Cybersecurity

Amazon, IBM leaders among those convening at White House for cyber meeting Wednesday

The White House seen from the North Lawn
UPI Photo

The CEOs of Amazon and IBM will be among a group of leaders from a wide spectrum of tech companies and organizations set to meet with President Biden at the White House on Wednesday.

Individuals familiar with the matter confirmed to The Hill on Tuesday that both Amazon CEO Andy Jassy and IBM CEO Arvind Krishna will attend the meeting, which the Biden administration announced last month. 

A spokesperson for Bank of America also confirmed that chairman and CEO Brian Moynihan will participate in the meeting.

Bloomberg News reported Monday that Apple CEO Tim Cook and Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella will attend. Microsoft declined to comment Tuesday, and Apple did not respond to The Hill’s request for comment. Reuters first reported Monday that Jassy would attend. 

White House press secretary Jen Psaki told reporters Tuesday that addressing cybersecurity threats requires a “whole-of-nation effort,” and she noted that a wide array of government and industry leaders would be involved in the meeting.

“The president, members of the Cabinet and his national security team, and private sector and education leaders are going to be meeting to discuss how we can work together to collectively improve the nation’s cybersecurity,” Psaki told reporters during the daily briefing.

“The president will be joined by leaders from the tech, the critical infrastructure, insurance and education sectors, and we will have more details for you later today, but I just wanted to note that is happening tomorrow, and there is of course a lot of ground that we will be covering,” she added. 

The meeting comes after months of escalating cyberattacks that have faced Biden since his first day in office. 

These have included the SolarWinds hack, first discovered in December, which involved Russian government-backed hackers compromising nine federal agencies and 100 private sector groups last year, along with Chinese hackers exploiting vulnerabilities in Microsoft’s Exchange Server, impacting thousands more businesses. 

Ransomware has also been a growing national security concern following high-profile attacks by Russian-linked cyber criminal groups on Colonial Pipeline, meat producer JBS USA and software company Kaseya in recent months.

Biden levied sanctions on Russia in April for its involvement in the SolarWinds hack and brought up cybersecurity concerns with Russian President Vladimir Putin during their in-person meeting in Geneva earlier this year. 

In addition, the Biden administration joined with allied nations last month in formally calling out the Chinese government for exploiting the Microsoft Exchange Server vulnerabilities, and Biden signed an executive order in May intended to strengthen federal cybersecurity. 

Tags Amazon Amazon Andy Jassy Apple Arvind Krishna China Colonial Pipeline Computer security cybersecurity IBM IBM JBS USA Jen Psaki Joe Biden kaseya Microsoft Ransomware Reuters Russia Satya Nadella SolarWinds SolarWinds hack Tim Cook Vladimir Putin
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