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White House Says 30-Day ‘Cybersecurity Sprint’ Was Only a Start

WASHINGTON -- Federal agencies have increased cybersecurity measures since the hacking at the Office of Personnel Management, but more work is necessary to help prevent further attacks, the results of a 30-day effort to raise standards show. The White House's Office of Management and Budget kicked off a "cybersecurity sprint" in June after the hacks that put the personal data of more than 22 million Americans at risk. The administration directed agencies to patch critical vulnerabilities, strengthen their networks and report back.

In a blog post Friday about that effort, White House Chief Information Officer Tony Scott said federal civilian agencies had increased use of "strong authentication for privileged and unprivileged users" from 42 percent to 72 percent.

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Many were still not up to the highest standards set by OMB, however. "While these statistics are just a few examples of a marked improvement in identifying and closing the gaps in the Federal cyber infrastructure, we still have more work to do" Scott said.

A team of more than 100 government and private industry experts are reviewing the government's cybersecurity "policies, procedures and practices" and will issue an assessment in the coming months, he said.

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