Tuesday, March 7, 2023

New Government Agency For Cyber Security

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Collaboration With Critical Infrastructure Owners And Operators

Massive cyberattack hits federal agencies l WNT

Because the private sector owns and operates most of the critical infrastructure in the U.S., CISA sees working with critical infrastructure owners and operators as central to its mission. The agency worked closely with industry partners in mapping out the Critical Functions list because, as an agency spokesperson tells CSO, Neither government nor the private sector alone has the knowledge, authority, or resources to do it. Public-private partnerships are the foundation for effective critical infrastructure security and resilience strategies, and timely, trusted information sharing among stakeholders is essential to the security of the nations critical infrastructure.

Information sharing with industry is also key to other CISA programs such as the Automated Indicator Sharing program, which is an early warning system that allows a company or federal agency to share information in near real-time after an attempted compromise has been observed. The goal of AIS is to allow industry and government partners to protect themselves before an intrusion occurs.

CISA says that since March 2016 , it has shared more than six million unique cyber threat indicators with partners. The agency currently has more than 250 organizations connected to its AIS server and more than 4,000 third-party AIS connections, a CISA spokesperson says.

More on critical infrastructure:

International Strategic Framework For Cyberspace

The international dimension of cyber security has not been the focus of Canadian action to date, despite the fact that many threats originate from abroad and that cyber security is an inherently transnational issue. The United States , Canadas largest economic and trading partner, is at the forefront of efforts to address international aspects of cyber security, and is looking to allies to cooperate closely by making a significant contribution to these international efforts. Global Affairs Canadas International Strategic Framework for Cyberspace will allow Canada to enhance its cooperation with the U.S. as it further implements its cyber security strategy, including by putting in place personnel in Washington to facilitate closer collaboration. GAC will also establish an International Cyber Engagement Working Group to enhance information sharing and coordination between government organizations working on international cyber issues. This initiative supports GACs mandate to enhance and promote Canadas leadership in an evolving global context, including by advancing efforts to more effectively fulfill Canadas commitments within the North Atlantic Treaty Organization and other regional organizations, such as the Organization for Security Cooperation in Europe , the Organization of American States , and the ASEAN Regional Forum .

What Is The Government Doing In Cyber Security

  • Case studies
  • While much of Australias digital infrastructure is owned by the private sector, cyber security is a shared responsibility between governments, the private sector and individuals.

    The Government is committed to driving Australias national cyber partnership effort to mitigate cyber security risks and to reduce any risk to Australias national security that result from large scale sophisticated cyber threats.

    Below is a summary of major government work on cyber security for a list of all government initiatives, refer to Australias Tech Future website.

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    Goal : Secure And Resilient Systems

    Through collaborative action with partners and enhanced cyber security capabilities, we will better protect Canadians from cybercrime, respond to evolving threats, and defend critical government and private sector systems.

    The threats we face in cyberspace are complex and rapidly evolving. Governments, businesses, organizations, and Canadians are vulnerable. With more of our economy and essential services moving online every year, the stakes could not be higher.

    Dod Updates Cmmc Program To Simplify Contactors Cyber Requirements

    Cyber Security NSW to extend scope to councils ...

    After a lengthy review process, the Department of Defense today issued an update to its Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification program dubbed CMMC 2.0 that will simplify some of the cybersecurity requirements for contractors in the Defense Industrial Base looking to do business with the government.

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    Senate Report Calls Out Long

    In a set of failures described as systematic, the Senate report found that every federal agency save the Department of Homeland Security came up short on its cybersecurity fundamentals. The report was conducted by the bipartisan Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, headed up by the tandem of Gary Peters and Rob Portman . While all of the federal agencies except for DHS were in some level of cybersecurity trouble, the report pointed to several that were given a grade of F for their security posture in 2020: the Departments of State, Commerce, Education, Transportation and Veterans Affairs.

    Though the DHS passed the tests, it was not without its shortcomings. The DHS Inspector General did not submit its annual evaluation to Congress prior to the release of the Senate report, and the cybersecurity program that it administers to provide other federal agencies with a baseline level of intrusion detection was found to have significant limitations in detecting and stopping attacks.

    Implementing The Cyber Security Strategy

    In 2016, the Government released Australias Cyber Security Strategy to secure our prosperity in a connected world. The strategy includes investments of more than $230 million across five themes of action for the period up to 2020, these include:

    • national cyber partnership
    • growth and innovation
    • a cyber smart nation.

    The Governments recent review of the Cyber Security Strategy has found that two years in, significant progress has been made across its five pillars, and that Australias comprehensive approach to cyber security has yielded economy-wide benefits. Importantly, it has also found that as the world becomes more connected, online security also becomes more important. As such, securing Australias interests online will remain a priority.

    The Academic Centres of Cyber Security Excellence is one initiative under the Cyber Security Strategy. It aims to address the national shortage of highly-skilled cyber security professionals by encouraging more students to undertake studies in cyber security and related courses. The ACCSE program gives recognition to Australian universities that successfully demonstrate high-level cyber security education and training competencies, research capability and strong connections to government and the business sector. The Government is providing funding of $1.9 million over four years shared equally between the University of Melbourne and Edith Cowan University to assist with establishment and operation of their ACCSE.

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    Audit Details Poor Cyber Maturity Across Nsw Government Agencies

    The Audit Office of New South Wales has found government agencies lack critical cyber maturity capabilities. Audit results released last week identified non-compliance and significant weaknesses against the governments policy.

    The audit examined compliance levels as of June 30, 2020. It focused on nine key agencies Premier and Cabinet, Communities and Justice, Customer Service, Education, Planning, Industry and Environment, Regional NSW, Health, Treasury, and Transport for NSW.

    The audit scrutinised compliance with the NSW Cyber Security Policy , a regime that requires NSW Government agencies to self-assess their cyber maturity and implement mandatory cyber risk mitigation strategies.

    Of the 104 NSW government agencies, 99 agencies complied with the CSP in an ad hoc manner or not at all.

    The poor levels of cyber security maturity are a significant concern, said NSW Auditor-General Margaret Crawford. The Auditor-General notes while some cyber maturity targets require investments of resources and time, other targets merely require leadership and an in-house commitment to cyber resilience.

    NSW government agencies are required to submit a cyber maturity report annually to Cyber Security NSW. Agencies must report on five cyber risk and mitigation factors, including assessing cybersecurity risks and whether they are continuously improving their cybersecurity governance and resilience.

    You can read the full audit results here.

    Cyber Security Assessment And Certification For Small And Medium

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    Businesses in Canada, especially Small and Medium Enterprises , do not have the same capacities as larger businesses when it comes to cyber security. The introduction of a voluntary certification for individual businesses will help participants position their competitive advantage and promote trust in the digital economy. The Cyber Certification Program is geared towards SMEs, which approximately make up 98% of the total number of businesses in Canada.

    While a small number of standards for cyber security exist, the Cyber Certification Program requires the implementation of specific cyber security controls by participants certified by a third party accredited certification body to ensure a consistent application of cyber security protections to demonstrate a baseline security provided by certified businesses. This Program is designed to be a starting point for SMEs to improve their cyber security posture.

    The ultimate purpose of the Cyber Certification Program is to raise the cyber security posture among Canadian SMEs, increase consumer confidence in the digital economy, promote international standardization, and better position SMEs to compete globally. This public-private initiative is led by Innovation, Science, and Economic Development Canada , in collaboration with the Communications Security Establishment , Standards Council of Canada and independent private sector accredited certification bodies.

    Goal 2: Milestone Table


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    Overview Of Dhs Cybersecurity Sprints

    In his March 31, 2021, address, Secretary Mayorkas outlined a bold vision for the Departments cybersecurity efforts to confront the growing threat of cyber-attacks, including a series of 60-day sprints to operationalize his vision, to drive action in the coming year, and to raise public awareness about key cybersecurity priorities.

    Understanding that most challenges require a more sustained effort than what can be accomplished within 60 days, the sprints are designed to leverage the Office of the Secretary to elevate existing work to address the specific challenge, remove roadblocks that have slowed down efforts, and launch new initiatives and partnerships where needed.

    Improved Integrated Threat Assessments

    The new Canadian Centre for Cyber Security , housed within the Communications Security Establishment , will increase its capacity to produce all-source strategic cyber threat assessments and contextualize cyber threats to assist the Government of Canada and Canadians in understanding complex and evolving cyber threats . A better understanding of the cyber threat landscape by the Government of Canada and Canadians will facilitate better responses and a more cyber secure and resilient Canada.

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    Strategic Policy Capacity In Cyber Security And Cybercrime

    With an enhanced strategic policy team responsible for cyber security and cybercrime issues, the Department of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness will be better positioned to support the expanded range of functions to be undertaken to implement the new National Cyber Security Strategy. This initiative will help ensure the proper coordination of strategic cyber security and cybercrime policy issues amongst internal and external stakeholders, allow the Department to begin preliminary work to address the cyber security and cybercrime data gaps, and allow for the resources necessary to support the expanded Cyber Security Cooperation Program .

    Canadian Centre For Cyber Security

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    Until recently, the Government of Canadas cyber security operational capabilities were distributed across different departments and agencies. Though measures were in place to ensure good communication and coordination, ambiguity concerning roles and responsibilities and the inherent difficulty in coordinating multiple decision makers was a barrier to the quick, effective, clear, and trusted technical guidance that Canadians have come to expect from their government. To address this gap, the Government of Canada established the new Canadian Centre for Cyber Security within the Communications Security Establishment in October 2018. It is a single, unified team of government cyber security technical experts that will be the definitive source of unique technical advice, guidance, services, messaging and support on cyber security operational matters for government, critical infrastructure owners and operations, the private sector and the Canadian public. Canadians will have a clear and trusted place to turn to for all cyber security operations issues. The Centre will also provide cyber security expertise to support lead agencies in the delivery of their core functions, including collaborating with the RCMPs NC3 and its law enforcement efforts to address cybercrime.

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    Facilitating More Seamless Information Sharing

    No single agency or company can address our nations cyber security challenge alone, which is why Microsoft has long been a believer in partnering with agencies to share threat information in the interest of national defense.

    Microsoft recently agreed to become an Alliance Partner in the new Joint Cyber Defense Collaborative established by Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency to promote resilience and strengthen cyber defense. Were also taking several further steps to help defend our nations cybersecurity, providing federal agencies targeted or compromised by a nation-state actor with notifications and enhanced reporting to CISA from our Digital Security Unit.

    Helping State And Local Government Agencies Address Cyber Security

    Cyber-attacks against state and local governments are increasing and accelerating even before COVID, two-thirds of attacks targeted state and local organizations. From January to May of 2020, there was a 350% increase in phishing attempts, with attackers taking advantage of the fear and uncertainty driven by COVID. With a nationwide workforce moving to remote work, vulnerabilities that may have been more fully protected by corporate networks are more easily exploited, and the sophistication of attacks through automation is resulting in an ever-growing barrage of cyber-attacks.

    Despite the growing cyber risk landscape, organizations need flexible, integrated, and trustworthy solutions that enable them to make better-informed decisions and deliver impactful and often lifesaving services to their communities. Our citizens have grown to expect a high level of service from the government, delivered through technology solutions that are high-performing and always available. Through the application of robust cybersecurity and resiliency capabilities, government agencies can help build community confidence and trust, ensure high-quality service delivery, safeguard data, protect critical digital infrastructure, and ensure privacy and regulatory compliance.

    Government leaders must:

    Key components to Microsofts own security strategy include our Cyber Defense Operations Center and the Microsoft Digital Crimes Unit.

    Additional Resources:

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    Resilience Of Democratic Institutions

    Fair and free elections are a hallmark of American democracy. The American peoples confidence in the value of their vote is principally reliant on the security and resilience of the infrastructure that makes the Nations elections possible. Accordingly, an electoral process that is both secure and resilient is a vital national interest and one of the Department of Homeland Securitys highest priorities. The Departments Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency is committed to working collaboratively with those on the front lines of electionsstate and local governments, election officials, federal partners, and vendorsto manage risks to the Nations election infrastructure. CISA will remain transparent and agile in its vigorous efforts to secure Americas election infrastructure from new and evolving threats.

    Cisas Role In Cybersecurity

    US government warns of growing cyber threats

    Cyberspace and its underlying infrastructure are vulnerable to a wide range of risks stemming from both physical and cyber threats and hazards. Sophisticated cyber actors and nation-states exploit vulnerabilities to steal information and money and are developing capabilities to disrupt, destroy, or threaten the delivery of essential services. Cyberspace is particularly difficult to secure due to a number of factors: the ability of malicious actors to operate from anywhere in the world, the linkages between cyberspace and physical systems, and the difficulty of reducing vulnerabilities and consequences in complex cyber networks. Of growing concern is the cyber threat to critical infrastructure, which is increasingly subject to sophisticated cyber intrusions that pose new risks. As information technology becomes increasingly integrated with physical infrastructure operations, there is increased risk for wide scale or high-consequence events that could cause harm or disrupt services upon which our economy and the daily lives of millions of Americans depend. In light of the risk and potential consequences of cyber events, strengthening the security and resilience of cyberspace has become an important homeland security mission.

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    To Stay A Step Ahead Of Cyber Threats Agencies Need To Be Innovative Understand Risks Prioritize Assets And Boost Capabilities

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    Government entities are engaged in a new cyber security arms race. With the ever-changing risk landscape and the amount of personal and mission-sensitive data collected, government entities are scrambling to recruit enough cyber security professionals. Increasingly sophisticated adversaries are using machine learning, automated intelligence, and other tools to exploit information. So how can government entities gain the upper hand? They must be innovative in protecting key assets and maintain a more sophisticated risk management strategy. And they must mature and expand their technology capabilities including the latest in automation and analytics.

    Goal : Effective Leadership Governance And Collaboration

    The federal government, in close collaboration with provinces, territories, and the private sector, will take a leadership role to advance cyber security in Canada and will, in coordination with allies, work to shape the international cyber security environment in Canadas favour.

    The Government of Canada will demonstrate leadership in advancing Canadas cyber security interests both domestically and abroad, by ensuring the enhanced collaboration and coordination of strategic cyber security and cybercrime issues amongst stakeholders, and by advocating for an open, free and secure internet. Establishing a clear focal point for cyber security within the federal government, through the newly established Canadian Centre for Cyber Security, will demonstrate leadership, while ensuring that partners receive unified advice and guidance on cyber security and cybercrime issues. The Government of Canada will work to increase information sharing amongst domestic and international partners, and to collect relevant data and metrics in support of evidence-based decision-making.

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    Federal Bureau Of Investigation

    While the FBI only employs about 35,000 people, their cybersecurity personnel is constantly growing. In addition to positions in the main FBI headquarters, the bureau has employed cybersquads in their 56 offices nationwide. These teams travel internationally with the 93 cybercrime task forces that are trained to work alongside the federal, state, and local agencies. Work for the FBI and you will help investigate federal crimes, guard the country from threats and assist the U.S. counter-intelligence and counter-terrorism agencies. The agency also has a Criminal, Cyber, Response and Services Branch to handle cyber crimes and other illicit activities.

    FBI recruiters are primarily looking for cybersecurity experts who have at least a bachelors degree. In fact, during a 2014 cyber conference, the FBIs Supervisory Special Agent Charles Gilgen stated that the agencys cyber division intended to hire 6,000 analysts and cyberwarriors by 2016.

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