A Times investigation reveals missed signals, slow responses and a continuing underestimation of the seriousness of a campaign to disrupt the 2016 presidential election.

Read the full article at: www.nytimes.com

“When Special Agent Adrian Hawkins of the Federal Bureau of Investigation called the Democratic National Committee in September 2015 to pass along some troubling news about its computer network, he was transferred, naturally, to the help desk.

His message was brief, if alarming. At least one computer system belonging to the D.N.C. had been compromised by hackers federal investigators had named “the Dukes,” a cyberespionage team linked to the Russian government.

“The F.B.I. knew it well: The bureau had spent the last few years trying to kick the Dukes out of the unclassified email systems of the White House, the State Department and even the Joint Chiefs of Staff, one of the government’s best-protected networks.

“Yared Tamene, the tech-support contractor at the D.N.C. who fielded the call, was no expert in cyberattacks. His first moves were to check Google for “the Dukes” and conduct a cursory search of the D.N.C. computer system logs to look for hints of such a cyberintrusion. By his own account, he did not look too hard even after Special Agent Hawkins called back repeatedly over the next several weeks — in part because he wasn’t certain the caller was a real F.B.I. agent and not an impostor.”

It is no wonder that cyber espionage and mayhem is in the news. The latest allegations of state sponsored cyber crime is just one of the burgeoning numbers of attacks on all systems, government and private. While technology is certainly one part of the solution, bringing the human element in as part of your first line of defense is often adhoc and dependent on the expertise of individuals not  institutional programs with processes, procedures and training.

If you need help adding the human dimension to your cyber strategies, contact us.