Northrop Grumman disks bought for $40 in Africa

It’s not the first time a military institution has lost a hard drive. Earlier this year, the RAF lost a disk containing data about retired officers. Today, the CBC is reporting that Canadian journalists purchased several disks, including one containing military contracts between Northrop Grumman and the U.S. government from a market in Accra, Ghana, in Africa, that they purchased for $40.

Companies need to do everything right. The need to protect servers and data on end user PCs. They also need to dispose of hardware in the right way.

The company told the CBC that it suspected that the hard drive was stolen and asked the students to return it. The CBC reported that they have not done so.

There’s no question that there’s a problem and that the current administration is aware of it. President Obama created a top level cybersecurity position in the White House and said, “From now on, our digital infrastructure, the networks and computers we depend on everyday will be treated as they should be — as a strategic national asset.”

The Department of Defense (DoD) is reaching out to contractors such as Northrop Grumman in a program called the Defense Industrial Base (DIB).

There’s plenty of good advice for companies. They need to follow it and they can start by encrypting their data, within reason.

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