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The FBI is trying to clear up why 100,000 messages were sent from its email servers. DHS unveils its hiring system. And real talk from an outgoing state official. This is CyberScoop for November 15, 2021.

FBI email account sends barrage of hoax emails

The FBI confirmed over the weekend that hackers who exploited a misconfigured server were able to send fake messages from an agency account. A nonprofit spam-tracking service, the Spamhaus Project, estimated that as many as 100,000 messages went out. The emails claimed that an attacker had stolen recipients' information. The purported hacker said the goal was to expose a glaring FBI security vulnerability, but the phony messages also smeared a researcher. Tim Starks has the details.

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DHS cyber hiring system debuts

A Department of Homeland Security system for swiftly hiring cyber personnel and paying them more launched Monday. Senior DHS officials told reporters on Friday that through the Cyber Talent Management System, DHS plans to hire 150 employees in 2022, beginning with the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency and the Office of the Chief Information Officer. The agency faces approximately 10 times that number of vacancies. The system has been seven years in the making. Tim previewed the system's arrival.

Nevada CIO says he's quitting after duties 'altered dramatically'

Nevada Chief Information Officer Alan Cunningham announced Sunday that he’s stepping down from the role later this month, citing unspecified changes to his position. “After having my job responsibilities altered dramatically I have decided to resign from the State of Nevada,” Cunningham wrote in a short post to his LinkedIn profile. During his 16 months as Nevada’s IT chief, Cunningham stuck out as one of the more outspoken statewide CIOs, including offering sometimes harsh criticisms of his own government. Shortly after taking the role, he told StateScoop that his staff was “massively overworked” compared with their counterparts in the private sector, and that the state government’s investment in technology had “generally taken a little bit of a backseat,” even as major firms like Apple and Tesla built up their presences in Nevada. Benjamin Freed digs in at StateScoop.

How to step up a cyber workforce

Offering remote work and recruiting workers without cybersecurity degrees can help universities — and government agencies — compete for a limited number of cybersecurity workers in today’s workforce, University of South Carolina Chief Information Security Officer Marcos Vieyra recently told EdScoop. Vieyra said that offering cybersecurity workers flexibility of where they live was a takeaway he gleaned from a summit on managing cybersecurity talent held at his university in late October. At the event, which also included state and federal government leaders, Vieyra also said state governments and higher education are having issues maintaining staffing levels, a problem as cybersecurity attacks continue to rise nationally. Emily Bamforth has more at EdScoop.

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