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March 04, 2022

NY Governor On High Alert as Russian Cyberthreat Looms

The Russo-Ukrainian conflict is currently the focal point of global news coverage. Unfortunately, the war on the ground isn’t the only problem: Russia’s cyber tactics are causing government officials in New York to sound off warnings about the possibility of a major cyber attack in America

So what makes a cyberattack in New York more significant than anywhere else in the U.S.? In short, it would cause the most impact. For starters, the New York Metro area has the highest population out of any city in America. It’s also the largest economic, technical, and cultural hub in the entire country, requiring enormous amounts of technical infrastructure. If a cyberattack somehow managed to infect New York’s digital systems, the resulting chaos would likely be greater than any other part of the United States.

Recognizing the consequences of a Russian cyberattack in New York, Governor Kathy Hocul, NYC Mayor Eric Adams, and other representatives announced the formation of a joint command center to monitor cyber threats and coordinate with leaders across the state.  Additionally, Westchester County Executive George Latimer revealed a new cybersecurity task force to provide civilian and private sector supported defense efforts.

However, some security experts think these efforts are too little too late. NYU Computer Science and Engineering Professor Justin Cappos told City&StateNY, “The best time to have done this would have been about five years ago. But in some sense, it’s better late than never.”

Putting appropriate cybersecurity measures in place is definitely a wise idea, especially considering the unpredictable nature of the Russian government. However, as Cappos points out, these security measures should have been implemented years ago. At the very least, the situation is a wakeup call for government leaders regarding the need for advanced security measures for digital infrastructure.

Edited by Maurice Nagle

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