Jurisdiction issues complicate Defense cybersecurity role

February 15, 2011
Cyber Security, FedCyber Wire
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via Federal Times

Who’s in charge? That’s the question that emerged from Capitol Hill this week after a series of U.S. congressional hearings addressed the growing problem of cybersecurity.

Jurisdictional issues complicate the prevention of and response to cyber attacks inside and outside the government, intelligence and DoD, officials told Congress.

Which government agency responds to a cyber attack depends on where the attack originated, and this is an incredibly difficult thing to decipher in the cyber world, officials said.

“The problem from our perspective is we tend to think of it in particular categories — crime versus government involvement — and yet at the outset you do not know whether it may be a state actor, a group of individuals operating at the behest of a state actor, or a high school kid across the street,” FBI Director Robert Mueller said Thursday at a House Intelligence Committee hearing on worldwide threats.

Government agencies need to collaborate to determine where an attack originates so that they can determine the appropriate response, he said.

Full story here.