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Former CIA director explains cybersecurity threats facing the U.S.

Michael Hayden 

Former CIA Director General Michael Hayden discussed some of the cybersecurity risks facing the U.S. in an interview with Ed Orgon, president of the New York-based Torrenzano Group, a high-stakes issues and reputation management firm.

General Hayden was particularly concerned about many of the cybersecurity threats that may affect both private industry and government entities. "The primary sin is people out there stealing your stuff. It is your pin number, it is your credit card number, if you are an industry it is your intellectual property, it is your trade secrets. If you are a state actor, it is going after another state’s secrets and so on. The evil going on out there right now is just theft of thought, theft of intellectual property, in one form or another...for whatever reason, they want to punish you. They want to take your network down, they want to manipulate your data, they want to delay, destroy, degrade or deny you your information," said General Hayden.

He explained the prevalence of cybersecurity threats and emphasized that government entities, businesses, and individuals will need to take steps to prepare and defend themselves against cyber attacks. "In this domain (cyber), individuals, institutions, enterprises are going to have to defend themselves far more than we think we have to defend ourselves against physical threat. The kinds of things we have a right to expect our government to do to protect us in physical space, it will not do in cyberspace."

Cybersecurity threats can come from a number of sources, he explained. "The Chinese, a powerful nation state, are not attacking just the U.S. government, they are going after U.S. enterprise. That is not a fair fight. That playing field is not level and you've now got the resources of a nation state coming after private American businesses.”

A full transcript of the interview with General Hayden is available online on The Torrenzano Group’s website at http://www.torrenzano.com/interviews-detail.php?interview=16.

In addition to New York, the Torrenzano Group has locations in Austin, London, San Francisco, and Washington, D.C. Please visit its website at www.Torrenzano.com for more information.

General Hayden is a principal at the Chertoff Group. He served as CIA director from 2006-2009 and director of the National Security Agency from 1999-2005. For more information about the Chertoff Group, please visit its website at www.ChertoffGroup.com


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