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Obama says US needs to aggressively bolster defences against hackers
June 8, 2015 / 3:07 PM / in 2 years

Obama says US needs to aggressively bolster defences against hackers

U.S. President Barack Obama speaks during his news conference at the conclusion of the G7 Summit in the Bavarian town of Kruen, Germany June 8, 2015.Kevin Lamarque

KRUEN, Germany (Reuters) - Responding to a recent cyber attack on U.S. government computers, President Barack Obama said on Monday the United States has old computer systems with "significant vulnerabilities" to cyber attacks and needs to be "much more aggressive" in stepping up defences against hackers.

"This problem is not going to go away. It is going to accelerate. And that means that we have to be as nimble, as aggressive and as well-resourced as those who are trying to break into these systems," Obama said at a news conference at the G7 summit in Germany.

He urged the U.S. Congress to move forward on passing cybersecurity legislation.

The personnel records of an estimated 4 million current and former federal government employees were compromised, the Obama administration disclosed Thursday.

Obama declined to discuss who U.S. authorities think was behind a massive breach.

Several U.S. officials, who requested anonymity, said the hackers were believed to have been based in China but that it was not yet known if the Chinese government or criminal elements were involved.

Another U.S. official said the breach was being investigated as a matter of national security, meaning it may have originated from a foreign government.

Reporting by Jeff Mason; Writing by Roberta Rampton and Julia Edwards; Editing by Doina Chiacu

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