25 Mar 2011

Cyber criminals continue to target federal agencies

Cyber attacks against federal agencies increased nearly 40 percent in 2010, according to the Department of Homeland Security's U.S. Computer Emergency Readiness Team.

The data reported by US-CERT is available in the report by the Office of Management and Budget officials, which includes information regarding implementation of the Federal Information Security Management Act.

Last year, federal agencies were the victims of 41,776 cyber attacks, up from 30,000 attacks in 2009. Attacks based on malicious code represented 31 percent of all cyber attacks on federal agencies, accounting for 12,864 attacks, while 27 percent are currently under investigation. Also, 8 percent of federal agencies currently do not have any monitoring program in place for protection.

"In fiscal 2011, the shift from the once-a-year FISMA reporting process to a monthly reporting of key metrics through Cyberscope will allow security practitioners to have more information than ever before to assist the protection of agency information and information systems," wrote OMB officials.

North America accounted for the highest percentage of global spending for cyber security in 2010, representing 38 percent, according to research by Frost & Sullivan.