May 16, 2017

CLTC’s Weber, Cooper Publish Op-Ed on the “New Normal” in the New York Times


Responding to the massive “WannaCrypt” ransomware attack, CLTC’s Steve Weber, Faculty Director, and Betsy Cooper, Executive Director, wrote an op-ed that was published by the New York Times. Their opinion piece, “Digital Insecurity Is the New Normal,” highlights the themes outlined in CLTC’s scenario, “The New Normal,” which depicts a future in which people retreat to non-digital technologies as cyberattacks become more widespread.

“The focus shouldn’t be on the scale of the attack and the immediate harm it is causing, or even on the source of the software code that enabled it (a previous attack against the National Security Agency),” they write. “What’s most important is that British doctors have reverted to pen and paper in the wake of the attacks. They’ve given up on insecure digital technologies in favor of secure but inconvenient analog ones.”

The authors stress that security must become a greater priority today to ensure the long-term viability of the digital economy. “We recognize that the consequences of prioritizing security are not all good, and the slowing or reversal of digitization will be a significant headwind for the United States economy even more than for other countries, at a time and in a political environment that really can’t afford such a setback,” they write. “But there is no other viable choice. You can’t fix a broken foundation by simply building more stories atop the house that rests on it.”

Read their New York Times op-ed here.