Maybe it’s time the Secret Service starts monitoring the computer security of presidential candidates, in addition to their physical security, some private cyber investigators say, after a leak of Democratic party files right before the nomination of Hillary Clinton for president.
“When you are running for president up and through [Republican National Committee] and DNC conventions, there are a lot of physical protections put in place for the potential president, however, on the cyber side we have not caught up in that world yet,” Tony Cole, global government chief technology officer for cyber forensics firm FireEye, told Nextgov.
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Last month, FireEye corroborated a report by DNC contractor CrowdStrike that Russian intelligence groups cracked the DNC network. Cole said could not comment on whether FireEye is assisting in the investigation or its clients.
The major threat actors this election, however, definitely are nation states with political agendas, Cole said.
“With world events taking place today, I would say probably Russia is the biggest concern in that area, in my opinion,” he said. “We are not aware that North Korea is a player in this area, trying to impact policy.” Cole also said some Middle Eastern countries and China also would have the capabilities to spy on politically sensitive data.
Potentially, attackers can manipulate data in a way that can physically hurt a candidate, Cole said.
Maybe a hacker “actually goes after a candidate, whoever their doctor is and changes their blood type” in the patient records system, he said.
Right now, until there is some type of specific intrusion, like …