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Third presidential debate: Both candidates flunk cybersecurity
Obama and Romney each mentioned cybersecurity and hacking once, with no follow-up detail. After the last four years, they should have said much more.
Obama used the word cybersecurity once during last night's third and final presidential debate, with no elaboration whatsoever. Romney mentioned systems getting hacked once, during a segment on China.
Considering all the hacking into the systems of private enterprise and the U.S. government these last four years, I'm surprised. Both of these guys flunked.
We heard a lot from Obama about "partnerships" he's set up to work for Middle East peace and some half-hearted words of support for Israel. We heard Romney talk about the need for more battleships, followed by Obama's snarky response on how "we have these things called aircraft carriers." We heard a lot from both candidates about terrorism and defense spending -- all important topics.
But we heard almost nothing about cybersecurity. The topic should have been a full segment in itself.
So now who will this undecided voter choose? Last night's final debate got me no closer to the answer.
Obama has gotten more accomplished on cybersecurity than his predecessors, mostly because there's been more public awareness in recent years, as each new data breach and DDoS made national and global headlines. Shortly after taking office, he was quick to give a speech on cybersecurity and announced the creation of a White House cybersecurity advisor, though it was the end of that first year before he hired Howard Schmidt.
There may be a lot going on behind the scenes we don't know about. There are specific operations he probably shouldn't discuss publicly. But the President could have at least said something more about cyber attacks as an issue moving higher up the priority ladder. Romney said nothing last night about what he would do to take things further.
On Election Day I just might flip a coin before deciding who to vote for. Or I'll write in another name. Since write-ins never stand a chance in a presidential election and my vote would be symbolic, I'd feel free to pick from the best of all the dead presidents: Reagan, both Roosevelts, Lincoln.
That's how I feel this morning. If anyone wants to convince me that either candidate has a better plan going forward, I'm all ears.
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