New York State Senate committee chairmen have cybersecurity hearing in Rome
(WKTV) - New York State Senate committee hearings are usually in Albany, or at least somewhere near there, but on Monday, Sen. Joe Griffo of Rome hosted a hearing on cybersecurity in his hometown, at the Griffiss Institute in Rome, home of New York State Cyber Research Institute.
"Sometimes you'll see hearings held at various locations, but it's uncommon," he said. "Most of them would be held in the city or in the capitol in Albany, but I thought this was very important because Griffiss is a former Department of Defense installation that still has defense agencies on site, and there's some critical research being done here."
"What's exciting about today is the bringing together of so many different committees," Gallivan said, "and so many different experts, whether its law enforcement, local, state, and national people to see what we can collectively do to try and stay ahead of the curve."
"Major New York City-based institutions already have been targeted, to be frank. Within the past year alone, American Express, JP Morgan, the New York Times, CitiGroup among others were struck in well-publicized cyber attacks."
"Cybercrimes are very insidious," he said. "It's an evolving threat. It's one that continues to morph into different things. Whenever you develop a mechanism to protect people, the bad guys are always looking for ways to get around it. So we're trying to be as aggressive as possible, but it's a very, very evolving type of threat that changes minute to minute."
State Police Superintendent D'Amico says cyber crimes run the gamut around the state.
"We see a lot on the consumer end," said D'Amico. "We see a lot of individuals reporting to us, whether it's compromising their passwords, cyberbullying, people getting into their social networking accounts, you see that at the lower level. We also see credit card frauds."
"We have partners with 21 agencies in the State Intel Center, all of the federal agencies, including the FBI, Homeland Security and Secret Service.'
"We have had state-assisted attempts by foreign governments to not only bring this state and this country to its knees using cyber attacks, but actually stealing trade secrets and using that as a competitive advantage in other parts of the world."
"You could see utilities, the grid system all be brought down," he said. "You could see financial institutions unravel, and people's livelihoods at stake. As well as each day the Department of Defense is engaging in warfare that we're not even aware of. It's computer warfare right now."
"It's very important that we continue to focus on cybersecurity from various segments, from a homeland security perspective, from a financial security perspective and from fighting crime."