The Security Board is a consulting company that has been involved in an effort assisting both private/public institutions to identify and secure their critical infrastructures against an All Hazards environment.
In November of 2002, representatives of the White House and Homeland Security, (e.g. Richard Clarke/Former Chairman President’s Critical Infrastructure Protection Committee) met with members of The Security Board. On behalf of both the White House and Homeland Security, The Security Board was funded to identify infrastructure interdependencies for the Chicago financial community.
In March 2003 the infrastructure selected for initial analysis was telecommunications. The analysis concluded that the financial corporations, and all other corporations, were potentially vulnerable to single points of failure. Further, the assessment identified linkages between and among telecommunication infrastructures and multiple other infrastructures that could, in the event of a catastrophic fail over or disruption adversely impact the 13 most critical infrastructures identified by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.
The economic (and national) security of the nation, and the welfare of its citizens, is highly dependent upon a vast network of highly complex, automated, interdependent national and global systems and services. These critical infrastructures produce and distribute energy, run communications, control transportation, determine the availability of food, water, and emergency care, and provide other essential services. Most of them are privately owned and operated and not subject to government control. Many of them have thousands of critical components. Some are highly regulated, but others are not. Many of these infrastructures are aging and are in need of repair or are inadequate to meet growing customer demand. They are vulnerable to cyber, as well as physical, disruptions.
Because of infrastructure interdependencies, a catastrophic fail over/well-planned attack could result in cascading impacts that could paralyze a region. Of particular concern are those regions within the United States that are a major hub of economic activity and where there are located a significant number of major transportation and regional trade organizations, as well as other critical infrastructure components. A terrorist attack, certain unintentional acts, natural disaster, or multiple disruptions could cause major, prolonged damage to these organizations, and consequently to economic and regional interests.
Recent catastrophe’s demonstrated that preventative measures can be compromised exploiting today’s infrastructure vulnerabilities, particularly regional infrastructure interdependencies. Companies may take a prudent approach to security — conducting threat and vulnerability assessments, undertaking mitigation measures, and assessments and training — and yet remain acutely vulnerable because of limited understanding of interdependencies, unprepared for regional disruptions that will become the norm in an increasingly interconnected world. Organizations may not be a direct target of attack or disaster and yet still be significantly impacted.
Many of the tools used today provide pieces of infrastructure information but they do not provide a full picture of linkages across, between, and among infrastructures. The Security Board has tailored an assessment designed specifically to identify these linkages as they pertain to individual client’s Base of business. The assessment will identify what needs to be done to enhance preparedness, reliability and provide critical infrastructure visibility. The study objective is to provide solid evidence to pursue changes (opening eyes), and provide the visual view needed for future location/decision/planning for critical assets.