and are actively developing asymmetric responses,” Air Force Gen. John Hyten told the Senate Armed Services Committee in written answers to questions. Asked to outline the main strategic threats, Hyten listed advanced ballistic and cruise missiles; counter-space capabilities; hypersonic weapons; unmanned aerial vehicles; and autonomous underwater vehicles. “I am also concerned about the growing cyber capabilities of advanced state actors, such as…

House intel report reveals Snowden damage

The House Intelligence Committee released an unclassified summary of the result of a two-year investigation into renegade National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden. The report reveals that Russian intelligence gained access to the 1.5 million NSA documents Snowden pilfered from NSA and provided to anti-secrecy journalists. According to the report, in June 2016, the deputy chairman of the Russian parliamentary defense and security committee confirmed that Snowden provide the spy agencies with secrets. The official, Frants Klintsevich, told NPR: “Let’s be frank, Snowden did share intelligence. This is what security services do. If…

House seeks study into foreign purchases

A bipartisan group of House members wants the Government Accountability Office to study whether a Treasury Department-led government security panel needs to be bolstered to protect U.S. national security from threats posed by foreign acquisitions. The request was made in a letter from 16 members to the congressional watchdog agency last week to examine whether the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States, known as CFIUS, needs to be strengthened. “There have not been substantial structural updates to CFIUS composition or authority since its inception, despite a rapidly changing foreign investment…

FBI Director: State cyber threats increasing

Cyber intrusions carried out by China, Russia, Iran and North Korea are increasing in both scale and severity, FBI Director James Comey said this week. The four states “are getting much more sophisticated, much more aggressive in state-sponsored intrusion activity,” Comey said Aug. 30. International criminals also are stepping cyber theft and the threat posed by ransomware is increasing, he added. Hackers of all types are targeting people with access to information systems. “The threat actors know that, and so they spend a tremendous amount of time trying to understand how they might get…

Election cyber security threatened

The FBI stated in a warning sent Aug. 18 that cyber attacks were carried out against two state board of electrions information system, raising concerns about foreign hackers manipulating election results. “The FBI received information of an additional IP address, 5.149.249.172, which was detected in the July 2016 compromise of a state’s board of election web site,” the FBI warning said. “Additionally, in August 2016 attempted intrusion activities into another state’s board of election system identified the IP address, 185.104.9.39 used in the aforementioned compromise.” The incident occurred in late June when an…

State, Pentagon at odds on Chinese cyber attacks

The State Department and Pentagon are odds over the threat posed by Chinese cyber attacks, a former White House official said Aug. 30. Michael Green, currently senior vice president for Asia and Japan at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, a think tank, said during a panel discussion on President Obama’s visit to China. “The the view on cyber is quite divided between the State Department and the Pentagon,” Green said. “The Pentagon’s view I would surmise as being we are already in a state of cyber warfare with China and…

On eve of sentencing, Guccifer attorneys say Clinton-linked hacker wanted to expose hypocrisy

The Romanian computer hacker who breached the personal accounts of more than 100 victims including an advisor to Hillary Clinton has asked a federal judge to spare him a lengthy prison stint ahead of a sentencing hearing set for Thursday morning in Alexandria, Virginia. Marcel Lazăr Lehel, also known as Guccifer, faces seven years behind bars when he’s sentenced Thursday morning over a 14-month hacking spree that targeted a confidant of Mrs. Clinton, Sidney Blumenthal, as well as Colin Powell and members of the Bush family, among others. He was extradited to…