The U.S. government attempts to fend off millions of cybersecurity threats each year, according to a report released by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB).
The report found that government attackers successfully executed 77,000 cyber incidents, including network breaches or data infiltration during fiscal year (FY) 2015. This is a 10 percent increase from FY 2014.
Speaking at a House Appropriations Legislative Branch Subcommittee hearing about the report, Will Plaster, House of Representatives chief administrative officer, said nearly one-third of the 200 million emails sent to the U.S. House last year contained malware or viruses, according to the top House administrator.
Speaking at a House subcommittee hearing last week, Department of Veterans Affairs CIO LaVerne Council said the agency blocked 160 million malware attacks last year.
The annual report, mandated by the Federal Information Security Modernization Act (FISMA) of 2014, evaluated Federal agencies’ information security policies and practices and the OMB’s 30-day ‘cybersecurity sprint‘ this year. The cybersecurity sprint, a national effort to strengthen federal agencies’ information security measures, grew out of the OPM breach last year.
The report noted that most federal agencies are challenged by a lack of information security and IT human capital. Several initiatives to address the personnel challenge exist, but the report stated that “implementation and awareness of these programs is inconsistent.”
Last week, Lisa Schlosser, OMB’s deputy federal chief information officer, was named interim CIO of the OPM, replacing Donna Seymour, who resigned in February following the department’s breach last year. Schlosser was involved in the OMB’s 30-day ‘cybersecurity sprint,’ a national effort to strengthen federal agencies’ cybersecurity measures and authentication measures following the OPM breach.