Doing It Wrong: Not Letting the Terrorists Win
To figure out how we got here, we have to go back a bit.
WaPo, May 2008:
America's spy agencies for the first time would be tasked with gathering intelligence on threats to the nation's computer networks under a policy that could be detailed by the White House as early as next week, a senior administration official said Wednesday.
Speaking at a security conference in Washington, the official said the Bush administration wants to harness the intelligence community's offensive capabilities in defense of government and civilian computer systems.
"We've never looked at how all the unique things this government wages against others could be used to inform our defensive posture," said the official, who asked not to be named because the White House has not yet released details about the plan. "We really need to move from [the reality that] the advantage is always with the attacker to how we can have our offense better inform our defense to shrink that gap."
In January, President Bush signed a directive authorizing the intelligence agencies, including the National Security Agency, to monitor all federal network traffic to prevent attackers from breaking in and from stealing sensitive data or disrupting critical systems.
Fast-forward to May, 2011:
The House on Friday overwhelmingly passed a bill to fund U.S. spy agencies, using the legislation as an opportunity to commend the operatives who were critical in hunting down al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden.
The vote was 392-15, a reflection of the strong bipartisan support and the goodwill toward the intelligence community after bin Laden's death.
From Investopedia: "Goodwill is seen as an intangible asset on the balance sheet because it is not a physical asset such as buildings and equipment. Goodwill typically reflects the value of intangible assets such as a strong brand name, good customer relations, good employee relations and any patents or proprietary technology."
Tangentially related: Why Did the U.S. Military Buy 500 Fake Internet Personas?