Cybersecurity is a national priority. Manufacturers, with their leadership in technology and connected devices, are on the front lines of protecting our nation’s most critical assets. Our industry needs the U.S. government and all of its resources to be an effective partner in combating cyber threats now and in the future.
That’s what the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) would say if we had 30 minutes to talk cybersecurity with our next president.
The NAM sits on the board of the Internet Security Alliance, and we are participating in its 15th anniversary event today in Washington, D.C. We are joining leaders from a diverse set of sectors to release a set of recommendations advising the next president on what he/she can do to enhance our nation’s cybersecurity. It is called the Cybersecurity Social Contract.
Manufacturers are the world’s leading innovators and have embraced disruptive technologies, such as the Internet of Things (IoT). These new innovations are creating tremendous opportunity for firms of all sizes, but they are also increasing the size of the cybersecurity challenge.
As the cyberattack surface grows, manufacturers are doing everything possible to secure their shop floors and products. We take very seriously the need to protect our intellectual property and keep our machines running. But with cyberthreats coming from every direction, we need the government to play a role in defending our nation.
The next president can help lead the efforts to determine the most cost-effective elements of cyber defense when even the smallest firms are facing the daunting task of nation-state attacks. Agencies such as the National Science Foundation and the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency can make funding research in IoT security a primary focus. And most importantly, the next administration can make outreach to the manufacturing sector job number one.
Manufacturers will continue to push the innovation envelope to develop and deliver better products to our customers. This will help us grow and create new jobs here at home. We need our government to do everything it can to facilitate this growth, including making cybersecurity of all manufacturing sectors a priority.