New directive addresses critical infrastructure security

In February 2013, the White House released the Presidential Policy Directive on Critical Infrastructure Security and Resilience (PPD-21). PPD-21 advances a national unity of effort to strengthen and maintain secure, functioning, and resilient critical infrastructure, and tasks various government entities with securing U.S. critical infrastructure against both physical and cyber threats.

PPD-21 has three strategic imperatives. The directive will refine and clarify functional relationships across the federal government to advance the national unity of effort to strengthen critical infrastructure security and resilience, while enabling efficient information exchange by identifying baseline data and systems requirements for the federal government. The directive will also implement an integration and analysis function to inform planning and operational decisions regarding critical infrastructure.

The directive also assigns roles and responsibilities to several government departments and entities. Among their specified duties under PPD-21, the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) Secretary of Homeland Security is responsible for identifying security and resilience functions that are necessary for effective public-private engagement with all critical infrastructure sectors. The Secretary also develops a national plan in coordination with Sector-Specific Agencies (SSAs) and other critical infrastructure partners, and integrates and coordinates Federal cross-sector security and resilience activities.

SSAs have a variety of duties and roles in addressing threats to each critical infrastructure sector. Among these duties is coordinating and cooperating with DHS and other SSAs, including the Departments of Justice, State, Defense, Commerce, and Interior, as well as the Director of National Intelligence.

For more information about PPD-21, please follow the link below.
Presidential Policy Directive 21 – Critical Infrastructure Security and Resilience, White House

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