Cyber Security/Protection

U.K. defence and security update

British PM Liz Truss has ordered an update of last year’s defence and security review due to what her government describes as a new global environment resulting from Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. John Bew, the PM’s special adviser for foreign affairs and defence, is leading the initiative with a view to completing it by year’s end. [node:read-more:link]

White House extends cybersecurity funding

The U.S. Administration today launched a long-awaited federal cybersecurity grant program that will funnel up to $1 billion to state and local governments to upgrade digital defences. Managed by the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency and the Federal Emergency Management Agency, it will begin by awarding an initial $185 million to states before the end of the current fiscal year. [node:read-more:link]

Cybersecurity concerns justified

Canada’s security community has become increasingly vocal about foreign cyberthreats and the concern is evidently warranted, according to a new study. Researchers at the University of Quebec in Montreal have identified at least 75 attacks since 2010, half involving espionage, and mostly government-orchestrated for political, economic or other purposes. [node:read-more:link]

China accuses U.S. of hacking

The National Computer Virus Emergency Response Centre in China is accusing the U.S. National Security Agency of breaking into computers at Northwestern Polytechnical University, an institution in Xi’an funded by the Ministry of Industry & Information Technology and believed to do military-related research. The newly-reported hacking occurred in June [node:read-more:link]

Italy’s energy sector under cyberseige

Cyberattacks on Italian energy operators and infrastructure are increasing, says the country’s National Cyber Security Agency. Following two breaches over the last week, it urges the sector to “raise the levels of protection of digital infrastructure of energy operators” and says it is “constantly updating them in line with the most recent threat information” as attackers use new coding software. [node:read-more:link]

U.K. health system cyberattacked

The National Health Service in Britain is working with the National Cyber Security Centre to investigate a recent ransomware attack on a vendor which provides information technology services to more than 1,200 NHS facilities. The vendor says it isolated all healthcare environments where the attack was discovered August 4. [node:read-more:link]

U.S. steps up pipeline security requirements

Updated cybersecurity directives for U.S. oil and natural gas pipelines have been announced by the Transportation Security. Initial plans a year ago were widely criticized and now the CSA says consultations with the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) have resulted in more “technical countermeasures” designed to prevent threats discovered during extended research. [node:read-more:link]

Who’s in control of your vehicle?

A new Deloitte Canada report raises concerns about the potential of hacking control systems on the latest generation of increasingly connected vehicles. The report examines the implementation of cybersecurity measures and cites, among other things, last year’s hacking of a transport company's 25 automated vehicles. [node:read-more:link]

CyberOps review in the U.S.

The U.S. administration is hoping to refine its predecessor’s offensive cyber capabilities to fit “within our foreign policy goals.” Deputy National Security Advisor Anne Neuberger confirmed the decision July 19, explaining that the review should give U.S. Cyber Command more discretion to engage in time-sensitive operations so as to determine whether cyber capabilities are “resilient, flexible, and ready to be used when needed.” [node:read-more:link]

CIA leaker convicted

A former Central Intelligence Agency computer engineer was found guilty July 13 in U.S. Federal Court of the largest data leak in ghe agency’s history. Joshua Schulte, whose previous trial ended with a hung jury in 2020, was accused of handing over reams of classified information to WikiLeaks in 2016 while working in the CIA Center for Cyber Intelligence. [node:read-more:link]

NATO ramps up cybersecurity

Rapid response to cyberattacks and other malign digital activity is the goal of a new NATO “virtual rapid response cyber capability” as it moves to boost Ukraine’s defences against relentless Russian activity. Agreed to at the latest alliance leaders’ summit, the voluntary program relies on current assets. [node:read-more:link]

CSE 2021-2022 Annual Report released

The Communications Security Establishment has both defensive capabilities and what are called "active" capabilities – which allow it to disrupt foreign online threats to Canada's system. The 2021-2022 annual report gives some details about the cyber campaigns it is waging to safeguard national security. It notes the CSE has used its active cyber operations capabilities to disrupt the efforts of foreign-based extremists to "recruit Canadian nationals, operate online and disseminate violent extremist material." [node:read-more:link]

Russian hackers attack on broad front

Microsoft reports that state-backed Russian hackers have engaged in “strategic espionage” against governments, think tanks, businesses and aid groups in 42 countries which have sided with Ukraine against Russian President Vladimir Putin’s so-called “special military operation.” Nearly two-thirds of the targets have been NATO members, notably the U.S. and Poland, and the hackers’ activities have included unrelenting cyberattacks against Ukraine. [node:read-more:link]

Dire warning about electoral interference

Yves Côté has ended his 10-year term as Commissioner of Canada Elections with a warning that disinformation and foreign interference are two key threats to the country’s electoral system. “There are all kinds of challenges that are lurking and some of them are becoming perhaps worse as we move on with time,” he says, calling on “politicians of all stripes, of institutions, of media, of academics . . . to pull together and say this is a danger.” [node:read-more:link]


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