Cyberspace has been widely considered the next frontier for international warfare. Already, cyber criminals are targeting government databases, exposing weak data security measures and releasing confidential information in the process.
Recently, the U.S. government took action against the rising online threats by releasing a new strategy for cyber security. The Strategy for Operating in Cyberspace report, which was issued by the Department of Defense, outlines several main initiatives for the federal government to focus on.
The report calls for U.S. Armed Forces personnel to be trained in cyber security, the creation of new defense operating systems, agencies to work together to draft and promote a government-wide strategy and strengthening alliances through the shared responsibility of cybersecurity.
The report also said federal agencies must be proactive against cyber attacks by practicing so-called "cyber hygiene." In other words, government agencies should educate their employees on what to look out for and what to avoid to ensure government data remains safe.
"Cyber hygiene must be practiced by everyone at all times; it is just as important for individuals to be focused on protecting themselves as it is to keep security software and operating systems up to date," the report stated.
Provisions for the security of mobile devices and cloud computing initiatives are two other areas highlighted in the new cybersecurity strategy.
These initiatives may become increasingly important as more government agencies work to deploy cloud services, in compliance with the Obama administration's highly promoted cloud-first strategy.
According to a recent Computerworld report, concerns over budget constraints and the security of hosted data are stalling cloud deployments for many federal agencies. Experts told the news provider that full adoption will take time, because federal IT doesn't follow a one-size-fits-all model.