JUL 08, 2021 | US
NIST Defines ‘Critical Software,’ Implications to Follow
Government Technology, July 8, 2021
By Jule Pattison-Gordon
The White House likely expects forthcoming EO-critical security standards to ripple out to the wider software landscape, beyond just government procurements, according to Henry Young, who previously worked at NIST and now is director of policy at the Software Alliance (BSA), a US-headquartered international software industry advocacy group. The idea is that vendors working for the federal government will simply follow these rules for all their products, making safer products more easily available to everyone.
Should security rules be too rigid, however, vendors might instead create compliant products for the federal government and less secure alternative versions to sell to the general public, Young told GT. He did not see significant risks of this happening, he said.
Aaron Cooper, BSA vice president of Global Policy, told GT that the security requirements NIST settles on will need to be flexible enough to ensure the guidance stays relevant and useful for the long term. Overly prescriptive rules may make sense for the present day but won’t keep up as technology and risks evolve.
For example, a hypothetical policy requiring software verify users via four-digit PINs would be wise 20 years ago but become a liability if it were still in place today, because it would prevent use of biometric or multifactor authentication, Cooper said.
BSA |“软件联盟”(www.bsa.org) 是全球软件行业的主要倡导者，旨在代表该行业，向政府和国际市场发声。其成员包括全球最具创新力的公司，这些公司制定的软件解决方案，不但能够刺激经济，还能提升现代生活的品质。
BSA 的总部位于华盛顿特区，其营运机构遍布 30 多个国家。BSA 凭借这些机构，率先涉足合规项目，以期促进使用合法软件、倡导制定公共政策，并以此培养技术创新能力，以及推动发展数字经济。