Podcast: Michael Daniel on Cyber Diplomacy in the Age of Trump

In-brief: In an interview with The Security Ledger, former Obama Cybersecurity Advisor Michael Daniel weighs in on the changing US-Israel relationship, promoting cyber security talent in the U.S. and the future of the intelligence community’s ‘vulnerability equities’ program. 

The arrival of the Trump Administration has raised many questions about the direction in which U.S. government policy and relations will move. Nowhere is that more true than in Israel, one of the U.S.’s closest allies.

U.S. Israeli relations were tense during much of the Presidency of Barack Obama, but that didn’t stop close coordination between the two nations, notably on Stuxnet, the world’s first documented cyber weapon, which was deployed against Iran’s Uranium Enrichment Facility at Natanz nearly a decade ago.

Relations between the government of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and President Trump are warmer. But the reset has not been without its mishaps. President Trump famously slipped classified Israeli intelligence on ISIS bomb making capabilities to Russian Diplomats during an Oval Office visit.

There are still many questions to be answered, including on the matter of cooperation on future cyber operations. At a conference hosted last week in Tel Aviv, President Trump’s Homeland Security Advisor, Tom Bossert, announced a joint US Israeli working group on cyber security issues, designed to identify and prevent nascent attacks.

J. Michael Daniel is the President of the Cyber Threat Alliance.

To get some insight into where the US relationship with Israel on cyber security may go next, we sat down with Michael Daniel, President of the Cyber Threat Alliance and Cybersecurity Coordinator under President Barack Obama.

I met up with Mike on the sidelines of the Cyber Week conference and recorded this conversation about the US Israel relationship, U.S. efforts to promote cyber security talent and whether the Trump Administration will continue holding so-called ‘vulnerability equities” – information on software vulnerabilities and exploits – that can be used in attacks.

[Check out Security Ledger coverage of Tel Aviv University’s Cyber Week here.]

Check our full conversation in our latest Security Ledger podcast or over at Soundcloud. You can also listen to it on iTunes.  As always, if you like our intro music, give some love to the group JoeLess Shoe, who recorded “Baxton,” the song we use in just about every podcast.

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