Friday, May 13, 2011

This is either wrong or a new threat to national security

If this is accurate, Congress and the Administration should begin an investigation immediately

This posting quotes from “SEC Is Pressed on Firms' Disclosures of Cyberattacks,” WALL STREET JOURNAL, 5/12/2011. The source being used is important because this is so unbelievable. Here’s the background.

“The lawmakers want the SEC, by issuing guidance, to make it more clear [clearer] when attacks or data breaches rise to the material level and become subject to disclosure, rather than the current approach of relying on a company's interpretation of when an incident is material.” That seems reasonable, but here’s the problem: “Specifically, the lawmakers want to ensure that firms disclose when they have suffered a ‘material network breach,’ which would be a cyberattack or data theft that would affect the average investor's decision to purchase or sell a stock.”

That’s ridiculous. What would affect investor’s decision to purchase or sell a stock can’t be known ahead of time; ridiculous, yes, but not unbelievable. It’s just the foolishness typical of Congress.

Here’s the national security threat. “A Commerce Committee review of recent SEC disclosures found companies that did report their information-security-risk exposure were inconsistent in the level of detail they provided, the lawmakers said. None provided information on steps that were being taken by the corporation to close potential security gaps, they added.”

We actually appear to have someone advocating that we force companies to disclose steps they take to thwart cyberattacts. Someone should investigate. Seems to me that if the staff of the Commerce Committee or the SEC has been infiltrated by the cyberterrorists, we need to know it.

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