FCC Chairman calls for increased cybersecurity measures

FCC Chairman calls for increased cybersecurity measures

Summary: The FCC chairman has called for a step-up in the fight against cybercrime.


The chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, Julius Genachowski, called on ISPs Wednesday to invoke increased security measures to combat cybercrime.

The FCC chairman suggested that U.S. service providers should notify subscribers when their computers are compromised; through malware, botnet attacks, IP hijacking and other kinds of cyber warfare.

Rather than enforcing government-led mandates, Genachowski believes that in order to protect against growing threats to national security and the economy, the solutions to the problem should be industry-led.

One method in particular that the chairman highlighted is the use of DNSSEC, a more secure version of DNS entries, which hosts a number of security-based tools that help sure Internet domains against attacks. However, the adoption of this technology has been sluggish at best.

In a speech at the Bipartisan Policy Center, Genachowski said:

"The cyberthreat is growing. If we fail to tackle these challenges, we will pay the price in the form of diminished safety, lost privacy, lost jobs and financial vulnerability -- billions of dollars potentially lost to digital criminals."

Not only this, but there is also the future possibility of subscribers loosing faith in ISP services that are not secure enough against constantly-evolving methods of cybercrime. IP hijacking and domain name fraud are currently the priorities outlined by the FCC's Communications Security, Reliability and Interoperability Council.

As part of a "multi-stakeholder process" to combat cybercriminals, the chairman recommended that multiple parties need to become involved if future security will be effective:

  • U.S. Internet service providers can help fight botnets by detecting infections on subscriber's computer and notifying them as a result.
  • The development of secure routing standards (DNSSEC) to tackle IP highjacking must be supported.
  • The industry as a whole should work together in order to develop new ways to improve security across all kinds of networks.

ISP Comcast has pledged its support in the effort to combat security issues. The president of Comcast, Kyle McSlarrow, responded in a blog post:

"Comcast agrees with Chairman Genachowski that protecting American consumers, businesses and governments from cybersecurity threats should be a global priority. To be effective, everyone who is a part of the Internet ecosystem must play a meaningful role in ensuring that private and government networks, and personal computers and devices are secured."

Image credit: CNet


Topics: Government US, Government, Security

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  • RE: FCC Chairman calls for increased cybersecurity measures

    How about actually doing something about Google's and Facebook's privacy violations. Monitoring their activities for 20 years means that you actually watch them and rap their knuckles when they cross the line. Why are the Electronic Frontier Foundation and The Center for Digital Democracy doing your job for you?
    Rabid Howler Monkey
    • RE: FCC Chairman calls for increased cybersecurity measures

      I completely agree with u!
  • RE: FCC Chairman calls for increased cybersecurity measures

    I don't agree with the premise that you can just leave it up to IT technical firms to solve the problem. Industry doesn't move ahead unless there is pure financial incentive to do so. I don't think people are going to stop using technology because it is dangerous as long as they go into technology assuming that there is security. How many people think Google is completely private and will safeguard your information and data? Now go read their privacy policy and terms of service. Still the temptation of making one's life easier is so tempting that most will bury their heads in the sand about security for it. Try tweeting some private message threatening "America" and watch what happens next time you travel.
  • Here we go again...

    Funny, the FCC... after recently losing their deceptive attempt to gain the legally-unsupportable position of Internet-regulator... is now, basically, demanding that ISPs adopt a "voluntary policy" that would basically, effectively, require ISPs to implement "End-Point-To-Endpoint... Trusted Computing...", and the extensive customer-monitoring which would be required to effectively "police" the Internet (...for the government, and various special-interests). You know, the very hardware/software scheme (heavily promoted by Microsoft, by the way) to completely "lock-down", and utterly control virtually every aspect all computers connected to the Internet (hardware, firmware, OS, and applications). And, the first company to support this announcement is Comcast... the very company which took it upon itself to intercept, and illegally terminate, the use of applications that Comcast didn't approve (using the, proven to be utterly bogus, claim of "network management").

    And, all of this almost immediately after "SOPA", and "PIPA" have apparently been tabled due to overwhelming public-opposition. Imagine that!
    Gayle Edwards
    • Exactly

      This is a classic 'end around'.

      They are going to 'sell fear' to protect us.