The Cyber Resilience Institute (CRI), through the Sports-ISAO Program Office, will be focusing its efforts this summer on monitoring online threats to health-related critical infrastructure. Not only has the coronavirus pandemic disrupted ordinary life, but malicious entities are engaged in unconscionable attacks on the very system so critically needed right now.

CRI, as a nonprofit devoted to building community cyber capacity, and Sports-ISAO, an organization devoted to protecting the sports community from cyberattack, assembled its cadre of cyber researchers, bloggers, interns, and managers to reach a common belief that the collective resources could be best used in the common defense of the health industry.

Supporting the health industry became obvious when, as an intern observed, Sports-ISAO has been a leader in detecting and reporting on the nation-state tactic of coupling cyberattacks with disinformation. Called Hack and Hype, Sports-ISAO has been able to associate certain cyberattacks with nation-state actors, or their proxies, because the attacks have commonly connected to a foreign nation’s disinformation campaign (e.g., Russia’s interest in distancing itself from its repugnant doping scandals). In the COVID-19 environment, we are again seeing disruption in two forms: cyberattacks and disinformation. Accordingly, Sports-ISAO will be monitoring for Hack and Hype activities associated with COVID-19.

In addition to cyberattack research, CRI and Sports-ISAO will use their media resources to publicize bad actors and their bad actions. Attacking hospitals during apandemic is unconscionable! Moreover, attacks upon advanced COVID-19 research and the healthcare supply chain are equally reprehensible. Indeed, many of these attacks are designed to create disruption and to advance the interests of certain nations and their economies. As these connections are made, the team will expose the culprits and their malicious agendas.

In due course, Sports-ISAO will return to its original mission, seeking to protect the Purity of Sport. During the summer months, however, the focus will be on helping to protect healthcare infrastructure and COVID-19 research.

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