cyber security

Paranoia is the best strategy for political campaigns when it comes to digital security. After all, who can forget the massive hack of the Hillary Clinton campaign's emails during the last presidential election and its embarrassing consequences?

The reelection campaign of Maine Sen. Angus King took this to heart. Lisa Kaplan, King's digital director, regularly sent out fake emails to her staff to "see who would click on them." Those emails during the 2018 campaign looked real — but they were not.

Hackers linked to Iran are probing American companies for vulnerabilities, cybersecurity researchers and U.S. government officials say.

The warnings suggest that the next phase of hostilities between the U.S. and Iran, following the Jan. 3 killing of a top Iranian general in an American drone strike, is likely to play out in cyberspace.

For decades, the cybersecurity community has had a consistent message: Mixing the Internet and voting is a horrendous idea.

"I believe that's about the worst thing you can do in terms of election security in America, short of putting American ballot boxes on a Moscow street," howled Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., on the Senate floor this year.

Associated Press

Detailed information on more than 20 million people — most of them thought to be Ecuadorean nationals — was found on an unsecured server in Miami, providing identity thieves and scammers a treasure trove.

The internet security firm vpnMentor said it discovered the cache of information during a routine scan of the internet and that the data breach had been closed last Wednesday.

Last spring, a ransomware attack hit the small city of Lodi in California’s Central Valley.

Hackers used malicious software to target Lodi’s phones and financial services, crippling the city’s ability to access swaths of its data, according to the city’s manager, Steve Schwabauer.

“All of our financial services, data, money that people owed us for utilities, and money we owed our vendors for construction contracts and service contracts, everything was locked up,” he says.

WLRN

Three Florida cities - Lake City, Riviera Beach and most recently Key Biscayne - have been targeted by hackers in the last month. All were held hostage by hackers for large amounts of money. Sundial spoke with Rob Wile of the Miami Herald to discuss his reporting on the hacking in Key Biscayne, Director of the Cybersecurity Center of the Americas at Miami Dade College Jorge Ortega and Palm Beach Post staff writer Tony Doris on the hacking in Riviera Beach.

 

By Adam Bakst

With recent cyber attacks on Riviera Beach and Lake City, security of computer systems and information seems to be a growing concern even for the smallest of cities.

This is leading local information technology departments throughout the state to try and control this problem before they fall victim to hackers.

Updated at 4:22 p.m. ET

House Republicans' campaign operation suffered a cyberattack during the 2018 midterm election cycle, it said Tuesday.

A spokesman working on behalf of the National Republican Congressional Committee acknowledged the compromise and said it was reported to authorities.

The Democratic National Committee acknowledged on Thursday that an attempted cyberattack it reported to the FBI was actually a security test by friendly volunteers from Michigan.

DNC security boss Bob Lord said in a statement that a "third party" launched a "simulated phishing test on" the party's voter database — one Lord had announced on Wednesday in what at first appeared to be a warning about more foreign active measures this year.

Courtesy Miami-Dade College

Miami Dade College's new CyberSecurity Center of the Americas wants to teach the next generation of  South Florida's security professionals to detect, stop and remediate when under attack.

Russians Have Penetrated Some Florida Voter Registration Systems, Sen. Bill Nelson Says

Aug 9, 2018
Lynne Sladky / Associated Press

Russian operatives have “penetrated” some of Florida’s voter registration systems ahead of the 2018 midterms, Sen. Bill Nelson said Wednesday, adding new urgency to concerns about hacking.

The state, however, said it has received “zero information” supporting his claim.

“They have already penetrated certain counties in the state and they now have free rein to move about,” Nelson told the Tampa Bay Times before a campaign event in Tampa. He said something similar a day earlier in Tallahassee but declined to elaborate.

Local elections supervisors in Florida have finally received the federal money for cyber security allocated to them back in March.

Updated at 9:38 p.m. ET

The Justice Department charged 12 Russian intelligence officers on Friday with a litany of alleged offenses related to Russia's hacking of the Democratic National Committee's emails, state election systems and other targets in 2016.

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, who announced the indictments, said the Russians involved belonged to the military intelligence service GRU. They are accused of a sustained cyberattack against Democratic Party targets, including its campaign committee and Hillary Clinton's campaign.

Supervisor of Elections 2018
Caitie Switalski / WLRN

The words “Russian hacking” were never uttered, but an official from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security said Wednesday that the 2016 presidential election played a big role in elevating the importance of cybersecurity for state and national elections. 

Tim Chapman

Faced with cyber-security threats to their voting systems, Florida election supervisors say they want access to some of the federal election security money Congress approved for all 50 states nearly two months ago.

But the state, which is supposed to receive $19 million, doesn't yet have the money, and election officials say they're growing impatient.

"We sure wish the money was available. It's frustrating," said Supervisor Mark Earley in Tallahassee's Leon County. "This is a big deal. There’s certainly room for improvement, especially in smaller counties."

Pages