OPM has published a new statistical breakdown of the federal workforce, showing that as a percentage of the overall American population, it has held roughly steady over the last decade, although in raw numbers it has grown along with the population. About half of the job growth, the data show, was at the VA, with most of the rest in DHS and DoD. For a closer look, go to https://www.fedweek.com/reports.
Stronger Response Proposed to Cyber Breaches Targeting Federal Employees
Newly offered legislation (HR-3403) in the House would require appointment of a federal official to take charge of assistance to federal employees in any future cyberattack targeting them.
The bill was offered on roughly the second anniversary of disclosure that two OPM databases had been hacked, one containing work-related records and the other containing often highly personal information on federal workers and others on whom background investigations have been conducted. Controversies over OPM’s response led to the resignation of the then-director and the offer of free identity and credit monitoring services and identity restoration services and insurance.
Federal employees are especially attractive targets to cyber criminals because of the nature of their work, sponsors say, adding in a statement that “these breaches are becoming much too commonplace. Information theft should not be an occupational hazard of federal employment.” It said there should be a central official to “ensure that there will be an organized, effective response to any cyberattack.”