National security has been at the forefront of Donald Trump’s agenda this week. First he fired FBI Director James Comey who was conducting an investigation into whether Trump’s campaign had links to accusations against Russia for meddling in the election. Then, in his first move to improve the nation’s cyber security strategies, he signed a long-awaited cyber security executive order that focuses on combating the digital vulnerabilities that US businesses and government face. It’s clear that this week has been dominated by moves to tackle escalating cyber security issues. Here’s a lowdown of Trump’s bold cyber-focused moves this week…
An Attempt to Hide a Cyber Scandal
Under the guise of finding ‘new leadership for the FBI that restores public trust and confidence in its vital law enforcement missions’, Donald Trump fired the leader of the FBI in what is only the second firing in U.S history. Although Trump is stating that the sacking is in the national interest, Democrats and Republicans alike have suspicions that Trump is doing this to interfere with Comey’s investigation into his links with Russia. Trump and his allies have cited Comey’s handling of the botched investigation into Hillary Clinton’s emails as the reason behind the firing, but do we really buy that Trump cares about how the FBI treated Hillary Clinton? It seems more probable that the Russian investigation was getting too close to home for Trump, and he had to stop it. Even almost half a year into his presidency, Trump’s relations with Russian cyber hackers is still under intense scrutiny.
A New, Stronger Cyber Security Strategy
Yesterday, Donald Trump signed an executive order that increases the White House’s role in cyber security. The new order means there’s now a sense of clarity regarding cyber security infrastructure within the government and roles have been clearly assigned to individuals working in this department. The order declares that the heads of executive departments and agencies will be held accountable for managing the cyber security risk to their enterprises. It’s now down to the executive branch to ‘build and maintain a modern, secure and more resilient executive branch IT architecture’ as the old branch has been deemed as antiquated and inadequate to deal with modern cyber threats. The order also focuses on risk management, stating that: “Risk management decisions made by agency heads can affect the risk to the executive branch as a whole.. effective risk management requires agency heads to lead integrated teams of senior executives with expertise in IT, security, budgeting, acquisition, law, privacy and human resources.”
By mandating one set of standards and making the heads of each government agency responsible for security, Trump has significantly boosted U.S cyber security policy. In spite of all his flaws, it’s clear that he’s serious about his cyber security game. How strong is your cyber security strategy? Call one of our advisors and we’ll send someone in to audit your company.