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Executive Order on Cybersecurity Could be Issued This Week

Executive Order on Cybersecurity

According to a report from Bloomberg, President Obama could issue an executive order aimed at cybersecurity as soon as this week. Word if the pending directive comes via two former White House officials briefed on the plans, the news agency reported.

Executive Order on Cybersecurity

According to a report from Bloomberg, President Obama could issue an executive order aimed at cybersecurity as soon as this week. Word if the pending directive comes via two former White House officials briefed on the plans, the news agency reported.

The order is expected to be released after Obama gives his State of the Union address. The way the details were explained to Bloomberg, the order itself seems to center on many of the points leaked to the Web last September.

At the time, a 19-page draft document, which would act as the basis for an executive order, was published by Techdirt. The draft focused on information sharing, and stronger lines of communications between the government and public sector, singling out several verticals that should be protected at all costs – including critical infrastructure and communications.

The draft’s wording was problematic for some. Privacy advocates pointed out that there was nothing that defined what should considered communications proper, leaving the proposed plan for information sharing between the public and private sectors, open to abuse and privacy violations. 

“In the case of interactive computer services, such as networks that facilitate commerce, provide search services, or are platforms for social networking and speech, vulnerabilities are unlikely to constitute threats to our national security,” Senator Ron Wyden wrote in a letter to White House Cybersecurity Coordinator J. Michael Daniel at the time the draft was leaked.

“It should be clear in any executive order related to cybersecurity that there is a fundamental difference between networks that manage infrastructure critical to public safety, like energy, water, and transportation systems, and those that provide digital goods and services to the public.”

On Friday, Bloomberg’s sources said that the order expected to come shortly will direct federal agencies to consider incorporating cybersecurity standards into existing regulations. The key word being consider. The order would also increase the number of security clearances, and increase the number of disclosures to the private sector. On the other side of the isle, Republicans have already warned the Obama Administration that such executive measures would serve to “solidify the present divide” between the parties.

For now, the order itself is still a rumor, as the White House would not comment on the matter.

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