New U.S. Sanctions Treat Hackers Like Terrorists

President Barack Obama said Wednesday that the U.S. will now treat foreign hackers and cyber spies like terrorists and nuclear arms dealers. He signed an executive order that would allow the U.S. to freeze their assets and bar them from entering the country. The new powers would address a weakness in policy that has allowed a small number of bad cyber actors abroad to be sheltered from American authorities. It is “broad brush … at the same time, it’s narrow,” said Michael Daniel, White House cybersecurity coordinator, during a press call with reporters. He said the sanctions were meant to fill a policy gap in which “individuals carrying out significant malicious cyber activities are located in places where it’s difficult for our diplomatic or law enforcement tools to reach.”