Skip to content Skip to navigation

Friday Cyber News: May 3 2019

Cyber technology-related news and links from around the web, for the week of 4/27 - 5/3:

1. Federal efforts to bolster the cybersecurity workforce include the recently-signed America's Cybersecurity Workforce executive order, which would standardize federal cybersecurity job listings, introduce incentives for cybersecurity skills, and create a rotational program for federal workers to get experience working with Homeland Security. [Axios]

2. Russia's attempts to use online tools to undermine support for democracy in the west are the subject of a new report from CSIS. [CSIS]

3. Expanded definitions of "critical infrastructure" have led DHS to designate a new category, "National Critical Functions," which are "The functions of government and the private sector so vital to the United States that their disruption, corruption, or dysfunction would have a debilitating effect on security, national economic security, national public health or safety, or any combination thereof." So, presumably, when these are hacked we'll see more of a retaliatory response than public condemnatory statements and indictments? [DHS]

4. Expanding on an aside in the Mueller report, Marco Rubio confirms that Russian hackers were in a position to change voter roll data in Florida, after a successful spearphish. [NY Times]

5. Bitcoin can't fix Venezuela in the face of hyperinflation, food shortages, and unreliable electricity infrastructure. [Coindesk]

6. Earlier this week, malware caused malfunctions at Cleveland's airport, affecting flight and baggage information systems. []

7. Leaders at the Pentagon and the State Department argue that cyber operations are not the best deterrent of cyber threats, and that cyber deterrence as a concept may be a weak strategy. [Fifth Domain]

8. Ukrainian separatist hackers are developing long-lasting ransomware campaigns that complicate attempts by researchers to classify Russian information operations. [Foreign Policy]

9. Globally applicable linguistic rules defining what is and isn't offensive are impossible to create, and Facebook's internal debates around content moderation guidelines sound as draining as you'd expect solving an impossible problem by conference call to be. [Telegraph]

10. A Norwegian aluminum manufacturer, Norsk Hydro, expects that a recent ransomware attack will cost it $52M. Relatedly(?), a Russian-outfitted beluga whale has defected to Norway. [Reuters; Guardian]

Thanks for reading,


Stanford Cyber Initiative

(To suggest an item for this list, please email You can view news from past weeks, subscribe, and unsubscribe at