Biden Administration issues emergency alert against cyber-attacks on critical infrastructure

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The Biden administration has issued a warning to all governors across the United States, urging them to be prepared for potential cyber-attacks on critical infrastructure by state-sponsored hackers. This precautionary measure comes amid concerns about recent cyber threats targeting essential services such as power utilities, water supply, and waste management facilities.

Recent incidents have highlighted the activities of cyber threat actors linked to Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and associated with China. These actors, along with Russian intelligence operatives, have successfully breached sectors including pharmacies, oil and supply chains, software providers, and healthcare, often employing ransomware attacks.

In response to these threats, President Biden visited Intel Inc.’s chip manufacturing facilities in Chandler, Arizona, announcing significant investments to strengthen domestic semiconductor production. The $8.5 billion in direct funding and $11 billion in loans are aimed at supporting silicon wafer manufacturing units in Ohio, New Mexico, Oregon, and Arizona. This injection of funds is expected to boost job creation in the manufacturing and construction sectors, particularly in Arizona, a state where a shift in political allegiance could impact the upcoming November 2024 elections.

Trade analysts believe that investing approximately $200 billion in domestic chip production will reduce reliance on foreign manufacturers and enhance national security by safeguarding critical technology infrastructure.

Since 2018, during the Trump administration, Chinese technology companies have faced scrutiny over allegations of espionage through their products. Huawei, TikTok, and other Chinese firms have been restricted from conducting business in North America due to concerns about potential security risks posed by their equipment.

Given the history of espionage-related activities involving companies from Eastern nations, the White House’s national security concerns appear justified, reflecting ongoing efforts to mitigate cyber threats to American interests.

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Naveen Goud is a writer at Cybersecurity Insiders covering topics such as Mergers & Acquisitions, Startups, Cyber Attacks, Cloud Security and Mobile Security

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