At the request of the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs, the Markle Task Force on National Security in the Information Age today provided written testimony for the Committee’s hearing on “Information Sharing in the Era of WikiLeaks: Balancing Security and Collaboration.”
In the testimony, the Markle Task Force concludes that the lesson the US government should take away from the WikiLeaks release of sensitive and classified US documents is that security professionals should not reduce or stop sharing critical counter-terrorism information.
A substantial change has occurred throughout government. Information sharing has become more widespread, thus enabling security professionals to better respond to new threats. Instead of reversing this progress, the government must improve the capability to better share information while concurrently developing the policies, processes, and organizational culture that control access and use to that information.
Specifically, the Markle Task Force recommends building a standard of authorized use and immutable audit logs into the Information Sharing Environment. Together, these tools can both prevent unauthorized disclosure of information and help build confidence in the Information Sharing Environment.
Technology is changing and improving at an incredibly rapid pace. In order to better protect Americans, the government should embrace new technologies instead of fighting them. Only in this manner can the government build an Information Sharing Environment that those who are working to protect us can trust and use, and that the American people can trust to protect their privacy and civil liberties.