In August 2018, Congress authorized the Cyberspace Solarium Commission (Commission), a blue-ribbon panel tasked with examining and developing a strategic approach to defending the United States in cyberspace and protecting its advantages there. The Commission released its report on March 11, 2020. This In Focus provides an overview of the Commission and its report’s findings and recommendations.
Over the course of nearly a year and a half, the Commission investigated approaches to defend the nation from significant cyber attacks and ways to implement those approaches. Its authorizing legislation highlighted three policy options: deterrence, norms-based regimes, and persistent engagement with adversaries in cyberspace. The Commission was not bound to those options, and indeed expanded its research. For its work, the Commission defined priorities, conducted cost-benefit analyses, evaluated the effectiveness of the current national policy for cyberspace, and considered restructuring the federal government to manage cyber risks.