U.S. Cybersecurity Transactions with Russian Spy Agency

Not a day goes by that Americans don't get at least three news notifications about the U.S.' relationship with Russia. In December 2016, the former Obama administration tightened sanctions on Russia as a direct result of their interference with the U.S. election.

In a press conference, President Obama said that \"all Americans should be alarmed by Russia's actions. [The sanctions were enacted] after repeated private and public warnings that the [U.S.] issued to the Russian government. [The sanctions] are a necessary and appropriate response to efforts to harm U.S. interests in violation of established international norms of behavior.\"

Once the Trump administration took office in late January, the Treasury Department modified the sanctions on FSB, Russia's intelligence agency. In loosening the sanctions on FSB, the United States Treasury supported U.S. companies making what Reuters terms: \"limited transactions.\" U.S. companies now have the permission to make \"limited transactions with FSB that are needed to gain approval to import information technology products into Russia.\"

What does the FSB do? The FSB serves as both an intelligence agency and regulator. "The FSB regulates the importation of software and hardware that contains cryptography." A Treasury Department official told reporters that the minimal sanctions change was in the works before Trump took office. U.S. companies complained that they could not import technology products because of the sanctions, and as such the sanctions needed to be restructured.

As reported by USA Today, Russian officials were pleased with the changes in the sanctions, but there are various members of Congress who believe there needs to be stricter sanctions on the government that influenced the U.S. election.

Why You Need Cybersecurity
The Trump administration remains wishy-washy about Russia's involvement in the U.S. election. The 45th president has continued to proclaim his respect for Vladimir Putin despite Putin's involvement in cyberattacks on the U.S. government and the Kremlin's multitudinous human rights violations.

Though improving foreign relations with leaders the U.S. has not always seen eye-to-eye with has been applauded, (consider President Obama's move with Cuba) to actively seek to work with a government that has aggressively targeted the U.S. government and mislead the American public is highly suspect. What does working with Putin do for the American public? Why is Mr. Trump and his administration so keen to seek a relationship with Russia's president?

It's easy to drive yourself insane with questions and conspiracy theories. To every sane American in the U.S., Trump's coziness with Putin is questionable, to say the very least.

If the sitting administration is not going to make an effort to protect your cybersecurity, it'll be left to you to take care of yourself. Does your business have a cybersecurity policy? If a nefarious cybercriminal tried to hack into your network today, would they be able to? What would the damage cost your company? What would the damage be to your reputation? These are questions Trump and his team are choosing to ignore, but you shouldn't. Your cybersecurity is important, stay safe and get a cyber insurance coverage plan with CyberPolicy today.

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