Cyber Safety Review Board Updates: It’s a critical aspect of President Joe Biden’s proposal to combat significant ransomware attacks and digital espionage campaigns: forming a board of specialists to analyze major occurrences and try to prevent them from happening again, similar to how a transportation safety board investigates plane crashes.
However, the Cyber Safety Review Board has yet to be established eight months after Biden signed an executive order forming it. That means important duties haven’t been done, such as an inquiry into the large SolarWinds espionage program, which was originally identified over a year ago.
Several federal agencies and private organizations were hacked by Russian hackers. Some proponents of the new board argue that the delay might jeopardize national security, particularly as concerns increase about a potential clash with Russia over Ukraine that could involve nation-state cyberattacks.
The FBI and other federal agencies recently issued an advisory on Russian state hacking methods and techniques, with a focus on key infrastructure such as utilities. “We’ll never get ahead of these dangers if it takes nearly a year to form a panel to examine big breaches like SolarWinds,” said Mark Warner, a Virginia Democrat who chairs the Senate Intelligence Committee. “Such a delay jeopardizes our national security, and I encourage the government to move forward.
“The board has 90 days to investigate the SolarWinds intrusion, according to President Biden’s directive, which was signed in May. However, there is no timetable for forming the board, which is the responsibility of Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas.
In response to questioning from The Associated Press, the Department of Homeland Security said in a statement that it was well on its way to putting it together and expected a “near-term announcement,” but did not say why the process had taken so long.
Scott Shackelford, the chair of Indiana University’s cybersecurity program and a proponent of establishing a cyber review board, believes that doing a thorough investigation into what transpired in a previous hack like SolarWinds is one method to assist prevent future assaults.
“It’s long past time for us to see some beneficial outcomes from standing it up. “The Biden administration has made cybersecurity a high priority and taken steps to strengthen defenses, but lawmakers have already expressed dissatisfaction with the speed of development. Several senators complained last year that the administration took too long to select a national cyber director, a newly formed job by Congress.
Despite intrusions across a broad swath of federal agencies and dozens of organizations, particularly telecommunications and information technology providers, the SolarWinds hack targeted flaws in the software supply-chain system and went unnoticed for most of 2020.SolarWinds is the name of the hacking campaign, which was called after the US software business whose product was used in the first stage of infection.
The hack demonstrated the Russians’ ability to gain access to high-level targets. SolarWinds hackers had previously gotten access to emails belonging to then-acting Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf, according to the Associated Press.
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