GALLIPOLIS — Gallia County Commissioners and its information technology department recently evaluated and discovered possible risks and vulnerabilities within the county’s cyber security.
Officials believe potential problem areas can be remedied within a month’s time, at most.
According to Gallia IT Director John Grubb, the County Risk Sharing Authority (CORSA), the county’s insurance company, finalized its cyber security vulnerability scan and sent the report back to Gallia officials for review. Grubb said he was pleased with the results of the scan as zero severe vulnerabilities were found within the county network system. Most of the problem areas could be remedied within a week and the rest within a month’s time.
Threats are measured on a scale of five levels, the lowest of which is, unsurprisingly, low and the highest level is labeled “severe.” Low threats are difficult or impractical to execute by a network attacker. Low-threat informational items can potentially be used by an attacker to research higher-level vulnerabilities in the system, though. A severe threat is considered “well-documented and/or easily executable, and should be remedied immediately.” Severe risk can be considered to be “glaring holes,” in layman’s terms.
With increasing threats from internet attacks in the modern world, CORSA formed a cyber security panel to help learn how to deal with internet security risks and how programs and projects can be offered to county governments to help protect from outside threats. Grubb serves on the panel due, in part, to the size of Gallia County’s network. This year’s project was a free external network vulnerability scan to test network security to aid counties like Gallia.
Grubb said the test is not intrusive and checks the internet facing addresses on the county network to see if there are any openings where a would-be attack could make entry. Grubb said that of nine potentially problematic areas, other security measures were already in place to help counter arising issues.
The cyber security panel’s project last year was to conduct conferences at four locations throughout the state to allow all counties the opportunity to send an IT representative to better educate themselves on cyber risks and how to better address them.
Overall, commissioners were pleased with the results of the Gallia County network scan.
Dean Wright can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2103.