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The Private Sector: A Reluctant Partner in Cybersecurity

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Part of the Palgrave Macmillan’s Studies in Cybercrime and Cybersecurity book series (PSCYBER)

Abstract

It may seem obvious that the private sector should be keen to protect its computers and networks from cyber attacks by criminals and foreign agents. After all, hacking has caused considerable losses of trade secrets and other proprietary information. Moreover, evidence suggests that cyber attacks can take a kinetic form, which can harm the equipment and facilities—such as the national electrical grid—of those attacked. However, as will be seen shortly, the private sector is far from rushing to protect itself from such attacks. The reasons for this reluctance range from the understandably pragmatic to the ideological. Meanwhile, in spite of major implications of this reluctance for homeland security, both the Bush and the Obama administrations limited themselves to cajoling the private sector to embrace much stronger cybersecurity measures rather than mandating their introduction.

Keywords

  • Private Sector
  • Critical Infrastructure
  • Homeland Security
  • Foreign Agent
  • Trade Secret

These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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  • DOI: 10.1057/9781137513960_6
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Notes

  1. Daniel Kahneman, Thinking, Fast and Slow (New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2011).

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  2. Amitai Etzioni, “Cybersecurity in the Private Sector,” Issues in Science and Technology 28, 1 (Fall 2011): 58–62.

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  3. Amitai Etzioni, “The Bankruptcy of Liberalism and Conservatism,” Political Science Quarterly 128, 1 (Spring 2013): 39–65. Internal quotation marks omitted.

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  4. Richard A. Clarke, Cyber War: The Next Threat to National Security and What to Do About It (New York: Harper Collins, 2010).

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© 2015 Amitai Etzioni

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Etzioni, A. (2015). The Private Sector: A Reluctant Partner in Cybersecurity. In: Privacy in a Cyber Age. Palgrave Macmillan’s Studies in Cybercrime and Cybersecurity. Palgrave Macmillan, New York. https://doi.org/10.1057/9781137513960_6

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