Recently, President Obama signed a long-anticipated executive order to improve the nation’s cybersecurity, which sets the course for the war against cyberterrorism based on a model of collaboration between government and private companies. His words shed new light on the reality of this battle, where the soldiers on the front lines are ordinary people like you and me, and urge us to take a look at what we can do to help with the fight.
We cannot look back years from now and wonder why we did nothing in the face of real threats to our security and our economy.
Recent occurrences of security breaches in the United States have led to an increasing concern of cyberthreats for both federal agencies and the private sector. During his State of the Union address, Obama stated, “We know hackers steal people’s identities and infiltrate private e-mail. We know foreign countries and companies swipe our corporate secrets. Now our enemies are also seeking the ability to sabotage our power grid, our financial institutions, and our air traffic control systems. We cannot look back years from now and wonder why we did nothing in the face of real threats to our security and our economy.”
To combat these growing problems, the order is designed to “strengthen our cyber defenses by increasing information sharing, and developing standards to protect our national security, our jobs, and our privacy,” said President Obama.
Through this executive order, the President is asking the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) to work with other federal agencies to develop the “Cybersecurity Framework”; a risk framework and set of best practices to reduce cyberthreats to those critical businesses that run our economy. This framework involves the government working hand-in-hand with private companies to identify potential risks and how to manage them.
Cyberterrorism is a very real threat against our country and its citizens, but today’s war is very different from wars of the past. Hackers are targeting government agencies, utility companies, banks and other organizations, where they can do real damage to the economy. This means the front lines of this fight are not in a military bunker, they’re at the IT desks of these businesses and government agencies, which must be vigilant at all times and leverage the latest technologies to shore up their defenses.
Protecting our critical information networks is vital to our country’s defense system, and we all have a sense of shared responsibility. Everyone must do their part, and this includes organizations making the right choices about the technology they invest in. In today’s Information Age, we’re all linked, and we’re all targets – and a security breach within one organization can have far-reaching consequences. Now more than ever, security is a major concern, and both the public and private sectors are realizing the need for technology built with heightened security in mind.
The president brought attention to the new reality of the war against cyberterrorism – we’re all in this together. Panasonic will continue to do its part, as it has done for more than a decade, and we look forward to many more years of helping other organizations do the same.