February 25, 2013

Jamie Barnett featured in Legal Bisnow on cybersecurity breach in Montana

1 min

Venable partner and retired Navy Rear Admiral Jamie Barnett was featured in a February 22, 2013 Legal Bisnow article on the recent cybersecurity breach of Montana's emergency alert system involving a fake zombie alert. Admiral Barnett said the incident has a simple explanation but serious cybersecurity implications.

He explained that the prank is a result of stations not resetting their emergency system-related passwords, saying "cyber-attacks will keep coming; our networks and government aren't organized to keep them out." Admiral Barnett suggested creating an admiralty for the cyberworld that would combine aspects of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the National Telecommunications & Information Administration (NTIA) and include a cyberadvisor to the president.

According to Admiral Barnett, this modern problem has low-tech predecessors pointing to piracy in the 1400s which led to the creation of maritime laws. Cyberspace is "like discovering a new ocean" that we want to stay safe for innovation and commerce. To protect our national interests, Admiral Barnett said the US needs to "raise the price" on violations of private companies by hackers and cyber spies.