Security & Fraud

Obama Pushes For $19B Cybersecurity Budget

The Obama administration is taking cybercrime seriously, having laid out a plan that would bring $19 billion to the fight against it.

Yesterday (Feb. 9), the White House released its Cybersecurity National Action Plan (CNAP), with the $19 billion being requested for the initiatives — which would take effect in 2017 — marking a 35 percent increase over the current fiscal year.

“The president believes that meeting these new threats is necessary and within our grasp,” reads the statement from the White House. “But it requires a bold reassessment of the way we approach security in the digital age. If we’re going to be connected, we need to be protected. We need to join together — government, businesses and individuals — to sustain the spirit that has always made America great.”

Highlights of CNAP that the White House shared in its fact sheet include the establishment of the Commission on Enhancing National Cybersecurity, which the statement says will be comprised of “top strategic, business and technical thinkers from outside of government” and will, in part, “make recommendations on actions that can be taken over the next decade to strengthen cybersecurity in both the public and private sectors while protecting privacy.”

The White House also proposes a $3.1 billion Information Technology Modernization Fund that will “enable the retirement, replacement and modernization of legacy IT,” as well as the formation of a new position — the Federal Chief Information Security Officer — to head up that portion of the initiatives.

CNAP also includes a new National Cybersecurity Awareness Campaign, whose purpose will be to educate consumers about how to protect themselves against digital crime. Behind that campaign is the National Cyber Security Alliance, a group the statement adds “will partner with leading technology firms, like Google, Facebook, Dropbox and Microsoft, to make it easier for millions of users to secure their online accounts, and financial services companies, such as MasterCard, Visa, PayPal and Venmo that are making transactions more secure.”

The Verge shares that President Obama has sent CNAP — as part of the entire $4 trillion national budget proposal — to Congress for review.

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