Press Release

Gillibrand Statement on Importance of Network Security

May 29, 2009

D.C. –
With news that the FBI’s computer and email system shut down due to a
far-reaching virus, U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand issued the following
statement on the importance of protecting networks and online security, and
praising President Obama’s plans to name a cyber czar responsible for
protecting America’s network security:

“President Obama has made a great step
forward to make our internet systems more secure by appointing a cyber czar and
initiating a comprehensive review of our cyber security risks.  Today,
everything from drinking water to electric systems, from financial institutions
to military operations are tied into online systems that are vulnerable to
viruses and other attacks.  Recently there have been attempts to access
sensitive information at the FBI, NYPD and many other government and private
sector computer systems. This not only imperils the security and safety of our
military and security efforts – it endangers our nation’s economy and the
ability of our local law enforcement agencies to protect our citizens.

“President Obama’s report will be a first
step toward a solution that coordinates government and private sector resources
to minimize vulnerabilities and ensure effective communication between all
parts of the system.  As we move forward, I am particularly concerned by
attacks targeting our financial sector and fundamental resources, which could
devastate our economy and endanger the health and safety of millions of New

“I also believe that we must seek to work
assertively, not only to protect ourselves from ongoing attacks, but to stop
cyber security risks at the source.  That means getting more effective
cooperation from countries that are the source of many of these viruses, such
as Eastern Europe, Russia and China.  I plan to use my position on the
Foreign Relations Committee to enhance our resources to help law enforcement
and legal efforts overseas fight cyber crime and ensure that America’s foreign
policy makes cyber security a key issue as we consider our relationships with
other nations.”