In response to persistent threats, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) yesterday issued an emergency amendment to cybersecurity programs for certain TSA-regulated airports and aircraft operators. It requires those entities to develop an approved implementation plan that describes measures they are taking to improve security, protect against disruption of their infrastructure, and proactively assess the efficacy of those measures.
The amendment focuses on actions that include the development of network segmentation policies and controls to ensure systems can continue to operate in case of an information technology breach; the creation of access control limitations to prevent unauthorized access to critical cyber systems; implementation of monitoring and detection procedures to respond to threats and anomalies; and minimization of the risk of exploitation of cyber systems through the use of security patches and updates.
The move, part of the Department of Homeland Security’s attempt to increase the cybersecurity resilience of critical infrastructure, follows similar measures applied in October to passenger and freight railroad carriers.
“Protecting our nation’s transportation system is our highest priority, and TSA will continue to work closely with industry stakeholders across all transportation modes to reduce cybersecurity risks and improve cyber resilience to support safe, secure, and efficient travel,” said TSA Administrator David Pekoske. “This amendment to the aviation security program extends similar performance-based requirements that currently apply to other transportation-system critical infrastructure.”