How the Government Shutdown Affects our Nation’s Cybersecurity

How the Government Shutdown Affects our Nation’s Cybersecurity
Willi Van Boven
US Capitol

The partial shutdown of the U.S. Government has left many agencies at a much greater risk of a data breach. Because of the vast amounts of personal data that agencies such as the Dept. of Justice and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) maintain, the privacy and data breach risks are just as high.

Many agencies have 24-hour security operations centers (SOCs). The employees and contractors in these SOCs fight the continuous battle against data breaches.

In the SOCs, remote devices can be wiped, threats neutralized and analyses of hacker trends take place. DataCenterKnowledge.com accurately described the situation: “Critical services related to cybersecurity are not being provided to the public. In addition, the shutdown is encouraging the most talented employees to leave for jobs in the private sector and will make it difficult to recruit in the future.” Some agencies have even taken the step to shut down their website.

Grant Wernick, CEO of Insight Engines, warned that “This is a perfect time for bad guys to attack…My guess is, a few months from now, we’ll find out that this period was a really scary time.”

The risk grows greater every day. Michael Borohovski, a founder of Tinfoil Security, said that “each day multiplies the added impact…It’s going to take even more effort for groups and agencies to get back up and running and get up-to-date with the latest threats and concerns, setting us back significantly.”

The warnings by experts in the field like this truly demonstrate the dire need for the U.S. Government to get back to running fully. In the private sector, the cyber threat remains just as high. As we have seen with the Mariott International breach, Equifax and the Panama Papers, hackers are always trying to break in anywhere they can.

CRANIUM has a team of cyber and privacy experts who are ready to help your organization mitigate the risk of a data breach or cyber-attack as much as possible. Both European and American law require that organizations handling personal data have up-to-date security and organizational safeguards in place to protect it. We can work with you to get the right practices and technology in place to mitigate both security and privacy risks.