Cybersecurity

On July 13, 2023 the White House issued the National Cybersecurity Strategy Implementation Plan (“NCSIP”).  The NCSIP identifies 65 initiatives – to be led by 18 different departments and agencies – that are designed as a roadmap for implementing the U.S. National Cybersecurity Strategy released earlier this year.  This is the first iteration of the plan, which is intended to be an evolving document that the Administration plans to update annually.  Consistent with the Strategy, the NCSIP contemplates five broad lines of effort (“pillars”):

  • Defending critical infrastructure;
  • Disrupting and dismantling threat actors;
  • Shaping market forces to drive security and resilience;
  • Investing in a resilient future; and
  • Forging international partnerships to pursue shared goals.

Among the many initiatives, the Administration has outlined several specific efforts over the next three years that will be of interest to technology companies, federal contractors, and critical infrastructure owners and operators.Continue Reading White House Releases Implementation Plan for the National Cybersecurity Strategy

Last week, the U.S. Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (“CISA”) released guidance on Security-by-Design and Security-by-Default principles for technology manufacturers that was jointly developed by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the National Security Agency, as well as cybersecurity authorities in Australia, Canada, United Kingdom, Germany, Netherlands, and New Zealand.  While similar principles have been published in the past, such as those released by the U.S. Federal Trade Commission, this guidance builds on the White House’s recent roll-out of the U.S. National Cybersecurity Strategy and is in line with efforts to encourage a consistent, international approach to software security that emphasizes the responsibilities of software manufacturers across various jurisdictions.  While the guidance primarily focuses on recommendations for technology manufacturers, it also includes recommendations for enterprise customers to “hold their supplying technology manufacturers accountable for the security outcomes of their products.”  CISA and the authoring agencies are seeking feedback on the guidance, and indicated plans to hold future listening sessions to collect feedback. Continue Reading CISA Publishes International Guidance on Implementing Security-by-Design and Security-by-Default Principles for Software Manufacturers and Customers

On March 8, 2023, the United States Department of Health and Human Services (“HHS”), through the Administration for Strategic Preparedness and Response and the Health Sector Coordinating Counsel Joint Cybersecurity Working Group, released an updated version of its Cybersecurity Framework Implementation Guide (the “Guide”) “to help the public and private health care sectors prevent cybersecurity incidents.”  Specifically, the Guide aims to help healthcare organizations leverage the NIST Cybersecurity Framework to “determine their cybersecurity goals, assess their current cybersecurity practices, or lack thereof, and help identify gaps for remediation.”  Continue Reading HHS Releases Guidance to Help Healthcare Organizations Align with the NIST Cybersecurity Framework

On March 7, 2023, the United States Transportation Security Administration (“TSA”) announced the issuance of new cybersecurity requirements for airport and aircraft operators on an emergency basis.  “The new emergency amendment requires that impacted TSA-regulated entities develop an approved implementation plan that describes measures they are taking to improve their cybersecurity resilience and prevent disruption and degradation to their infrastructure.”Continue Reading TSA Issues New Cybersecurity Requirements for Airport and Aircraft Operators

The United States National Cybersecurity Strategy, released on March 2, 2023, is poised to place significant responsibility for cybersecurity on technology companies, federal contractors, and critical infrastructure owners and operators.  The Strategy articulates a series of objectives and recommended executive and legislative actions that, if implemented, would increase the cybersecurity responsibilities and requirements of these types of entities.  The overall goal of the Strategy is to create a “defensible, resilient digital ecosystem” where the costs of an attack are more than the cost of defending those systems and where “neither incidents nor errors cascade into catastrophic, systemic consequences.”  The Strategy outlines two fundamental shifts to how the federal government will attempt to allocate roles, responsibilities, and resources in cyberspace. Continue Reading White House Releases National Cybersecurity Strategy

In February, the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) published a blog post that elucidated key security principles from recent FTC data security and privacy orders.  Specifically, the FTC highlighted three practices that the Commission regards as “effectively protect[ing] user data.”  These practices include: (1) offering multi-factor authentication (“MFA”) for consumers and requiring it for employees; (2) requiring that connections within a company’s system be both encrypted and authenticated (e.g., deploying a “zero trust” methodology); and (3) requiring companies to develop data retention schedules.  The FTC noted that while these measures “are not the sum-total of everything the FTC expects from an effective security program, they are a sample of provisions [that the FTC has] seen recently that speak directly to the idea of attacking things at their root cause to produce uniquely effective results.”Continue Reading FTC Publishes Blog Post on Data Security Practices for Complex Systems

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (“FERC”) issued a final rule (Order No. 887) directing the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (“NERC”) to develop new or modified Reliability Standards that require internal network security monitoring (“INSM”) within Critical Infrastructure Protection (“CIP”) networked environments.  This Order may be of interest to entities that develop, implement, or maintain hardware or software for operational technologies associated with bulk electric systems (“BES”).Continue Reading FERC Orders Development of New Internal Network Security Monitoring Standards

On September 14, 2022, the Director of the Office of Management and Budget (“OMB”) issued a memorandum to the heads of executive branch departments and agencies addressing the enhancement of security of the federal software supply chain.  The memorandum applies to all software (other than agency-developed software) developed or experiencing major version changes to be operated “on the agency’s information systems or otherwise affecting the agency’s information,” and requires new self-attestations from software vendors before that software can be used by agencies.  Continue Reading OMB Issues Memorandum on Self-Attestations by Software Developers of Secure Software Development Practices and Collection of Software Bill of Materials

On September 12, 2022, the U.S. Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (“CISA”) published a Request for Information, seeking public comment on how to structure implementing regulations for reporting requirements under the Cyber Incident Reporting for Critical Infrastructure Act of 2022 (“CIRCIA”).  Written comments are requested on or before November 14, 2022 and may be submitted through the Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov.Continue Reading CISA Requests Public Comment on Implementing Regulations for the Cyber Incident Reporting for Critical Infrastructure Act

On September 15, 2022, the European Commission published a draft regulation that sets out cybersecurity requirements for “products with digital elements” (PDEs) placed on the EU market — the Cyber Resilience Act (CRA). The Commission has identified that cyberattacks are increasing in the EU, with an estimated global annual cost of €5.5 trillion. The CRA aims to strengthen the security of PDEs and imposes obligations that cover:

  1. the planning, design, development, production, delivery and maintenance of PDEs;
  2. the prevention and handling of cyber vulnerabilities; and
  3. the provision of cybersecurity information to users of PDEs.

The CRA also imposes obligations to report any actively exploited vulnerability as well as any incident that impacts the security of a PDE to ENISA within 24 hours of becoming aware of it.

The obligations apply primarily to manufacturers of PDEs, which include entities that develop or manufacture PDEs as well as entities that outsource the design, development and manufacturing to a third party. Importers and distributors of PDEs also need to ensure that the products comply with CRA’s requirements.

The requirements apply for the lifetime of a product or five years from its placement on the market, whichever is shorter. Due to the cross-border dimension of cybersecurity incidents, the CRA applies to any PDEs that are placed on the EU market—regardless of where they are manufactured—and imposes new mandatory conformity assessment requirements. The proposed regulation will now undergo review and potential approval in the Council of the EU and the European Parliament. Its provisions would apply fully within two years after entry into force, potentially in late 2026. We set out more detail and commentary below based on our initial review of the proposal.Continue Reading EU Publishes Draft Cyber Resilience Act