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Microsoft’s Brad Smith: National, Global Cyber Strategy Needed to Address Nation-State Attacks

Brad Smith President Microsoft
Brad Smith, President, Microsoft

Brad Smith, president of Microsoft, has urged the U.S. public sector and technology industry to work together on coordinating a multipronged cybersecurity strategy in the wake of a SolarWinds network management software breach that hit several federal departments, private companies and non-governmental organizations.

He wrote in a blog post published Thursday telemetry data from the antivirus Defender tool shows the customer base that installed SolarWinds Orion software upgrades exploited by Russia-linked attackers using a malicious technique that possibly put the supply chain at risk.

Smith said the sophistication of nation-state attacks, the proliferation of cyber mercenaries he describes as "private sector offensive actors" and the ongoing coronavirus pandemic have been eye-opening trends in the cybersecurity landscape this year.

“The defense of democracy requires that governments and technology companies work together in new and important ways ““ to share information, strengthen defenses and respond to attacks.“

Governments should implement a systemic approach to facilitate threat intelligence analysis and exchange, stricter international policies to stop cyberattack ecosystem growth and stronger measures to increase nation-state accountability for security incidents, Smith added.

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