Cyberspace Solarium Commission Provides Guidance to the Incoming Biden-Harris Administration

Co-Chairs Offer Insights to Position the United States to Prevent, Withstand, Respond to, and Recover from Significant Cyber Incidents

Press Release

Washington, D.C. (January 21, 2021) - U.S. Senator Angus King (I-Maine) and Congressman Mike Gallagher (R-Wis), co-chairs of the Cyberspace Solarium Commission (CSC), today released its roadmap towards a stronger cyberdefense posture for the future White House: “Transition Book for the Incoming Biden Administration.”

In the months since the launch of the Commission's final report, many of the Commission’s critical recommendations have been enacted in legislation, but there is still more work to be done to meet the urgent challenges facing our nation, and much can be achieved through coordinated and thoughtful executive action. As President Biden has noted, cyberattacks like the Solar Winds incident “constitute… grave risk[s] to our national security.”

The new report – the fifth to be released by the Commission – identifies possible early policy achievements, suggests priorities for action over the coming months and years, and outlines areas where the White House can work with Congress to promote a positive legislative agenda for cybersecurity to ensure that the United States is best positioned to prevent, withstand, respond to, and ultimately recover from significant cyber incidents. The priorities outlined in the white paper reflect the bipartisan consensus of the Commission and include both executive actions and a robust legislative agenda for the Biden-Harris administration.

To meet the cybersecurity challenges facing the nation head on, the Commission proposes three priorities for the first 100 days of the administration:

  1. Establish the Office of the National Cyber Director;

  2. Develop and promulgate a National Cyber Strategy to include a clear declaratory policy of cost imposition upon those who in initiate significant cyber attacks against us, and

  3. Improve the coherence and impact of existing government cybersecurity efforts and further strengthen partnerships with the private sector.

In addition, the Commission highlights a set of six longer-term priorities for the administration, including:

  1. Restoring American international cyber leadership;

  2. Investing more in the people we need to defend against malicious cyberattacks;

  3. Investing in the resiliency of our infrastructure;

  4. Safeguarding America’s high-tech supply chains;

  5. Preserving America’s military cyber advantage; and

  6. Protecting America’s full spectrum war fighting and deterrence capabilities from cyber threats.

Finally, the Commission outlines six legislative priorities for the administration aimed at:

  1. Building better cyber expertise in government;

  2. Institutionalizing international cyber engagement;

  3. Promoting a more secure national cyber ecosystem;

  4. Investing in cyber resiliency;

  5. Creating support for victims of cybercrime; and

  6. Protecting American democracy.

The members of the Cyberspace Solarium Commission look forward to working closely with the Biden-Harris Administration on areas of agreement, just as it did with the Trump-Pence Administration.