Threat Management, Threat Management

Officials preparing for cyber attacks, scams as Olympics nears


With the London Olympics set to kick off in July, U.S. security officials are warning about the event being a target for cyber criminals.

Incidents could range from hacktivist attacks against Olympic sponsors -- either with the goal of disabling their website or stealing information -- to common phishing or "black hat" search engine optimization-enabled ruses that try to cash in on the popularity of the Olympics to steal money from unsuspecting people or install malware on their machines, according to a bulletin from the Department of Homeland Security's National Cybersecurity and Communications Integration Center, posted this week on the Public Intelligence website.

British authorities have been working with the U.S. Secret Service to get a handle on how cyber vandals wanting to take advantage of the grand stage may try to strike, and what defensive strategies can be put into place.

The bulletin also looked forward to the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, a politically volatile region.

"Legacies surround land claims and ethnic sovereignty issues in the Caucasus have been ongoing for centuries, and they continue to the current day with wars having occurred in the last view decades," the bulletin said.

Olympic protests have a rich history. This year, many demonstrators plan to call out wrongdoing committed by the Games' wealthy corporate sponsors.

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