The way business is transacted, government operates, and national defense is conducted have changed. These activities now rely on an interdependent network of information technology infrastructures called cyberspace. The National Strategy to Secure Cyberspace provides a framework for protecting this infrastructure that is essential to our economy, security, and way of life. In the past few years, threats in cyberspace have risen dramatically. The policy of the United States is to protect against the debilitating disruption of the operation of information systems for critical infrastructures and, thereby, help to protect the people, economy, and national security of the United States.We must act to reduce our vulnerabilities to these threats before they can be exploited to damage the cyber systems supporting our Nation's critical infrastructures and ensure that such disruptions of cyberspace are infrequent, of minimal duration, manageable, and cause the least damage possible.
Securing cyberspace is an extraordinarily difficult strategic challenge that requires a coordinated and focused effort from our entire society-the federal government, state and local governments, the private sector, and the American people. To engage Americans in securing cyberspace, a draft version of this strategy was released for public comment, and ten town hall meetings were held around the Nation to gather input on the development of a national strategy. Thousands of people and numerous organizations participated in these town hall meetings and responded with comments. I thank them all for their continuing participation. The cornerstone of America's cyberspace security strategy is and will remain a public-private partnership. The federal government invites the creation of, and participation in, public-private partnerships to implement this strategy. Only by acting together can we build a more secure future in cyberspace.
George Bush, forty-first president of the United States (1989A-1993), is the coauthor with Brent Scowcroft of the 1998 critically acclaimed book ""A World Transformed."" He and his wife, Barbara, live in Houston, Texas, and Kennebunkport, Maine.