The visit comes just days after more than a thousand companies found their data encrypted in what is believed to be the largest ransomware spree in history.By Audra Streetman

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (CBS4) – Sen. John Hickenlooper wants to better protect the United States from cyberattacks. On Tuesday, Hickenlooper visited the National Cybersecurity Center in Colorado Springs with Mayor John Suthers.

(credit: Sen. John Hickenlooper)

Hickenlooper helped establish the National Cybersecurity Center in 2016 while he was Governor of Colorado. On Tuesday, he met with leaders in the space industry, education and the private sector to discuss ways to bolster U.S. cyber defense. Hickenlooper also touted the bipartisan infrastructure package that would invest $47 billion toward cyber resilience.

The trip comes just days after more than a thousand companies found their data encrypted in what is believed to be the largest ransomware attack on record. Security researchers have attributed the attack to the Russian-linked REvil ransomware group, which was also behind the cyberattack on JBS.

Friday’s supply chain attack targeted software supplier Kaseya and spread to managed service providers and companies in at least 17 countries. On Sunday, REvil claimed to have infected a million systems and demanded a $70 million ransom.

Around the same time as the Kaseya ransomware attack, Bloomberg reports Russian government hackers breached the computer systems of the Republican National Committee. The RNC denies it was hacked and said in a statement that no RNC data was accessed.

In a meeting last month, President Joe Biden warned Russian President Vladimir Putin that the U.S. will “take action” if Russia continues to harbor cybercriminals or engage in hacking attacks. In a statement, Deputy National Security Advisor Anne Neuberger said President Biden directed the full resources of the government to investigate the Kaseya ransomware attack.

Audra Streetman