DHS cyber board to examine hacking extortion group Lapsus$

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The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced on Friday that its Cyber Safety Review Board (CSRB) will begin conducting a review of recent hacks associated with Lapsus$, a global extortion hacking group that has been tied to numerous data breaches targeting major tech firms.

DHS said the cyber criminal group has reportedly used various techniques to circumvent a range of security controls and has successfully infiltrated several companies across multiple industries.

It added that the board’s upcoming review will include recommendations on how organizations can protect themselves, their employees and their customers from cyber extortion schemes.

Lapsus$ has been linked to a number of data breaches that have targeted major tech companies including including Uber, Microsoft, Samsung, Cisco and Okta.

“The ongoing Lapsus$ hacks represent just the type of activity that merits a fulsome review and can provide forward-looking recommendations to improve the nation’s cybersecurity in the near term,” DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said in a background call to reporters on Friday.

“The cyber threat environment facing our nation is as diverse and severe as it’s ever been,” Mayorkas added.

The agency, which did not provide a timeline, said CSRB will share its findings and recommendations with President Biden once it has concluded the report.

This is the board’s second review of the year. In July, it published its first report, which focused on tackling a software vulnerability known as Log4j. The report indicated that it could take years to eliminate the software vulnerability that the government and companies use to collect and maintain information about system activity.

The board concluded in the report that the vulnerability will be “endemic” and may stay in systems for up to a decade or more.

The board provided a series of recommendations to DHS, including addressing the continued risk of Log4j, adopting industry-accepted practices for managing vulnerabilities, and building a more proactive model of vulnerability management.

“As cyber threats continue to evolve, we have to evolve the methods we use to protect ourselves against cyber criminal activity and increase our resilience from future attacks,” Mayorkas said during the call.

The board was launched in February after Biden’s executive order on improving the nation’s cybersecurity.

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