U.S. officials ratcheted up pressure on companies and foreign adversaries to fight cybercriminals and they also said that President Joe Biden is considering all options, including a military response, to counter the growing threat.
U.S. Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo, when asked about if military action was being considered said that the Biden administration is looking at all of the options, to defend the country against ransomware criminals. Raimondo did not detail what those options could look like. He just said that the topic will be on the agenda when the president meets with Russian President Vladimir Putin this month. The Biden administration is pushed into a more aggressive stance against Russia by this rising cyber-attacks. He also stated that they are not taking anything off the table as they think about possible repercussions, consequences or retaliation.
The world’s largest meatpacker was targeted by cybercriminals over last week, which is followed by the attack in the largest fuel pipeline in the United States in May month. Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm said separately in an interview with CNN that U.S. adversaries have the ability to shut down the country’s entire power grid. This is stated in account of the thousands of attacks on all aspects of energy sectors. Some cyber experts stated that a next step could be destabilization of the computer servers that are used to carry out such hacks.
Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg said that the May attack on Colonial Pipeline created temporary gasoline shortages. This showed the national implications of a hack on a private company. Hence, they have asked the private companies to be more vigilant and transparent about the attacks. He said in a CBS interview that part of our vulnerability on cybersecurity is you are only as strong as your weakest link.
Granholm said that when the companies are being targeted, they need to alert the federal government instead of paying the attackers. Because paying them keeps on encouraging them in this kind of works.