Federal cyber roles debated

Wednesday - 8/4/2010, 8:30am EDT

Cybersecurity Update - Tune in weekdays at 30 minutes past the hour for the latest cybersecurity news on the Federal Drive with Tom Temin and Amy Morris (6-10 a.m.) and the DorobekINSIDER with Chris Dorobek (3-7 p.m.). Listen live at FederalNewsRadio.com or on the radio at 1500 and 820 AM in the Washington, D.C. metro area. The Cybersecurity Update is brought to you by TripWire.

  • Should the DoD be more involved in securing government cyberspace? The Quadrennial Defense Review Independent Panel has jump started a debate over cybersecurity in civilian agencies. Currently, DHS is tasked with maintaining and protecting cyberspace in civilian agencies, but the panel recommends that the Defense department be more involved. Citing technology already in place at U.S. Cyber Command and the National Security Agency, the panel said that DoD should be given more authority to support DHS's efforts to secure dot gov and dot com domains. The panel also suggested that DoD reach out to industry talent in Silicon Valley to support its cyber mission, NextGov reports.

  • It's another way that cyber baddies would like to make life miserable for people - and this way involves more than just spam or spyware. U.S. officials say computer hackers have been targeting power plants and other critical infrastructure around the world - in an effort to seize control of such key facilities. The experts say they have run across computer code specifically designed to take over the systems that control the inner workings of industrial plants. As much as 85 percent of the nation's critical infrastructure - like nuclear and electric power plants as well as transportation systems - is owned and run by private firms. The Department of Homeland Security is creating new specialized teams to confront the threat.

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