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National Institute of Standards and Technology’s (NIST) 3rd Cybersecurity Framework Workshop will be July 10-12, 2013, in San Diego, CA.

After President Barack Obama issued Executive Order 13636, “Improving Critical Infrastructure Cybersecurity,” NIST got the responsibility to work with industry to develop a voluntary framework — incorporating existing standards, guidelines and best practices — that institutions could use to reduce the risk of cyber attacks. Critical infrastructure includes those industries vital to the nation’s economy, security and health such as finance, energy, transportation, food and agriculture and health care.

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More than 700 people attended NIST’s first two workshops, in Washington, D.C., and Pittsburgh, with more than 2,500 people participating online. The workshops aim to bring together a broad set of participants from critical infrastructure owners and operators, industry associations, standards development organizations, individual companies and government agencies. The goal is to maximize private-sector input in developing the framework. Participants should actively assist in the framework development process through hands-on participation in breakout sessions.

“We’re holding these workshops in different parts of the country, but our focus is on the nation’s critical infrastructure,” said project leader Adam Sedgewick. “We have received considerable input already, but we look forward to hearing from both new industry representatives and those who are already engaged with the framework development. We will provide a draft outline and describe the approach of the framework, so it is a crucial time for all relevant industries to be involved to help us fill in the gaps and produce a framework that will be effective and widely used on a voluntary basis.”

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NIST expects the third workshop to result in a more detailed draft of the Cybersecurity Framework and a corresponding list of current standards, guidelines and practices, as well as important gaps. A final workshop is on tap for September 2013, after which NIST will release the official preliminary framework for public comment. According to the executive order, the final framework must be ready by February 2014.

Click here to register to attend the workshop. The University of California, San Diego, and the National Health Information Sharing and Analysis Center are hosting the event.

Click here to view the “Improving Critical Infrastructure Cybersecurity” document.

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