‘Reminiscent of the Obama administration’: Cyberattackers ignore Biden’s red lines

The Washington Times:

President Biden’s tough talk against cyberattacks from Russia has not stopped an onslaught of ransomware and hacks from hitting the U.S., cybersecurity professionals say.

Mr. Biden said U.S. critical infrastructure was off-limits for Russia-based attackers and repeatedly admonished Russian President Vladimir Putin to take action against cyberattackers. The effort has failed to yield an observable deterrent effect, said Michael Ellis, a former top lawyer at the National Security Agency appointed by President Trump.

“I think it was a little naive perhaps to think that just Biden telling off Putin would actually lead to anything in and of itself,” Mr. Ellis said. “One fault of the Biden administration’s policy so far: Their approach does appear to be again reminiscent of the Obama administration’s — that meeting after meeting to consider an issue but without making a decision. And when you don’t make a decision, that amounts to a decision, in some ways, and that leads to bad results.”

Mr. Biden set his red lines with Mr. Putin at a June summit in Geneva. Mr. Biden declared 16 critical infrastructure sectors out of bounds for cyberattacks, including communications, the defense industrial base, energy, financial services, health care, transportation, and food and agriculture.

“The bottom line is I told President Putin that we need to have some basic rules,” Mr. Biden said immediately after the summit. “This is the road that we can all abide by.”

The number of weekly attacks against several of the off-limits critical infrastructure sectors has continued to soar over previous years, according to cybersecurity firm Check Point, which has headquarters in California and Israel.

Check Point observed an average of 406 attacks per week against the financial services industry, 790 average attacks per week against the health care industry and 976 average attacks per week against the communications industry in June and July.

More at The Washington Times

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