Dr. Chase Cunningham - Defend & Conquer Weekly Review November 22, 2023

  • News
  • By Daniel Michan
  • Published on November 22, 2023

The Latest in Cybersecurity: What You Need to Know

As technology continues to evolve, so do the threats and challenges in the cybersecurity landscape. Staying informed about the latest developments is crucial for individuals and organizations alike. In this article, we'll delve into the recent cybersecurity updates that you need to be aware of.

Zero Trust Certifications by Cloud Security Alliance

To combat the ever-increasing cyber threats, the Cloud Security Alliance has introduced a series of certifications focused on zero trust. What sets these certifications apart is that they were developed by volunteers who are not associated with any vendors. This nonpartisan approach ensures that the certifications are unbiased and reliable.

The zero trust concept revolves around the idea that organizations should not automatically trust any user or device, regardless of their position or location. Instead, access to resources should be granted on a need-to-know basis and verified continuously.

If you're interested in enhancing your cybersecurity knowledge and skills, pursuing zero trust certifications can be a valuable investment of your time. These certifications will equip you with the expertise needed to implement effective zero trust strategies within your organization and strengthen your overall security posture.

The FCC's Pilot Program for Schools and Cybersecurity

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has proposed a three-year pilot program aimed at improving cybersecurity in schools and libraries. With the rapid digitization of educational resources, it's essential to protect sensitive information and prevent cyber threats.

The proposed program seeks to leverage the Universal Service Fund, a source of funding used to improve telecommunications services across the United States. Throughout the pilot program, the FCC will assess how this fund can be utilized to enhance cybersecurity measures in educational institutions.

If you're a concerned parent or a citizen invested in the well-being of the education sector, it's recommended to review the FCC's proposal and provide your feedback during the public comment period. Your insights can help shape the program's effectiveness in safeguarding the educational landscape from cyber threats.

Strengthened Cybersecurity Regulations for New York City Hospitals

New York City Governor Kathy Hochul has introduced a set of regulations aimed at bolstering cybersecurity in hospitals. These regulations require hospitals to establish robust policies and procedures to protect themselves from evolving cybersecurity threats.

To support these efforts, the state has allocated a $500 million fund specifically dedicated to helping hospitals implement these new security measures. While it's encouraging to see financial support for cybersecurity initiatives, some critics argue that continually introducing regulations might not solve the core issue. Instead, there's a need for a more comprehensive and strategic approach to cybersecurity.

Nevertheless, hospitals play a critical role in safeguarding patient data, and these regulations serve as a step in the right direction towards strengthening their cybersecurity defenses.

Scattered Spider Group: A New Cyber Threat on the Horizon

The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) has released an advisory discussing the Scattered Spider Group, a malicious actor involved in cybercriminal activities. This group primarily employs the Mitre attack technique, posing as IT or help desk staff to conduct phishing attacks using SMS, multi-factor authentication (MFA) notifications, and other tactics.

While their toolset appears limited at present, it's crucial to remain vigilant and take proactive measures to protect your systems. Implementing application whitelisting and other relevant cybersecurity solutions can help mitigate the risks associated with such threats.

Staying informed about emerging cyber threats allows organizations to tailor their defense strategies accordingly and close potential vulnerabilities before they can be exploited.

Boeing's Ransomware Attack and Data Leak

A high-profile case highlighting the devastating consequences of a ransomware attack involves aerospace company Boeing. Following the attack, a ransomware group linked to Russia leaked approximately 45GB of data that they claim to have stolen from Boeing's systems.

The leaked files supposedly contain sensitive information, including Citrix logs, email backups, provisioning services, and security controls. This incident serves as a reminder of the importance of comprehensive cybersecurity measures and the potential ramifications of a successful ransomware attack.

Organizations must remain vigilant, regularly updating their security protocols, and investing in sophisticated defensive measures to prevent and mitigate the impact of such attacks.

Meridian Link's Cyberattack and SEC Involvement

Financial software company Meridian Link experienced a cyberattack orchestrated by hackers who then resorted to pressuring the company into paying a ransom. In an intriguing twist, Meridian Link decided to report the incident to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), publicly acknowledging the attack.

This bold move by Meridian Link underscores the increasing importance of transparency and accountability in addressing cybersecurity incidents. By involving regulatory authorities and sharing information about the attack, organizations can help raise awareness and better protect themselves and their stakeholders.


In the ever-evolving world of cybersecurity, staying informed about the latest developments is paramount. This article covered several recent updates, including the introduction of zero trust certifications by the Cloud Security Alliance, the FCC's pilot program for schools and libraries, increased cybersecurity regulations for New York City hospitals, the emergence of the Scattered Spider Group, the ransomware attack on Boeing, and Meridian Link's involvement with the SEC following a cyberattack.

By staying updated and proactive, individuals and organizations can bolster their cybersecurity defenses and effectively combat the growing cyber threats that loom in today's digital landscape. Remember, staying smart, staying safe, and staying secure must always be at the forefront of your cybersecurity efforts.