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Cybersecurity legislation is still needed according to lawmakers

Cybersecurity today is a huge issue not only for businesses and individuals in the United States, but also for the federal government. Defense News reports that the White House is working with the Department of Homeland Security, the FBI, and others to draft an executive order to counter cybersecurity threats. 
 
The cybersecurity effort from the White House and other governmental agencies comes after the U.S. Senate failed in an attempt to pass its own cybersecurity legislation. The legislation from the U.S. Senate would have set security standards for companies who operate critical systems for the United States infrastructure such as the electrical grid, water treatment facilities, and transportation systems.
 
An executive order on cybersecurity will not replace the need for cybersecurity legislation according to DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano. She says that the Executive Order will be less effective than legislation because it can't do several important things. An Executive Order is unable to do things such as provide liability protections for certain companies who are victims of cyber attacks, increase criminal penalties for cyber criminals, and provide the DHS with funding to hire and pay competitive salaries to cybersecurity workers.
 
Napolitano said, "We still need cyber legislation."
 
Some senators have little hope that cybersecurity legislation would be passed during the lame-duck session following the November elections.
 
Senator Joseph Lieberman said, "I would not count on it. The sooner the executive branch is ready to try to fill whatever gaps it can, the safer the country will be." 

Source: Defense News



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oh God not again!
By Pneumothorax on 9/20/2012 9:18:49 AM , Rating: 5
Executive orders and Executive 'privilege' need to be heavily neutered by a Constitutional Amendment!




RE: oh God not again!
By FITCamaro on 9/20/2012 11:12:53 AM , Rating: 3
They already are. The President has the authority issue orders on things the President has authority over through the executive branch.

It does NOT allow them to issue executive orders changing laws or essentially creating new ones.

But this President doesn't care about that. His attitude is "If they don't do it, I will." He has stated this. That we can't wait. Wrong. We can wait. That's why we have 3 branches of government. Not one.


RE: oh God not again!
By FITCamaro on 9/20/2012 11:14:38 AM , Rating: 1
We simply lack Congressman with the political courage to use the constitutional check (impeachment) that is theirs to wield.


RE: oh God not again!
By NellyFromMA on 9/20/2012 12:42:13 PM , Rating: 2
What's the impeachable offense?


RE: oh God not again!
By Schrag4 on 9/20/2012 1:44:52 PM , Rating: 2
We might actually know, if Obama hadn't used executive privilege to protect Eric Holder over Fast and Furious. I have to believe that he didn't really do it to protect Holder. There must have been something pretty damning of the White House in those documents for Obama to have injected himself like that.


RE: oh God not again!
By Ish718 on 9/20/2012 3:12:15 PM , Rating: 2
That whole situation goes much deeper than Obama or Holder...


RE: oh God not again!
By semiconshawn on 9/21/2012 1:38:57 AM , Rating: 2
Really? Deeper than the president of the USA? Who is guilty God? Lets have some facts Ish.


RE: oh God not again!
By anactoraaron on 9/20/2012 11:19:06 AM , Rating: 2
What is a shame is that executive orders are always used for this kind of nonsense.

Would be great if an executive order could revive the bipartisan bill that died yesterday in the senate (killed by republicans and I don't know why) that would have helped returning soldiers get jobs...


RE: oh God not again!
By aharris02 on 9/20/2012 2:09:57 PM , Rating: 2
Actually, we don't have time to wait for Congress to hammer out a cybersecurity protection plan for the Federal Government. Protection for that infrastructure is absolutely needed today. Not tomorrow, not next month, and not next year.

I wouldn't trust this Congress to pull together a comprehensive plan within the next twelve months, much less approve it, and the chances are even slimmer that it will be effective when you consider the general level of technical understanding Congress has demonstrated to date.


RE: oh God not again!
By Ammohunt on 9/20/2012 12:01:03 PM , Rating: 2
To play devils advocate executive order is there to protect the republic when threats materialize faster than congress can react. Considering we have the most inept congress in United States history i don't see any other way to get these types of protections or efforts in place in a time frame that matters.


We don't need cyber legislation.
By GatoRat on 9/20/2012 11:56:06 AM , Rating: 2
It isn't the federal government's responsibility to provide or enforce internet security for the private sector. The conceit that if the government makes a law, everything will become perfect is beyond absurd. In reality, it will burden companies with all sorts of regulations which will eventually become counter-productive.

Moreover, I can all but guarantee that the law will give the federal government a back door through ALL security and something akin to no-knock warrant access. In the end, this will result in less security, not more.




By aharris02 on 9/20/2012 2:24:52 PM , Rating: 2
Sure, but national interests are the federal government's responsibility, and, so happens, many areas of the private sector (energy, financial, manufacturing, defense) are national interests.


i wish executive order powers were expanded...
By deadrats on 9/21/2012 1:43:21 PM , Rating: 2
...on both the state and federal levels. congress, and state legislators, usually are filled with people that are more interested in making a life long career out of their elected positions that actually doing something good/beneficial for their state or country.

furthermore, it's extremely hard to get hundreds of people to agree on any one piece of legislation and more often than not objections are based primarily on party ideologies. for a bill to make it through 100 senators and 435 voting congressman without being heavily modified, altered, watered down, riders attached to it or flat out voted down are slim to none.

it would be much better if we just had a senate (no house of representatives), the supreme court and a president and if the path for a law could be either a) be introduced in the senate, sent to the president to be signed and then have the supreme court give a final say if it passes constitutional muster or b) have the president introduce a law, have the senate vote on it and if they approved have it go to the supreme court for a final constitutional ok.

this way we could be sure a law would be constitutional prior it it being enacted, the president and/or an efficient congress could get their desired goals realized and the supreme court would have an active role in passing legislation rather than waiting until someone challenges an already existing law to rule on it.




By JPForums on 9/24/2012 12:22:31 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
i wish executive order powers were expanded...
I don't. I may work well for a time given a leader both wise and benevolent, but leaders with both of those traits aren't always elected (or event available). Think of the worst president/governor you know of. Now imagine he got to dictate, via executive order, anything he wanted. Are you seeing the merits of checks and balances yet?
quote:
furthermore, it's extremely hard to get hundreds of people to agree on any one piece of legislation and more often than not objections are based primarily on party ideologies.
This is a good thing. With hundreds of differing opinions, the things they agree on are much more likely to be in the best interests of everyone than if it were just one or a few people making the decisions.
quote:
for a bill to make it through 100 senators and 435 voting congressman without being heavily modified, altered, watered down, riders attached to it or flat out voted down are slim to none.
If they are doing their jobs, it is getting modified, altered, ect. because the bill in its current form does not meet the needs of the people being represented. Unfortunately, our representatives have gotten comfortable with a system of passing bills that they know are bad in exchange for special treatment, unrelated addons, the so called "riders" you mention. However, the solution isn't to get rid of the house. It would be better to require each bill to begin with a very specific clause of intent. Anything not related to the intent of the law to be passed, should not be allowed in the bill. After the bill is pass, the law should not be applicable to anything not related to the intent of the law (prevents abuse). To prevent overly general clauses, when a law to be passed has a clause of intent overlapping with a law already passed, it requires a modification of the original (conflicting) law to narrow the intent so that it doesn't conflict. Such a modification would naturally require a higher vote count (3/5, 2/3) than simple majority. As an aside, this would also push state specific issues back to the states where they should be handled, as it would be increasingly less likely that a state specific issue would gain traction at the national level without "riders". The same can be said for state - local situation.
quote:
congress, and state legislators, usually are filled with people that are more interested in making a life long career out of their elected positions that actually doing something good/beneficial for their state or country.
I'd rather leave the decision in the hands of hundreds of people trying to make a life long career of their positions. called to account every two years, than one person with the same objective. Without checks and balances, one person looking to make a life long career of it can simply suspend elections until he's ready to retire. Again, imagine your least favorite president/governor in this position.
quote:
it would be much better if we just had a senate (no house of representatives)...
Ever since the passing of the 17th amendment, I almost agree with you (though it would be the senate that disappeared). In the original setup, the house, elected directly by the populace, was to represent the commoners or working class. The senate was elected via state legislature. The goal was to represent the interests of the rich or, more appropriately, the employers. Any legislation with any hope of passing would need to appeal to both. This effectively prevented both mob rule and oppression by the rich. Since the passing of the 17th amendment, the senate isn't effectively any different than the house (just less accountability due to longer terms). I say I almost agree because I'm not entirely convinced that we won't eventually find it was a mistake to pass the 17th amendment, but that is a very lengthy discussion for an other time.
quote:
if they approved have it go to the supreme court for a final constitutional ok.
I can really see the benefit of having a portion of the judicial branch dedicated to removing unconstitutional law before it effects the populace. I'm not sure whether the supreme court is the place to do it (they have plenty of other cases to see and not a lot of man power), but I generally agree with the sentiment. As this would be more of a federal legislative check court, it may be better to appoint at the state level as to remove a connection between those trying to pass the law and those checking it for constitutionality. I'm going to put some thought into this one, thanks.


hmmm
By NellyFromMA on 9/20/2012 12:41:40 PM , Rating: 3
Wouldn't it be great if people who actually understood technology actually were able to contribute towards sensible resolutions?




By Beenthere on 9/20/2012 12:22:41 PM , Rating: 2
Most rational people now understand that the Internet is a means used to attack people as well as businesses and that additional measures are required to clarify laws to punish those who hack, pirate and attack society.

They need to get this legislation ironed out and passed with significant increases in punishment and repayment for all losses and costs associated with prosecution and incarceration.




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