Obama issues executive order on security
President Obama is expected to announce a major executive order having to do with online security today. It's the culmination of a seven month investigation on governmental and military security practices and it stems from the Wikileaks breach last year. The directive seeks to establish a broader solution to security to replace the old and deeply flawed patchwork system now in place.
The directive enshrines many stopgap fixes that the Pentagon, the State Department and the Central Intelligence Agency made immediately after the initial WikiLeaks disclosures last November. Since then, for instance, the military has disabled 87 percent of its computers to prevent people from downloading classified data onto memory sticks, CDs or DVDs.
In addition to these immediate measures, Mr. Obama's order creates a task force led by the attorney general and the director of national intelligence to combat leaks from government workers, or what the White House calls an "insider threat."
The directive also establishes a special government committee that must submit a report to the president within 90 days, and then at least once a year after that, assessing federal successes and failures in protecting classified information on government computer networks.
The security community's response seems to be relief along with a sense of "what the hell took you so long?"