Future Government Shutdowns: Potential Impact on National Cybersecurity

Cyber Security Threat Summary:
In a recent report from Forbes, the nation's cybersecurity was in a tight spot when Congress passed a bill to keep the government running for the next 45 days. A government shutdown could have caused problems for many government functions, including those responsible for protecting the country from cyberattacks. Depending on how long the shutdown lasted, it could have led to a crisis for companies and organizations across the country.

A shutdown might have forced many government workers to take time off, which could have adversely impacted the cybersecurity of the nation's software supply chain, including important areas like transportation, healthcare, and energy. Before the possible shutdown, the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) was ready to send more than 80% of its workers home. This would have made it difficult for CISA to give advice on how organizations should protect themselves against cyber threats.

Security Officer Comments:
CISA would have also had to stop doing assessments to check for physical and cybersecurity issues for the government and businesses, including election officials and important but vulnerable areas like water, schools, and healthcare. The scenario has prompted inquiries into the preparedness for an upsurge in cyber threats during periods when critical agencies face operational disruptions. Although certain aspects, such as the fundamental cybersecurity functions of CISA, may have remained unscathed, notable challenges would have persisted. Vital endeavors such as collaborating with businesses and conducting preparatory exercises for cyber threats would have been temporarily suspended.

Suggested Correction(s):
Every organization should prioritize preparedness for potential future government shutdowns within their crisis management strategies. Regular practice and refinement of these plans are essential to ensure their effectiveness when the need arises.