cybersecurity

White House to issue cybersecurity order Wednesday

by Jennifer Martinez, The Hill  |  published on February 12, 2013

The White House is poised to release an executive order aimed at thwarting cyberattacks against critical infrastructure on Wednesday, two people familiar with the matter told The Hill.

The highly anticipated directive from President Obama is expected to be released at a briefing Wednesday morning at the U.S. Department of Commerce, where senior administration officials will provide an update about cybersecurity policy.

The executive order would establish a voluntary program in which companies operating critical infrastructure would elect to meet cybersecurity best practices and standards crafted, in part, by the government.

Observers are expecting the president to briefly mention the need for the country to improve its defenses against cyberattacks during his State of the Union address on Tuesday.

White House press secretary Jay Carney declined Monday to say whether the president would discuss cybersecurity during his Tuesday address to Congress, saying the president believes that it’s “a very important issue.”

“It represents a huge challenge for our country. He has called on Congress to take action. Unfortunately, Congress has thus far refused legislatively,” Carney said at a press briefing with reporters. “But I don’t have any previews to provide.”

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