Washington Bureau Chief
Expect cybersecurity to be high on Congress’ agenda in January, thanks to the hacking of Sony Pictures Entertainment and the company’s decision not to release “The Interview” because of the threat of terrorist attacks against theaters that show the movie.
North Korea is suspected of being behind the Sony hacks. “The Interview” is farce about two television journalists enlisted by the CIA to assassinate North Korean leader Kim Jong-un.
To Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., this hacking is a national security issue. He blamed President Barack Obama for not doing more to protect companies from cyber threats.
“North Korea’s cyber attack on Sony Pictures is only the latest in a long and troubling list of attempts by malign actors to use cyber to undermine our economic and national security interests,” McCain said. “From Iranian and Russian attacks on American banks to China’s orchestrated campaign to steal military secrets from our defense contractors, the administration’s failure to deter our adversaries has emboldened, and will continue to embolden, those seeking to harm the United States through cyberspace.”
McCain, who likely will chair the Senate Armed Services Committee in the next Congress, promised to “enhance congressional oversight of related programs, operations and activities by establishing a subcommittee focused on cyber matters such as this, and hold the administration accountable.”
He also called on Congress to “finally pass long-overdue comprehensive cybersecurity legislation.”
Obama agrees with McCain that legislation is needed to encourage businesses and the government to share information about cyber threats with each other.