SEI Podcasts

Members of Technical Staff at the Software Engineering Institute

Conversations in software engineering, cybersecurity, artificial intelligence engineering, and future technologies read less


Identifying and Preventing the Next SolarWinds
Identifying and Preventing the Next SolarWinds
In this podcast from the Carnegie Mellon University Software Engineering Institute (SEI), Gregory J. Touhill, director of the SEI CERT Division, talks with principal researcher Suzanne Miller about the 2020 attack on Solar Winds software and how to prevent a recurrence of another major attack on key systems that are in widespread use. Solar Winds is the name of a company that provided software to the U.S. federal government. In late 2020, news surfaced about a cyberattack that had already been underway for several months and that had reportedly compromised 250 government agencies, including the Treasury Department, the State Department, and nuclear research labs. In addition to compromising data, the attack resulted in financial losses of more than $90 million and was probably one of the most dangerous modern attacks on software and software-based businesses and government agencies in the recent past. The SolarWinds incident demonstrated the challenges of securing systems when they are the product of complex supply chains. In this podcast, Touhill discusses topics including the need for systems to be secure by design and secure by default, the importance of transparency in the reporting of vulnerabilities and anomalous system behavior, the CERT Acquisition Security Framework, the need to secure data across a wide range of disparate devices and systems, and tactics and strategies for individuals and organizations to safeguard their data and the systems they rely on daily.