Gilman Louie on what this current administration must address in order to meet the growing cyber challenges of the 21st century. This article was originally published on The Cipher Brief.
U.S. failure to fully develop and implement a comprehensive cyber security strategy created the perfect opportunity for Russia to attack the Democratic National Committee computer network, and enabled them to meddle and interfere with the U.S. presidential election.
Years of bickering by federal agencies – over which agency was in charge, who had which jurisdictions, who was going to pay, what information could be shared, what should be the role of the private sector, privacy and liability concerns, and who should be accountable – has left the United States with numerous cyber vulnerabilities, so that any country, non-state actor, or trained individual with reasonable skills can attack this country with little to no consequence.
Our country has failed to take the necessary actions to protect and secure its digital infrastructure and assets. Over 80 percent of U.S. businesses are hacked every year; some of our most valuable military technologies, data, and intellectual property have been stolen; and 21.5 million personnel records, including numerous caches of security clearance information, have been hacked. This is not the result of technology failing, but of failed policies and leadership.
These failures have created a window for emboldened hackers. Countries, as well as non-state actors, no longer attempt to cover their tracks. The lack of sufficient consequences, combined with increasing profitability, has made attacks on high value targets in the United States something to brag about.
While there have been numerous cyber commissions, working groups, task forces, studies, and plans – such as the Cybersecurity National Action Plan of 2016, Commission on Enhancing National Security, Comprehensive National Cybersecurity Initiative, National Cyber Incident Response Plan, and National Strategy to Secure Cyberspace – as well as thousands of recommendations over the past 15 years, our country is more vulnerable today to cyber attacks, espionage, influence, ransom, and theft than it was 15 years ago.
This month, the Center for Strategic and International Studies Cyber Policy Task Force released a cybersecurity agenda for the 45th president This task force grew out of years of frustration over the lack of an effective national effort to protect cyberspace, and the growing concerns around cyber risks and vulnerabilities. Comprised of the leading cybersecurity experts from industry, academia, and government, the task force’s goal is to help the Administration establish a robust and effective plan that will create a secure and stable digital environment that supports continued economic growth while protecting personal freedoms and national security.
The task force laid out five vital recommendations Continue reading "Gilman Louie: Cybersecurity: Time for Action"