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A Google logo at the company's offices in Berlin in August 2021. Photo: Sean Gallup/Getty Images

Google announced Tuesday it has created a new cybersecurity team to help respond to and prevent cyberattacks against governments, critical infrastructure managers and other crucial companies.

Why it matters: It said the creation of the team is in response to the recent surge in cyber and ransomware attacks, including the ransomware attempt against the Colonial Pipeline in May and the sprawling SolarWinds breach, which was uncovered in December 2020 but likely existed for months before its discovery.

What they're saying: Google said recent attacks "all speak to a major shift in the needs of threat protection."

  • "Cybersecurity is at the top of every C-level and board agenda, given the increasing prominence of software supply chain exploits, ransomware, and other attacks," said Thomas Kurian, CEO of Google Cloud.
  • "The Google Cybersecurity Action Team is part of our ongoing commitment to be the best partner for our enterprise and government customers along their security transformation journey," Kurian added.

The team, which will be made up of cybersecurity experts in the company, will help governmental entities and companies strengthen their digital security systems against cyberattacks.

  • The team will help organizations respond to attacks by providing threat briefings, preparedness drills and offering rapid response capabilities.

The big picture: FBI director Christopher Wray warned earlier this year that cyber threats against the U.S. government and companies were "increasing almost exponentially."

  • The Biden administration has devised collection strategies to get ahead of cyber criminals, including offering financial rewards for information that helps identify and locate people engaged in foreign state-sanctioned malicious cyber activities.
  • The administration has also called on major tech companies to work with the federal government to address the growing wave of cyberattacks, and they have responded with new cybersecurity projects and spending plans, Axios' Scott Rosenberg reports.

Go deeper: DOJ launches new initiative to target contractor cyber-fraud

Go deeper

Ina Fried, author of Login
Oct 16, 2021 - Technology

Fixing the pipeline won't solve tech's race problem

Illustration: Shoshana Gordon/Axios

The tech industry likes to cast its failure to include enough people of color and other underrepresented groups as a "pipeline problem" — one that would vanish if only more such people studied tech skills and entered the field.

But there's another reason U.S. tech companies struggle to diversify: work environments that critics say are rife with harassment and discrimination even as companies paint themselves as champions for diversity.

Nikolas Cruz pleads guilty to Parkland school shooting

Parkland school shooter Nikolas Cruz at the defense table during jury selection at the Broward County Courthouse in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., on Oct. 6, 2021. Photo: Amy Beth Bennett/South Florida Sun Sentinel/Tribune News Service via Getty Images

Nikolas Cruz on Wednesday pleaded guilty on all counts for carrying out the 2018 shooting at the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., that left 17 people dead, including 14 students and three staff members.

Driving the news: Cruz, 23, pleaded guilty at a hearing on Wednesday to 17 murder counts and 17 counts of attempted first-degree murder for carrying out the deadly shooting.

2 hours ago - Health

White House unveils plan to "quickly" vaccinate kids ages 5-11

Charles Muro, 13, is inoculated at Hartford Healthcare's mass vaccination center at the Connecticut Convention Center in Hartford, Conn. Photo: Joseph Prezioso/AFP via Getty Images

The White House on Wednesday released its plan to vaccinate children between the ages of five and 11, pending authorization from the Food and Drug Administration of the first COVID-19 shot for that age group.

The big picture: The White House said it has secured enough vaccine supply to equip more than 25,000 pediatric and primary care offices, hundreds of school and community health clinics, as well as tens of thousands of pharmacies, to administer the shots.