The United States is launching its new office of digital and cyberspace policy. In a statement, the White House said: “This office will provide strategic guidance to government agencies on how best to leverage technology to achieve national security objectives while protecting the privacy and civil liberties.”
This office will have approximately 100 employees. Its mission is to “Address national security challenges, economic opportunities and implications for United States values associated with cyberspace.”
The U.S. has also launched a cyber-security center in Silicon Valley. This Center will be headed by Michael Daniel, the cybersecurity coordinator at the National Security Council.
Some background in the Cybersecurity law:
* On June 25, 2016, President Obama signed the Cybersecurity Act of 2015 (CSA) into law. The CSA aims to protect U.S. critical infrastructure from cyber-attacks. It requires that all federal agencies create plans to secure their networks against cyber threats.
* On July 29, 2016, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) released its first-ever strategy for securing the nation’s critical infrastructure. The report outlines steps DHS can take to improve the security of our power grid, water systems, financial institutions, transportation networks, healthcare facilities, emergency services, and other vital sectors.
The creation of the CDP includes three policy units: International Cyberspace Security, International Information and Communications Policy, and Digital Freedom.
This unit will focus on international efforts to address cyber threats. The team will coordinate with foreign governments and private sector partners to promote global cooperation on issues such as information sharing, technical standards, and norms of behavior.
This unit will work to ensure the development of policies that support the free flow of information and communications across borders. The team will also help countries develop legal frameworks that enable them to regulate ICTs within their borders.
This unit will work to promote freedom of expression, innovation, access to knowledge, and privacy online. The team will also work to strengthen democratic processes around the world through its use of it.
The Cybersecurity Center will be located in Palo Alto, California. Its purpose is to coordinate federal efforts to strengthen the security of civilian computer networks and deter malicious activity.
The Center will include two components: a public-private partnership called the Partnership for Secure Computing, and an interagency task force called the Computer Emergency Response Team Coordination Center.
The Partnership for Secure Computing will bring together industry leaders, academics, and government officials to share ideas about ways to make computing safer.
The Computer Emergency Response Team Coordinating Center will coordinate the response to significant incidents involving computers or networks.
There are many challenges facing this newly created office of Cyberspace and Digital Policy. One challenge is that there is no clear definition of “cyberspace”. For example, does cyberspace extend beyond the Internet? Does it include mobile devices? What about social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter?
Another challenge is that the United States needs to work more closely with other nations to combat cybercrime. This means working with allies to share intelligence and collaborate on cybersecurity.
A third challenge is that the United Nations has been trying to create a framework for regulating cyberspace since 1999. However, the U.N. has not yet produced any concrete proposals.
Fourth, the United States must continue protecting civil liberties while ensuring national security. For example, it cannot allow terrorists to use the Internet to communicate freely without fear of being caught. At the same time, it must protect its citizens from identity theft and other crimes committed by criminals using the Internet.
Finally, the United States must take steps to improve its cybersecurity to defend itself against potential attacks.
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