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Specifically Address How Cyber-Security Relates to Our National Critical Infrastructure and Its Protection

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Critical infrastructure describes the physical and cyber systems and assets that are so vital to the United States that their incapacity or destruction would have a debilitating impact on our physical or economic security or public health or safety

The nation's critical infrastructure provides the essential services that underpin American society.

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Nations and their citizens rely on infrastructures. Modern societies depend on electricity and transportation systems, banking and telecommunications, postal and shipping, and a variety of additional services that enable modern life and allow humanity to flourish

Disruption of such services could cause annoyance, inconvenience, and financial losses to civilians, companies, and governments. Incapacitation or even destruction of infrastructures could result in more than mere inconvenience. It could eliminate nations’ abilities to protect themselves from both domestic and foreign threats, cause substantial economic harm, lead to social unrest, and even result in loss of life. Therefore, protecting these infrastructures—especially those deemed critical—is an obvious strategic task and even duty of any sovereign state. While the need to protect critical infrastructures (CIs) is far from novel, digitization brings about new challenges. In the pre-digital world, the government’s role in protecting infrastructures was relatively justifiable and straightforward, as risks both originated and materialized in the kinetic realm. Thus, government and the relevant public and private entities that controlled the infrastructures could focus on ensuring physical security by improving their resilience.

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Hawald and Bittinger (2012) have written that the worst problem faced by the Department of Defense and the rest of the government this year is not having a full workforce of cyber experts. The problem with attracting experts is that government cannot pay the large salaries plus benefits that cyber security companies pay. Hawald and Bittenger (2012) suggest several strategies to attract quality employees for the national cyber security workforce; a) make hiring cyber security experts a priority. b) use targeted recruitment, in-house training, and offer internships, and c) increase Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) financial aid for college scholarships. d) Using “non-financial incentives . .

like leadership mentoring on key projects . . . and collaboration with the top experts in academia and industry” (Hawald and Bittenger, 2012, p. 1). Initiative 12 of the Comprehensive National Cybersecurity Initiative addresses the issues of CIKR. A major point is to focus on information sharing between the public and the private sectors to strengthen cyber security in government and CIKR. Initiative 12 supports the efforts of Homeland Security to follow their plan to organize a project with all their recommendations. The main purpose of the Homeland Security plan is “to increase resiliency and operational capabilities throughout the CIKR sectors” (CNCI, WhiteHouse.gov, 5).

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Summing up, businesses corporations are usually not targets of terrorism, but government databases usually are targeted

Cyber terrorist often try to hack into government databases and steal information that would be valuable to America but dangerous in the hands of terrorist. Through cyber-attacks information for nuclear weapons, shut down codes or other government secrets can be gained by a number of terrorist organizations. “ cyber-attacks on our nation private sector and government networks have increased dramatically in the past decade”. This increase in attacks means that there is a higher chance that terrorist can shut major power grids and leave millions without power or disrupt the stock market to cause mass panic.

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Hawald, S. & Bittinger, S. (2012). How government/DoD CIOs can deal with the cybersecurity workforce shortage. Gartner, Inc., Industry Research C002375335. Retrieved from http://www.gartner.com/resources/237500/237535/
how_govermentdod_cios_can_d_237535.pdf

Office of Infrastructure Protection. (2008). A guide to critical infrastructure and key resources protection at the state, regional, local, tribal, and territorial level. National Protection & Programs Directorate. U.S. Department of Homeland Security. Retrieved from http://www.dhs.gov/xlibrary/assets/nipp_srtltt_guide.pdf

Trabansky, L. (2011). Critical infrastructure protection against cyber threats. Military and Strategic Affairs, 3(2), 61-78. Retrieved from http://www.inss.org.il/upload/(FILE)1326273687.pdf

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