WikiLeaks Disclosures Highlight Challenges to Blocking Cyber-Attacks

It will take years for the government to fully install systems designed to block cyber-attacks and the technology it is using may already be outdated, Homeland Security officials told the Associated Press this week.

The drawn-out timeline enables criminals to become better at stealing sensitive data through the approximately 2,400 network connections used every day by millions of federal workers around the globe.

“The department that is responsible for securing government systems other than military sites is slowly moving all the government's' Internet and e-mail traffic into secure networks that eventually will be guarded by intrusion detection and prevention programs,” the AP story says.

However, progress has been delayed by technology issues, complex contracts with network vendors and concerns about protecting privacy. WikiLeaks recent release of U.S. documents highlights the coming challenges. Officials believe an Army intelligence analyst who downloaded them onto a CD stole the sensitive documents from secure Pentagon computer networks, the article says.

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