Trump relaxes rules on US cyberattacks

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The Trump administration has reversed a set of cybersecurity rules put in place by its predecessor, reports have revealed.

These rules, established by President Obama, dictated how US government agencies engaged in cyber warfare, and prevented them from engaging in domestic cyber operations, except in cases of emergency.

It is not clear if the Trump administration created its own set of rules, or simply rolled-back Obama's, which it dubbed as 'unnecessarily restrictive'.

The Obama directive, officially titled “Presidential directive 20” was publicly unveiled by the whistle-blower Edward Snowden, back in 2013. It showed that the government should not engage in domestic cyber operations, unless the situation is dire.

According to the Huffington Post, the Trump administration saw Directive 20 as an impediment, and not a useful framework for interagency communication, “a stance that could signal an increase in the U.S. engaging in such attacks moving forward,” it said.

Allegedly, national security adviser John Bolton was behind the decision.

The news comes at the time when the media are reporting of new Chinese hacking attempts against the US government and company websites. Apparently, a group of hackers from a Chinese university (dubbed ‘Chinese MIT’), looked for flaws and cracks in the system, to try and get inside websites and networks of the Alaskan government, among other places.

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