The following statement was released by One Bermuda Alliance Senator Douglas DeCouto…
Last week the One Bermuda Alliance submitted several questions about the Government Hack (see attached), expecting answers in today’s Senate session. However, rather than enlightening the public the Government has chosen to hide behind the excuse of ‘secrecy’ and refused to provide any information. Based on this Government’s track record, we can only presume this attempt to dodge accountability is to hide poor management and mishandling of the recent hack and any prior hacks that may have occurred.
Our questions included asking about the history of Cyberattacks on the Bermuda Government in the past three years, details of any ransoms paid, and what actions the Government has taken to improve cybersecurity after each attack. We explicitly asked about any attacks within the past three years. Since Minister Darrell used the excuse of secrecy and ongoing investigations, we can only presume that any hacks within the past three years are still under investigation. What could justify such delay?
The Bermudian public deserve to know what happened in this attack, that has affected almost everyone on the island, including civil servants who couldn’t pay their rent because of missing or late pay checks, businesses stalled waiting on paperwork stuck in Government, and travelers unable to get their travel documents.
The public also deserve to know whether or not it was a ransomware attack, and if their personal data is safe. Detailed travel and health records, payment information, and other sensitive commercial and personal information may have been stolen from Government systems. And, if the Personal Information Protection Act (PIPA) was in force, the Governmentwould be required by law to disclose this information.
Finally, what are the financial impacts to the Government for this hack? As the Government has not denied this was a ransomware attack, we can only presume that it was, and ask, how much ransom was paid? And, how will that affect Government spending on programs and projects?
It’s time for this Government to come clean. However, to most of the public, it’s no surprise that they refuse to.
*Q1. Would the Honourable Minister please provide the Senate with a list of all Cyber-attacks or hacks on Government of Bermuda IT systems over the last three (3) years prior to 30thSeptember 2023, with dates and details on the nature of the attack?
*Q2. With respect to each attack cited in Question 1, would the Honourable Minister please inform the Senate as to whether any ransom was requested, the amount of the ransom, and whether any ransom was paid or not?
*Q3. With respect to each attack cited Question 1, would the Honourable Minister please inform the Senate as to what specific actions were taken by Government to improve cybersecurity?