US launches cybersecurity bureau amid ‘hacking’ accusations — Analysis

Washington commits diplomatic resources to cybersecurity and ‘digital freedom’ as Russia & China denounce cyberattacks

On Monday, the State Department revealed that the US Bureau of Cyberspace and Digital Policy has started its operations. Three branches are responsible for the operation of this bureau. “cyberspace security,” “international information And communications policy,” and “digital freedom.” 

Jennifer Bachus (Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary), a career diplomat will head the bureau, until an ambassador at-large is confirmed. Bachus has previously worked in France, Vietnam and the Czech Republic. 

Antony Blinken, US State Secretary, stated that the Bureau’s launch was announced in prepared remarks. “Democracies must together answer the question of whether universal rights and democratic values will be at the center of our digital lives.” 

During the Trump administration’s overhaul of the State Department in 2017, then State Secretary Rex Tillerson abolished the Office for the Coordination of Cyber Issues, which was created during the Obama administration to handle US diplomatic efforts at negotiating the rules and expectations of cyberspace, assigning cybersecurity responsibilities to the much broader Bureau of Economic and Business Affairs. 

The CDP Bureau’s inauguration is one more indicator that cybersecurity remains front and center in international affairs as the US and its allies compete with adversaries like Russia and China.  

Last week, Russia’s Foreign Ministry declared that “anonymous hackers and provocateurs” composing an “army of cyber-mercenaries”Cyberattacks on Russian media outlets and government buildings, as well as critical infrastructure, are being carried out by cyber-attackers sympathetic to Kiev. “grave consequences”All those accountable.

In March, Israeli newspaper Haaretz published a report that stated the following: “largest ever” cyberattack in the country’s history had taken the websites of its interior, health, justice, and welfare ministries as well as the prime minister’s office offline, while China’s foreign ministry denounced the US as a “hacking empire,”It was accused of using Chinese networks for a “springboard”To launch cyberattacks against Russia or Belarus

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