At a glance.
- US Reserve components and their role in cybersecurity.
- Sino-Australian dispute over hacking allegations expected to prompt trade wars.
- Kentucky primary election seen as holding broader lessons for US 2020 voting.
More on the US House version of the National Defense Authorization Act: a look at Reserve components.
Among the cybersecurity provisions in the version of the FY21 National Defense Authorization Act that cleared the US House Armed Services Committee's Subcommittee on Intelligence and Emerging Threats and Capabilities this week is its requirement that the capabilities and authorities for use of the National Guard and other Reserve components in cyber incidents be assessed and evaluated. Fifth Domain notes that the mark-up requires "a review of statues and rules that pertain to the use of the National Guard for response and recovery from significant cyberattacks," which the bill defines as incidents that cause "demonstrable harm to the national security interests or economy of the United States and the public confidence, civil liberties, or public health and safety of the American people." Such an evaluation would extend to "non-traditional cyber support" Reserve components could deliver in an emergency.
The House subcommittee is particularly interested in the Guard's cyber mission assurance teams (CMAT): “Efforts such as the nascent CMAT program are important as the military services seek to better understand the operational risks, to include cybersecurity, of domestic installations. [T]he committee seeks greater fidelity on how the CMAT program will align to the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s regional construct, as well as work with the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency’s Critical Infrastructure Vulnerability Assessments program and the Protective Security Advisors program.”
Jonathan Dagle, of JD Solutions LLC, commented to us in email that, "The idea of leveraging full-time civilian cyberwarriors in part-time Guard positions was always attractive, but difficult in practice. A 'surge capability' is exactly what the Reserve Components are for. As long as the surging' Guard forces are from outside the affected area, this is good. You sure don't want to steal away net admins, CTOs, and security analysts from companies or local governments when there's a crisis."
Sino-Australian dispute over hacking allegations expected to prompt trade wars.
Channel News writes that Beijing is expected to retaliate for Canberra's strong hint that Chinese intelligence services are hacking targets in Australia on a large scale. The response is expected to take the form of tariffs and bans on certain Australian exports.
An election success story?
The Washington Post calls Kentucky's primary elections yesterday a success story worthy of emulation. The three lessons the Post draws for the security and successful conduct of US November elections from Kentucky’s experience this week are the importance of bipartisan cooperation, lots of up-front planning, and, perhaps most important from the point of view of security, no hasty introduction of novel and unfamiliar voting machines.