At the end of last week, Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation (DBPR) Sec. Halsey Beshears provided an update on the current status of network systems and services of the Department.
The update was as follows:
The Department of Business and Professional Regulation is currently operating with system network limitations as part of an ongoing effort to ensure the security of all information technology assets. During this limited service period, all DBPR Online Services for applications, payments, and other licensure transactions are available through www.myfloridalicense.com, and customer support agents are available to support users who need assistance with these services.
On Wednesday, October 7, 2020, DBPR’s information security infrastructure identified instances of malicious activity on state-owned technology assets. The Department took immediate security response measures to identify and contain the cause of the malicious system activity and to prevent any compromise of Department systems and data.
Necessarily, these measures to protect the operation of the Department’s network systems required temporary outages in the DBPR Online Services beginning on Thursday, October 8, 2020, and continuing through the restoration of the Online Services on Monday, October 12, 2020. While online options now are available for public use, the Department has taken additional steps this week to enhance the system safeguards that helped identify this concern.
The Department’s continuing efforts to eliminate any perpetual malicious activity have delayed the availability of some system resources that support certain services and processes performed by Department staff. These system limitations are anticipated to continue until all systems and system functions are cleared for access by users. Importantly, to date, the Department has not identified any evidence that suggests a breach of any personally identifiable information.
The Department is committed to achieving a safe and responsible restoration of all system functions swiftly, and upon restoration, will take additional steps to expedite handling of any transactions that have been delayed by this disruption in operation of certain network systems. During the week of October 19, 2020, the Department will align staff resources where necessary to support these additional efforts in processing pending applications and inquiries.
Risks posed by malicious activity on state-owned technology assets are serious, and the Department will continue to work tirelessly with state technology and law enforcement partners to exhaust all available measures in deterring threats directed toward these assets. In this case, the Department has engaged the Florida Department of Law Enforcement for additional support in the investigation and review of these system security matters.