This year, hackers have accessed 100,000 tax accounts after breaking into systems at the Internal Revenue Service. A hack of the US Postal Service last year exposed the sensitive information belonging to 800,000 employees. 25m individuals had their personal information stolen in one hack on the Office of Personnel Management, the government’s human resources arm.
Since 2006 the number of “incidents” at federal agencies, including phishing attempts, malware attachments and unauthorised access by employees, rose 1,100 per cent to 67,168 in 2014, according to OMB. Some of that increase, officials say, reflects the better job agencies have done in detecting attacks. “The entire nation is now making up for 20 years of under-investment in our nation’s cyber security, in both the public and private sectors,” Andy Ozment, assistant secretary of the Department of Homeland Security, told Congress.