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Congressman Garbarino’s Statement on MTA Cyberattack

June 3, 2021

MASSAPEQUA, NY – June 3, 2021 - Recently, it was reported that the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) in New York suffered a cyberattack in April which breeched the agency’s computer systems. Congressman Andrew R. Garbarino (R-NY), Ranking Member of the House Homeland Security Subcommittee on Cybersecurity, Infrastructure Protection, and Innovation, issued the following statement in response to the attack:

“News of the MTA cyberattack perpetrated by suspected Chinese hackers is further evidence that we cannot wait to improve our nation’s cyber preparedness. We have known for years that Chinese entities with official and unofficial ties to the Chinese Communist Party have the ability to infiltrate American data infrastructure and networks, but we cannot take this attack lightly. Cyber criminals are going after every critical infrastructure sector, including the transportation sector, from private businesses to government entities. If we do not act to ensure public and private entities throughout every sector are adequately prepared to mitigate cyber threats, we will likely continue to see devastating impacts on our economy, our productivity, and our national security.

“In order to appropriately respond to this attack, we need answers. MTA claims that rider safety was not at risk, but so far has failed to brief Congress or provide information on what portion of MTA’s systems were compromised and how that might affect riders. The fact that they failed to disclose this attack is deeply concerning. This is personal to my constituents. Millions of New Yorkers use MTA services every day and they deserve to know if they or their personal information is at risk.

“We must continue to shine a light on cyberattacks like this one because these criminals thrive in the dark. We need transparency from the MTA and other affected companies, we need federal interagency coordination, and we need to make sure the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) has the resources it needs to identify, prevent, and respond to nefarious attacks. Cybersecurity is national security, and we must do everything we can to protect our critical infrastructure sectors.”