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Tuesday, 1st September 2015

Cybersecurity: Legislation, Hearings, and Executive Branch Documents

Source: Congressional Research Service via Federation of American Scientists

From Summary:

Cybersecurity vulnerabilities challenge governments, businesses, and individuals worldwide. Attacks have been initiated against individuals, corporations, and countries. Targets have included government networks, companies, and political organizations, depending upon whether the attacker was seeking military intelligence, conducting diplomatic or industrial espionage, engaging in cybercrime, or intimidating political activists. In addition, national borders mean little or nothing to cyberattackers, and attributing an attack to a specific location can be difficult, which may make responding problematic.

Despite many recommendations made over the past decade, most major legislative provisions relating to cybersecurity had been enacted prior to 2002. However, on December 18, 2014, in the last days of the 113th Congress, five cybersecurity bills were signed by the President. These bills change federal cybersecurity programs in a number of ways:

codifying the role of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) in developing a “voluntary, industry-led set of standards” to reduce cyber risk;

codifying the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS’s) National Cybersecurity and Communications Integration Center as a hub for interactions with the private sector;

updating the Federal Information Security Management Act (FISMA) by requiring the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to “eliminate ... inefficient and wasteful reports”; and

requiring DHS to develop a “comprehensive workforce strategy” within a year and giving DHS new authorities for cybersecurity hiring.

+ Direct link to document (PDF; 957 KB)


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Having begun his career in academic libraries, Adrian Janes has subsequently worked extensively in public libraries, chiefly in enquiry work as an Information Services librarian. In this role he has had particular responsibility for information from both the UK Government and the European Union. He wrote a detailed report on sources for the latter which was published by FreePint in 2007, and has contributed articles to FreePint and ResourceShelf. He is involved in training in information literacy and the use of online reference resources.

A Contributing Editor to DocuTicker, he also write reviews for Pennyblackmusic.

More articles by Adrian Janes »



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