Technology Record - Issue 31: Winter 2023

FEATURE Malicious actors are increasingly targeting government organisations to disable critical infrastructure, compromise public data and destabilise democracy. Microsoft’s Kirk Arthur explains why technologies like artificial intelligence and public-private sector collaboration are key to winning the cyber war BY REBECCA GIBSON A united front Photo: iStock/Fani Kurti When cybercriminals launched a ransomware attack on Kalix Kommun one night, they infiltrated the Swedish municipality’s entire IT database and shut down systems managing everything from communications to finances, medical records and heating and ventilation in municipal buildings. The blackout impacted more than 1,600 employees and around 16,000 citizens. The City of Saint John in New Brunswick, Canada, faced a similar situation when its IT environment was breached and held hostage for multiple millions of dollars. Meanwhile, a two-pronged nation state attack on the Government of Albania caused 1,118 e-services to go down for three days. While all three government organisations were able to rapidly prevent widespread damage and regain 132