For the government, cybersecurity isn’t only a challenge—it’s a big obstacle to long-awaited digital transformation. Plus, the stakes are sky-high: Hacking public-sector information might imperil national security as well as citizens’ trust. Is our government up to the task?
July 2015 – “The Office of Personnel Management in the US government said hackers stole “sensitive information,” including addresses, health and financial history, and other private details, from 19.7 million people ”
Sept 2017 – “143 million compromised Social Security numbers. Attackers stole half the US population’s Social Security numbers from Equifax”
2020 – Jamaica’s entire population NIDS data hacked…???? Will this be our fate?
Budgets towards cybersecurity
- Bank of America Corp. spent $400 million USD on cybersecurity in 2015
- J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. recently lifted their cyber security budget from $250 million to $500 million USD.
- the British insurance company Lloyd’s estimated that cyber attacks cost businesses as much as $400 billion a year
- The United States is expected to spend $31.5 billion on cybersecurity tools and services
Now with Global cybersecurity spending set to grow by 7% to $86.4BN in 2017, according to Gartner. What is the budget being set aside by the government of Jamaica to securing the NIDS or any essential system that they have? Is this being considered in the implementation plans they have?
These are the tough questions that our leaders should be asked and not petty nonsensical questions which have been floating around on the necessity of such a system in the 21st Century and in our 50+ years of independence.
As with modern-day terrorism, cybersecurity has proven daunting because the nature of the threat is constantly evolving. Each major technological development—mobile, social, cloud computing—brings a host of new risks. Cybercriminals, on the other hand, aim to exploit new technologies before developers discover their vulnerabilities. How prepared are we for these realities?
Closing the cyber skills gap
A cybersecurity strategy means nothing without the skills and talent needed to execute it. Technology companies and banks with world-class cybersecurity capabilities owe much of their success to top-flight technical staff. How will we as a country train and attract such talents to secure our nation’s data? In fact, experts consistently cite a talent shortage as one of the key challenges to better public cybersecurity.
The Internet is a new environment with its own rules and its own dangers. In the past two decades, we’ve connected our economy and society via the Internet—
a platform designed primarily for sharing information, not protecting it
. This connectivity has driven innovation and high performance in the public and private sectors alike.
Yet as connectivity reshapes government in positive ways, it presents business opportunities for criminals with cyber talents. As agencies extend their capabilities through cloud computing, IT outsourcing, and partnerships, they increasingly rely on complex infrastructure not fully within their control. Similarly, government efforts to engage citizens and employees through social media introduce gaps and opportunities attackers will doubtless try to exploit.
The important test lies in how government officials anticipate and counter moves by an ever-shifting cast of criminal adversaries. Digital governments will need speed, dexterity, and adaptability to succeed on this new battlefield.
Like the post above? Check out these related posts: