In the wake of a data breach that caused their chair to resign, the Democratic National Committee is creating a cybersecurity advisory board to help concentrate efforts to stop hackers.
The four-person advisory board — comprised by Rand Beers, current acting secretary of the Department of Homeland Security, and former federal executives including White House Chief Technology Officer Aneesh Chopra, Justice Department prosecutor Michael Sussmann and White House Deputy Chief Technology Officer Nicole Wong — aims to “prevent future attacks and ensure that the DNC’s cybersecurity capabilities are best-in-class,” according to a memo obtained by Politico.
“The Advisory Board will work closely with me and the entire DNC to ensure that the party is prepared for the grave threats it faces — today and in the future,” current acting DNC Chairwoman Donna Brazile wrote in the aforementioned memo.
Among its many other responsibilities, the newly formed board will help assist individuals whose personal information was compromised as a result of the DNC data breach.
Next week, the DNC will reportedly begin to reach out to those individuals who were affected by the leak, some of which “will receive offers of assistance to help mitigate any threats to… financial security,” the memo reads.
Reportedly orchestrated by a hacking group with ties to Russia’s intelligence agencies, the DNC breach effectively exposed internal emails in addition to personal contact and financial information for some staff members, donors and other party supporters. This type of information can be used for financial fraud purposes, experts say.
Though the DNC originally stated that no financial information appeared to be accessed or extracted, Gawker later obtained a data dump from the alleged, self-named hacker, “Guccifer 2.0,” proving the contrary — with donor pledges, addresses, emails and other contact information all in plain view.
Several prominent democratic donors also had their credit card and banking information publicly leaked following the publication of internal DNC documents by WikiLeaks, which made contact with Guccifer 2.0, ABC News reported.
“I’ve already had phone calls and emails from strangers,” Former U.S. Ambassador to Austria and democratic party donor William Eacho told ABC News. “My wife had attempts for people trying to apply for credit cards in our names. Someone in Tennessee tried twice to apply for credit on Monday, pretending to be her.”
It remains unclear exactly how the DNC plans to mitigate financial fraud risks and other damages caused by the breach. Cyberscoop has reached out to the DNC for comment and will update this post if further information is made available.