Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano issued a scary warning to the county yesterday:
We need to take precautions against a severe cyber attack, one that could take place at any moment and cripple our online infrastructure.
“We shouldn’t wait until there is a 9/11 in the cyber world,” Napolitano said in Washington D.C. “There are things we can and should be doing right now that, if not prevent, would mitigate the extent of damage.”
Napolitano pushed Congress to pass legislation that would make it easier for the government to share information with the private sector, considering the latter owns much of the infrastructure in question.
Businesses, however, oppose such a move and worked with privacy groups in 2012 to defeat just such a measure.
In the near future, President Barack Obama is likely to issue an executive order that will reward companies who work openly with the government – but Napolitano insists it won’t be enough. Hard laws must be in place.
“The clarion call is here and we need to be dealing with this very urgently,” she said. “Attacks are coming all the time. They are coming from different sources, they take different forms. But they are increasing in seriousness and sophistication.”