Cybersecurity

NIST seeks input on security guide

gloved hands

A new NIST publication will seek to improve communication between computer security response teams.

The National Institute of Standards and Technology has issued a request for information for a new guide on how to respond more quickly to security breaches. The guide, "Computer Security Incident Coordination," is aimed at improving communication between response teams.

"Even though government and industry defend their information systems against hackers, attacks are sometimes successful," NIST officials said in a statement. "When that happens, speed is of the essence."

The new publication "will supply guidance, methodologies, procedures and processes to cut response time and limit information loss when multiple organizations are involved," they added.

Among other things, the guide seeks to answer the question of when someone should share potentially sensitive information in the course of dealing with security threats, said Lee Badger, a group manager at NIST. Although some highly sensitive information cannot be shared under any circumstances, he said officials still need to consider many variables before sharing less sensitive information.

"The question when you're trying to share helpful information with your peers is to understand levels of sensitivity, what kinds of information can be shared with a peer given how well you know them and how well you know that they will protect that information," Badger said. "And, of course, other levels of sensitivity may be too high, and you really can't share those. So there are lots of judgments that need to be made in order to share correctly."

Badger said he hopes the guide will help educate people about how to build circles of trust to ease that decision-making process and increase appropriate information sharing.

The new guide will complement NIST's "Computer Security Incident Handling Guide," which addresses how to detect attacks and mitigate damage. The RFI asks for input on communication barriers, incident coordination objectives and standards.

Comments should be emailed to incidentcoordination@nist.gov by July 29 and should include the sender's name, company name and a reference to "Computer Security Incident Coordination."

About the Author

Reid Davenport is an FCW editorial fellow. Connect with him on Twitter: @ReidDavenport.

The Fed 100

Save the date for 28th annual Federal 100 Awards Gala.

Featured

  • Social network, census

    5 predictions for federal IT in 2017

    As the Trump team takes control, here's what the tech community can expect.

  • Rep. Gerald Connolly

    Connolly warns on workforce changes

    The ranking member of the House Oversight Committee's Government Operations panel warns that Congress will look to legislate changes to the federal workforce.

  • President Donald J. Trump delivers his inaugural address

    How will Trump lead on tech?

    The businessman turned reality star turned U.S. president clearly has mastered Twitter, but what will his administration mean for broader technology issues?

  • Login.gov moving ahead

    The bid to establish a single login for accessing government services is moving again on the last full day of the Obama presidency.

  • Shutterstock image (by Jirsak): customer care, relationship management, and leadership concept.

    Obama wraps up security clearance reforms

    In a last-minute executive order, President Obama institutes structural reforms to the security clearance process designed to create a more unified system across government agencies.

  • Shutterstock image: breached lock.

    What cyber can learn from counterterrorism

    The U.S. has to look at its experience in developing post-9/11 counterterrorism policies to inform efforts to formalize cybersecurity policies, says a senior official.

Reader comments

Please post your comments here. Comments are moderated, so they may not appear immediately after submitting. We will not post comments that we consider abusive or off-topic.

Please type the letters/numbers you see above

More from 1105 Public Sector Media Group