Despite efforts to improve, GAO report says most government agencies are at risk of security attack.
At a time when the cyberthreat level is at its peak, many federal agencies continue to struggle with IT security.
Weaknesses in information security policies and practices at 24 major federal agencies continue to place the confidentiality, integrity and availability of sensitive information and information systems at risk. Consistent with this risk, reports of security incidents from federal agencies are on the rise, increasing more than 650% over the past five years, concluded a report from the watchdogs at the Government Accountability Office this week."Each of the 24 agencies -- including the Departments of Agriculture, Commerce, Defense, Education, Energy, Health and Human Services, Homeland Security and the IRS -- reviewed had weaknesses in information security controls. An underlying reason for these weaknesses is that agencies have not fully implemented their information security programs. As a result, they have limited assurance that controls are in place and operating as intended to protect their information resources, thereby leaving them vulnerable to attack or compromise," the report stated.