The US Govt. is on rage now, all thanks to the recent hack on its database that has breached the privacy of more than 4 million employees in the nation. Some Govt. officials hold China responsible for these attacks although there is no tangible evidence to support their claim. Whatsoever maybe, almost every federal agency has been affected by this breach, thus leading to the theft of sensitive information, from the secured network of Official Personnel Management, like social security numbers, names and birth dates.
According to various reports from sources, this is the biggest data breach on US soil ever. But is China really responsible for this cyber-attack? The Chinese Govt., itself said that in fact they have had a several cyber attacks in the past. Some of you might be thinking that thief will never say that he is responsible for stealing something, hence the same theory applies to China, but again we can’t directly jump to conclusion without any substantial evidence. Okay, let’s say that China is responsible for the data breach. So, how would China benefit from that? According to some experts, this will help China to build a federal database that can provide opportunities to fool and impersonate US govt. officials that can thus help to organize a chain of ‘future insider attacks’.
This is not the first time US has ever seen a massive data breach. Several cyber attacks were also discovered in the past like the data breach of Anthem, a major health insurance company, a year ago. Back then U.S also accused China being responsible for the attack, without any tangible proof. There were only some theories made up that could link the Chinese Govt. for the data breach. Similarly, this time also China has been framed because the US Govt. has speculated China in a position to initiate those attacks with military and economic motives. All that can be said is, jumping directly to conclusions won’t help the American Govt. to find the hackers responsible. They need to investigate the matter properly before framing someone as the culprit.
Apart from the China-Responsible-Ties, it is also possible that any other State like Russia or Iran might be responsible for carrying out the attacks. The personal identity and social security numbers of federal officials can also be sold to any dealer for a large value in the black market. This means that, the hackers responsible for this data breach, might be having monetary motives. What if this attack might have been co-ordinated by someone from the inside because it is not so easy to just break in to a highly secured federal US network? What if this is not just an ordinary hacker group but rather an unknown organization hiding in plain sight? Again think about it- is China actually responsible?
The lesson that US Govt. learn from this issue is that there is still a hole in their cyber security and that gap needs to be filled up, so as to strengthen the limitations of the American Digital Border, so that the nation won’t be vulnerable to such type of attacks anymore. Because in the present scenario, information warfare is already brewing up, especially in developed countries. The one who controls data, rules the entire society. Probably in the next decade, ‘data’ will surely become a form of monetary unit in the market. Not only US, but also other nations in the world need to keep this in mind and invest more on making their networks highly secure and hack-proof to any vulnerabilities possible.