Suspected state actor linked to BC government hacks

May 12, 2024
1 min read





TLDR:

British Columbia’s civil service has experienced multiple cyber-security incidents believed to be the work of a “state or state-sponsored actor.” The breaches were detected in April and May, with government teams enlisting the help of Microsoft’s cybersecurity response team and the Canadian Cyber Centre. There is no evidence of sensitive information being compromised so far. Cybersecurity experts support the government’s decision to keep the breaches secret initially, citing the advantage criminals have when caught off guard. The British Columbia Freedom of Information and Privacy Association emphasizes the government’s responsibility to secure information and provide further details about the breaches to the public.

Full Article:

The head of British Columbia’s civil service, Shannon Salter, revealed that a “state or state-sponsored actor” is believed to be behind multiple cyber-security incidents against provincial government networks. The first breach was detected on April 10, with additional incidents occurring on April 29 and May 5.

Government teams enlisted the help of Microsoft’s cybersecurity response team, DART, and the Canadian Cyber Centre to investigate the breaches. Despite the incidents, there is currently no evidence to suggest that any sensitive information was compromised.

Cybersecurity experts, including Chester Wisniewski from Sophos, support the NDP government’s decision to withhold information about the breaches initially. Wisniewski warned that the public should expect a lengthy investigation process.

The British Columbia Freedom of Information and Privacy Association emphasized the government’s responsibility to secure the wealth of information in its possession and called for transparency about the breaches. FIPA CEO Mike Larsen stated that the public has a right to know who is attacking B.C.’s public information systems and how the government plans to respond.

Public Safety Minister Mike Farnworth assured reporters that the government is actively working on enhancing the security of government information systems. He also mentioned that a complete review of the incidents and the government’s response will be conducted after the investigation concludes.


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