June 5, AtoZForex, Vilnius – It is widely known that the Federal Reserve (Fed) is the central banking system of the United States. It is also the main database of all the information regarding the country’s monetary policies, which influence the global markets financial systems. Therefore, it remains an attractive target for cyber criminals, who seek ill-profits from illegally obtaining confidential information. Yet, how safe and cyber-attack-proof is the Fed? According to recent reports, between 2001 and 2015, over 50 Fed Cyber-attacks detected. These attacks targeted the Federal Reserve’s confidential information on various global issues.
Over 50 Fed Cyber-attacks detected in 4 years
AtoZForex learnt that the Fed was attacked by hackers more than 50 times in a 4-year time span – from 2011 to 2015. Some of the breaches were targeted at the financial institutions worldwide, including America’s JPMorgan. Other international targets were Vietnam’s Tien Phong Bank and Ecuador’s Banko del Austro. According to the reports, cyber criminals were targeting the data mostly during the period of Fed’s heavy investment in U.S. government debt and mortgage-backed securities. The former Fed’s employees say that the hacker attacks are very common in Fed’s practice.
The Fed reported that in most cases the hackers were using malicious code or software to attack. The individuals were having unauthorized access to the Fed’s financial systems and were performing the information disclosure, fraud and inappropriate usage of data. The reported number of breaches represents only a small part of all of the cyber-attacks on Fed, as it includes only the cases related to the Washington – based Board of Governors. The number of breaches related to the other 12 privately owned regional branches has not been disclosed yet.
The Federal Reserve declined to comment on the confidential data breaches. It is still unknown, whether the hackers were stealing money or accessing secret information. James Lewis, a cybersecurity expert at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, commented:
“Hacking is a major threat to the stability of the financial system. This data shows why.”
NIRT reports 140 hack attempts
8 information breaches involving the ‘malicious code’ are reported
140 reports are referred to hacking attempts on the agency out of the 310 provided by the Fed’s Board of Governors
4 hacking incidents, which are considered by Fed as ‘espionage’ are recorded in 2012
51 incident identified by the Fed’s cyber security experts. These can include unauthorized people accessing the Fed’s data, or cyber-attacks on an email sent to the wrong person.
The National Incident Response Team (NIRT), which operates in the building where the millions of cash are processed every day, is the Fed’s national cybersecurity team. The NIRT has created the above incident report.
Committee on Science, Space and Technology conducts an investigation
The Committee on Science, Space and Technology requested Fed Chair Janet Yellen for more information on the 51 Fed Cyber-attacks detected. The Committee is currently conducting the oversight of the cybersecurity incidents that happened between 2011 and 2015. In order to perform an adequate evaluation of the cyber security events, the Committee asked for the briefing from the Fed’s officials.
Is the Fed able to increase their cyber security? What are the next steps of the Fed? Stay tuned with AtoZForex for the latest development and details on this case.
What are your thoughts on the cyber-attacks targeted on the Fed? Let us know down in the comments section.