President Biden on Monday urged American companies to put up their cyber-defenses, citing "evolving intelligence that the Russian Government is exploring options for potential cyberattacks" against the U.S.
"The Federal Government can’t defend against this threat alone," Biden said in a lengthy statement released by the White House. He called on the private sector, as "critical infrastructure owners and operators," to "accelerate efforts to lock their digital doors."
The White statement comes as Russia's invasion of Ukraine continues into a fourth week. Cybersecurity experts have warned repeatedly since the beginning of the war last month that parallel cyber-attacks by the Russian government and its allies could spill over into the U.S., whether deliberately or accidentally.
"I urge our private sector partners to harden your cyber defenses immediately," Biden said in the statement. In the lead-up to the invasion of Ukraine, the White House repeatedly publicized its intelligence about Moscow's plans in an effort to deter them.
"We need everyone to do their part to meet one of the defining threats of our time," Biden concluded, calling directly on "private sector partners" that work with the federal government. "Your vigilance and urgency today can prevent or mitigate attacks tomorrow."
As the White House issued its warning, Yahoo News also reported that U.S. Customs and Border Protection has warned internally about the national security implications of ransomware attacks on the supply chain and the possibility that they "will cause further congestion at ports of entry and delays in shipping nationwide."