Bush shows teeth, says Clinton 'didn't take cyber-security seriously'

In advance of President Obama's State of the Union address Tuesday evening, Jeb Bush on Tuesday criticised Hillary Clinton's cyber-security approach.

In a Business Insider op-ed, the former Florida governor and Republican presidential candidate released his “plan to address the monumental threat of cyber-attacks”.

Bush led off his cyber strategy with a thinly veiled attack on Clinton's lax cyber policies as secretary of state. “We can't trust someone as our next president who didn't take cyber-security seriously when she was secretary of state,” he wrote.

On Monday, Fox News quoted an unnamed FBI source as saying that “many previous public corruption cases have been made and successfully prosecuted with much less evidence than what is emerging in this investigation”.

Last May the Florida Department of State issued a notification for the inadvertent release of personal information to 13,000 people on a wait list for disability services from 2003 whose names, dates of birth and social security numbers were in former Bush's emails released in answer to a public records request.

After the department began releasing the records in December 2014, they were found, in February, to contain personal information on 45,000 Florida residents that had not been properly redacted. 

In his op-ed piece, Bush also argued for stronger private/public partnership efforts in the opinion piece. “Cyber-security is not solely the responsibility of the federal government, but the next president must harness an array of tools to confront this challenge,” he wrote. “As president, I will ensure the private sector is provided the most current threat information, the best practices and standards to protect systems and critical infrastructure, and a legal framework that better allows it to defend itself.”

Previous attempts to foster cooperation between government agencies and private enterprises have been marked by the private sectors' resistance to attempts by legislators to create policies that industry professionals say would undermine the information security of customers, such as calls from politicians supporting backdoors and decryption.

“If you create encryption, it makes it harder for the American government to do its job — while protecting civil liberties — to make sure that evildoers aren't in our midst,” Bush said in August.

The US is not the only nation that has faced a strained relationship with the private sector. Tech firms have also opposed legislation proposed by other nations – including the UK and China – that would task technology companies with providing access to customer information.

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