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Senate information systems vulnerable to cyberattack

Senate information systems vulnerable to cyberattack

Senate President, Jose Luis Dalmao Santiago, reported on Wednesday that a cybersecurity incident affected the information systems of the legislature.

The legislature’s phone box stopped working in the afternoon, as did the web page and internet server. This caused offices like that of independent Senator Jose Vargas Vidot to close because employees did not have access to documents stored in the cloud.

“Early this morning, we identified a cybersecurity incident, activated the Senate Homeland Security Protocol and notified the relevant authorities, as well as specialized personnel of the situation to begin assessing information systems. Currently, there is no evidence that sensitive information has been disclosed to Senate personnel. Elders, contractors or consultants, and specialized personnel perform an analysis to determine the scope of the incident.

Dalmau Santiago also said that the cybersecurity incident did not involve a loss of public funds, and indicated that Senate operations with external information assurances will be resumed once analysts determine that the incident has been mitigated.

The situation in the Senate also affected the Internet system in the House of Representatives. “The chamber was not subjected to a cyber-attack per se,” said Jose Brines, a spokesman for the chamber’s presidency.

He explained that most of that legislature’s web devices were in the Senate building, and with the emergency system turned off, the chamber’s web page collapsed.

The investigation into the incident is being conducted with the support of the Puerto Rican Innovation and Technology Service (PRITS) and has been reported to local and federal authorities.