President Barack Obama May Sign Executive Order Aimed at Cybersecurity

Amid increasing threats of cyber attacks by foreign forces, the White House is reportedly going to release an executive order intended to improve the nation's cyber defenses. Details of the directive are expected to be released during a briefing tomorrow morning at the U.S. Department of Commerce.

According to The Hill, which claims to have spoken with two people familiar with the matter, the executive order would establish voluntary cybersecurity standards for businesses operating critical infrastructure. Government agencies, in turn, would be required to share information about potential threats with businesses.

President Barack Obama

"It represents a huge challenge for our country. He has called on Congress to take action. Unfortunately, Congress has thus far refused legislatively," White House press secretary Jay Carney said during a press briefing. "But I don’t have any previews to provide."

The executive order is no doubt motivated by recent hacker attacks, including one on the U.S. Federal Reserve a week ago, for which the hactivist organization Anonymous has taken credit for.

As part of the amended order, which has undergone several changes in the past few months, businesses that operate critical infrastructures would receive protection from legal action and other other incentives in exchange for adopting the new policies.