The Administration of Homeland Aegis hasn’t apparent signs that China seeks to baffle in the midterm elections by targeting acclamation infrastructure, Homeland Aegis Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen said Tuesday — a account that appears to be at allowance with remarks Admiral Trump fabricated about Beijing aftermost week.
“We currently accept no adumbration that a adopted antagonist intends to agitate our acclamation infrastructure,” Nielsen told me at a cybersecurity acme hosted by The Washington Post.
Nielsen did not endorse Trump’s alarming affirmation at the United Nations that China “has been attempting to baffle in our accessible 2018 election.” Without alms evidence, Trump said China does not “want me or us to win because I am the aboriginal admiral to anytime claiming China on trade” — an abnormally arresting animadversion because the admiral has afresh equivocated on his abutment for the intelligence community’s assessment that Russia interfered in the 2016 acclamation to advice him win.
Nielsen drew a acumen between interference in acclamation basement – which would accommodate voting machines and allotment databases – and other Chinese admission operations that could admission accessible opinion. She said that China is added focused on a “holistic” admission accomplishment that may not be anon aimed at aition the elections.
“It’s allotment of a added holistic admission to admission the American accessible in favor of China,” she said.
Still, Nielsen did not foreclose the achievability that China could change their admission and move to ambition acclamation basement in the future. “We apperceive they accept the adequacy and we apperceive they accept the will. So, we’re consistently on alert.”
With beneath than bristles weeks to go afore the midterm elections, Nielsen says the country is far bigger able to avert adjoin threats to U.S. acclamation systems than it was two years ago. The administration is administration added blackmail advice with accompaniment and bounded acclamation admiral than ever. It has formed out a arrangement of cyber-intrusion sensors accoutrement areas area 90 percent of voters will casting ballots. DHS teams accept spent months out in the acreage scanning accompaniment networks for vulnerabilities.
“We accept fabricated amazing strides,” Nielsen told me Tuesday. “We’re absolutely throwing annihilation and aggregate that we accept at it.”
But the administration still faces obstacles as the midterms admission and intelligence admiral acquaint of continuing efforts by Russia to agitate U.S. politics. Nielsen lamented that Congress still hasn’t anesthetized a bill that would acquiesce DHS to booty the advance in the government’s noncombatant cybersecurity efforts. And although the administration hasn’t detected interference efforts on the calibration apparent in 2016, the blackmail is consistently there.
“We would all be absurd if, say today, that we don’t see any adumbration to pretend or accept that we won’t see one tomorrow,” she said.
Here are a few added highlights from my chat with Nielsen:
1. Email-based attacks are on the rise. In contempo months, tech companies accept appear that Russian agents and potentially added adopted adversaries accept targeted political campaigns, anticipate tanks and alike aldermanic offices with spearphishing attacks. These are the email-based attacks in which attackers affectation as a trusted antecedent in an email to accretion admission to clandestine information. Nielsen said the department, too, has empiric “more and added adult spearphishing attacks,” admitting she wouldn’t activity capacity about who the victims were. “Not acclamation officials, aloof accepted attack officials, some of the campaigns,” she told me. The attackers, she said, “use acceptable assuming to acquisition out aggregate about you — what your dog’s name is, what you like, what your parents are, who your parents are — so that back they accelerate that spearphishing email, it does in actuality attending like it’s from somebody that you know, about article you afresh talked about, so that you’re added acceptable to bang on it.”
Russian hackers acclimated spearphishing techniques in 2016 to admission Autonomous organizations and the Hillary Clinton campaign, tricking an abettor to attack administrator John Podesta into aperture a awful email bearded as a aegis apprehension from Google. They additionally beatific 100 spearphishing emails to acclamation administrators in Florida. Nielsen said DHS hasn’t “seen any above compromises yet. But again, it’s that basal assignment that should accession everybody’s bouncer and accomplish you added able to attending for the aing shoe to drop.”
2. States charge added acclamation aegis money. Nielsen said states charge “consistent funding” to advancement their acclamation infrastructure, alveolate a choir of accompaniment and bounded acclamation admiral who say the $380 actor Congress beatific them beforehand this year wasn’t about abundant to accomplish the all-important improvements. Lawmakers on Capitol Hill accept voted adjoin assorted bills that would accept accustomed states addition infusion. But Nielsen encouraged accompaniment admiral to accumulate the burden on. “States charge to be allotment it, they charge to be cerebration through. And if they charge federal assistance, they charge to be authoritative bright what the specific ask is,” she said. “If the states charge added money, they should absolutely go to Congress and ask for money.”
3. DHS will move faster to active accompaniment admiral about intrusions in their networks. It took DHS about a year to acquaint accompaniment admiral that Russian hackers had scanned — and in a brace cases infiltrated — their systems in the countdown to the 2016 election. I asked Nielsen whether they’ll accept to delay that continued if it happens again. “Absolutely not,” she said. Communication amid DHS, accompaniment admiral and the intelligence association has bigger awfully in the accomplished two years, she said. Adventure acknowledgment teams will be “pre-deployed” to abutment states, and the administration will run a “situational acquaintance room” out of its Washington offices on Acclamation Day. “The administration is quicker, faster and added tailored,” she said. “We accept everybody on acceleration dial.”
CORRECTION: This adventure has been adapted to added acutely reflect Nielsen’s comments about Chinese interference. Nielsen drew a acumen amid arrest in acclamation basement and broader admission operations.
PINGED, PATCHED, PWNED
PINGED: An anonymous group calling itself Intrusion Truth has been tracking and advertisement Chinese hacking campaigns in minute detail, but who absolutely is abaft the accomplishment charcoal unclear, the Wall Street Journal’s Robert McMillan appear Tuesday. “Security advisers say they don’t apperceive who is abaft Intrusion Truth,” according to the Journal. “The group’s adjustment of anonymously auctioning advice and targeting a adopted intelligence bureau is article new, they say, and advertisement declared actionable activity could up the burden on Chinese companies allied with state-sponsored hacking efforts.”
Intrusion Truth has gone to abundant lengths to investigate Chinese hackers and has appear abstracts to abutment its findings. “Intrusion Truth called alone declared culprits — abnormal in the apple of nation-state hacking ysis — acquaint photographs, dug up declared hackers’ places of assignment and alike appear Uber receipts that appeared to articulation the individuals to accurate addresses in China,” McMillan wrote. “That is the affectionate of able sleuthing few bodies would accept the accent skills, accoutrement and ysis abilities to cull off, said Thomas Rid, a assistant at Johns Hopkins University. ‘It’s somebody who is professional,’ he said, ‘somebody who knows what they’re doing.’ ”
PATCHED: “Twitter has appear added changes to its rules to try to accomplish it harder for bodies to use its belvedere to advance politically answerable bamboozlement and thereby abrade autonomous processes,” TechCrunch’s Natasha Lomas reported Tuesday. “In an amend on its ‘elections candor work’ yesterday, the aggregation flagged several new changes to the Twitter Rules which it said are advised to accommodate ‘clearer guidance’ on behaviors it’s arise bottomward on.”
For instance, the aggregation appear that it will acclimatize the way it handles afraid actual on its platform. “Twitter addendum that its rules already prohibit the administration of afraid actual which contains ‘private advice or barter secrets, or could put bodies in harm’s way’ — but says it’s now accretion ‘the belief for back we will booty activity on accounts which affirmation albatross for a hack, which includes threats and accessible incentives to drudge specific bodies and accounts,’” Lomas wrote. “So it seems, generally, to be adorning its activity to awning a added abutment ecosystem about acclamation hackers — or hacking added generally.”
Additionally, Twitter said it removed about 50 accounts in August that were “misrepresenting themselves as associates of assorted accompaniment Republican parties.” However, as the Wall Street Journal’s Dustin Volz reported, the company “didn’t yze which counterfeit accounts it had adjourned from its network, or say who it believed had created them.”
PWNED: A activity to use tech and abstracts to improve a allocation of Toronto is adopting aloofness concerns. “A assemblage of Google’s ancestor aggregation Alphabet is proposing to about-face a briefing allotment of Toronto’s beach into what may be the best active association in history — to ‘fundamentally clarify what burghal activity can be,’” the Associated Press’s Rob Gillies appear Tuesday. “Sidewalk Labs has partnered with a government bureau accepted as Beach Toronto with affairs to arrect mid-rise apartments, offices, shops and a academy on a 12-acre (4.9-hectare) armpit — a aboriginal footfall adjoin what it hopes will eventually be a 800-acre (325-hectare) development.” Nevertheless, the activity charcoal at an “embryonic stage,” according to the AP.
But some in Toronto admiration how the abstracts consistent from the burghal development would be handled. “Bianca Wylie, an apostle of accessible government, said it charcoal acutely adverse that Sidewalk Labs still hasn’t said who will own abstracts produced by the activity or how it will be monetized,” Gillies wrote. “Google is actuality to accomplish money, she said, and Canadians should account from any abstracts or articles developed from it.” Dan Doctoroff, arch controlling of Sidewalk Labs, said the activity aims to “improve the affection of activity of people” by putting abstracts to work, the AP reported. “Doctoroff said the aggregation isn’t attractive to monetize people’s claimed advice in the way that Google does now with chase information,” Gillies wrote. “He said the plan is to ad-lib so-far-undefined articles and casework that Sidewalk Labs can bazaar elsewhere.”
— “Former secretary of accompaniment Hillary Clinton drew a allegory Tuesday amid the Sept. 11, 2001, agitator attacks and Russian efforts to admission the 2016 election, adage that in both cases, a adopted ability had attacked the United States, but that in the latter, the admiral had ‘done nothing,’” The Post’s Felicia Sonmez reported. “Clinton, the 2016 Autonomous presidential nominee, additionally said she thinks Russian arrest and added factors ‘certainly adapted the outcome’ in several genitalia of the country during the aftermost campaign.”
— The Administration of Homeland Security, the Treasury Administration and the FBI accept identified malware that North Korean government hackers use to abduct money as allotment of an ATM cash-out scheme, according to a apprehension issued Tuesday by DHS. There is no adumbration so far that hackers accept active the arrangement in the United States, but they accept acclimated it adjoin banks in Africa and Asia back at atomic 2016. In one instance this year, North Korean hackers managed to acquiesce banknote withdrawals from ATMs in 23 countries simultaneously, according to the announcement. They enabled withdrawals from ATMs in added than 30 countries in addition adventure in 2017. Citing a “trusted partner’s estimation,” the apprehension said that North Korean government hackers accept baseborn tens of millions of dollars.
The U.S. government refers to North Korean government hacking campaigns as “HIDDEN COBRA” and calls this accurate arrangement “FASTCash.” “FASTCash schemes accidentally accommodation acquittal about-face appliance servers aural banks to facilitate counterfeit transactions,” according to the notice. “The U.S. Government assesses that HIDDEN COBRA actors will abide to use FASTCash admission to ambition retail acquittal systems accessible to alien exploitation.”
— “A California appeals cloister alone a aegis contractor’s altercation that his confidence on adolescent chicanery accuse was actionable because the government conducted an ever ample chase beneath a accreditation issued to admission affirmation of adopted spying,” The Post’s Ellen Nakashima reported. “Keith Gartenlaub, who had been a arch computer systems administrator at Boeing in Continued Beach, Calif., was bedevilled in December 2015 of one calculation of control of adolescent porn. He was bedevilled to 41 months in prison. On Monday he was confused to a center house. Gartenlaub came to federal agents’ absorption as they advised an declared aperture of advice to Chinese agents about Boeing’s C-17 advancing carriage plane.” Ellen letters that no hacking or spying accuse were brought adjoin the man.
— Added cybersecurity account from the accessible sector:
The Intelligence Committee, anticipating the charge to conduct added interviews, is absurd to end its assignment this year.
Acting to adverse Russia’s advancing use of cyberattacks beyond Europe and about the world, the U.S. is accepted to advertise that, if asked, it will use its appalling cyberwarfare capabilities on NATO’s behalf, according to a arch U.S. official.
Mitt Romney’s Senate antagonism has added coercion to efforts to beef up acclamation aegis and bouncer adjoin the blackmail of voting arrest from Russian hackers, Utah admiral said Tuesday.
Lawmakers still charge a hands-on affirmation of voting accessories vulnerabilities to absolutely the coercion of acclamation security, according to Rep. Jackie Speier, D-Calif.
Dana Deasy, the Pentagon’s new Arch Advice Officer, defends the department’s admission in what’s become a arguable behest war.
Aaron Gregg and Christian Davenport
Andrew Saul, Admiral Trump’s aces to arch the Social Aegis Administration, affairs to accomplish IT modernization, abstracts administration and cybersecurity top priorities.
— Apple arch controlling Tim Cook said he sees “privacy as one of the best important issues of the 21st century.” In an account with VICE Account Tonight on HBO released Tuesday, Cook said “some akin of government adjustment is important” to abode aloofness concerns. He additionally said he “absolutely” considers that Apple users in China accept a appropriate to privacy. “Encryption for us is the aforementioned in every country in the world,” Cook told VICE News’s Elle Reeve. “We don’t architecture encryption for the U.S. and do it abnormally everywhere else. It’s the same. And so to accelerate a bulletin in China, it’s encrypted, I can’t aftermath the content. I can’t aftermath it in the United States either. If you lock your buzz in China, I can’t accessible it.”
— Added cybersecurity account from the clandestine sector:
Above sites application Facebook’s Single Sign-On don’t apparatus basal aegis features, potentially authoritative the fallout of aftermost week’s drudge abundant worse.
A anniversary afterwards advertent the affliction data-breach in its history, Facebook said it has begin no affirmation third-party apps that use the company’s accepted log-in account were afflicted by the hack.
Wall Street Journal
Investors apperceive bitcoin’s agitated affection swings well. What they generally don’t apperceive is that arrant traders, wielding purpose-built software, can be abaft them.
Wall Street Journal
THE NEW WILD WEST
The Dublin-based abstracts aegis ascendancy could advertise its ysis aural the aing 48 hours, bodies aing to the amount say.
Four all-around tech giants – Facebook, Apple, Alphabet and Amazon – will argue an Australian law that would crave them to accommodate admission to clandestine encrypted abstracts affiliated to doubtable actionable activities, an industry antechamber accumulation said on Wednesday.
Government hearings in Singapore put Facebook beneath acute ysis and accept paved the way for a new affected account law in the country. That has animal rights organizations and activists concerned.
David Petraeus: “A bulletin has to be beatific to Russia” on acclamation interference.
U.S. agent to NATO: U.S. ability accept to “take out” Russian missiles that breach treaty.
Notable women who accept won a Nobel Prize:
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