Critical Infrastructure Sectors

News & Analysis as of

New Executive Order Authorizes Economic Sanctions to Combat Malicious Cyber Activity

Calling cyber threats “one of the most serious economic and national security challenges to the United States” and declaring a national emergency relating to those threats, on April 1, 2015, President Obama issued an...more

Obama Administration Recognizes Cyber Threats to U.S. Critical Infrastructure as a National Emergency

Many cybersecurity experts have warned that the United States is already engaged in covert cyber warfare against hostile actors around the world. The latest cybersecurity Executive Order reflects formal recognition that,...more

Executive Order Blocks Property of Those Engaging in Malicious Cyber Activities

The executive order enables US government agencies to block the assets of any foreign person determined to have engaged in malicious cyber-enabled activities....more

U.S. Authorizes Targeted Sanctions Against Overseas Cyber Threats

Cyber threats are one of the U.S.’s top security threats. In just the past year, there has been a significant increase in the frequency, scale and sophistication of cyber intrusions and attacks – many of them originating...more

U.S. Climate Policy That Will Actually Matter in the Short Term

Lost in a series of higher-profile actions concerning his Administration’s climate change initiatives, President Obama’s Executive Order on Floodplain Management will have a profound impact on any future federally-funded...more

Update: Germany's Draft Bill on IT Security

On March 20, 2015, the revised bill to increase the security of IT systems (the "Draft Bill")was first read in the German Bundestag. As contemplated in the White & Case Technology Newsflash of August 2014, the overarching...more

President Obama’s April Fools' Day Order on Cyberterrorism – No Joking About It!

While it’s not clear whether the President’s release today of an Executive Order, "Blocking the Property of Certain Persons Engaging in Significant Malicious Cyber-Enabled Activities," was purposefully timed to coincide with...more

POTUS Declares Cybercrime a National Emergency, Announces New Penalties for Trade Secrets Theft

Declaring cybercrime a “national emergency,” President Obama today empowered Treasury to freeze assets that are the fruits of cybercrime, according to an Executive Order issued this afternoon. The agency can block money or...more

Cyber Vulnerability in Wind Turbines

It has been reported that a wind turbine which is deployed across the energy sector worldwide has been hacked. Due to a software bug, an attacker can get the user name and password from the browser. This can allow admin...more

Best Practices on “Best Value” Discussed by the National Cooperative Highway Research Program

The National Cooperative Highway Research Program (NCHRP) released its latest installment of its “Synthesis of Highway Practice” on March 5, 2015, discussing specifically practices for developing transparent “best value”...more

New York State Charges Ahead on Critical Infrastructure Cybersecurity Legislation

On Feb. 26, 2015, in an effort to make “New York State’s computer infrastructure the most secure in the nation,” the New York State Senate passed a suite of four cybersecurity-related bills focused on protecting critical...more

President Obama Issues Executive Order on Cybersecurity Information Sharing

On February 13, 2015, President Barack Obama signed an executive order entitled "Promoting Private Sector Cybersecurity Information Sharing" (the "Executive Order") to foster cybersecurity threat information sharing within...more

CFIUS Annual Report Confirms Strong Chinese Investment and Renewed Concern about Foreign Governments’ Efforts to Acquire U.S....

On February 26, 2015, the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) released its annual report to Congress summarizing its activities in 2013. CFIUS is an inter-agency committee that reviews the national...more

What General Counsel Need To Know About The Latest Cybersecurity Developments

In the wake of reported security breaches at a number of significant financial institutions, cybersecurity is garnering more attention and concern than ever before — both within the financial services industry and among...more

Water District Not Liable In Inverse Condemnation When Water Pipe Breaks and Damages Property

California’s infrastructure is aging. There have been numerous reports of water line breaks and gas line leaks, and public agencies have been moving quickly to upgrade their utilities to minimize these risks and satisfy...more

Are Cyber War & Cyber Terrorism Insurable?

The frequency of cyber war and terrorism is no longer the risk. The magnitude of the potential damages is the real threat. It’s conceivable that an enemy of the U.S. government could hack a U.S. energy, water, or fuel...more

Continuity of supply of essential services to be guaranteed during business recovery (UK update)

Following a consultation on the issues last year, an Order was laid before the UK Parliament on Monday (9 February 2015) to prevent suppliers of water, gas, electricity, communications services and IT from cutting off supply...more

A CFIUS Roundup: Polaris Financial [Video]

Morrison & Foerster corporate partner Jeff Bell discusses developments in the CFIUS arena....more

BlackEnergy Malware Highlights Special Confidentiality Considerations in Critical Infrastructure Breach Investigations

On October 29, 2014, Department of Homeland Security’s Industrial Control Systems Cyber Emergency Response Team (“ICS-CERT”) published an important alert regarding a particularly destructive advanced persistent threat (“APT”)...more

NIST Framework as Basis for Standard of Care for Cyber Security

When the National Institute of Standards and Technology (“NIST”) released its Cybersecurity Framework for Improving Critical Infrastructure Cybersecurity (the “Framework”), (a priority program for the federal Department of...more

EPA Draft Ruling Could Mean Significant Changes to How Stormwater Systems are Categorized

The last thing that public agency leaders want to hear is that looming changes may make operating and building new public infrastructure more challenging and expensive. Unfortunately, proposed changes by the Environmental...more

Manufacturing and Infrastructure: Not Just About Economics – Our Own Security Depends on It

The call for dramatic improvements in America’s infrastructure as a critical driver in the reestablishment of the nation’s manufacturing supremacy is building momentum. But that’s only part of the story. Lost is the real...more

NIST RFI to Solicit Feedback on Cybersecurity Framework Closing: Good Opportunity to Assess Suggestions and Concerns

On Friday, October 10th, an opportunity to submit comments on a Request for Information concerning awareness and implementation of the “Framework for Improving Critical Infrastructure Cybersecurity” closes. Companies of all...more

House Passes Three Bipartisan Cybersecurity Bills to Protect Critical Infrastructure

On July 28, 2014, the House of Representatives passed three bills aimed at enhancing the cybersecurity efforts of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) in certain critical infrastructure sectors, including the energy...more

House of Representatives Passes SAFETY Act Amendment

The U.S. House of Representatives took a major positive step towards increasing the nation’s cyber security posture today when, on a voice vote, it passed H.R. 3696, the “National Cybersecurity and Critical Infrastructure...more

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