By Russell Wicke, Corporate Communications Officer
Contrary to our initial estimates, the water management page will remain unavailable for another few weeks, but we continue to make progress on the rebuild.
There are several contributing factors to the long delay.
The first relates to the original reason it was removed from the internet. One of our security systems identified an attempted cyber attack on our water management web server. This malicious activity resulted in multiple response actions by the Corps of Engineers with the intent to: Identify the scope of the attack, ensure it was an isolated event, and secure the web servers from additional attacks. These actions are what prompted our information technology department to remove the site from public access in order to conduct an in-depth inspection.
The effort to secure the web server from additional attacks includes numerous time-intensive actions. One of these actions is a complete and exhaustive review of all the code that makes the web server work. New code is then written to address any issues identified during the review. Testing the new code occurs at multiple intervals which also adds to the downtime of the web server. This was required not only to protect the water management site from malicious activity, but to protect all our other internet and intranet platforms that make up our digital network. Since the water management page hosted and processed more than 50 years of rainfall and basin data, this process took a considerable amount of time.
Once all the security actions were completed, we were directed to have the site retested by an external government agency. This process also involves numerous testing intervals. Right now we are making the final adjustments in response to the last test. We believe these final adjustments will bring the site up to Defense Department security standards.
Once live, we think you will find the new site more appealing and user-friendly than the old version. Getting information will be simplified and more intuitive in nature.
We will continue to keep you updated on the progress here on this blog.