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­.s. International Cyberspace Policy Sounds Good; Will Be Hard to Implement

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The White House's recently issued and ambitious International Strategy for Cyberspace could be difficult to deploy as some of its objectives conflict and pose seemingly unbeatable technical challenges, according to several experts.

The strategy has been touted by U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton as a framework to devise, implement, and coordinate policies that address all cybersecurity issues. "As we work to achieve a cyberspace that is open, interoperable, secure, and reliable, there is no one-size-fits-all, straightforward route to that goal," Clinton says. However, some experts say the strategy's goals are conflicting. For example, the policy urges support for free expression and commerce through the Internet while also denying those benefits to criminals and terrorists, with the challenge being to distinguish citizens from criminals while maintaining online privacy.

Participants at a recent cybersecurity and privacy protection panel at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology CIO Symposium stressed that the government should get more involved with safeguarding Web infrastructure. Security consultant Jeffrey Carr says that although the White House strategy calls for shielding critical infrastructure, U.S. statutes calling for such measures lack force. Another problem is that the ideal of unfettered Internet use is contradicted by the fact that governments usually do what is in their own best interest.

From Network World
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