Ana Viseu on Fri, 12 Oct 2001 07:08:59 +0200 (CEST)

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<nettime> Bush's administration new network

[The Bush administration wants to create a new network that runs parallel
to the internet but has no links to it. This new network would be called
'Govnet' and critical information to the govt. would be communicated
thorough it. It seems like Bush's administration is not really aware of the
fact that no network is secure, no matter how many 'locks' you put in place
because there is always going to be an element you cannot totally control:
people. Best. Ana]
by Robert Lemos, ZDNet News
Oct 11,2001

Should the government get its own Net?

The Bush Administration has apparently decided that the Internet isn't 
secure enough for its needs and has proposed a new network be created to 
communicate critical government information.

The Bush administration has apparently decided that the Internet isn't 
secure enough for its needs and has proposed a new network be created to 
communicate critical government information.

The new network, dubbed Govnet, is the brainchild of Richard Clarke, the 
newly appointed presidential adviser for cyberspace security, and is 
intended to carry data, voice-over-IP and possibly video.

"Planning for this network has been going on for several months," Clarke 
said in a statement Wednesday, adding that the General Services 
Administration--the agency responsible for providing service and equipment 
to the U.S. government--will play a critical role. "We need the combination 
of skills the GSA has to establish this network quickly."

The agency posted a so-called request for information on its Web site 
Wednesday, calling for the high-tech industry to create potential 
blueprints for the new network.

The proposal outlines a network that uses the current Internet protocols 
that would be limited to communications between government agencies and 
other authorized users. "There will be no interconnections or gateways to 
the Internet or other public or private networks," the RFI said.

In addition, the proposal requires that all data on the network be 
encrypted using the current standard recommended by the National Security 
Agency and that the network be immune to worms, viruses, denial-of-service 
attacks and other Internet hazards.

During the announcement of his new position Tuesday, Clarke explained why a 
secure network for critical government services is needed.

"Our economy, our national defense, increasingly our very way of life 
depends upon the operation--secure and safe operation--of critical 
infrastructures that in turn depend on cyberspace," he said. He made no 
mention of the Govnet at the time.

However, the idea of a separate Internet for critical government services 
is not a new one for Clarke. Last December, at Microsoft's SafeNet 
Conference, Clarke proposed just such a network.

"We need to bifurcate cyberspace: We need to have a secure zone in 
cyberspace and then we can leave the rest of it as it is today," he said at 
the time, when he had been serving as President Clinton's National 
Coordinator for security, counterterrorism and infrastructure protection on 
the National Security Council.

The secure Internet should have the equivalent of armed guards at the doors 
and no one would be anonymous, he added. "In this zone, privacy and 
security could be achieved, as long as there is no anonymity."

The request for information calls for a network release in the contiguous 
48 states, with the possibility of future expansion into Canada, Alaska and 
Hawaii. Industry proposals are due by Nov. 21, and Clarke intends to hold 
information-exchange meetings on the topic.

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Tudo vale a pena se a alma não é pequena.
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