Last week, the U.S. Justice Department acknowledged that its Bureau of Justice Statistics website had been hacked. The hacker group Anonymous claimed credit for the hack and published 1.7 gigabytes of data. Included in the data were internal e-mails, which possibly contained personal or sensitive information related to crimes, criminals, and crime victims.
The Heritage Foundation’s new report listing the U.S. government cyber breaches and failures already has some new additions, including this hack and another that Paul Rosenzweig chronicled earlier today.
This ever-growing list of government cyber failures should be a warning to those who think that a top-down, government regulatory regime is the best way to protect our nation from attack. Regulating cybersecurity would impose potentially massive costs on the private sector while providing questionable improvements in security.
If this list is any indication, the government doesn’t have all the answers. A real cybersecurity solution would start with collaboration: clarifying legal ambiguities and encouraging the sharing of cyber threat and vulnerability information among the private and public sectors.
Hacking and cyber attacks are here to stay, and the U.S. should pursue sensible solutions.