We’ve been warning you for two years about the growing risk of cyber threats to private and public institutions. The President has now put it front and center on the global security risk list. Vowing to spend billions of dollars to help secure the private and public cyber worlds, the President at least showed us that there are a lot of different views on this subject.
Security experts say that there so many new threats on a weekly basis that a national effort to try and “stop” cyber theft and cyber attacks is an impossible goal. But, we can limit the severity of the attacks and the level of highly vulnerable and highly destructive attacks that are possible. The President wants to focus on the electric grid and major utilities as the first areas of focus. They are attractive targets for cyber terrorists because of the amount of damage that a successful attack could wield on the nation. And, with new cyber attacks aimed at taking over process control systems, physical damage can be done to infrastructure (damage that might risk the life and welfare of US citizens).
We know that North Korea and several “more developed” nations have active cyber warfare units. Those units have been making “probes” of US private and public infrastructure for years – punching holes in firewalls and sometimes leaving their presence undetected so that they can exploit those holes at a later date. Today, we only suspect that we know what are true vulnerabilities are. We might not know for sure until we are faced with a national crisis in which the nation comes under attack. A coordinated physical and cyber attack is not out of the question – especially from a terrorist organization. Analysts believe that these types of strategies are not only in the works – but are likely already in place and just ready for execution. That could be some of the “behind the scenes” intelligence that has pushed the President to make this a national issue.
Watch for more investment, emphasis, assistance, and focus on cyber security. As private enterprise leaders – your systems will be part of that focus as well.Tweet