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PEI Systems Hacked Several Times in Two Years

by: Bryon Turcotte  /  April 9, 2014

Government systems owned and operated by the Canadian province of Prince Edward Island (P.E.I.) have fallen victim to "six major cyberattacks over the past two years\, "according to an_ article published on Canada's C.B.C. News website. The article indicates that these attacks compromised many email accounts allowing the hackers to "_install malware and obtain administrative usernames and passwords."

These "data breaches_" allowed attackers to gain access to "_more than 200 administrative usernames and passwords to allow modifications to the province's website_", according to information, which as confirmed in the report, was obtained by C.B.C. News "_under the province's Freedom of Information Act." Unfortunately, details about how these breaches happened were not exposed in government statements. Still, the article did indicate that the existing system has been changed so "hackers can't gain access again using the same exploit."

Scott Cudmore, one of the province's directors within the information technology division, was quoted in the article to say, "The province has been continuously improving the depth and level of the security, again in the face of an ever-increasing number of exploits that's available. At no time over the past two years have hackers obtained any personal information." Although, the article did continue to note that within the time frame of one week in June 2013, "a small number of government email accounts_" were compromised "_using malware, malignant software programs_" which effected "_accounts using common passwords, including the person's username." According to the article, per province officials, the accounts that were victimized used "_weak passwords_, "according to the article.

Read more about these government breaches and what the province has planned for the future in the full article at C.B.C. News.

Written by Bryon Turcotte  /  April 9, 2014