cybersecurity

Nadya Faulx / KMUW/File photo

A California company that specializes in cybersecurity technology plans to open an office in Wichita.

Novacoast expects to immediately hire 60 people for its Security Operations Center, which will be located in the Epic Center downtown. It hopes the office will be open in three to four months. Employment could eventually increase to 100 people.

Officials with the Greater Wichita Partnership made the announcement Thursday. They have made growing the region’s IT industry a priority.

TOPEKA, Kansas — When it comes to cybersecurity, most Kansas counties are behind. Overall, only eight county websites end in .gov, a domain extension that’s only given to governments.

Most of Kansas’ 105 counties have websites ending in .org or .com. And 60 counties don’t use a basic security protocol called SSL; their website URLs start with “http” rather than the more secure “https.” Both make it easier for hackers to impersonate websites in an effort to install malware, trick citizens into giving out personal data or sway elections.

A massive voter-tracking program run by Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach — which purports to help states keep voter rolls accurate — has halted operations over concerns about its own accuracy and security.

The Interstate Crosscheck system, which Kobach’s office promised would be working ahead of the 2018 elections, has been sidelined while the U.S. Department of Homeland Security conducts a security assessment following the unintended release of hundreds of voters’ private information.

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The U.S. Department of Homeland Security has issued an alert about Russian government-backed attempts at breaking into utility company computer systems.

Deborah Shaar / KMUW

In the past six months, Harvey and Butler counties were the victims of cyberattacks that shut down their computer networks for a short time.

The incidents are a reminder that network security and backup systems are critically important for government agencies, businesses and organizations of all sizes.

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Officials with the Kansas Department for Aging and Disability Services said Thursday that a staff member improperly disclosed personal information for 11,000 people in an email sent to multiple addresses.

Deborah Shaar / KMUW

Friends University in Wichita is offering a path for students in Butler Community College’s cybersecurity program to continue their education.

The Kansas Secretary of State’s office took a trove of public records offline Thursday after a technology website discovered that they reveal partial Social Security numbers for potentially thousands of state officials.