Cyber roundup (4/10): In defense of CISPA, an analysis of information-sharing, cyber-threats hamstring U.S. cooperation with allies, a global cyber arms race, NSTIC’s pilot program moves forward, and the CFAA and your employer’s computer use policy

A busy night in cyber news . . .


On 4/10, Gerry Smith reported for the Huffington Post on how lawmakers are defending CISPA, a House cybersecurity proposal.  Notably, CISPA's authors–Rep. Mike Rogers and Dutch Ruppersberger–rebutted criticisms that CISPA doesn't protect consumers "from having their private data shared with the government."  Privacy groups argue that CISPA's information sharing provisions are an end run around the Fourth Amendment in that private companies can voluntarily share consumer data with the government.  Supporters of the bill argue that the government can't use the information "unless a significant cybersecurity or national security purpose exists."  Moreover, the information-sharing is completely voluntary.

Rep. Rogers was quick to note that CISPA has nothing in common with SOPA.  In fact, Rogers believes that "[t]he two bills 'are some completely different there is absolutely no comparison.'"


On 4/10, Paul Rosenzweig wrote a blog post for Lawfare on information-sharing across the various cybersecurity proposals.  His blog post was pretty in-depth, so I recommend you get the full experience here.


On 4/10, Carlo Munoz reported for The Hill on U.S. cooperation with its allies on cybersecurity.  According to the article, DOD is concerned about sharing sensitive U.S. cybersecurity information with some of our allies because U.S. adversaries could steal that information from our allies.  The article explained that the U.S. "is looking to grow [its] circle of international cyber allies" by engaging New Zealand, South Korea, Japan, Australia, and the United Kingdom, but these concerns have slowed collaboration.  The article did not mention which of our allies are a liability.


On 4/10, David Alexander reported for Reuters on comments coming out of a recent cybersecurity conference held at Georgetown University.  Notably, the article quoted Rear Admiral Samuel Cox, director of intel at CyberComm:

[W]e're looking at [] a gobal cyber arms race . . . It's not proceeding at a leisurely or even a linear fashion but in fact is accelerating. I wouldn't claim that it's following Moore's law, but the curve looks kind of similar.

According to Reuters, the consensus was that in order to achieve effective cybersecurity, government agencies must collaborate together in a team mentality.  Moreover, cyber arms control wouldn't really work, but agreed upon norms of behavior might have more success.


On 4/10, SecureIDNews reported that the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has notified 27 finalists of "grants that would pilot portions of the identity ecosystem for the [NSTIC]."  The article said that the finalists must decide whether to announce their status.  I'll keep my eyes open for any such announcements.  The finalists are likely made up of state and local government agencies, major companies, business start ups, and universities. 

From here, the finalists must submit full proposals to NIST by May 10th.  After that, NIST will choose 5 to 8 proposals that will receive a total of $10 million. 

A bit of background on NSTIC.


On 4/10, Joseph S. Nye, Jr., (a former U.S. assistant secretary of defense in the Clinton Administration) wrote for CNN on cyberwarfare.  The article gave a broad overview of the issues, and was mostly a pitch for Mr. Nye's upcoming book The Future of Power

Nye explained that in the The Future of Power, he argues that "the diffusion of power away from governments is one of this century’s great political shifts."  Cyberspace really demonstrates that.


On 4/10, Lisa Rein reported for the Washington Post on the Commerce Department's recent problems with a cyberattack.  According to the article, the Commerce Department's Economic Development Administration had been offline since January due to a cyberattack.   


On 4/10, David Kravets reported for Wired on a recent holding out of the 9th Circuit.  According to the article, the 9th Circuit held that employers cannot be prosecuted under the CFAA (the basic federal anti-hacking statute) for violating their employer's computer use policy. 

There is a split among the Circuits on this issue . . . the Supreme Court might have to take it up.

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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. She is the 2018-9 Editor in Chief of the Syracuse Law Review, as well as a member of the Journal on Terrorism and Security Analysis, and the senior editor for the Syrian Accountability Project. 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. 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

Anna Maria Castillois 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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