I've been watching the recent GOP presidential debates, and while Social Security is a very important topic, I do hope there will be some focus on another type of security: cyber security. I thought it should have been a conversation in the 2008 election cycle, too, but it absolutely, positively must be added to the discussion for this election season.
I'm not the only one who thinks our government officials need to step up cyber security and cyber intelligence. A report from the Intelligence and National Security Alliance (INSA) warns that the increase of sophisticated cyber attacks no longer simply threatens financial and intellectual property theft. And, the report added, the U.S. needs to do a much better job of developing cyber intelligence that can predict the threats and deter them.
According to an Associated Press article printed in HSToday.us:
"The impact has increased in magnitude, and the potential for catastrophic collapse of a company has grown," said the report, which is slated to be released later this month. It adds that it is not clear that the business community understands or accepts that.
I know that cyber security is not going to be at the top of the campaign agenda - or the Congressional agenda, even though there are bills pending in both the House and the Senate that look to improve cyber security. We need to focus on job creation and improving the economy, of course. But not focusing more on cyber security could end up being detrimental to the country on so many levels. It's a call that is supported by the Pentagon and the Department of Homeland Security. From the article:
INSA, a non-partisan national security organization, says the U.S. must develop strategies beyond the current "patch and pray" procedures, create cyber intelligence policies, coordinate and share intelligence better among government agencies and businesses, and increase research on attack attribution and warnings.
One section of the report also jumped out at me. It warns of the dangers in outsourcing the design and maintenance of computer technologies and hardware to other countries, which can result in malware and spyware being added to the technologies. We've seen that, with things like USB drives from foreign countries being pre-loaded with malware.
Yes, cyber security does need to join the campaign discussion - not only because our country's security depends on it, but also because by focusing on bringing computer technology manufacturing back home, more jobs (and security) will be created. It's a win-win situation in today's world.