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Cybersecurity Tops Agenda At White House Meeting With Big Tech

 |  August 25, 2021

The White House asked Big Tech, the finance industry and key infrastructure companies to do more to tackle the growing cybersecurity threat to the US economy in a meeting with President Joe Biden and members of his cabinet on Wednesday, August 25.

“The federal government can’t meet this challenge alone,” Biden told the masked executives, all seated at tables in the East Room. “We’ve got a lot of work to do.” reported Reuters.

Cybersecurity has risen to the top of the agenda for the Biden administration after a series of high-profile attacks on network management company SolarWinds, the Colonial Pipeline company, meat processing company JBS, and software firm Kaseya. The attacks hurt the United States far beyond just the companies hacked, affecting fuel and food supplies.

Biden touched on ransomware attacks and said he had pressed Russian President Vladimir Putin to hold people responsible for attacks when he met him earlier this year.

The guest list included Amazon CEO Andy Jassy, Apple CEO Tim Cook, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, Google’s parent Alphabet CEO Sundar Pichai and IBM Chief Executive Arvind Krishna.

Microsoft announced it will invest US$20 billion over five years, a four-fold increase from current rates, to speed up its cyber security work. Microsoft also stated it will make available US$150 million in technical services to help federal, state, and local governments to help keep their security systems up to date.

The meeting comes as Congress weighs legislation concerning data breach notification laws and cybersecurity insurance industry regulation, historically viewed as two of the most consequential policy areas within the field.

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