February 10, 2009

Obama Begins Review Of US Web Security Measures

In an effort to follow through with campaign promises, President Barack Obama is launching a 60-day review of US cyber security efforts.

During his bid for the presidency last year, Obama had compared cyber threats the threat of nuclear or biological attacks.

According to the White House, the review will be overseen by Melissa Hathaway, a former official in George W. Bush's presidency cyber monitoring for the director of national intelligence.

The review comes shortly after Bush's administration, which was widely scrutinized for its invasive manner of overstepping the boundaries of civil liberties.

A November 2008 congressional panel report noted that China has increased its hacking abilities to such a level that it is able to penetrate US computer networks and expose sensitive information.

"The national security and economic health of the United States depend on the security, stability, and integrity of our nation's cyberspace, both in the public and private sectors," said Obama's assistant for counterterrorism and homeland security John Brennan.

"The president is confident that we can protect our nation's critical cyber infrastructure while at the same time adhering to the rule of law and safeguarding privacy rights and civil liberties," he said in the statement.

Furthermore, a December report by the Commission on Cybersecurity for the 44th Presidency said that cybersecurity was "among the most serious economic and national security challenges we will face in the 21st century."

Additionally, the report found that "decisions and actions must respect American values related to privacy and civil liberties; and only a comprehensive national security strategy that embraces both the domestic and international aspects of cybersecurity will improve the situation."


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