Clinton Addresses Internet Security Concerns

Recent denial of service attacks and other breeches of Internet security
at
leading e-commerce sites has led to the White House’s involvement in how
to
stem further attacks.

On Tuesday, President Clinton and Cabinet members met with Internet firms,
security experts and civil liberties organizations to jointly address the
vulnerabilities within the Internet. The panel discussed ways the public
and
private sector can work together on security initiatives.

“What we’re going to try to do today is to talk about what the
government’s
responsibility is for our own systems and networks; what the private
sector’s responsibility is; and. . .how to talk about having adequate
security, how to protect privacy and civil liberties, but also how to keep
the Internet open,” President Clinton said at a press conference Tuesday.

“And keep in mind, one of the reasons this thing has worked so well is
that
it has to be free of government regulation.”

In his budget proposal submitted to Congress, the President asked for $2
billion for cyber security and increased partnerships with the public
sector. Attacks last week on sites such as Yahoo (YHOO)
,
Amazon.com (AMZN)
and
E*Trade (EGRP)
, though have prompted the jump start of those efforts with a $9
million
supplemental request for immediate use.

The White House also plans to participate with private companies in the
Partnership for Critical Infrastructure Security. The group will be made
up
of federal, state and local officials, as well as infrastructure
companies,
risk management firms and others who deal with infrastructure issues. Its
mission will be to explore ways in which industry and government can
jointly
address the risks to the nation’s critical infrastructures.

Clinton said the recent denial of service attacks are cause for concern,
especially because the Internet is now a viable business tool.

“It’s a source of concern, but I don’t think we should leave here with
this
vast sense of insecurity,” he said. “We ought to leave here with a sense
of
confidence that this is a challenge that was entirely predictable; it’s
part
of the price of the success of the Internet; and we’re all determined to
work together to meet it.”

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