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Cyberspace Threats Could Affect National Security

February 8, 2010

According to the White House’s top counter-terrorism advisor on Sunday, the United States faces “serious and significant” cyberspace threats which may affect national security.

The advisor, John Brennan, told NBC that a cyber-security board has been set up at the White House to work on the matters of cyber crime. “It’s a very complex and complicated challenge, but we are working very closely with the private sector.”

The issues stem back to accusations Google made over China’s apparent involvement in cyber attacks made against the Internet giant. Beijing officials denied any government involvement in any such attacks.

President Obama said he was disturbed by Google’s statements that it had been attacked by China-based hackers, and demanded answers.

Google has threatened to drop its Chinese search engine, and possibly cut all relations with the country over the attacks. It has also said it will no longer obey Chinese censors.

Brennan said the cyber crime unit will be looking at all threats as serious risks to national security, be it from governments or individuals and “whether they be hackers or terrorist organizations,” it may all be acts of espionage. “National security is something that is at risk. That’s why what we’re trying to do is to ensure that our networks, our government networks, our private sector networks have the ability to withstand these attempts to hack in.”

Last week, the House of Representatives dominantly approved a bill that will aim to protect the Internet and vulnerable computer networks by funding cyber security research and training.

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