The Homeland Security Department plans on opening a satellite office in Silicon Valley. The firm announced the news on Tuesday during San Francisco’s RSA Conference.
Homeland Security wants more involvement in cyber-security
Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson added that the department is in the last stages of opening the California office. He explained that they want to strengthen their critical relationships in Silicon Valley. It is important for government agencies and companies to work together. Johnson also said they hope to convince some of Silicon Valley’s brightest to join Washington.
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The National Cyber-security and Communications Integration (also known as NCCIC) received over 97,000 cyber-incident reports. These reports came from the government and other sectors last year. They also issued 12,000 cyber-alerts. Johnson claims the ultimate goal for the NCCIC is to move to a higher level. Right now, the DHS is seeking a new director for NCCIC. He said he was personally participating to find an all-star in the cyber-security field.
Previous government involvement in fighting cyber-attacks
President Barack Obama aims to make the NCCIC the main portal for private sector businesses to pass cyber-threat indicators. The administration also offers support for legislation that will protect those who share cyber-threat indicators from civil or criminal liability. Last February, Obama signed an executive order to facilitate information sharing between companies and government.
Another more recent executive order authorizes the secretary of the Treasury to impose sanctions on individuals or businesses involved in cyber-criminal activities. Two years ago, a joint study conducted by the Center for Strategic and International Studies and McAfee estimated that between $70 billion and $140 billion has been spent to fight cyber-crimes.
Johnson added they could do more in the name of homeland security, but they should not do it at the cost of the nation. People still value privacy, diversity and freedom. They don’t want to feel afraid. He concludes that it’s these particular things that matter the most.