Category Archives: Cyber Risk

President Trump Signs Long-Awaited Cyber Executive Order

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On May 11, 2017, President Trump signed a long-awaited executive order on cybersecurity (the “Order”).  The Order directs executive agencies to complete a risk management report based on the NIST Cybersecurity Framework (the “Framework”) and also requires the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and other agencies to undertake activities in support of effective cybersecurity risk management for operators of critical infrastructure.  More generally, the Order directs several agencies to submit reports to the President on a varied set of cybersecurity-related topics.  These measures demonstrate [...] Read more

Bank Regulators Issue Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on Cyber Risk Governance and Management Regulations

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More regulators (apart from the FTC) are now taking note of cybersecurity issues in the financial services industry and are taking steps to protect the industry and its consumers. Earlier this year, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (“CFPB”) issued its first enforcement action on data security against an online payment system.   In June, the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council (“FFIEC”), an interagency body, issued a press release advising financial institutions to review their risk-management practices.  Last month, the New York State Department of Financial [...] Read more

New York State Financial Services Regulator Issues Proposed Cybersecurity Regulations

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On September 13, 2016, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced the issuance of proposed “first-in-the-nation” cybersecurity regulations for entities regulated by the New York Department of Financial Services (DFS), including jurisdictional banks, insurance companies, and other financial institutions.  The proposed regulation will be subject to a 45-day comment period prior to being issued as a final rule.  Once finalized, the regulation would become effective on January 1, 2017, at which point a 180 day "transitional period" would go into effect, during which entities would need to come into compliance [...] Read more

Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Issues Emergency Preparedness Requirements That Address Cyber-Attacks

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The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (“CMS”) issued a final rule on September 8th, 2016 establishing national emergency preparedness requirements for providers and suppliers participating in Medicare and Medicaid in response to “inconsistency in the level of emergency preparedness amongst healthcare providers.”  The rule will be officially published in the Federal Register on September 16th, 2016, and providers and suppliers subject to the rule must comply by November 15th, 2017.  Notably, CMS describes cyber-attacks as a potential risk to assess when implementing the emergency [...] Read more

Report Suggests Organizations Still Vulnerable to Credential Management and Network Segmentation Attacks

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The Multi-State Information Sharing and Analysis Center (MS-ISAC) published its 2016 mid-year review on August 22, 2016, highlighting large incidents of malware infections, with particular emphasis on ransomware and click fraud malware.  In contrast to the MS-ISAC report, however, an August 2016 report suggests most organizations would benefit from addressing issues of credential management and network segmentation.  The report is based on data collected over the course of 100 internal penetration tests (i.e., tests assuming one user on the network has already had their account compromised) on [...] Read more

FERC Takes Action on Cybersecurity in Response to Ukrainian Cyber Attacks

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The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (“FERC”) issued a Notice of Inquiry (“NOI”) and Final Rule at the end of July to address several urgent cybersecurity issues affecting the bulk electric system.  FERC is taking these actions in the face of increasingly sophisticated threats to our power grid, including in response to an actual cyber-attack against Ukraine’s electricity system last year. In the NOI, the Commission seeks comments on possible modifications to the Critical Infrastructure Protection (“CIP”) Reliability Standards developed and managed by the North American [...] Read more

Alston & Bird Issues Advisory on Six Myths of Breach Response

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Alston & Bird recently issued an Advisory entitled “Six Myths of Breach Response,” authored by Jim Harvey. As data breaches are on the rise, so are the challenges that businesses face in handling these security incidents. This Advisory identifies six strategic pitfalls to avoid when responding to breaches. The Advisory addresses the true significance of public notification, common mistakes in preserving attorney-client privilege, and tough choices regarding the selection of public relation, investigative, and legal counsel. Jim Harvey co-chairs Alston & Bird’s Cybersecurity Preparedness [...] Read more

SEC Continues to Focus on Cyber-related Disclosures

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Participating in a panel at the “SEC Speaks” event on February 19, Deputy Director of the SEC’s Enforcement Division Stephanie Avakian expressed that the Commission continues to focus on cybersecurity as a top priority in 2016. Avakian discussed the Commission’s cybersecurity concerns in three contexts: (1) failure of registered entities to follow Rule 30(a) of Regulation S-P (the “Safeguards Rule”) in protecting customers’ records and information; (2) illicit securities trading following theft of material non-public information; and (3) cyber-related disclosures by public companies, [...] Read more

The Importance of Strategic Vendors in Breach Response

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Alston & Bird recently issued an Advisory, co-authored by Jim Harvey and Karen Sanzaro, on the complexities of managing a data breach that implicates strategic third party vendor relationships. Cybercrime and data security incidents are on the rise.  Security breaches and the ensuing investigation and remediation process can be costly and complex.  The process is further complicated if the breach implicates a company’s third party service provider, or the services provided by such third party, particularly where the services or the service provider are strategic or essential to a company’s [...] Read more