Cyber threats increased dramatically during the coronavirus pandemic. Individual members of vulnerable populations, small businesses, large corporations, and even the federal governments were hit by major attacks that stole millions of dollars along with sensitive data. One of the largest, most damaging events to come out of this surge in digital crime was the Solarwinds hack that dominated headlines throughout late 2020 and early 2021. Major players like Microsoft and the titular company Solarwinds were affected by the data breach, along with 9 federal agencies. Most worrying is the fact that its still unknown who was behind the hack. Speculation ranges from foreign governments to independent hacking groups, but nothing is definite.
This hack revealed how unprepared most entities are for preventing and mitigating the effects of cybercrime. This week, the Justice Department announced that it would be investigating the U.S. response to cybercrime. Newly confirmed Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco announced the review at the Munich Cyber Security Conference, stating that the U.S. was at a “pivot point” around how it approaches concerns around cybersecurity. While details are understandably scarce, she elaborated that the review would focus on issues such as digital currency, supply chain attacks such as the SolarWinds attack, and state-sponsored cyber-terrorism.
This is the second announcement from the government addressing cybersecurity concerns, following the Justice Department’s creation of a Ransomware and Digital Extortion Task Force to tackle the past year’s spike in ransomware attacks against critical infrastructure and organizations. It’s always encouraging to see increased awareness surrounding cybersecurity, especially from an organization as large as the federal government. Now is a great time for any organization, large or small, to re-evaluate how they are approaching security concerns and their information systems more generally. If you’re interested in learning more about how you can improve business security, reach out to us at info@optfinITy.com or leave us a comment. Stay safe!