Ministry of Defense overseeing military communications and presidential calls became HACKED in 2019 and revealed 200,000 private data of individuals, including social security numbers
- The Defense Information Systems Agency confirmed a data breach in 2019
- The agency is part of the Ministry of Defense and supervises communication for the army and presidential communication
- The agency sent letters to exposed people and offered free credit monitoring
This month the US Department of Defense sent letters to people whose personal information was exposed by a “data breach” at one of its agencies.
The attack was aimed at the computer systems of the Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA) and is believed to have taken place between May and July 2019.
DISA has more than 8,000 military and civilian employees who oversee the sharing of information and communication technology for the Ministry of Defense,
The Defense Information Systems Agency, part of the Department of Defense that oversees military communications, information sharing, and presidential calls, announced it was hacked in 2019
The office’s work includes overseeing presidential communication and calls to Donald Trump.
The Ministry of Defense has refused to say what they know about the identity of the hackers.
The department has confirmed that personal information of more than 200,000 people has been exposed, according to one report in TechCrunch.
“The Defense Information Systems Agency has started issuing letters to people whose personally identifiable information may have been compromised in a data breach on a system hosted by the agency,” said DISA spokesperson Charles Prichard.
“Although there is no evidence that any of the potentially compromised PII has been abused, the DISA policy requires the agency to inform individuals whose personal information may have been compromised.”
DISA, which employs around 8,000 soldiers and civilians, will not say whether they have identified those responsible for the infringement, nor what their motive was, but it is assumed that this took place between May and July 2019
Earlier this month, DISA sent letters alerting people whose personal information was exposed, with free credit surveillance services as compensation
The news of the hack began to spread earlier this week, when people started posting pictures of the letter of infringement they had received from DISA on Twitter
“DISA has thoroughly investigated this incident and has taken appropriate measures to secure the network.”
The agency began sending these letters to people on 11 February and offered free credit surveillance services to remedy the violation of privacy.
Andy Piazza, who works at cyber security and intelligence agency Phia LLC, posted a copy of DISA’s letter to Twitter on February 18.
“Great,” he wrote. “Have another #PII #breaking letter from DoD. Is this a Pokemon where I want to catch them all? ”
The agency did not respond to whether the hack affected classified information, but the exposed personal information is believed to include social security numbers.
HOW CAN I CHOOSE A SECURE PASSWORD?
According to internet security provider Norton: ‘The shorter and less complex your password is, the faster the program can come with the right combination of characters.
The longer and more complex your password is, the less likely the attacker will use the brute force method, because of the long time it takes the program to figure it out.
“Instead, they use a method called a dictionary attack, where the program goes through a predefined list of common words used in passwords.”
Here are a few steps to create a new password:
- Use a combination of numbers, symbols, uppercase and lowercase letters
- Make sure the password is at least eight characters long
- Use abbreviated sentences for passwords
- Change your passwords regularly
- Log out of websites and devices after you have used them
- Choose a frequently used password such as “123456”, “password”, “qwerty” or “111111”
- Use a lonely word. Hackers can use dictionary-based systems to crack passwords
- Use a derivative of your name, the name of the family member, the name of the pet, telephone number, address or birthday
- Write down your password, share it or have someone else use your login details
- Answer ‘yes’ when you are asked to save your password in a computer browser