Cybersecurity Expert Glenn Gerstell, Former General Counsel of the National Security Agency, on a Hack Attack on the u.s. Gov’t.

December 18, 2020
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It’s as if you wake up one morning and suddenly realize that a burglar has been going in and out of your house for the last six months.

  • “You’d have to go back and look at every room to see what was taken, what might have been touched. And of course, that’s just a horrifying thought.” Gerstell.
  • The hack attack is only becoming public now; it’s reportedly ongoing.
  • The gov’t believes it started in the spring.
  • All signs points to Russia, but Russia denies it.
  • What Happened: It appears hackers entered government computer systems through a cybersecurity firm (Solar Winds) – stealing the firm’s software THEY use to keep government entities safe. The firm has 300,000 customers; 18,000 had this software. Unfortunately, those 18,000 entities include governments, major corporations, OTHER tech companies and beyond.
  • The hack ignited a “team” from the Dir. of National Intelligence, FBI, Dept. of Homeland Security.
  • No certainty on just how many government agencies impacted or the information stolen.
    Why It Matters: To date, no one know how big this attack is or how much the hackers have accessed – from public information to private to classified and beyond. The most significant warning: the stealth malware used for the hacking is still “in the system” gathering information.

Many of the reports on this topic *initially* cited anonymous sources, though more are coming on the record – this is typical in a developing story with high national consequence. This was a helpful read on this topic.

by Jenna Lee,