Canada faces escalating threats from cyber attacks by foreign spies, hackers and terrorists, and experts warn more must be done to strengthen the country’s cybersecurity and response systems, according to QMI Agency
Canada’s Public Safety Minister Vic Toews said attacks on government computers have grown “quite substantial,” and attempts to tap into the federal network have come from everywhere.
“Whether it’s a vandal who enters our computer systems or a terrorist or other organized criminal, it’s significant,” Toews told QMI Agency in an interview.
Last fall, the Canadian government launched a cybersecurity strategy to lay out a prevention and response plan that coordinates with municipal, provincial and industry partners. The plan also includes $90 million over five years to fight the cyber threat.
Toews said speculation of U.S. and Israeli governments being behind last year’s Stuxnet attack on Iranian nuclear facilities proves any country is vulnerable.
“If other governments are able to attack critical infrastructure of other governments, it’s certainly a significant threat that we have to concern ourselves with,” he told QMI Agency.
David Harris, director of the international and terrorist intelligence program with Insignis Strategic Research Inc., told QMI Agency Canada and other countries must do more to fight the cyber threat, adding “we’re in the middle of a brutal war at the cyber level . . . It’s a comprehensive and compelling threat that is decisively present.”