Dark Reading is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Risk

4/21/2009
11:15 PM
George V. Hulme
George V. Hulme
Commentary
50%
50%

NSA Does Not Want To Lead U.S. Cybersecurity Efforts. This Is Good News

Lt. Gen. Keith Alexander told a packed security audience here at the RSA Conference 2009 that the National Security Agency wants to help support the nation's critical IT security infrastructure efforts as part of a "team" effort. And that the NSA isn't interesting in the job of running the security of the critical IT security infrastructure.

Lt. Gen. Keith Alexander told a packed security audience here at the RSA Conference 2009 that the National Security Agency wants to help support the nation's critical IT security infrastructure efforts as part of a "team" effort. And that the NSA isn't interesting in the job of running the security of the critical IT security infrastructure.This is good news. For the past several months, we've watched the U.S. Air Force, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, and (what many believed to be) the NSA lobbying to be the ultimate protector of the critical IT infrastructure.

But you know what? IT security is too big of a job to be "led" by any one agency. None of these agencies know how to properly secure banks or the financial system. Certainly not better than private industry does. They'd focus too much on locking people out, not on enabling secure business operations. They also don't know much about securing utilities, chemical manufacturers, small government agencies, health care organizations. No, they don't. The job of securing these industries should be handled by each respective constituency.

This is not to say that all of these agencies don't have a role in maintaining the nation's IT security. They certainly do. They can provide intelligence and support. And no one, other than the armed services, should have the authority to retaliate against a nation state that launches a denial-of-service or some other form of attack against our infrastructure.

What the nation needs is each part of our infrastructure - from banking to manufacturing to telecommunications - to protect is part of the infrastructure, and report their efforts to Congress. Perhaps the government could "Red Team" these organizations, to see just how well they are protecting their networks. And provide guideance on how to adjust accordingly.

And there needs to be open lines of communication, for certain, with the government and private industry. But any effort by DHS or the Air Force, or any other department, to oversee and enforce the security of each segment will do little more than create a humongous bureaucracy that will fail under it's own weight.

At today's Cryptographers Panel, also at the RSA Conference, which was held right before Lt. Gen. Keith Alexander gave his keynote, Bruce Schneier, chief security technology officer at BT Counterpane proffered his opinion on the subject. He said that national IT security efforts should not be led by any single agency, and that a more federated approach will be more successful.

I couldn't agree more.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Threaded  |  Newest First  |  Oldest First
Edge-DRsplash-10-edge-articles
7 Old IT Things Every New InfoSec Pro Should Know
Joan Goodchild, Staff Editor,  4/20/2021
News
Cloud-Native Businesses Struggle With Security
Robert Lemos, Contributing Writer,  5/6/2021
Commentary
Defending Against Web Scraping Attacks
Rob Simon, Principal Security Consultant at TrustedSec,  5/7/2021
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon Contest
Write a Caption, Win an Amazon Gift Card! Click Here
Latest Comment: Take me to your BISO 
Current Issue
2021 Top Enterprise IT Trends
We've identified the key trends that are poised to impact the IT landscape in 2021. Find out why they're important and how they will affect you today!
Flash Poll
How Enterprises are Developing Secure Applications
How Enterprises are Developing Secure Applications
Recent breaches of third-party apps are driving many organizations to think harder about the security of their off-the-shelf software as they continue to move left in secure software development practices.
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2020-23369
PUBLISHED: 2021-05-10
In YzmCMS 5.6, XSS was discovered in member/member_content/init.html via the SRC attribute of an IFRAME element because of using UEditor 1.4.3.3.
CVE-2020-23370
PUBLISHED: 2021-05-10
In YzmCMS 5.6, stored XSS exists via the common/static/plugin/ueditor/1.4.3.3/php/controller.php action parameter, which allows remote attackers to upload a swf file. The swf file can be injected with arbitrary web script or HTML.
CVE-2020-23371
PUBLISHED: 2021-05-10
Cross-site scripting (XSS) vulnerability in static/admin/js/kindeditor/plugins/multiimage/images/swfupload.swf in noneCms v1.3.0 allows remote attackers to inject arbitrary web script or HTML via the movieName parameter.
CVE-2020-23373
PUBLISHED: 2021-05-10
Cross-site scripting (XSS) vulnerability in admin/nav/add.html in noneCMS v1.3.0 allows remote authenticated attackers to inject arbitrary web script or HTML via the name parameter.
CVE-2020-23374
PUBLISHED: 2021-05-10
Cross-site scripting (XSS) vulnerability in admin/article/add.html in noneCMS v1.3.0 allows remote authenticated attackers to inject arbitrary web script or HTML via the name parameter.