Bryan Ware, assistant director at the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), said CISA has strengthened cyber defense measures at federal health agencies and research facilities as nation-state actors continue their attempts to compromise coronavirus vaccine research efforts, CyberScoop reported Friday.
“I just want you to know that we have stepped up our protections of [the Department of Health and Human Services] and [the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention] — our federally-funded research organizations,” Ware said during a webinar Friday. “[We’ve] significantly accelerated that work.”
He cited CISA’s efforts to protect the U.S. health care sector from ransomware attacks and address hacking threats related to COVID-19 pandemic.
“We pivoted our organization the first quarter of this year to really helping the nation with this COVID response,” said Ware. “There’s nowhere that said that pandemic response was within our job, but we realized very quickly that our adversaries…whether they’re state actors or criminal actors, that they could present great risks to [the U.S.].”