Bay Area Council Blog: Cybersecurity Archive

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AS CYBERSECURITY MOVES THROUGH D.C., THE COUNCIL IS THERE

Once the purview of science fiction movies and a few obvious member companies in Silicon Valley, cybersecurity has now become a burning concern for companies in nearly every sector of the economy and each of our members.  Cyberspace has become the new venue for crime, intellectual property theft, and intrusions and attacks by foreign governments.  Cyber attacks or cyber breaches now cost many of our members tens or even hundreds of millions of dollars a year, and – true to form – the patchwork of responses by states and federal agencies have often exacerbated a tough situation.  Luckily, Congress and the Administration are trying to address the situation this year, and are generally headed on the right path.

The Bay Area Council has received a prominent role in the D.C. debate due to our representation of the region most affected by the pending laws and regulations and our multi-sector membership.  Indeed our Cybersecurity Committee, chaired by Visa’s Chief Enterprise Risk Officer, Ellen Richey, includes companies in banking, technology, security, healthcare, energy, food, retail and finance, among others.  As breaches, violations, and cyber attacks increase in frequency and sophistication, it has become essential to swiftly develop and implement strong solutions that can be driven by private industry, with the assistance of government and law enforcement where appropriate.

Last Friday, the Council delivered our formal response to the U.S. Commerce Department (a lead agency on the issue) on their proposals.  You can read our letter here.  We have conducted conference calls with the White House and are in regular touch with staff of the leading legislators and committees that will decide on the legislation.  Our staff are now making regular trips out to D.C. to advocate on the issue, and we are preparing for a major member trip for October when cybersecurity legislation negotiations should be at their peak. To get involved with our Cybersecurity Committee, contact Linda Galliher at lgalliher@bayareacouncil.org or 415-946-8708.

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CYBERSECURITY LEGISLATION MOVING. COUNCIL GEARS UP TO ACT

With strong signals coming from the House, the Senate and the White House, real cybersecurity legislation seems destined to become law in late fall of this year.  This issue affects nearly every one of our members and is a multi-sector top priority.  The Bay Area Council Cybersecurity Committee traveled to Washington D.C. to tee up influencing the language of this legislation, plus related issues earlier this year.

The Council’s Cybersecurity Committee will have a legislative policy meeting next week at Google at 3 p.m. to revise our “straw man” legislative language.  We believe now is our time to weigh-in with one of our key strengths as a united, multi-sector voice, and as we suspect from our interactions in DC and with policy makers, we believe our voice will be heard.  For more information about the Council’s Cybersecurity Committee, please contact Linda Galliher at lgalliher@bayareacouncil.org.

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BAC CYBER SECURITY COMMITTEE GOES TO WASHINGTON

In unseasonably summer-like heat and humidity, members of the Council’s “Cyber Squad” went covert at Secret Service HQ and stormed Capitol Hill this week to talk about protecting and advancing the e-economy of our nation.  Visa, Inc. Chief Enterprise Risk Officer and Cyber Security Committee Chair Ellen Richey led the delegation, which featured an end of visit private briefing and discussion with White House Cyber Security Czar Howard Schmidt.  The committee has been hard at work since its inception last year, advocating for a national standard for handling data breaches and creating a workforce development pipeline to increase the number of cyber security professionals in the United States.

Also this week, the Council announced the results of a nationwide poll that found 71% of Americans believe the safety of our information systems is a national security issue.  The poll of 1,000 registered voters, conducted by Pineda Consulting, also showed that 66% of Americans surveyed think new laws need to be written to keep personal information secure, with 61% also stating that government needs to make the protection of the nation’s information systems and networks a higher priority.

Read and watch more about the delegation and poll on Politico and KTVU.

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Press Release: 71% of Americans Believe Safety of our Information Systems is a National Security Issue, according to New Nationwide Poll on Cyber Security

The Bay Area Council today released a new poll on cyber security and internet use, and the results show that 71% of Americans believe the safety of our information systems is a national security issue.  The announcement was made as the Bay Area Council and a dozen of its member companies traveled to Washington D.C. this week for meetings at the White House, on Capitol Hill, and at the Commerce and Justice Departments on cyber security issues.

“Securing the personal and financial information of every American is a bipartisan issue,” said Jim Wunderman, President & CEO of the Bay Area Council.  “With more Americans using smart phones and tablet computers to check their account balances and make purchases, it is absolutely critical for the federal government to step up and do more to protect consumers and businesses.”

The poll of 1,000 registered voters, conducted by Pineda Consulting, also showed that 66% of Americans surveyed think new laws need to be written to keep personal information secure, with 61% also stating that government needs to make the protection of the nation’s information systems and networks a higher priority.  63% of those surveyed also believe the current penalties for crimes related to electronic transactions and e-commerce are not tough enough.

The data showed that a digital divide still exists in America, with 59% of those earning less than $40,000 reporting that they go online to access the internet and e-mail, compared with 84% of those earning between $40-80,000, and 96% of those earning greater than $80,000.  The poll also showed that 87% of Republicans reported going online to access the internet and e-mail, compared to 74% of Democrats and 77% of independents.

Separately, the poll also yielded interesting data about the Bay Area and its tech-savvy residents.  While only 16% of Americans nationwide reported receiving all or almost all calls on a cell phone, in the Bay Area, nearly 31% do.  78% of Americans reported going online to access the internet and check e-mail, but in the Bay Area, 91% reported doing so.  And, whereas 64% of Americans reported making purchases online, 78% of Bay Area residents surveyed reported doing so.

The poll was conducted between January 9-13, 2011.  Findings are subject to a sampling error of plus or minus 3 percentage points.

PDF Press Release

4.12.10

Council’s New Cyber Security Initiative Profiled by Business Week

By Jim Wunderman

Here is a recent interview I did for Business Week on the Council’s new Cyber Security initiative, which is already grabbing attention and being taken seriously by both policy leaders and the media. The Committee has begun to the address Cyber Security challenges facing business communities around the world and will be delivering its recommendations to the highest levels of policy makers in Washington D.C. and Sacramento.