Cyber attacks on NZ

September 11, 2007 at 10:26 pm Leave a comment

Today’s Dominion Post’s leading headline is “NZ spies uncover cyber attacks” with the sub-heading “Department computers hacked by foreign governments, says SIS.” That made the topic of today’s post obvious.

Head of the SIS or Security Intelligence Service, aka Chief Spook, indirectly blamed China, adding NZ to a growing list of countries around the world who now name China as the cyber enemy. He talked about websites attacked, sensitive information stolen, and software surreptitiously installed.

Perhaps not so surprising was that in some cases the government departments were unaware that their computer systems had been breached.

Lots of press coverage on this, including the Prime Minister on TV news, but no one really had much more other than what the Chief Spook said. Peter Griffin in his blog speculated about “patriotic hackers” out of China while Bruce Simpson somehow even found a way to use this to attack Microsoft.

It isn’t government agencies alone that have been attacked from overseas. A recent survey published in the CIO Magazine (print edition only unfortunately) painted a similar picture of cyber attacks on private organisations.

I suspect many NZ organisations have been lulled into a false sense of complacency. Hopefully this and the coming of data breach notification guidelines will be sufficient for them to start beefing up their online security. Before it is too late.

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Entry filed under: data_breach, fraud, government, network, NZ, security, strategy.

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