Government


The Threatpost Daily News Wrap #1

In the first episode of the Threatpost Daily News Wrap podcast, Threatpost editors Ryan Naraine and Dennis Fisher discuss President Obama’s cybersecurity plan and the Microsoft DirectShow vulnerability.

Obama cybersecurity plan has a familiar ring

President Obama on Friday presented his long-awaited cybersecurity plan, which included the establishment of a new White House office headed by a cybersecurity “coordinator” who would oversee and advise Obama on this issue. He also proposed hiring a separate official dedicated to privacy and civil liberties concerns. The proposal, which bears a striking resemblance to the six-year-old National Strategy to Secure Cyberspace, is ambitious in its scope and scale and it likely will face many of the same roadblocks that previous efforts in this area have faced.


On the day that President Obama releases a cybersecurity policy review, hear from experts and officials in the field. This video features Janet Napolitano, Secretary of Homeland Security; William Pelgrin, Chief Cybersecurity Officer of New York; John Thompson, CEO of Symantec; Leslie Harris of the Center for Democracy & Technology; Jeannette Wing of the National Science Foundation.

From The New York Times (David E. Sanger and Thom Shanker)
The Pentagon plans to create a new military command for cyberspace, administration officials said Thursday, stepping up preparations by the armed forces to conduct both offensive and defensive computer warfare.
The military command would complement a civilian effort to be announced by President Obama on Friday that would overhaul the way the United States safeguards its computer networks. Read the full story [NYTimes.com].

Whoever is brave enough to fill the soon-to-be-created cybersecurity czar position will find a rather large pile of challenges waiting. Among them will be dealing with a confused and argumentative Congress, doing a full-scale assessment of the country’s critical infrastructure and reaching out to all of the federal agencies that have been without leadership on cybersecurity for months. But none of those should be the cybersecurity czar’s top priority.

From The Washington Post (Ellen Nakashima)
The Obama administration is set to announce the creation of a new high-level position to run the cybersecurity program for the country. The announcement is expected on Friday, along with the release of the report on the administration’s 60-day review of the country’s cybersecurity posture.

From the Associated Press
Law enforcement computers were struck by a Mystery computer virus Thursday, forcing the FBI and the U.S. Marshals to shut down part of their networks as a precaution.
The U.S. Marshals confirmed it disconnected from the Justice Department’s computers as a protective measure after being hit by the virus; an FBI official said only that that agency was experiencing similar issues and was working on the problem. Read the full story [yahoo.com]

From Federal Computer Week (Ben Bain)
Attackers have penetrated a network that the Department of Homeland Security uses to share sensitive information with state and local authorities, gaining access to important, but unclassified, data. The attack began in March and occurred again a few weeks later, according to a report in Federal Computer Week.

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