The US Senate Homeland Security Committee issued, on Tuesday, a 47-page report finding that federal agencies (some of which are responsible for safeguarding personal data) have failed to implement basic defenses to protect against cyberattacks. Some agencies, such as the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), the State Department, and the Social Security Administration (SSA), the report found, continue to depend on outdated systems, that are not routinely updated with security patches and otherwise fail to protect sensitive and personally identifiable data of millions of Americans.
In a statement issued by Senator Rob Portman (R-Ohio), the ranking member of the Senate Homeland Security Committee, Senator Portman cautioned that “[t]his report shows a sustained failure to address cybersecurity vulnerabilities at our federal agencies, a failure that leaves national security and sensitive personal information open to theft and damage by increasingly sophisticated hackers.”
As a result of the Committee’s finding, the Senate is expecting to begin work on legislation to update what has been found to be outdated cybersecurity standards.
A full copy of the report can be found here.
Nixon Peabody’s Cybersecurity and Privacy Team will continue to monitor developments and any fallout concerning this report.