December 4, 2012 |
WASHINGTON - As head of the FBI's cyber crimes division, Shawn Henry often had to deal with exasperated company executives after his agents informed them that their networks had been hacked and their secrets pilfered. "By whom?" the company officials would ask. "What have they taken? Where did it go?" "Sorry," Henry's agents had to reply, "that's classified. " Even though the FBI in many cases had evidence the attacker had been backed by a foreign intelligence agency, agents couldn't disclose it because the U.S. government believed doing so could compromise top-secret sources and methods.
October 26, 2012 |
In a recent speech to business leaders, U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta revealed for the first time how a virus wiped data from more than 30,000 oil company computers in Saudi Arabia and Qatar. Panetta said the "Shamoon" virus was probably the most destructive attack the business sector has experienced. All of the computers were rendered useless and had to be replaced. The virus replaced crucial system files with a burning American flag and rewrote all the data on the machines.
October 17, 2012
Speaking to a group of U.S. business leaders last week, Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta issued a dire warning that foreign hackers are becoming increasingly sophisticated and that their online attacks on transportation systems, banks and other vital facilities are escalating. The worst-case scenario, he said, is a "cyber Pearl Harbor" perpetrated by state-sponsored hackers or terrorists that "would cause physical destruction and loss of life, paralyze and shock the nation and create a profound new sense of vulnerability.
October 7, 2012 |
The gig: Steve Jillings is chief executive of TeleSign, a Marina del Rey company that provides security services to websites. Jillings, 50, took the helm two years ago, and since then TeleSign has grown from 10 employees to more than 100 — with similar growth in revenue. Its clients, mostly in North America and Europe, use TeleSign's software to authenticate users logging in to their websites. Jillings declined to identify his clients but said they run some of the world's largest consumer websites.
October 2, 2012 |
WASHINGTON - President Obama issued a proclamation Monday making October National Cyber Security Awareness Month. But with cyber security proposals stuck in Congress, the Obama administration is moving to do more than create an awareness month. The White House, as first reported by the Associated Press , began to draft an executive order after the shutdown of the Obama-approved Cyber Security Act of 2012 in the Senate in August . “We are very cognizant that in some industries there exist already regulatory authorities that can be used for cyber security,” Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano said at the National Journal's Cyber Security Summit.
September 27, 2012 |
A shadowy but well organized hacker group in the Middle East has disrupted the electronic banking operations of America's largest financial institutions in recent days, underscoring U.S. vulnerability to online terrorism. A group identifying itself as Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Cyber Fighters attacked the websites of Wells Fargo, U.S. Bancorp and Bank of America. The strikes left customers temporarily unable to access their checking accounts, mortgages and other services. The banks said account and personal information for their tens of millions of online and mobile customers were not compromised.
September 5, 2012 |
A hacker group's claim that it obtained from an FBI laptop a file with more than 12 million identification numbers for Apple iPhones, iPads and other devices has set off widespread speculation about why a federal agency would possess such information. But the FBI disputed the allegation Tuesday, saying that "at this time, there is no evidence indicating that an FBI laptop was compromised or that the FBI either sought or obtained this data. " If the FBI's denials prove correct, the agency may have been the victim of a clever hoax by the group known as AntiSec that spurred thousands of headlines around the Web and left readers wondering how and why the FBI could have gotten access to Apple customer records.
August 3, 2012 |
WASHINGTON - Earlier this year, top national security officials held a classified briefing in the Capitol for about half the Senate, warning that the country's crucial infrastructure was highly vulnerable to a major cyber attack and urging Congress to move swiftly to require new safeguards. Gen. Keith Alexander, head of the National Security Agency, and Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, were among those who pressed for a White House-backed cyber-security bill to regulate privately owned crucial infrastructure, such as electric utilities, chemical plants and water systems.
August 2, 2012 |
WASHINGTON -- Despite warnings from intelligence officials that the U.S. is ill-prepared to stop a growing wave of cyber attacks against its crucial national infrastructure, the Senate on Thursday failed to pass a watered-down bill that would have set voluntary standards to harden the network defenses of electric utilities, chemical plants and other privately owned facilities. Most Republicans and a few Democrats voted to block the measure even after its sponsors agreed to scale back its regulatory mandates.
July 25, 2012 |
As athletes compete for Olympic gold, a different group will seek international recognition - online hackers. Olympic security officials are bracing for an onslaught of cyber assaults that could easily surpass the 12 million attacks a day, or 500,000 an hour, that were logged during the Beijing Olympics four years ago. "From the hacker's perspective, this is the mother of all opportunities," said Larry Ponemon, president of the Ponemon Institute,...