US Commerce Confirms It Was Hacked; Treasury Reportedly Breached

US Commerce Confirms It Was Hacked; Treasury Reportedly Breached
The U.S. Treasury Department building viewed from the Washington Monument in Washington on Sept. 18, 2019. (Patrick Semansky/AP Photo)
Zachary Stieber

The U.S. Commerce Department on Sunday confirmed it was breached, after reports that both it and the Treasury Department were hacked by a foreign government.

“We can confirm there has been a breach in one of our bureaus. We have asked CISA and the FBI to investigate, and we cannot comment further at this time,” the Commerce Department said in an emailed statement to The Epoch Times, referring to the Department of Homeland Security’s Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

A CISA spokesperson told The Epoch Times via email: “We have been working closely with our agency partners regarding recently discovered activity on government networks. CISA is providing technical assistance to affected entities as they work to identify and mitigate any potential compromises.”

The National Security Council said it was aware of the reports.

“The United States government is aware of these reports and we are taking all necessary steps to identify and remedy any possible issues related to this situation,” John Ullyot, a spokesman with the council, said in a statement to outlets.

The Treasury Department didn’t respond to a request for comment.

Reuters reported earlier Sunday, citing anonymous sources, that hackers backed by a foreign government had breached systems at the Treasury Department and the Commerce Department’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration.

Last week, FireEye, a U.S. cybersecurity firm, announced it was breached by what it described as “a highly sophisticated threat actor, one whose discipline, operational security, and techniques lead us to believe it was a state-sponsored attack.”

“Consistent with a nation-state cyber-espionage effort, the attacker primarily sought information related to certain government customers,” FireEye CEO Kevin Mandia said in a statement.