November 27, 2020

White House Cybersecurity Plan: On Life Support?

The White House’s “National Strategy to Secure Cyberspace,” initially slated for release on Wednesday, has been delayed, the Washington Post reports. This comes on the heels of the removal of some of the report’s proposals, and a leak of the draft proposal.

It looks like the report will end up as an eloquent expression of good intentions, coupled with few if any effective action items. Once the decision was made that the report would be changed to make all of the stakeholders happy, this result became inevitable. There are just too many agendas in play to reach any kind of consensus on this issue.

This is not necessarily a bad thing. The government can improve the security of its own systems, but there is little it can do to make ordinary non-government computing more secure. Our main problem is that the market doesn’t reward vendors for investing the large amounts of time and money necessary to build highly secure systems. There isn’t much the government can do to change that.