As the most connected country on Earth, the United States is also the largest target for both cyber attacks and cyber crimes. Accordingly, cybersecurity is of the utmost importance to all of us.
Many of us have experienced cybercrime through using credit cards. Just as department stores consider shrinkage through shoplifting part of the “cost of doing business,” financial institutions have considered credit card fraud part of the normal cost of business.
The effect on consumers is largely harmless — legislation limits liability for stolen cards to $50 if the loss is promptly reported, and there is no liability for fraud due to stolen information. This situation — along with the fact that computer networks were designed for exchanging scientific information between users assumed to be trustworthy — has led to the development of today’s insecure computer networks, which has enabled cybercrime to grow with no great public outrage.
Cybersecurity has only recently entered public consciousness, as cyberattacks and identity theft have become common. We hear of new situations daily. Most recently, we’ve heard about people who find their computer’s information being held for ransom, as well as the attempts of other nations to influence the outcome of elections using technology.
Our national security and our ongoing economic competitiveness depend on our development into a global cyberpower. That is, we must ensure that we control the development of this cyberrevolution on our own terms, without the possibility of interference from others.
In order to prosper economically — and at the same time meet the growing challenges we face — we must develop…
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