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Last week Wednesday, President Biden signed into law a sweeping order that attempts to combat cyber hacking. The order comes in the wake of numerous hacking cases, like the Colonial Pipeline, Microsoft Exchange, and SolarWinds. In all cases, infrastructure, federal agencies, and businesses were seriously affected.
Biden wrote that “Incremental improvements will not give us the security we need; instead, the Federal Government needs to make bold changes and significant investments in order to defend the vital institutions that underpin the American way of life.”
Steps outlined in the executive order include:
- IT service providers must tell the government about cybersecurity breaches.
- Playbook for the federal response to cyber incidents.
- Stresses need for federal agencies to use secure cloud services and multi-factor authentication and encryption.
- Requires software vendors selling to the government to include security improvements.
- Established a cybersecurity safety review board to analyze and make recommendations in the event of cyber events.
- Improve sharing of security information between federal agencies.
Christopher Krebs, former director of US cybersecurity, said that “I think it’s a really ambitious plan and that it should be effective if implemented properly, which I have confidence in the team, both at my old agency as well as in the National Security Council and elsewhere.”