Obama Signs Executive Order on Cybersecurity Information-Sharing

Image: Barack Obama

President Barack Obama speaks at the White House on Friday, Jan. 16, 2015. Evan Vucci / AP

Obama: Cybersecurity 'has to be a Shared Mission' 3:37

President Obama signed a cybersecurity-focused executive order on Friday encouraging private companies and the government to share information about cyber threats.

"As a country, one of our greatest resources are the young people, the digitally fearless. But it also means that the problem of how we secure this digital world will only increase," Obama said during a speech at a White House cybersecurity summit at Stanford University.

Obama closed the speech by signing the executive order, which the White House previewed in a briefing to reporters on Thursday. The order is a "framework," the White House said, that aims to:

  • Push for the development of "Information Sharing and Analysis Organizations," (ISAOs), that will serve as the central point for collaboration between private and federal entities
  • Develop standards for those ISAOs
  • Clarify the Department of Homeland Security's authority to work with ISAOs
  • Streamline the access private companies have to classified cyber-threat information
  • Ensure that information sharing will include strong protections for privacy and civil liberties

The Obama administration has steadily ratcheted up its focus on cybersecurity over the past year. On Tuesday, the White House announced the creation of a Cyber Threat Intelligence Integration Center that will collect threat information and disseminate analysis.

Back in January, Obama dedicated a portion of his State of the Union Address to cybersecurity concerns after the White House outlined a trio of legislative proposals on the subject.

Apple CEO Tim Cook spoke at the summit, but CEOs from other big tech companies including Google and Facebook were noticeably absent.