New York Senator Chuck Schumer is calling on the federal government to release more information about recent data breaches, and he urged Uncle Sam to step up enforcement against cyberattacks.
Hackers recently infiltrated several major U.S. companies as well as local government servers on Long Island, and the Senate Majority Leader said federal regulators and enforcers should up their game to protect New Yorkers.
The Federal Trade Commission must release more details about breaches and that the Department of Justice should go after the perpetrators, said the pol.
“It’s a heck of a lot of personal information that’s at risk,” Schumer told reporters during a press conference in Midtown Sunday. “We want to know who took it, what they’ve done with it, and what consumers need to do ahead of the problem.”
Suffolk County government officials discovered last month that cyberattackers had targeted its systems, gaining access to personal information from its servers and demanding ransom for the documents.
They hackers claimed to have obtained 4 terabytes of data, including files from the court system, the sheriff’s department, government contracts, and information on private citizens.
The breach also knocked out the computer system of the suburban county’s 911 dispatch center, forcing emergency workers to revert operations to pen and paper.
Several companies suffered breaches that became public in recent weeks as well, including American Airlines, Uber, U-Haul, and DoorDash.
New regulations signed into law by President Joe Biden in March require companies to notify the U.S. Department of Homeland Security of hacks within 72 hours after they discover the breach, and 24 hours if they make a ransomware payment, Bloomberg reported.
But Schumer warned customers affected by an online intrusion may be left in the dark about it.
“Most people don’t know about these hacks, they don’t even know they occurred, and the federal government — unfortunately — is saying very very little,” he said.
Republican politicians were against including a provision in the law mandating the firms to tell their customers about a hack, according to Schumer.
A spokesperson for the FTC said the agency is collecting input from the public about whether new regulations are needed.
“The FTC takes data security very seriously and has brought scores of cases to hold companies accountable when they fail to protect consumer information,” said Juliana Gruenwald. “On the basis of our law enforcement experience, the FTC has recently put out for comment an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to ascertain whether data security standards set by enforceable rules should be implemented. We welcome the public’s comment.”
Update (Monday, Oct. 3, 11:07 a.m.): This story has been updated to include comment from the FTC.