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The connection between the process of maintaining homeland security and the development of the private sector might seem tenuous at first, yet a closer look at the subject matter will show that there is, in fact, a distinct link between them. Malware-related innovations in the contemporary realm of the digital world represent an imminent threat to the security of U.S. citizens. To reduce the impact of the specified dangers, one will have to consider opportunities for enhancing the current infrastructure of homeland security (HS). Furthermore, the strategies aimed at improving both the cyber- and physical security of American citizens will have to be compatible. Seeing that a massive part of the critical infrastructure on which the efficacy of HS hinges belongs to the private sector (PS), encouraging its growth must be deemed as an essential objective. Since the PS controls most of the urban infrastructure, the latter resides outside of the range of the government’s influence Therefore, collaborating with the PS is likely to help reinforce the efficacy of the existing defense system, especially as far as cybersecurity issues are concerned.
2014 QHSR: Preventing Terrorism and Enhancing Security
Since the knowledge of the critical infrastructure, which the private sector owns, for the most part, is crucial in preventing acts of terrorism, a collaboration between HS and PS is essential to ensuring the well-being of American citizens For instance, access to power grids will help reduce the possibility of a cyberattack that may cause the deactivation of the grid The identified threat is especially important to address since most industries and infrastructures rely on the power grid, and interfering with it may affect not only security but also the lives of American citizens. For example, a sudden power cut is likely to have dire consequences in a subway or in an operating room
Cooperation with the PS, in turn, is likely to help prevent the scenarios similar to the one identified above. The cooperation of HS and PS is likely to lead to rather impressive results. Particularly, PS and HS may develop a coherent plan for managing emergencies such as the malfunctioning of the state power grid due to a cyberattack. The fact that smart technologies give attackers more opportunities to extend the range of negative effects that their attacks will have on the American infrastructure should also be deemed as a reason for concern. The PS, in turn, will provide the information that will be necessary to reduce the threat and avert possible cyberattacks. Furthermore, the temporary source of power can be located and used successfully in the identified scenario once the PS will offer its resources to the HS.
Creating a new agency that will address the issue of cybersecurity should be regarded as a necessity at present. Furthermore, multidisciplinary cooperation between the specified body and the private sector must be enhanced to ensure that the threats to the U.S. infrastructure are averted. The specified step will help the HS take control over the process of protecting the power grid, at the same time giving the PS enough room for running essential operations for delivering crucial resources and maintaining the information management process consistent.
It should also be borne in mind that a range of current systems, especially the ones that are used in the industrial control realm, are very old and require an urgent update. Thus, not only is their efficacy highly questionable but they may also pose a threat to the well-being of American citizens due to numerous opportunities for breaking or disrupting them. Herein lies the importance of introducing a multidisciplinary team that would carry out regular assessments of the system and introduces changes to it so that it could remain updated in accordance with the latest technological requirements. The specified goal can be attained by reinforcing cooperation between PS and HS since the former will provide essential data and tools for efficient information management, whereas the latter will create the environment in which threats are eliminated. Therefore, encouraging cooperation between PS and HS will lead to a significant drop in the possibility of a terrorist attack. The specified change must be regarded as a massive improvement given the increasingly high possibility of the infrastructure disruption by terrorists.
2014 QHSR: Securing and Managing Our Borders
Apart from maintaining the safety of the state infrastructure at the required high level, the cooperation between HS and PS is likely to enhance the efficacy of managing state borders. The specified phenomenon can also be explained by the opportunities for controlling the infrastructure and, therefore, restricting opportunities for criminals to trespass the U.S. borders.
Securing the integrity of the state borders is essential to preventing the instances of trespassing and the issues that it entails, e.g., smuggling, illegal immigration, etc. The process of merchandise processing becomes significantly easier once the support of the PS is provided to the HS. By cooperating with the PS, the HS will be able to control the flow of goods much more efficiently. The specified strategy will contribute to not only preventing illegal activities but also help increase the quality of products since imported goods are going to be filtered based on a much more rigid set of standards.
The cooperation between the HS and the PS will also help enhance the cybersecurity levels required to prevent the instances of trespassing. Cooperation with the PS will contribute to receiving the required information in a timely manner and processing it efficiently to produce a viable solution Furthermore, in collaboration, the HS and PS can determine behaviors and other issues that can be defined as indicators of the threat of terrorism. The standardization of regulations aimed at securing the process of passing the U.S. border will also create opportunities for reducing the possibility of a terrorist attack. The identified actions, however, can only be implemented once the HS starts cooperating with the PS since the latter has information about the state infrastructure. Therefore, loopholes in the current state security system can be identified and addressed successfully.
The PS also provides extensive opportunities for increasing resilience levels among the U.S. population. Having a vast amount of resources for supporting community members, the PS can facilitate a faster recovery from outcomes of trespassing, such as the possibility of illegal actions and activities that may jeopardize the well-being of U.S. citizens. The PS can mobilize its resources to address and prevent the scenarios that may lead to destructive and devastating effects.
Furthermore, the cooperation between the PS and the HS is likely to lead to the reconsideration of the current set of values and standards adopted by the HS. Consequently, outdated principles that no longer apply to the contemporary global environment will be filtered and removed from the setting of the organization. Replacing the current framework with a more relevant and up-to-date one is bound to create better opportunities for securing the state boundaries.
Although the connection between the HS and the PS might seem as tenuous, the PS provides a plethora of options for reinforcing the efficacy of the existing information management framework and the state infrastructure. As a result, a range of threats associated primarily with cybersecurity can be eliminated. Therefore, a collaboration between the HS and the PS must be encouraged.
Apart from creating chances for managing infrastructure-associated issues more efficiently, cooperation with the PS will help the HS utilize cutting-edge technology that will accelerate a range of processes occurring within the HS framework. For instance, the process of data collection, its further analysis, and the identification of future security management strategies based on the output will be enhanced to a considerable extent. The specified change is bound to lead to a significant improvement in the levels of security.
Furthermore, the information management issue needs to be brought up as one of the key factors that necessitate collaboration between the HS and the PS. The PS offers innovative tools for data transfer, processing, and acquisition. Consequently, the PS and the HS must join their efforts in enhancing the security levels within the state. As a result, a significant number of threats that affect the well-being and security of American citizens can be eradicated from the political, economic, and financial landscape of the United States. Therefore, a collaboration between the HS and the PS should be viewed as a necessary step in enhancing security.
Bullock, George Haddow, and Damon P. Coppola. Homeland Security: The Essentials. Cambridge, MA: Butterworth-Heinemann, 2014.
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