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Department of Defense Extends Cybersecurity Program

The U.S. Defense Department has decided to extend a program that helps partners and defense contractors improve their cybersecurity. The original program included almost two dozen companies, and the extended version of the effort will now continue to mid-November 2011, according to an excellent story by Lolita C. Baldor for  the Associated Press.

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This renewed security push comes after some of the highest profile attacks of security firms and defense contractors in recent years, with a successful phishing attack on security vendor RSA contributing to another attack on giant defense contractor Lockheed Martin. The RSA attackers were able to obtain confidential information about RSA's SecurID access tokens, which Lockheed Martin confirmed was a factor in the attack on their systems.

This year has turned into one of the worst years on record for cyber attacks, and that’s a worrying trend that government and business leaders have to contend with. The Pentagon’s move to extend the aforementioned cybersecurity program is a step in the right direction, and an especially timely one considering that October 2011 has been christened “National Cybersecurity Awareness Month” by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).

Are you an IT or security professional working for state, local, or the federal government? Feel free to let us what you think of the current state of government IT security by adding a comment to this blog post or starting up a discussion on Twitter.

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