GOP, Dems outline cybersecurity policies – with big differences

Mirroring larger differences as to the role of government, the Democratic plank urges a strong centralized approach to the nation’s information infrastructure. The GOP platform, on the other hand, warns of the dangers of too much regulation and of government involvement in research.

The Dems are including initiatives like funding new research investment and implementing standards for security measures for critical infrastructure. "We will continue to take steps to deter, prevent, detect, and defend against cyber intrusions by investing in cutting-edge research and development, promoting cyber-security awareness and digital literacy, and strengthening private sector and international partnerships," reads the Democratic platform.

Conversely, the GOP platform cautions that such an approach would merely add to Federal spending and bureaucracy. Instead, private security vendors should be tapped and better communications lines opened up between security professionals and the government to keep on top of current threats.

President Obama has already established the first IT-oriented military command, the US Cyber Command, and the Administration is in the throes of a full federal review of existing government efforts to thwart cyber-terrorist threats and hacking groups both at home and abroad. "Going forward, the President will continue to take executive action to strengthen and update our cyber defenses," the Dems said.

Despite the strong role the Administration sees for federal involvement in cyber-measures, it has also been cautious when it comes to individual rights. It recently vetoed the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act, which it felt did not protect private citizens’ online rights adequately.

That’s a factor that any policy, be it Republican or Democrat, will need to take into account as privacy issues continue to make headlines. Recently, a hacking group called AntiSec accused the FBI of tracking iPhone users – a charge the FBI vehemently denied.

What’s Hot on Infosecurity Magazine?