Treasury Board to end pencil-pushing with ‘secret network’ for classified information

datacentreOTTAWA — Just over two years after hackers broke into Treasury Board servers — showing how classified information wasn’t properly protected — a new “secret network” is being developed inside the department.

The secured system would eliminate much of the “time consuming, inefficient, paper-based” process department officials follow for handling classified information that the department said in a briefing note was “completely out of step with the objectives of Workplace 2.0.”

It would also reduce the use of USB keys to move around sensitive files.

A copy of the briefing note to Treasury Board President Tony Clement was released to Postmedia News under the access to information law. Parts of the memo have been redacted.


Four McMaster University computer servers hacked

Four McMaster University servers were the latest in an internationally spread hack attack by a cyber-group dubbed Team GhostShell.

McMaster University was one of the 100 schools hacked in protest of the current state of education and the latest in “ProjectWestWind.”

McMaster reported security breaches in servers at the Brockhouse Institute for Materials Research, the Origins Institute, the Canadian Centre for Electron Microscopy and the Department of Mathematics and Statistics.

The hackers copied older data, much of which is already publicy available, said Gord Arbeau, McMaster director of public and community relations. This includes lists of people who attended some departmental events.

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Hackers release information taken from four UBC servers

VANCOUVER BC – For the first time, UBC may not be happy to be on the same list as Harvard and Cambridge.

Four of UBC’s servers were hacked on October 1 as part of an attack by the hacker group Team Ghost Shell, which released 120,000 files from 100 universities across the world. One other Canadian university, McMaster, was also a target.

Randy Schmidt, associate director of UBC Public Affairs, said the four UBC servers that were hacked had lower security measures, making them more vulnerable than other servers on campus.

“The most concerning piece for us was the server that had to do with the linguistics course, and so I understand that full or partial names of 90 students were part of that, along with usernames and passcodes to the course accounts,” said Schmidt. “All the other information seems relatively innocuous.”

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CSIS Suspensions: Two Employees Reprimanded For Security Lapses, Records Show

 OTTAWA – Two security breaches at Canada’s spy agency prompted employee suspensions last year, newly released documents show.

In the most serious case, a Canadian Security Intelligence Service employee was suspended for five days without pay following an incident involving information that “must be kept in the strictest of confidence and in full compliance with the need to know principle.”

The CSIS employee was found to be in violation of several aspects of the spy agency’s conduct policy, including provisions on security, performance of duties, integrity and compliance with direction.

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BCIT warns medical database security breached

BCIT has issued a warning to students and staff after one of its computers servers containing the personal medical records of more than 12,680 students was hacked.

The Vancouver-area post-secondary school says a regular security audit determined an unauthorized third party accessed the server used by the school’s Burnaby Student Health Services Medical Clinic.

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Squamish privacy breach admitted

District of Squamish officials last year accidentally posted bylaw infraction information on the district’s website that should have remained private.

The privacy breach happened for approximately a month in January 2011. At the time, the public was able to access mostly unidentifiable bylaw complaint attachments, said Robin Arthurs, the municipality’s general manager of corporate services. Those included items such as photos of vehicles or a low-hanging branch over a sidewalk.

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Data On Canadian Officials Stolen In Attack On Stratfor

Data on almost 1,000 Canadian government officials was stolen in the hacking of a Texas-based intelligence firm in December, according to internal government documents.

Almost 900 federal government workers and 109 provincial government officials were affected when computers owned by StrategicForecasting Inc. were hacked, according to a memo by the federal Public Safety department obtained by Bloomberg News under Canada’s freedom-of-information law.

The hackers obtained the client list of the company also known as Stratfor, and released personal information such as emails, passwords, home and office addresses and credit-card data, according to the Jan. 9 memo. 

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Ontario: Slick hacker hits student data

ON, CANADA — A massive security breach at the Thames Valley District school board rippled through the online world Thursday, leaving 27,000 area high school students scrambling to change their passwords for everything from Facebook to bank accounts.

Read more in the London Free Press.

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