Expert Reaction On News Of Russian State Hackers Targeting Biden Campaign

One of Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden’s main election campaign advisory firms has been targeted by suspected Russian state-backed hackers, according to Reuters. Sources said the hacking attempts targeted staff at Washington-based SKDKnickerbocker, a campaign strategy and communications firm working with Biden and other prominent Democrats, over the past two months. Cybersecurity expert reacted on this news.

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Tarik Saleh
Tarik Saleh , Senior Security Engineer and Malware Researcher
InfoSec Expert
September 10, 2020 2:06 pm

As we approach November, it is very likely that we will see an uptick in foreign state-sponsored attempts to sway the democratic process. The fact that there was an attempt to compromise SKDK\’s network but that the cyber defences in place were sufficient to spot and block the attack is certainly a good sign. We must also remember, however, that very often all it takes for an incident to happen is an employee to click on the wrong link – it would be a good idea for all the organisations involved to refresh their staff\’s cyber awareness training ahead of the next few months.

Last edited 2 years ago by Tarik Saleh
Niamh Muldoon
Niamh Muldoon , Senior Director of Trust and Security, EMEA
InfoSec Expert
September 10, 2020 2:02 pm

It is critical that those High Value Targets, governmental institutions and all those involved in electoral campaigns are vigilant – adopting the appropriate measures to avoid being hacked. Most attacks will begin by exploiting the weakest link – the people. Individuals should apply the S-T-O-P principle: (1) Stop- (2) Take a Deep Breath- (3) Opportunity to Think- (4) Put the email into Perspective and report the phish. Having security awareness training in place will help prepare individuals to instil this mindset. Elections are the foundations of democracy, any interference or even suggestion of an interference, risks jeopardising the legitimacy of the people’s vote.

Last edited 2 years ago by Niamh Muldoon
Jake Moore
Jake Moore , Cybersecurity Specialist
InfoSec Expert
September 10, 2020 1:36 pm

We are clearly seeing a rise in multiple directional attacks concerning the presidential election, but this is far from surprising. The Biden campaign was able to withstand this particular attack, which suggests they are fully aware of this increased risk and are stepping up their protection. In the run up to the election, the types of attack will vary and will be fired from all directions as cyber criminals look for any possible vulnerability. However, the safest way for these political parties to remain safe is to stay on high alert, monitor every single email entering their inboxes, and verify all links and attachments.

Last edited 2 years ago by Jake Moore
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