A cybersecurity breach is an ever-present threat faced by any industry that relies on technology. It’s particularly hazardous for government agencies that keep sensitive civilian and national-security data in their information systems. Important data is shared and stored by these agencies more and more frequently as cloud systems and bring-your-own-device (BYOD) policies become common practice. However, opening up networks to outside mobile devices and virtualization software also makes these networks more susceptible to attack.
According to this infographic by Microsoft Government, cyberthreats to government agencies quadrupled between 2006 and 2009. This is no surprise, given the increase in data production, but it’s still worrisome for government IT managers and CIOs. The infographic highlights a 2005–2010 timeline of cyberattacks on government agencies. The wide-ranging attacks affected government websites, such as USAjobs.gov, government agencies and federal employees.
Regardless of the source, hackers have been able to access important civilian and classified information, sometimes from foreign intelligence agencies. Reported federal civilian agency incidents increased from less than 20,000 in 2008 to more than 30,000 in 2009.
Is your agency protecting itself from these types of attacks?
For more information on these cyberattacks against the federal government, check out Microsoft Government’s cyberthreat timeline, below.