Tags: state | dept | computer | hacking

State Department Warns of Hacking Risk

Wednesday, 29 Jan 2014 03:55 PM

By Drew MacKenzie

  Comment  |
   Contact  |
  Print   |
    A   A  
  Copy Shortlink
The State Department's computer systems are wide open to a security breach that could result in large-scale hacking or the theft of classified documents similar to the case of fugitive leaker Edward Snowden at the NSA, the agency's inspector general has warned.

The IG says that "classified information vital to the preservation of national security in high-risk environments across the globe" is in danger of a cyber-attack, along with the personal information of 192 million U.S. passport holders, according to Fox News.

The IG's warning was revealed when a "management alert" to the department's leading officials became public, although many portions were heavily redacted for security reasons.

Three years after U.S. Army Pvt. Bradley Manning gave hundreds of thousands of sensitive State Department cables to WikiLeaks, the alert said the department's "info-tech system" is still rife with security risks and there are no plans on how to fix it.

The alert says that between 2011 and 2013, six detailed reports on information security found "recurring weaknesses" in several areas of cyber-security, including the protection of its system from hackers or unauthorized users.

The report also points out that the State Department is meant to warn other agencies like Homeland Security of the potential security risks but has failed to do so.

The inspector general's alert noted that the department had "remediated the identified vulnerabilities and risks," which means that little or nothing at all had been done to fix the potential security lapses, Fox News reported.

The department's watchdog said that part of the problem was the Bureau of Information Resource Management, which specifically oversees information security issues. The IG report said it had "identified a number of conditions that required management’s attention” at IRM.

The report also warned that, as of last August, IRM had a startling number of systems administrators, 6.369 to be exact, who are cleared to "collaboratively manage and troubleshoot issues” across the State Department.

The IG compares the security danger to what happened with former National Security Agency employee Edward Snowden, who has leaked hundreds of thousands of classified documents after stealing them while working as a contracted systems administrator for the agency.

The "management alert" also reveals that 36 workers had "access to unspecified areas" to classified information, even though they didn’t have the proper security clearances to perform work on those documents, Fox News says.

Related Stories:










© 2014 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

  Comment  |
   Contact  |
  Print   |
  Copy Shortlink
Around the Web
Join the Newsmax Community
Please review Community Guidelines before posting a comment.
>> Register to share your comments with the community.
>> Login if you are already a member.
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
Email:
Country
Zip Code:
Privacy: We never share your email.
 
Follow Newsmax
Like us
on Facebook
Follow us
on Twitter
Add us
on Google Plus
Around the Web
Top Stories
You May Also Like

Report: Vermont Abandons Single-Payer Health Care Effort

Wednesday, 17 Dec 2014 20:13 PM

The liberal dream of single-payer health care for the United States suffered a setback on Wednesday in one of its provin . . .

Obama on Sony Hack: 'Go to the Movies'

Wednesday, 17 Dec 2014 19:57 PM

President Barack Obama told ABC News on Wednesday that Americans should not fear going to the movies amid threats of ter . . .

Meningitis Outbreak That Killed 64 Spurs Indictment

Wednesday, 17 Dec 2014 19:24 PM

Fourteen officials, pharmacists and technicians tied to the Massachusetts company involved in a meningitis outbreak that . . .

Most Commented

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

 
NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
©  Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved