Cyber Round Up: U.S. Strengthens Cyber Defenses while recruiting 6,000 cyber-warriors, RSA:CyberSecurity industry is ‘fundamentally broken’, Who’s Really in Charge in case of a US Cyberattack?

  • U.S. Grapples with Controlling ‘cyber-munitions’ while Recruiting 6,000 new Cyber-Warriors (TechRepublic): According to TechRepublic, the development of code-based tools, known as cyber-munitions, which can wreak havoc in the world of cyber, is a burgeoning, worldwide industry.  The article states that this is troubling since these cyber-munitions were originally developed by or controlled by the U.S. government, however now both private, as well as state actors can develop and gain access to these tools.  One of the most widely known cyber-munition was the Stuxnet worm that was discovered in 2010 and was reportedly used to target the Iranian centrifuges to thwart the Iranian nuclear effort.

Meanwhile, TechRepublic reports that along with the attempts to control cyber-munitions, the U.S. Cyber Command recently issued a request for proposals for private contractors to fill a nearly $500 million contract to help the government retain over 6,000 Cyber-Warriors.  The full article may be found here.

  • RSA: Cybersecurity industry is “fundamentally broken” (SC Magazine):  The former Director of Cybersecurity at DHS and current President of RSA claims that information security (InfoSec) is “fundamentally broken”, according to SC Magazine. This report indicates that RSA President, Amit Yoran claims that current cybersecurity threats emanate primarily from professional, aggressive actors who launch successful attacks in spite of next-gen firewalls and advanced InfoSec software.  The article highlights four points raised by Yoran to combat this growing issue:
  1. Advanced protections offer a false sense of security: a determined adversary will discover and exploit vulnerabilities to breach your system(s);
  2. A complete end-to-end vulnerability awareness must be created which ranges from the network to endpoints and into the cloud as well;
  3. Identity and Authentication are critically important. The most important user accounts are the ones you should trust least, since they are more likely to be attacked;
  4. situational awareness: understand what your critical data is, where it is stored, how it is accessed and then — protect it

The full text of the article is here.

  • Who’s Really in Charge if a Massive Cyberattack strikes the U.S.? (Nextgov):  According to an article in Nextgov, the current command and control structure within the U.S. means that in the event of a large-scale cyberattack it is unclear whether DHS or the DoD would be in charge.  The report asserts that currently the only thing defined is the structure through which various entities would be expected to have a discussion about who is in charge; however there is no actual concrete designation of exactly who would be in charge.  According to the report some of the unresolved, outstanding issues surround using the Armed Forces to execute laws which would violate the posse comitatus act.  This poses some difficulties with respect to the prospect of leveraging DoD resources in the event of a cyberattack.  The full text of the article can be found here.
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  1. […] Cyber Command $460 million Cyber Project In a follow-up to a recent round-up; according to NextGov, an upcoming $460 million project at U.S. Cyber Command will outsource a […]

Authors

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Professor William Snyder

Professor William C. Snyderis a member of the faculty of the Institute for National Security and Counter-terrorism at Syracuse University after fifteen years with the United States Department of Justice.

Ryan D. White

Ryan D. WhiteRyan is currently a third year law student at Syracuse University College of Law, and is also pursuing a Master of Public Administration degree from Syracuse’s Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs. Ryan spent time with Homeland Security Investigations while pursuing his undergraduate degree at Wesleyan University, and spent his first summer of law school as clerk for the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the Western District of New York. He is a member of Syracuse Law Review, the Journal on Terrorism and Security Analysis, and participates in the Veteran’s Legal Clinic. Full biography

Shelby E. Mann

Ryan D. WhiteShelby is a second year law student at the Syracuse University College of Law. During her final year at the University of Missouri, she served as a full-time news producer for ABC 17 News. Shelby spent her first summer of law school at the Shelby County District Attorney General's Office in Memphis, Tenn., in the Public Corruption and Economic Crimes Unit. She is a member of Syracuse Law Review, the Journal on Terrorism and Security Analysis, and the senior editor for the Syrian Accountability Project. Full biography

Christopher w. FolkChristopher W. Folk

is a 2017 graduate of SU College of Law. A non-traditional student, Christopher returned to academia after spending nearly twenty years in the high tech industry. Christopher served in the Marine Corps, graduated from Cornell University with a B.S. In Applied Economics and Business Management, attended Northeastern University’s High-Tech MBA Program and received a M.S. In Computer Information Systems. Christopher previously worked in Software Engineering. Christopher is currently serving his second term as Town Justice for the Town of Waterloo. Christopher externed with a Cybersecurity firm in the Washington, D.C. area between his first and second year at SU College of Law. Full biography

Anna Maria Castillo

is 2016 graduate of Syracuse College of Law. She also holds a Master of Arts in International Relations from Syracuse University's Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs. She has interned at a London-based think-tank that specializes in transnational terrorism and global security and at the legal department of a defense contractor. She served as an executive editor in the Syracuse Law Review. Full biography

Jennifer A. CamilloJennifer A. Camillo

is a 2015 graduate of Syracuse College of Law and is a prosecutor. She has served as a law clerk in the United States Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of New York and the Cayuga County District Attorney’s Office and as an extern in the Oneida County District Attorney’s Office. She was a member of the Syracuse National Trial Team and was awarded the Tiffany Cup by the New York Bar Association for her trial advocacy achievements.

Tara J. PistoreseTara J. Pistorese

holds Juris Doctor and Masters of Public Administration degrees from Syracuse University's Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs and its College of Law. She wrote for this blog when a student. She is now a member of the U.S. Army Judge Advocate General's Corps.

Benjamin Zaiser

is both a scholar and a Federal Agent of the Federal Criminal Police Office of Germany. (Opinions expressed here are his own and not any part of official duty.) Full biography

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