Last week, members of the House Energy and Commerce Committee told Congress that they must set cyber security standards for all devices connected to the internet or else face the possibility of a major cyberattack that could cripple critical infrastructure throughout the United States. This hearing came on the heels of the widespread internet outage on October 21.
There are 6 billion internet-related devices today, but that figure is expected to grow to over 20-billion by 2020. With that looming growth, it is important to set those cyber security standards today as it will dictate how internet-connected devices will be made prospectively.
Many have questioned the direction the Trump administration will take in regulating cyber security, as heightened standards will certainly lead to increases costs for businesses. No one can answer that question with any certainty now, but cybersecurity should be a non-partisan issue. As Bruce Schneier, a cybersecurity expert, stated, “I’m not a regulatory fan. But this is the world of dangerous things….The choice is not between government involvement and no government involvement. It’s between smart government involvement versus stupid government involvement.” For now, the message is clear: increase cybersecurity standards or face some dangerous consequences.