Cybersecurity Debate: Three Things to Know

April 27, 2015
12:40 pm (EST)

Cybersecurity Debate: Three Things to Know
Explainer Video
from Video

The debate over cybersecurity is heating up again in Washington. Congress is considering multiple pieces of legislation intended to enhance the ability of the private sector and government to share information about digital threats. Meanwhile, the White House has put forth its own proposal, which diverges from those measures on major issues. Robert Knake, CFR’s senior fellow for cyber policy, offers three things to know about the debate on cybersecurity information sharing.

More From Our Experts

Expanded Monitoring: Congress and the White House generally agree on the need for the private sector and government to share intelligence about cyber threats. Where they diverge is on the extent to which private service providers, such as AT&T and Verizon, can monitor Internet traffic, explains Knake.

More on:

United States

Cybersecurity

Improved Sharing: Most companies already monitor their networks for threats and share cybersecurity information with other firms and government, says Knake. President Barack Obama’s proposal would simply clarify that authority, while bills supported by the Congressional intelligence committees would allow ISPs to monitor all traffic crossing their networks.

Choosing a Portal: President Obama wants cybersecurity information shared between the government and the private sector to pass through the Department of Homeland Security, while congressional intelligence committees want the National Security Agency to be the hub. These divisions do not fall along partisan lines, says Knake.

More From Our Experts

More on:

United States

Cybersecurity

Close

Top Stories on CFR

Somalia

Middle East and North Africa

Washington and Tehran seem determined to revive the deal that freezes Iran’s nuclear program, despite domestic criticism on both sides and the apparent sabotage of an Iranian facility.

China

The Spring Meetings should address BRI’s pitfalls and advance policies to help put BRI countries on the path toward recovery and sustainable growth.