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Poll: Will the House Cyber Task Force’s Recommendations Work?

by John Reed on October 10, 2011

The widely anticipated report is finally out from the House of Representatives Cyber Task Force. The twenty page document, written by House Republicans, was released last week and as expected, opinions have begun to fly. One person I spoke with has even called the report “superficial.” Perhaps the best part of the document is where it calls for the streamlining of information security regulations. One insider told me that at last count there were over 400 proposed pieces of legislation relating to cyber security. With that as a background, who in their right mind would not support streamlining or eliminating regulations. This would reduce overlapping requirements, and what seem to be contradictory clauses in the bills.

Any piece of cyber legislation must become a living document that is frequently updated to keep step with a threat environment that seems to change by the minute. The report references legislation from 2002 and 1986. Just think back to the cyber environment way then. It is hard to imagine that these laws don’t require updating given the changes that have taken place.

I would hope that a much more detailed, classified — or at least For Official Use Only — version of the report exists and that it was given to Cyber Command and others who have a need to know. There are a lot of good things in the report, but like others, I was expecting a bit more.

POLL – Read the report here and then tell us what you think of it in our poll after the jump:

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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Navydoc84041986 October 10, 2011 at 11:04 am

This is what happens when you try to control something that was never meant to be controlled. Like a bull ride, you may think your going to control that bull, but you will only ride for 8 seconds, and the odds of you getting hurt are immensely greater then your idea of controlling that bull!

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brian October 10, 2011 at 2:28 pm

Lets try a better question, "How could this bill possibly work?"

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The_Hand October 10, 2011 at 3:47 pm

I am unimpressed. Any real cybersecurity policy would have to contain at least some technical information in order to be even slightly effective. This document could have been written by people who had never used a computer.

A piece of legislation that would actually work would take the form of appointing one or more agencies to oversee government and private cybersecurity, with the resources and authority to actually carry it out. And even this would be inadequate without the development of new protocols and operating systems built with security in mind from the ground up. Last I checked there existed only one operating system capable of EAL 6+ accreditation, and it's not exactly flying off the shelves.

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blight October 10, 2011 at 4:17 pm

Meh. Law is rarely written in technical terms, to avoid being "trapped in the times". That and most politicians have little technical training. Most are lawyers if they did go to college. Some are businessmen with the appropriate training. A fair number are veterans. Some are MDs. I don't think computer scientists, computer engineers and sysadmins are well represented.

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