White House issues new Cybersecurity standards for both federal agencies and the software vendors that supply them
On May 12, 2021, President Biden signed the Executive Order on Improving the Nation’s Cybersecurity in efforts to protect the federal government’s networks. The Executive Order mandates new Federal Cybersecurity Standards for both federal agencies and the software vendors that supply them. The Executive Order is in response to the recent uptick in destructive cyberattacks that have occurred, affecting major U.S. operations. Most notable events include the cyber-attack on Solarwinds software company, a foreign cyberespionage campaign involving several federal agencies, and the recent shutdown of the Colonial Pipeline, causing gas shortages throughout the South-East.
Several months in the making, the Executive Order is a specific call to action for securing federal networks, improving information-sharing between the U.S. government and the private sector on cyber issues, and strengthening the Government’s ability to respond to incidents when they occur. Specifically, the Executive Order focuses on:
All of these facets are to be consolidated into a federal ‘playbook’ by CISA Director Brandon Wales, working along with the Secretary of Homeland Security, and in consultation with other high-level security officials. The playbook will outline all cybersecurity standards, a name intended users of the standards, and continually update progress regarding incident response results.