A recent article revealed that the United States government has gotten better at providing unclassified cyber threat information to the private sector. Law enforcement and intelligence organizations have greatly cut down the time it takes to provide unclassified versions of cyber threat indicators (a term that can reference that can refer to a variety of technical data that includes but is not limited to IP addresses, malware, e-mail addresses, etc.) to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to disseminate promptly to the private sector. The process had traditionally been slow as it involves an originating agency to determine if the indicator has been properly vetted without exposing sources and methods, per the article.
Speed of delivering pertinent threat information is certainly an improvement in a domain where attacks occur in seconds. A November 2017 report from the DHS Office of the Inspector General provided a report on actions taken during 2016 in fulfillment of direction mandated by the Cybersecurity Information Sharing Act of 2015 with regards to the sharing of threat indicators. Per the report, despite successfully classifying indicators and defensive measures, it still faced challenges effectively sharing such information across the public and private sectors. The report advocated enhanced outreach and a cross-domain information processing solution.
In late July 2018, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced the creation of the National Risk Management Center, a new organization dedicated to threat evaluation particularly as they pertain to potential hacking against the U.S. critical infrastructure. According to news reports, the center will initially commence with narrowing its focus on the energy, finance, and telecommunications sectors. This new initiative is designed to improve risk assessment across the critical infrastructures and serve as the primary “one-stop shop” to help private companies manage their cyber security risks.
Coinciding with this announcement is the Congress-lead “DHS Cyber Incident Response Teams Act of 2018” that seeks to create permanent incident response and threat hunting teams in the DHS. Such a bill further empowers DHS to help improve cyber security via trained professionals to mitigate and remediate cyber incidents against Federal entities and critical infrastructure entities. The bill passed the House of Representatives on March 19, 2018 and goes to the Senate for its consideration.
In 2018 the number of cyber threats is rising every day, but there are still many gaps that needs to be filled in the world of cybersecurity. There is definitely a talent shortage as many people still think that there is no place for women in information security. Currently, women represent only 11 percent of the cybersecurity force worldwide.
As we already hear and read news related to cyber warfare and espionage on a daily basis, maybe it’s the right time for women in cybersecurity to step in and help to solve more related cyber problems. Although some people may say that the lack of interest is the main reason why there isn’t many women in InfoSec there is a huge potential for this to change in the future. We from CyberDB have created a list with some of the top women in cybersecurity so you can learn more about them and their accomplishments. Feel free to check it out!
Some months ago I had the pleasure of attending a GDS Engagement Evening hosted by Admiral Patrick Walsh (ret) from iSIGHTPARTNERS (prior to its acquisition by FireEye). It was fascinating to hear from Pat the role that threat intelligence played from his direct experiences in the Navy and I think I can speak on behalf my peers on our table when I say that we could all benefit from those insights in our own work.