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Homeland Security still under hackers’ attacks

Hackers don’t stop before anything. Although one would say these people have some respect and potential fear against possible punishment, the latest news proves this theory wrong: Several government agencies within the Department of Homeland Security admit they are regularly victims of computer break-ins at home and overseas by hackers finding their way into the department’s cyber network. More than 800 security incidents plagued the department over the past two years, including viruses, password-stealing programs and “Trojans” or hacker tunnels found on some workstations. Problems have cropped up at FEMA, the Transportation security Agency, the Coast Guard and other agencies. The House Subcommittee on Emerging Threats, Cybersecurity, Science and Technology asked officials Wednesday how they are improving their cybersecurity to prevent such incidents from happening again. Chairman Jim Langevin, D-R.I., called the reports “very disturbing.”

Some security problems include unauthorized software installed on department computers, misconfigured firewalls and unauthorized disclosures of classified data. It’s not just happening within the Department of Homeland Security. The Department of Commerce was hacked last year by computer criminals in China that forced one to get rid of hundreds of computers and set up a new network system. Congressional investigators, expected to testify Wednesday during an oversight hearing about the department’s security lapses, determined that persistent weaknesses “threaten the confidentiality, integrity and availability of key DHS information and information systems,” according to a new report from the Government Accountability Office being released later in June.


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  1. June 21st, 2007 | 05:30

    that’s kind of interesting, i bet they ALL use windows.

  2. Lopak
    June 21st, 2007 | 05:34

    China ? , what about Israel they been keen on stealing secret info laitly :3

  3. JoshuaMH1
    June 21st, 2007 | 05:44

    Windows isn’t that insecure, just most of its users make it that way.

  4. June 21st, 2007 | 05:52

    Uhm… WRONG.

    MS Windows(3.1-XP)are the least insecure OS of them all. XP SP2 is slightly better and now Vista is finally starting to be more secure, but MS are the only ones that give admin/root rights by default.

  5. walker
    June 21st, 2007 | 07:12

    The least insecure OS of them all huh.

    No one cares Linux fanboy.

  6. oker
    June 21st, 2007 | 09:26

    i bet some users install p2p and share their whole disk including c:\topsecret

    and they install all kinds of crap they download on their windows workstation, because they can

  7. June 21st, 2007 | 10:05

    Homeland security my ass. You know who the true terrorist are, the rich people.

  8. Selk
    June 21st, 2007 | 11:28

    “”Uhm… WRONG. MS Windows(3.1-XP)are the least insecure OS of them all. “”

    Umm… wrong.

    BTW if you screw with the computers at the coast guard you deserve to be shot through the head.
    There isn’t even a word to describe the level of arseholishness required to fuck with people who risk their lives for others and are the only people who will rescue you from certain death if you are in distress on the seas.

  9. SoniKalien
    June 21st, 2007 | 12:07

    Well this news is more terrifying for USA not because of the hackers, but because the world now knows how pathetic and useless their defences really are.

    America’s bark apparently is a lot worse than the bite…

  10. ByteRider
    June 21st, 2007 | 13:33

    *chuckle* Soni .. that’s like saying that because your keyboard has problems your computer is a piece of crap.

    EVERY government around the world has problems with computer security. Your’s is not different.

    The IT Infrastructure of the government is really no different than any large (ok .. REALLY large) corporation out there. You have overarching regulations that need to be adhered to and local administrators that have to implement them.

    The biggest problem is that unlike corporations, government sectors rarely have a ‘bottom line’ that justify increased costs for infrastructure protection. While in a corporation, a profit-loss presentation can be given to someone that controls the money (Hmm.. so you’re saying that if I invest another $5 million in cyber security I can protect myself form about $500 million in intellectual property losses? Sold!).

    Government sectors usually have to operate within the budget given to them and until something ‘bad’ happens to give an ‘emotional event’ to someone that controls the budget, the attitude of “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” prevails. In this case though, “if it ain’t broke” usually means” if it’s broke, but isn’t front page news, then I don’t care and have other areas I need to spend my money”

    As to your blatent Anti-US comment … blah .. why bother. Small minds = small comments. All countries have good and bad .. we have a lot of each.

    United States – The country who has aspects you love and hate depending on the mood you are in at the moment (myself included).

  11. Q
    June 21st, 2007 | 14:31

    all your base are belong to us

  12. June 21st, 2007 | 15:57

    Not a linux fanboy, I use XP SP2 but I know how to protect myself with 3rd party apps, plus I am just an average guy, ain’t nobody out to get me.

    I wasn’t condoning hackers either don’t know where you got that from, whatever.

  13. June 21st, 2007 | 17:19

    I think they just need a good tech support admin, who knows all about the ‘computer’. He’ll fix ‘em up all good and won’t allow anymore outsiders to access his system.


  14. Selk
    June 21st, 2007 | 17:38

    “”America’s bark apparently is a lot worse than the bite…”"

    This is a pretty impressive piece of idiocy.
    You really should take the time to savour this for a moment. Let your brain explore the myriad of ways this statement doesn’t apply to the topic nor anything that’s been discussed.
    It’s like a perfectly crafted fork in a world of soup.

  15. GateKeepeR
    June 21st, 2007 | 18:54

    HAHA agree SELK….

  16. Juice
    June 22nd, 2007 | 04:04

    WingAttackGroupExIl –

    “You know who the true terrorist are, the rich people.”

    You are a moron. I don’t think *RICH* people would saw your mother’s head off without even hesitating.

    Maybe you should go talk to someone who lost a loved one on 9/11 and ask them who the *TRUE* terrorists are. See, stupid people like yourself are bringing down our country, the ones who like to believe that global warming is more of a threat then terrorism.

  17. Boo
    June 22nd, 2007 | 04:21

    Not to rain on your parade, but I’d say global warming poses much more of an immediate and imminent threat than terrorism. If you actually wish to discuss this, I can come back tomorrow when I’ll have more time to piece my thoughts on the subject together.

  18. cccc
    June 22nd, 2007 | 06:34

    Juice is an ignorant moron.

  19. RPG
    June 22nd, 2007 | 09:16

    Yeah, right.. It’s funny we have million security holes and they keep saying people are resposible of protecting and updating systems.

  20. SoniKalien
    June 22nd, 2007 | 22:55

    I love the way non-americans can post 3 lines of comment and the typical american response is to get up in arms and post 3 paragraphs defending themselves.

    My point was, if you read and thought carefully, that America is not as secure as they would have you believe, as implied by that article.

  21. Boo
    June 23rd, 2007 | 01:31

    SoniKalien, the reason is simple: it probably takes more time for the “all your base are belong to us” guy to compose his comment than it takes for Americans, who are fluent in English and (generally) have no problem expressing their thoughts in their native language, to compile a little essay on the very same subject. By the way, your thoughts on the U.S. security-related issues are immature and uninformed.

  22. wtfbshax
    June 23rd, 2007 | 02:34

    Boo you should google “all your base are belong to us”. This country is getting more fucked up and less secure because it’s the melting pot of the races. It’s like the public swimming pool. Every other country dropped their kids off here and there’s alot of piss in the pool.

  23. Boo
    June 23rd, 2007 | 02:51

    “While the wildfire has died down, “All Your Base” is still a well-known reference among gamers and programmers.”

    Heh, I’m both, and I’ve never heard of this phrase before. Thanks for a quick cultural lesson, wtfbshax. I hereby change my previous “all your base are belong to us” foreign commentator reference to the “the world now knows how pathetic and useless their defences really are” one.

  24. SoniKalien
    June 23rd, 2007 | 06:05

    Yea why not – you gotta take it out on someone, huh?

  25. Juice
    June 26th, 2007 | 05:49

    CCCC –

    Ignorant….hmmmm maybe slightly tilted but not ignorant

  26. Juice
    June 26th, 2007 | 06:01


    Terrorism is a viable and concrete threat, while in the scientific community, global warming isn’t even considered a bona fide or tangible issue.

  27. Bjorn
    March 12th, 2008 | 19:27

    “Maybe you should go talk to someone who lost a loved one on 9/11 and ask them who the *TRUE* terrorists are.”
    Most people who lost their loved ones wants a new investigation because they think the official story is a joke and that the evidence clearly points towards a total inside job. So it’s probably you who need to wake up to who the “true” terrorists are.

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