Israel Police Pulls Out of Civilian Web Network Amid Cyber Attack Threat

An intelligence tip indicated that a virus would be inserted into the police's central computer system via a USB flash drive or CD.

Yanir Yagna
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Yanir Yagna

The Israel Police on Thursday ordered every district and officer under its jurisdiction to disconnect their computers from the civilian web network, after learning that its system could be at risk for a severe cyber attack.

An intelligence tip indicated that a virus would be inserted into the police's central computer system via a USB flash drive or CD.

The police issued an order at around 10:30 A.M, warning all relevant parties to avoid inserting any media devices into any computer linked to the system. The system was disconnected from the civilian web network immediately following the announcement, until further notice.

The Israel Police is currently checking its system to see whether the cyber attack succeeded, and to assess the damage caused, if any.

The intelligence tip did not indicate who may be behind the attack, but it appears to be an external organization. The police are still trying to identify who supplied the intelligence tip.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said two weeks ago that the threat of cyber attacks on Israel was growing, particularly on networks linked to its central infrastructure.

Netanyahu added that Israel would fight this threat just as it would any other attack: "Just as we have the Iron Dome to fight rockets, and the security fence to prevent infiltration and terror – we will have a similar form of defense against cyber attacks.

But like with the security fence, it will take time to make. We are working on this at full capacity, and with full vigor."

An IDF course for cyber-defense in Ramat Gan. Credit: Alon Ron

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