Cyber Threats Against U.S. Are “Prevailing”

Mar 18, 2013

Last week was very busy in terms of cybersecurity and our nation.  On Tuesday, the Senate Armed Services Committee held a hearing and Gen. Keith Alexander, Commander of U.S. Cyber Command and Director of the National Security Agency, warned of a growing “roster of actors” that are threatening U.S. interests.

Gen. Alexander’s testimony came on the same day that the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) issued its “Intelligence Community Worldwide Threat Assessment” report, which pointed to cyber threats being the greatest risk to our nation.

On top of this, week before last, DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano said that DHS is more focused on preempting a future cyber attack that “could upend the economy or kill civilians.”

In addition, President Obama met with a number CEOs in an effort to stave off any resistance from his recent cybersecurityexecutive order.  Many believe that the executive order falls short of a complete cybersecurity plan and should be seen as a first step in addressing this major challenge.

Each week, we are seeing new cybersecurity stories in the news cycle — from government leaders calling for more threat containment efforts to more startling reports about potential attacks from China and other nations.

As General James R. Clapper, Director of National Intelligence (ODNI), pointed out that cyber threats are a bigger concern than terrorist attacks, clearly we are in a new era of warfare.

During the “War on Terror,” we fought a mostly unseen enemy in Afghanistan and Iraq.  Now, the new enemy is also faceless, hides behind a computer and can cause just as much damage.

Our challenge, as a nation, is to stay one step ahead of the new bad guys…