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October 26, 2016

Cyberattack Shows DHS Must Linkup With Critical Infrastructure Companies

(WASHINGTON) – Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Ranking Member of the Committee on Homeland Security, sent a letter to Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson inquiring about the recent distributed denial of service (DDoS) cyber attacks against the network services of Dyn, Inc. The October 21 attacks affected many popular websites and access to these sites was temporarily hindered. In the letter, Ranking Member Thompson stresses the importance of having robust information sharing and outreach between the government cybersecurity entities and critical infrastructure companies.

In the letter, Congressman Thompson writes:

“While DDoS attacks are not uncommon, these attacks were unprecedented not only insofar as they appear to have been executed through malware that exploiting tens of thousands of Internet of Things devices but also because they were carried out against a firm that is provides services that, by all accounts, are essential to the operation of the internet.”

“The attacks on Dyn underscore the interdependencies among operators in the Information Technology Sector.  It is critical that the Department has a dynamic picture of these relationships and foster robust relationships with those firms that are essential to the operation of the internet…I would like to know how the Department’s knowledge of such interdependences impacts its outreach and information sharing efforts and the status of its efforts to ensure that mechanisms are in place for companies providing essential services such as Managed DNS providers to access information and technical assistance from the Department.”

Link to Letter

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Media contact: Adam Comis at (202) 225-9978