Banks Seek NSA Help Amid Attacks on their Computer Systems

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Banks seek NSA help amid attacks on their computer systems

Major U.S. banks have turned to the National Security Agency for help protecting their computer systems after a barrage of assaults that have disrupted their Web sites, according to industry officials.

The attacks on the sites, which started about a year ago but intensified in September, have grown increasingly sophisticated, officials said. The NSA, the world’s largest electronic spying agency, has been asked to provide technical assistance to help banks further assess their systems and to better understand the attackers’ tactics.

The cooperation between the NSA and banks, industry officials say, underscores the government’s fears about the unprecedented assault against the financial sector and is part of a broader effort by the government to work with U.S. firms on cybersecurity. Nonetheless, the assistance is likely to dismay privacy advocates, who say that the NSA has no business peering inside private companies’ systems, even if for the strict purpose of improving computer security.

U.S. intelligence officials said last year they believe the attacks against the banks and other companies have been carried out by Iran, although some experts have cautioned that it is difficult to accurately determine who is behind them.

“If you look at their actions, they’re taking this very seriously. The government is stepping up to the plate,” said one bank official, who like most interviewed for this article spoke on the condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak for the record.

The NSA declined to comment for this article beyond a statement saying that the agency provides assistance “in full compliance with all applicable laws and regulations.”

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Comments
2 Responses to “Banks Seek NSA Help Amid Attacks on their Computer Systems”
  1. Sarah says:

    Can we ask the NSA to help us with Banksters? Iran hasn’t made anyone homeless as far as we’ve been told. Those military industrial computer whiz kids could help us determine exaclty what was going on at Fannie Mae, et al, and put an end to fraudclosure terror once and for all.
    World peace, pigs will fly!

  2. bobbi swann says:

    Blemaing it on Iran? Really??!!! Guess they don’t think there’s enough intelligence here in the USA to bring down the banking system! I doubt very seriously if Iran has the technology available in order to break the bank, so to speak, here on USA soil. Think about it folks! What is even more ironic is that maybe, just maybe, US technical wizards have indeed trained the Iranians in computer technology only to have them come back at us??? Sort of like how we have furnished them with fire power. Could our government be any more stupid! I really like the description of Homeland in the post on this article calling them Hokieland..hahahaha! Need the laughing mouse here….

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