President Obama signed an executive order aimed at bolstering U.S. cybersecurity prior to tonight’s State of the Union address. The Order precedes a House Homeland Security Committee hearing on “new threats.”
It is the government’s latest move in attempting to deal with cyber threats, and the order has not undergone any public technical, rights-based, or privacy review.
The Order “enables the government to share more information with private industry partners and developing a new framework of practices to reduce cybersecurity risks.”
President Barack Obama’s Improving Critical Infrastructure Cybersecurity Executive Order is to “maximize the utility of cyber threat information sharing” – although the document does not define ‘cyber threat’, ‘cyber intrusions’ or exactly what will be shared for its information sharing provisions.
The Order requires the Attorney General, the Secretary of Homeland Security (the “Secretary”), and the Director of National Intelligence to issue implemenation instructions within 120 days.
Privacy and digital rights may take a back seat as the assesment of privacy concerns and civil liberties risks is being kept in-house.
The Chief Privacy Officer and the Officer for Civil Rights and Civil Liberties of the Department of Homeland Security will assess the privacy and civil liberties risks of the Order and make ‘recommendations’ a year after today’s signing.
The Order puts the Department of Homeland Security in charge of creating ways to share information between entities, but does not define or explain how this will be done without enacting critical privacy violations of citizens.