Congress is Hurting the U.S. Regarding Cybersecurity

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Joel Harding


I just received an email from someone who I deeply respect.  He is in a position of authority, teaching many of our future leaders in subjects we desperately need them to not only become proficient, but they must excel.

He deeply disrespects Congress.  He thinks they are ‘idiots’ and not worth the effort of teaching them about ‘cyber’.

On March 19, the CEO of Mandiant, Kevin Mandia, briefs the Senate Armed Service Committee’s subpanel on Emerging Threats and Capabilities on emerging threats.  Then, according to CQ:

The subcommittee will then hold a closed briefing with Stephanie O’Connell, principal deputy director of national intelligence, and Lt. Gen. Jon Davis, deputy commander of U.S. Cyber Command.

Mandiant is reputedly about to launch an IPO, so they stand to financially capitalize from their growing position at the front of the cybersecurity world, their position relative to Congress and their recently released report pointing at China as the ‘Great Satan of the Internet’.  Yeah, I just made that up…

Then we have the Intelligence Community who really needs a shot in the tail to make it appear credible, in light of their perceived global failures.  Then we have the US Cyber Command, who needs to step out from beneath the US Strategic Command and take their place as a Unified Command with authority to wage warfare within the Cyber Domain.  The problem is, as many have pointed out, is that the US Cyber Command does cyber for cyber’s sake, with little thought to integrating it with the rest of DoD.  Oh yeah, they are a part of the US military but that is often forgotten.

So we are left with briefings to the US Senate’s Armed Services Committee subpanel.  These briefings will be long remembered as…  oh, that’s right, we’re talking about a Congress who has the attention span of…. *poof* done.

Maybe we’ll see some serious discussion about CISPA, this time.  But if Congress doesn’t wake up and begin asking serious questions, their inattention is going to cause us great harm in the coming years.

Cross Posted from To Inform is to Influence

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