US, EU Officials Discuss Cyber Cooperation; Jane Holl Lute Comments


The U.S. and European Union have developed cooperative cyber crime investigations but officials suggest developing policy for a concrete partnership may prove more difficult, GCN reports.

U.S. and E.U. officials met in Washington Wednesday at an event hosted by Center for Strategic and International Studies and the European Security Round Table. 

Defining the government’s role in cybersecurity is a challenge for the U.S., said Jane Holl Lute, deputy homeland security secretary.

The nations have similar policies in many areas, but have disagreed when it comes to Internet governance, said Thomas Dukes, a policy adviser to the State Department. 

Officials may not agree on the specific policies yet but both sets of officials agreed that cybersecurity is playing an increasingly important role to national economies.

Cooperation is not a matter of choice as much as it is a necessity at this point, said Cecilia Malmstrom, the E.U.’s home affairs commissioner. 

Countries have begun to appoint officials dedicated to overseeing cyber strategies, Dukes said. 

The Budapest Convention on Cybercrime treaty includes more than 30 nations and covers network breaches and issues with copyrights. 

Lute brought the officials’ attention to the seven years it took for the U.S. and E.U. to agree on exchanging airline passenger data, since the two perceive personal privacy rights differently. 

The U.S. still does not have a defined idea of the role of government in cybersecurity or who should be in charge of it within government.

Under a White House proposal, DHS would take the lead while other legislation aims to put the Defense Department in charge.

The House has recently passed several cyber bills, including the private-public online information sharing bill, a cyber research development bill and a bill updating the Federal Information Security Management Act. 

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