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US Govt. Debuts New ‘Cyber Threat’ Agency

People are pretty annoyed at America right now due to intrusive spying undertaken online by security agencies from the country, so it’s only slightly less annoying that a new announcement from the Obama administration says that yet another group is to be set up to ‘defend’ the US from people online.

The new group, called the Cyber Threat Intelligence Integration Center, takes inspiration from another group set up in 2001 after the 9/11 attacks known as the National Counterterrorism Center. These type of groups within American intelligence agencies are mercifully not independent, instead they are more of a ‘task force’ or central agency which brings all the intelligence gathered by existing agencies together under one roof.

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High profile hacking, intrusion and cyber warfare headlines, recently and as far back as 2011, have been the reason behind the new institution, which could be America’s first lie of defense against cyber threats. “The cyberthreat is one of the greatest threats we face, and policymakers and operators will benefit from having a rapid source of intelligence,” said Lisa Monaco, assistant to the president for homeland security and counterterrorism.

It’s not entirely clear just what kind of intelligence gathering or intelligence usage will be carried out by the new CTIIC, but it is clear that the issue of cyber attacks is being taken more seriously in the US. Centralizing the operations behind online defense could also be an answer to what some have criticized as slightly out of control agencies such as the NSA, whose secret projects caused massive controversy recently.

The NSA have recently been a big part of a spying scandal online.

With everything organised under one roof, it may be much easier to monitor whether an agency is doing anything shady, although it’s not like anyone attempted to stop the NSA or reel them in when their PRISM surveillance program was revealed by whistleblower Edward Snowden.

As well as collecting information gathered covertly, the new agency will also be in close partnership with the private sector, where hacking threats are a big concern. US industry is at risk ever more frequently as gung-ho hackers seek to hold big companies to ransom by exploiting security holes.

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Hopefully America’s addiction to snooping on internet users will be re-evaluated once the new CTIIC comes into its own, but of course it’s not just the US who have been caught red handed – UK service GCHQ was also recently condemned for their actions, which were deemed unlawful by an independent court.

The internet is becoming more regulated, more risky for users, and harder to maintain privacy during use these days, as even the most secure sites are coming into the firing line from big government. The announcement of another prying eye on the web is, to some, yet more frustrating news.

Via: Gizmodo

Via: Washington Post