The head of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has stated U.S. financial institutions are ‘actively under attack’ from cyber hackers and that the White House may issue an executive order after Election Day to address cybersecurity issues.
TheHill.com reports that DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano cited the lack of congressional legislation on cybersecurity as the driving force for an executive order. Napolitano stated that the executive order would come ‘when’ President Obama is re-elected.
‘I think he will have to consider an executive order that covers many of the areas that legislation would cover,’ said Napolitano during a cybersecurity forum yesterday in Washington, D.C.
However, Napolitano added that the executive order would be a ‘complete substitute for legislation’ and that ‘there are some things that only legislation can provide,’ including liability protection for companies that follow cybersecurity best practices.
Regarding the cyber attacks against financial institutions, Napolitano confirmed that money and information have been taken by hackers, but she declined to offer specific details. ‘I really don't want to go into that per se,’ she said.