Former CIA/NSA Head: Cyber Security Threats "Horribly Over-Classified"
October 7, 2011 11:35 AM
comment(s) - last by
Former head of the National Security Agency and CIA and retired U.S. Air Force Gen. Michael Hayden
Ex-head of the National Security Agency and CIA and retired U.S. Air Force Gen. Michael Hayden said federal agencies need to open up to public and private industry to address cyber threats
climbs its way up the priority list after 2011's string of attacks against government and corporate systems, U.S. government agencies and companies struggle to find a happy medium between excessive secrecy and too much disclosure regarding the handling of such issues.
Going one way or the other can have severe repercussions. Excessive secrecy can stifle cyber defense, as too much focus could be placed on an issue that was already resolved elsewhere. If you keep it secret, someone who might know how to fix it cannot do so. Too much disclosure, on the other hand, gives hackers what they need to work around security systems.
So what's a company to do? According to former head of the National Security Agency and CIA and retired U.S. Air Force Gen. Michael Hayden, information regarding cyber attacks are "over-classified" and releasing only necessary information without being too descriptive could be helpful in creating an educated, open forum of
how to deal with these problems
"This may come as a surprise, given my background at the NSA and CIA and so on, but I think that this information is horribly over-classified," said Hayden. "The roots to American cyber power are in the American intelligence community, and we frankly are quite accustomed to working in a world that's classified. I'm afraid that that culture has bled over into how we treat all cyber questions."
U.S. President Barack Obama released a memo in January 2009 telling federal agencies to
work more closely with public and private industry
on important matters, allowing for greater government transparency. According to Army Col. Rivers Johnson, U.S. Cyber Command has been compliant with the president's demands.
"It's important to note that both NSA and USCYBERCOM continue to be committed to open government and transparency in accordance with the President's 21 January 2009 Memo," said Johnson. "We also have a responsibility to ensure classified and sensitive information is protected in accordance with applicable laws and policies."
"What's happened is, the accumulation of those individual, discrete, maybe correct decisions has created a consequence in which the overall effect is greater than the harm that would have been created by reviewing the individual decisions," said Hayden. "Collectively, what you've got is an uninformed public, and what you've got is a private sector that doesn't understand the precise nature of the threat they're up against."
This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled
RE: security through obscurity is not an answer
10/7/2011 3:35:30 PM
I think it's not the only answer but part of a collection of answers. Lack of adequate training and competence seem to be the biggest factors in most cases that are reported on (as the general alluded to).
Why it was just last week that was reported here about Oxford university's claim of Microsoft blacklisting them for no apparent reason only to find out that it was a direct result of a "mailing list misconfiguration" by Oxford's own people. Here's the link:
"I mean, if you wanna break down someone's door, why don't you start with AT&T, for God sakes? They make your amazing phone unusable as a phone!" -- Jon Stewart on Apple and the iPhone
DHS Conducts Cyber Security Simulations to Aid Private Industries
October 3, 2011, 9:36 AM
Companies "Pwned" in Hacking Contest, Cyber Security Skills Lacking
August 8, 2011, 5:37 PM
Global Cyber Security Push is Underway
July 6, 2011, 7:28 AM
FCC Orders Advertisers to Cut Out That Racket, Turn Down Commercials
August 29, 2014, 12:49 PM
Dropbox Bows to Competitive Pressure, Provides 1TB of Storage for $10/Month
August 27, 2014, 11:17 AM
Amazon Acquires Twitch for $970 Million
August 25, 2014, 4:37 PM
Facebook Adds Satire Tags to Its Auto-Generated "Related News" Posts
August 18, 2014, 10:43 AM
Comcast, TWC Pull Dinner Gift for FCC Commissioner... Sort Of
August 15, 2014, 1:10 PM
Comcast Accused of Wooing FCC Commissioner w/ $110K Dinner
August 13, 2014, 8:20 PM
Most Popular Articles
Numerous Leaks Detail 4.7" iPhone 6 Processor, RAM, Cellular and NFC Capabilities
August 29, 2014, 10:37 PM
Windows 9: "Upgrade Now" Button Coming for Enterprise Updates, ARM Preview in H1 2015
August 26, 2014, 8:00 PM
L.A. Unified School District’s Apple iPad Contract Canceled Following Heavy Criticism
August 26, 2014, 12:37 PM
Apple Builds Not-So-Secret Secret 3-Story Tower for iPhone 6/iWatch Unveil
August 28, 2014, 3:41 PM
Netflix Accuses Comcast of Ripping Off Customers, Files to Block Merger
August 26, 2014, 5:49 PM
Latest Blog Posts
Space Terrorism is a Looming Threat For the United States
Apr 23, 2014, 7:47 PM
Facebook Aims to Provide Internet to "Every Person in the World" with Drones, Satellites
Apr 1, 2014, 10:20 AM
Retail Mobile Sites Experience Outages in Light of Simplexity's Bankruptcy
Mar 14, 2014, 8:48 AM
Tesla vs. BMW: Who Has the Safer EV?
Feb 1, 2014, 2:56 PM
Justice Leaks Details of Next HTC One Two Flagship Phone
Dec 5, 2013, 4:04 PM
More Blog Posts
Copyright 2014 DailyTech LLC. -
Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information