The Internet is infected and U.S. citizens are paying a steep price by having their identities stolen and bank accounts raided by international hackers on a regular basis. We are calling for more action from the U.S. government to help industry fight the battle and stop those who are wreaking havoc on our lives.

While there has been some positive movement by the current administration to address the cybercrime issues plaguing our nation, there is much more work to be done. From new legislation aimed at appointing a national cyber security czar to bringing the cyber initiatives under the NSA, these all show that the U.S. government is starting to address this problem – at least on the surface.

The challenge is that we need to dive deeper and reach wider to address this problem. For example, President Obama is at the G20 meeting last week mainly to address the global financial crises. Are the leaders discussing how to stop the global hacking rings – especially the ones coming out of Russia and the Ukraine?

Speaking of Russian hacker rings, we urge you to check out this 60 Minutes clip. What is most disturbing about this segment is that these hackers are actually celebrated figures in their country. They are perceived as being heroes because they rob from the “greedy westerners.” These are obviously deep cultural issues that need to be addressed.

Industry should not have to shoulder the burden alone. No matter how much time and investment is put into developing virus-protection technologies and fraud prevention programs at banks and financial institutions, the bad guys always seem to be one-step ahead.

Last week, the House Homeland Security Committee held a hearing on the impact of the PCI standards on reducing compromises of sensitive personal information — so the issue is being addressed — and the news was not good. According to a Justice Department official who testified, a new breed of international cybercriminals are developing sophisticated techniques for stealing personal data – a major threat to millions of Americans. Read more here.

The bottom line is that we need broader support from the U.S. government, which needs to address this on a global political and diplomatic scale. Seriously, what do you all think about this? Do you think the U.S. government can do more to bring down these hackers? If so, what more can be done??

We want to hear from you!

To read this post and more, check out the ITAC Identity Blog from the Identity Theft Assistance Center:



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Scary! Just heard about the cyberspies from China or Russia who penetrated the U.S. Power Grid, leaving sotware which could easlily disrupt the system. The even more frightening thing is that it wasn’t only limited to the electrical power grid, but affected systems like water and sewage. What would we do without our water supply!!!

Ed Albetski

First off, I work for my agency’s IT Security Officer, so I am in line with the whole “security first” thought path. I just see the frantic building of “better” security as the answer to these threats as cartoonish. Ever watch a cartoon as a kid where the protagonist, a guy, a duck, whatever tries to make his home mouseproof, or rabbitproof, or chipmunk proof? It becomes an arms race and finally ends up with the protagonist standing proudly in the smoking ruins of his home proclaiming victory while the little furry pest peeks out from the rubble and laughs. It is far easier to break something than build it, thus the advantage will always be with the black hats. You were right when you said there were deep cultural issues to be addressed. I’m not sure government subcommittees with all their meetings and reports are going be effective here. The black hats do not fear our consequences. And mostly our weapons are talking men in suits. Perhaps we need different ordnance. A hacker squad of our own going after them… Hmm. Now I see it all in a movie with Bruce Willis emoting away as he types furiously on a keyboard… Well, obviously I don’t have any answers!