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OMB Report Details Progress, Challenges in Gov’t Cybersecurity Efforts

cybersecurityThe Office of Management and Budget has indicated that government agencies reported a 15-percent increase in information security incidents in 2014 as they gain more insight into their networks, Federal News Radio reported Monday.

Jason Miller writes OMB’s latest Federal Information Security Management Act report to Congress pointed to almost 70,000 cybersecurity incidents in the past fiscal year compared to 48,000 in 2012.

It found mishandling of documents with personal or sensitive information as the most common threat rather than the phishing and denial-of-service attacks commonly recorded in the public and private sectors, the station reports.

According to OMB, data from its E-Gov Cyber unit and the Department of Homeland Security‘s U.S. Computer Emergency Readiness Team showed a significant percentage of incidents traced to the lack of strong authentication systems.

“Strong authentication implementation for civilian agency user accounts remains at only 41 percent, well below the 75 percent target,” OMB stated in the FISMA report.

It added that E-Gov Cyber’s CyberStat reviews will focus on the 18 agencies that have reported difficulty in the implementation of two-factor authentication, especially for privileged user accounts.

Miller reports that only six agencies have posted an 80-percent implementation rate for smart identity cards as part of network access controls under Homeland Security Presidential Directive-12.

Meanwhile, the report said the percentage of agencies that use Trusted Internet Connections is up from 86 percent in 2013 to 95 percent last year.

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