Biden admin announces new security requirements for government networks

Biden admin announces new security requirements for government networks

President Joe Biden's administration is releasing a new set of requirements for America's most secure networks, mandating use of government-approved encryption and ordering officials to report breaches to the National Security Agency NSA. The requirements are laid out in a national security memorandum released Wednesday, and require agencies such as the Pentagon, the Central Intelligence Agency, and the Department of Energy to implement baseline security measures for national security systems where the most sensitive US data is held.

Among the requirements are multi-factor authentication or the use of multiple layers of passwords delivered via different services, NSA-approved encryption and zero-trust architecture, an industry term for the continuous validation of users' or devices' identities.

The memo builds on previous requirements from the Biden administration for federal civilian networks. After a series of digital debacles, including a cybercriminal shakedown effort that temporarily suspended gasoline deliveries to the East Coast and the discovery that Russian hackers had infiltrated several government agencies, the White House decided to make cybersecurity a priority.