Pittsburg beefing up web security around city website

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PITTSBURG, Ks. — The city of Pittsburg is defending its website daily from hackers–now they’re doing something to hopefully fix that problem.

It really comes down to the difference of a .org and a .gov.

This switch can offer another layer of protection from cyber-security threats.

The city will join a small percentage of government agencies in Kansas with a .gov domain.

Jay Byers, Deputy City Manager, Pittsburg, said, “We have to have firewalls in place. We have to have a whole bunch of security items around our website to make sure we don’t get hacked.”

Like most government agencies, the city of Pittsburg has their own website.

Currently, the city of Pittsburg’s website is a .org website — meaning they are more susceptible to hackers and malware versus being a .gov.

There are attempts to hack into the city domain–daily.

They are looking for very sensitive information.

“We do have more than 350 employees so their social security numbers and things like that, that we do keep. There’s quite a bit of information we do keep.”

Last year, all .org domains were purchased by a private company that could potentially censor information on websites.

“They may say you can’t have a .org domain name if you put this kind of information on out on your website, and that’s a little concerning of course.”

With that much sensitive information on site, they are looking to make the switch as soon as possible.

“Up until 2012, the .gov domain could only be used by the federal agencies. Now it can be used by state and local agencies, as well. And I think it’s controlled by the Government Services Administration of the federal government, they’re a non-profit group that are under the federal government. They’re pretty objective in how they approach these things.”

Pittsburg isn’t the only government agency in Kansas with a .org domain.

Only about eight Kansas county websites have a .gov domain.

Pittsburg hopes to have its new website up by 2021.

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