Obama Uses Staged Cyber Attack To Sell Draconian Cybersecurity Bill
Wants federal control over companies’ cyber security systems
March 8, 2012
The Obama administration conducted a mock cyber attack on New York City yesterday in an effort to gain support in the Senate for a cybersecurity bill that internet providers argue will prevent them from making real security improvements.
“Senators from both parties gathered behind closed doors in the U.S. Capitol yesterday for the classified briefing attended by Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, FBI Director Robert Mueller and other administration officials.” reports Bloomberg.
White House spokesperson Caitlin Hayden said that the staged attack was “intended to provide all senators with an appreciation for new legislative authorities that would help the U.S. government prevent and more quickly respond to cyber attacks,”.
Hayden added that the Senate will receive a classified briefing on the “hypothetical cyber attack against United States critical infrastructure networks.”
The networks attacked during the mock event reportedly included U.S. banks, power grids and telecommunications systems.
Also reportedly present at the demonstration, were Gen. Keith Alexander, director of the Defense Department’s Cyber Command; Ashton Carter, deputy secretary of Defense; Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff; James Cole, deputy attorney general; Stephanie O’Sullivan, principal deputy director of national intelligence; Howard Schmidt, cybersecurity coordinator at the White House; Cam Kerry, general counsel of the Commerce Department; Thomas D’Agostino, under secretary for nuclear security and administrator, National Nuclear Security Administration; and Chris Painter, coordinator of cyber issues at the State Department.