Joint Economic Committee Report on New Security Challenges and Strategies   [open pdf - 4MB]

Over the years, the Joint Economic Committee has investigated a wide range of threats to the United States and its economy. The committee has consistently identified emerging issues including radio frequency weapons, bioterrorism, information warfare, espionage, technology transfers, transnational crime, and weapons proliferation. We continued that course in June 2001 with a hearing entitled, "Wired World: Cyber Security and the U.S. Economy." Following this hearing, it became clear that we needed to better understand an increasingly complicated set of diffuse security threats. Senator Bennett volunteered to identify individuals whose perspectives about critical infrastructure protection would be of value to the Congress and compile a study. Computer networks connect and control everything from pipelines to stock exchanges. At a speech given on March 23, 2001, to the Partnership for Critical Infrastructure of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Condoleeza Rice, United States National Security Advisor said, "Today, the cyber economy is the economy. . . . Corrupt those networks and you disrupt this nation." The September 11 attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon make it clear that we must be better aware of our vulnerabilities and develop viable strategies to detect, deter, and counter both physical and cyber-based threats to our people and our infrastructures. This compendium represents a range of perspectives on infrastructure protection, from definitions and strategies to business challenges and policy actions. I thank Senator Bennett for his efforts and the authors for sharing their expertise.

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