Open letter to Barack Obama: Securing critical infrastructure - the first 90 days

Hope, change and the wise use of technolgy - one security expert's call to the White House.

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Dear President Obama,
As America enters a new era that has already begun to reflect the leadership, the change, and the hope of your presidential campaign, it is imperative that we take this opportunity to implement a vision for how the United States and the world will securely and efficiently maximise the value of technology for the betterment of all.

We are experiencing unprecedented advances in technological innovation, but we are also losing ground in realizing gains from these advances due to increasing dangers posed by a rapidly evolving information security threat environment.

From organised criminal elements who prey on our inability to secure our information technology assets, to state-sponsored espionage that undermines the foundation of our strong nation, we can no longer sit idly by and hope things will change for the better or occur without action on our parts. We must demand freedom in our digital age and eliminate the fear that challenges our prosperity.

We look to you as a leader who not only understands but embraces technology to help us realise this dream of a prosperous, technologically advanced society. To that end I present thoughts intended to maximise the social benefits of advancing information technologies while increasing their safety born of decades of service to the security industry, to our society and to our country.

Communication and collaboration between the public and private sectors

To date, there have been many attempts to bridge the divide between the public and private sector in the information security space, but now more than ever it is critical that we work together to make these efforts successful.

Bringing security to cyberspace requires more than the efforts of elite organisations that operate in secrecy and behind the scenes, although clandestine operations against malevolent forces are important. National information security initiatives must emphasise cross-functional, cross-organisational, and cross-domain information sharing among our country’s best and brightest regardless of political affiliation or employer.

In the first 90 days in office your administration should seek to consolidate the efforts of Federal government organisations with information security responsibilities—civilian and military, clandestine and fully public—into a single organisation that is funded under a common objective to secure public and private critical infrastructure and reports directly to the administrations Chief Technology Office.

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