Cybersecurity meeting between Biden and the tech giants- Apple, Amazon and Microsoft

It is reported that a meeting has been scheduled in the White House where CEOs of the reputed companies, namely, Apple, Amazon and Microsoft are to meet President Joe Biden. The meeting is planned for Wednesday (25th August’21).

Various sources confirmed that Andy Jassy, the CEO of Amazon will attend the meeting. In addition, Satya Nadella who is the CEO of Microsoft and Tim Cook – CEO of Amazon, are also reportedly up for the meeting on Wednesday. Sources say that IBM CEO Arvind Krishna is also called for the meeting. However, there is a straight declination of the statement from IBM. In fact, reports say that Google’s CEO was also supposed to be a part of the meeting.

Reasons behind the meeting

One of the major issues that has been bothering internet users all around the globe is cybersecurity threats. Privacy is at stake and that is something which cannot be compromised at any cost. Common man like always has been at the threshold of notorious cyber-attacks. What has triggered the U.S. Government recently is the cyberthreats that are directed against high-profile celebrities.

Cyber crime effects the global economy and the estimated amount that it costs is around 1 trillion, more than 1% of global GDP. The data breach costs as much as $3.86 million. It has increased to $4.24 million in 2021. Therefore, it becomes extremely important for any government to ensure cyber security.

Some cyber attacks and data breaches in the recent years

  • Solar Winds Attack was one of the notable and devastating cyber-attacks of 2020. It enabled intruders to gain access to client’s devices. Microsoft had to suffer the outburst of clients along with U.S. defence agencies.
  • FireEye, being a prominent cybersecurity firm had also been a victim of cyber attack back in December, 2020. This attack has to be associated with the Solar Winds attack whose intensity was detected by FireEye, after it confessed that it had been attacked too. This is reported by the President of Microsoft Brad Smith himself.
  • Colonial Pipeline hack that took place very recently on 7th May’21 that ceased the working of a major pipeline. The digital systems of the pipeline were shut down for several days, affecting its customers and the East Coast airlines.
  • Kaseya experienced a terrible ransomware attack in July this year. Attackers were able to take down over 1,500 global businesses along with several individual systems.
  • On August 22, the State Department was reportedly attacked as notified by the Department of Defense Cyber Command.

After the FireEye cyber-attack, a bill was passed that required the private sector companies to disclose cyberattacks. So far, this information was not publicised since these private firms work with government agencies. But improvements are being made to ensure cyber security that would also benefit these private agencies in terms of being sued by shareholders on account of not reporting a data breach.

Things likely to be discussed in the meeting

Biden’s call for a meeting with the reputed companies was being planned from July’21, given that the U.S. had faced so many ransomware attacks since the beginning of 2021. The U.S municipalities and other associated government systems have also been at the threshold of repeated cyber-attacks and data breaches. These are to be addressed in the meeting.

United States have also made frequent accusations against countries like Russia and China, suspecting them of training professional hackers and supporting these cyber-attacks on U.S. A part of the discussion would definitely be on how U.S. can fight the foreign intruders by building up strong security. The President believes that U.S. is now involved in a “real shooting war” and the country would strongly condemn the cybercrimes with the aid of tech giants.

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