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Obama's cybersecurity recommendations a small step forward, but need teeth and political willpower

Maria Korolov | Dec. 8, 2016
Last week's report recommended training 100,000 new cybersecurity professionals and increasing federal R&D funding for cybersecurity by $4 billion over the next decade

"When you look at the value of the assets that the cybersecurity will be protecting, it's not that big," she said. "It should be higher. That $4 billion will not go as far as we think it would."

Plus, the timing of the report is problematic.

"The fact that we have started this strategy while we're transitioning from one president to another president might affect priorities," she said. "But, then again, since the commission was established, we've seen even more breaches in federal agencies, so I think there will be more focus overall by the government."

"With a new presidency, it is always interesting to wait and see which programs become a priority for the government and presidency," said Paul Calatayud, CTO at Overland Park, Kansas-based FireMon.

But cybersecurity affects trust in technology, innovation and commerce, he said, and has a big potential impact on the economy.

"In order to preserve and maintain this trust, our government will need to continue to play an active role," he said. "Cyber defense is not an isolated issue and cannot be seen as a partisan agenda.”

"It's not a very political issue," said Jamison Utter, VP and lead cybersecurity trainer at Portland, Ore.-based Senrio, an IoT cybersecurity firm. "I believe that the issue is pretty strong and apparent, and doesn't have much to do with party or politics. This is a societal problem, not a Democrat or Republican or whatever issue."


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