Critical Infrastructure

Ransomware: Lessons Learned From Attack on Texas Police

Ransomware: Lessons Learned From Attack on Texas Police

The ransomware infection of Cockrell Hill Police Department’s (CHPD) servers in Texas on December 12, 2016 revealed cyber vulnerabilities that can be mitigated. The hacker behind the attack demanded $4,000 in bitcoins to decrypt CHPD’s files. After consulting with the FBI Cyber Crime Unit, CHPD decided not to pay the ransom and wiped its server to remove the virus. The wipe caused the loss of some body camera, dash camera, and surveillance videos, as well as photos that were not properly backed up.

Proposed Energy Pipelines: Minimal Impact to New Jersey

The proposed Dakota Access and Keystone XL Pipelines pose little impact to New Jersey due to the State’s robust, independent infrastructure and the lack of credible threats from anarchist or environmental extremist groups. The Dakota Access Pipeline will transport crude oil from the Bakken shale oil fields in northwest North Dakota to a terminal in Illinois, where it will travel to refineries on the Gulf of Mexico and the Midwest. The Keystone XL Pipeline is a proposed project awaiting US State Department approval, which will provide a more direct route to transport crude oil from Alberta to Nebraska.

Support to Religious Facilities in Face of Threats

NJOHSP continues to offer resources to religious facilities in New Jersey, especially following recent bomb scares against Jewish centers across the United States and Canada. Since January, approximately 60 Jewish Community Centers (JCCs) and day schools in 30 states have received roughly 100 bomb threats. The FBI is coordinating all investigative activity with state and local law enforcement partners.

Hotel Security: Lessons From Terrorist Attacks in Africa

Since 2015, foreign terrorist organizations, including al-Qa’ida affiliates and the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), have directed and inspired attacks against the hotel industry in Africa, with the goal of depleting emergency responder resources and maximizing casualties. Hotels are often open to the public and host tourists, government officials, and entrepreneurs, as well as provide a conducive environment for meetings, conferences, and other special events.

Transportation/Maritime: Ferries a Vulnerable Target

An NJOHSP review of the Transportation Sector found that ferries remain susceptible to terrorist attacks because they transport large volumes of people, have limited security, and offer minimal escape options during incidents. Although there has not been a recent plot or attack against ferries in the United States, authorities across the country, including in New Jersey, have increased security in this area. French authorities likewise hardened port security following a bomb scare at the Port of Marseille in July.

Zika: Assessing the Risk from Flights to Cuba

New Jersey is taking proactive steps to mitigate the risk of Zika virus disease transmission as flights from Newark to Havana begin in November. Cuba is a country where Zika is spread by mosquitoes and one of many areas in the Americas—including southern Florida in the US—that have local transmission of the virus.

Security Considerations for Pipeline Systems

The vast systems of pipelines in the United States are a fundamentally safe means of transport for energy related commodities, but present unique security challenges for the private sector and government. According to the US Department of Homeland Security (US DHS), these systems span over 2.5 million miles while transporting nearly all of the country’s natural gas and roughly 65 percent of hazardous liquids consumed nationwide. 

Introducing Resiliency

Anticipating threats, adapting to changing conditions, and recovering from adversity are the tenets of the resiliency mission undertaken by NJOHSP.  Through this mission area, NJOHSP aims to empower our partners and help build a State that is prepared, well informed, and ready to react to whatever threat it faces – whether a natural disaster or a human-induced event.