Cyber SecurityJanuary 10, 20210Why The SolarWinds Hack Was Significant

Through an executive order, Biden also created stricter security standards for supply chain companies that work with the U.S. government. SolarWinds also reported that unknown hackers exploited a previously unknown flaw in July 2021, but denies that it was related to the high-profile 2020 data breach. SolarWinds claimed that unknown hackers only targeted a “limited, targeted set of customers.”

About SolarWinds

SolarWinds is an Austin-based network monitoring company. Despite the name, the company is actually not involved with either solar power or wind power. It was founded in 1999 in Tulsa, Oklahoma, and was co-founded by David Yonce and Donald Yonce. The company was also the victim of one of the most significant cybersecurity breaches in the history of the United States, and one of the most sophisticated hacker

The company develops software that helps businesses manage their network, systems, and IT infrastructure. The company’s business model involves offering them freely downloadable software and then marketing more advanced software. The company’s clients boast many Fortune 500 organizations located all over the world.

SolarWinds generates hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue. As of December 2020, SolarWinds had about 30,000 customers. SolarWinds had its IPO in 2009, and it proceeded to acquire several companies and products, including Kiwi Enterprises. It has continued to acquire several notable companies from 2010 to 2020, including M-Able Technologies, Confio Software, Librato, Loggly, and more.

 

About The SolarWinds Hack

SolarWinds made a software update available to its customers. This particular hack is known as a supply chain attack. Specifically, the hackers were able to access a system that develops updates for the SolarWinds product Orion. Orion accounts for a significant amount of SolarWinds revenue. The two major cyber attacks both involved SolarWinds Orion, and were dubbed “SUNBURST” and SUPERNOVA.”

This kind of cyber attack is effective because it allows cybercriminals to package their malware inside trusted software. The SolarWinds hack was first detected in December 2020, but the hack began as early as March 2020. The SolarWinds data breach was a huge cybersecurity incident, but some believe that it was overshadowed in the media by the 2020 U.S. presidential election.

The update was supposed to offer bug fixes and enhanced performance, but it instead allowed the hackers to infiltrate many of Solarwinds’ customers. U.S. Intelligence officials have blamed Russia for the cyber attack, although this is still not ultimately confirmed. Russia has denied this claim.

Many cybersecurity experts and analysts have pointed out that this was a more innovative way to hack companies than most cyber attacks. The hackers went as far as reverse-engineering Orion’s commands to hide in plain sight essentially. Christopher Krebs, who previously served as the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Agency director, called the data breach “too novel.”

 

Consequences Of The SolarWinds Data Breach

The SolarWinds data breach is notable because the cyber attack affected some of the most well-known tech companies in the world. The cybersecurity data breach affected major companies such as Microsoft, and parts of the US. government, including the Department of Homeland Security and the Treasury Department.

When the news became public, the share price of SolarWinds dropped 25% within several days. Within a week, the stock was down by 40%. The CEO and president of SolarWinds, Sudhakar Ramakrishna, stated that he believed the cyber attack affected somewhere around 18,000 customers, but he acknowledged that “we don’t know the exact numbers.”

Ramakrishna also estimated that the SolarWinds hack affected 100 companies and a dozen government agencies. The Biden administration also announced direct sanctions as a result of the SolarWinds data breach. Brad Smith, the president of Microsoft, called the cybersecurity breach “the largest and most sophisticated attack the world has ever seen.”

After the SolarWinds hack, there is also a renewed debate about how and when companies should notify their customers about a data breach. There are complex laws regarding information sharing that make the process difficult, since companies are often incentivized to not disclose the cyber attack at all. Some lawmakers believe that a cybersecurity incident reporting system should provide liability protection to encourage companies to come forward.

There were also class action lawsuits that emerged regarding the SolarWinds data breach. The lawsuit alleges that executives should have disclosed the data breach sooner, and also cites the fact that security researchers had previously warned the company of various cybersecurity flaws. Three of those class action lawsuits merged into one in March 2021.

Through an executive order, Biden also created stricter security standards for supply chain companies that work with the U.S. government. SolarWinds also reported that unknown hackers exploited a previously unknown flaw in July 2021, but denies that it was related to the high-profile 2020 data breach. SolarWinds claimed that unknown hackers only targeted a “limited, targeted set of customers.”

 

About Malimar

Malimar Technology Group consists of expert IT professionals and cybersecurity experts to help protect your business from cyberattacks such as the Solarwinds data breach. We can help guide your organization with respect to preventing cyberattacks in the future, and offer seamless remote support to our clients regarding their IT needs.

We are one of the top cybersecurity companies in the San Diego area, and offer services such as server/PC management, strategic IT planning, and server backup solutions.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *