The White House has issued an executive order today aimed at improving the security of classified networks and preventing the release of documents to organizations such as WikiLeaks that have compromised classified and delicate intelligence information.
The so-called “WikiLeaks Order“ issued by President Obama on Friday emphasizes the need for structural reforms by making agencies primarily responsible for the information they obtain and share.
The order also calls for the establishment of a “senior information sharing and safeguarding committee,” to develop standards and policies to secure data against improper usage and links.
The committee is to be co-chaired by senior representatives of the Office of Management and Budget, the National Security Staff, and officers designated by the heads of the Departments of State, Defense, Justice, Energy and Homeland Security, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, the CIA, and the information Security Office within the National Archives and Records Administration.
Officials will be tasked with implementing a balance between the needs of federal agencies to access classified data and the necessity of securing that data against improper usage and leaks. The steering committee will have 90 days from today to assess the executive branch’s successes and shortcoming in sharing information and safeguarding classified data, and make subsequent reports to the president at least annually.
The executive order also calls for establishing a Classified Information Sharing and Safeguarding Office with detailees to provide “full-time, sustained focus” on sharing and safeguarding.
The order also establishes an insider threat task force to develop approaches for deterring, detecting and mitigating the risk of information leaks occurring from within agencies.