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OMB: Slowing Federal Cyber Attack Growth Still 5X Greater than Private Sector

Site: NIST.gov

The Office of Management and Budget recently reported the number of cyber attacks on federal networks continued to increase in 2011, but at a slower rate than in previous years.

The OMB said cyber attacks in the federal space were up by 5 percent over 2010 figures as federal agencies complied with 73 percent of cybersecurity policies.

The agency conducted a report in cooperation with the U.S. Computer Emergency Readiness Team and found most of 2011’s cyberattacks where phishing scams.

The OMB reports 43,889 of the 107,665 cyberattacks reported in 2011 were directed toward federal agencies. The private sector saw only saw 1 percent increase in cyber attacks, OMB said.

OMB reported that federal agencies are showing significant improvements in implementing cybersecurity policies and ensuring compliance.

NASA and the Labor Department showed the most improvement, while other agencies such as the Interior, Agriculture and Transportation departments only met half of cybersecurity measures, according to OMB figures.

The agency said it expects threats to federal infrastructure to continue to grow and suggests agencies should continuously monitor their networks in order to minimize risk of further cyberattacks.

Department of Homeland Security Deputy Cybersecurity Undersecretary Mark Weatherford recently reported he aims to set aside part of his agency’s budget to help other federal agencies get up to speed on cyber practices and for continuous monitoring.

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