Tuesday, August 25, 2009

DHS Official: Agencies Must Make High-Risk Cyber Threats Top Priority

Jill R. Aitoro writes on NextGov:

Federal agencies should prioritize their information security requirements to ensure mission-critical operations are protected first, and delineate between "that which is aggravating and that which is truly dangerous," the Homeland Security Department's cyber chief Greg Schaffer said during a conference on Tuesday.

Cyberattacks are growing far more sophisticated, in part because they're more difficult to detect, said Schaffer, who was appointed assistant secretary of DHS' Office of Cybersecurity and Communications in June. Schaffer and Dave DeWalt, chief executive officer of security vendor McAfee, spoke Tuesday morning at the GFirst conference in Atlanta hosted by the department's U.S. Computer Emergency Readiness Team.

"The more sophisticated attacks ...are low and slow, designed to not draw attention, but insidiously get at data and resources," Schaffer said "Yet at the same time, the level of noise from less sophisticated attacks continues to grow. This makes for an environment where it is easy to focus on the wrong pieces of the puzzle while bad things happen under the radar. We need to be vigilant and focused."

More here.


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