President Trump has reversed an Obama-era memorandum on how and when the US government can deploy cyberweapons against adversaries, in an effort to loosen restrictions on such operations, The Wall Street Journal wrote, citing sources familiar with the matter.
The executive order signed by Trump on Wednesday is a retreat from an Obama-era memorandum known as Presidential Policy Directive 20 signed by then-Presidnet Barack Obama in February 2009, outlining an interagency process to be followed before the United States uses cyberattacks, particularly those targeting the country’s adversaries.
President Trump earlier criticized the excessively bureaucratic procedure of implementing the Presidential Policy Directive 20 complaining about the large number of federal agencies involved in the process.
On June 18, the Pentagon authorized the US Cyber Command to raid foreign networks almost on a daily basis hoping that that such pre-emptive measures would help disable cyberweapons before they could be used.
Created in 2009, the US Cyber Command (USCYBERCOM) unifies the direction of cyberspace operations, strengthens the Pentagon’s cyberspace capabilities, and integrates and bolsters its cyber expertise. While originally created with a defensive mission in mind, it has increasingly been viewed as an offensive force.